"Barcelona / Such a beautiful horizon: Critical social infrastructure to promote art scene health resilience" sessions with BAR Tool 2018–19 participants

Poster produced for the 2015 seminar at the Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco. Photo: Latitudes.

Latitudes has been invited to lead three closed-door sessions with BAR Tool's 2018–19 participants Milagros Bedoya, Arash Fayez, Adëláide Feriot, Fran Glez, Céline Mathieu, Marina Salvo, Gabriella Torres-Ferrer. The sessions will take place on October 29, 2018; January 22 and March 5, 2019.

Titled "Barcelona / Such a beautiful horizon: Critical social infrastructure to promote art scene health resilience", the three-part seminar will draw on the qualitative analysis of the legacy of three meetings of the "Near Future Artworlds Curatorial Foresight Disruption Group" convened in 2015 (Vessel–MADA International Curatorial Retreat, Bari, Italy; Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco, USA; Eastside Projects, Birmingham, UK). The invitation is to collectively instigate a collective systematic review of proposed decisive factors that underpin the psychological fitness and physical well-being of a city art scene, with Barcelona as a case study.

With a focus on developing taxonomies and diagnostics, as well as therapies and triage, this strand of BAR Tool will culminate in a series of institutional simulations and operations. Viva! Barcelona! Such a beautiful horizon!

BAR TOOL is a practice-based training program articulated around research, production and presentation processes. Conceived by BAR project in collaboration with Fundació Antoni Tàpies and Fabra i Coats – Art Factory, Barcelona.


RELATED CONTENT:

  • Cover Story—June 2018: Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group 4 June 2018
  • Sediments of the Geologic Time 4-week residency at the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity 10 October 2017
  • Documentation of Latitudes' talks at the Athens Biennale summit and Tabakalera, Donostia-San Sebastián, November 2015 19 February 2016
  • 'Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group' seminar convenes in its third iteration in Birmingham's Eastside Projects, 15 November 2015 11 November 2015
  • Session with first-year participants of the MA Curatorial Practice at the California College of the Arts (CCA), San Francisco, 8 September 15 September 2015
  • Guest Faculty of the Thematic Residency 'Blueprint for Happiness' at The Banff Centre, Canada, 27 July–8 August 2015 16 July 2015 
  • Tutors of the 2015 International Curatorial Retreat, 9–13 May, Bari (Italy) 17 May 2015 
  • Lead Facilitators, Curating Lab 2014–Curatorial Intensive, National University of Singapore (11–14 June), symposium (14 June, 15–17h) and a field trip to Hong Kong (16–20 June) 30 May 2014




Workshop for Curating Lab 2014: Imagining an institution

After a morning lecture introducing a range of our projects to the 11 participants of Curating Lab 2014, we proposed a challenging exercise: to define a succinct "about us" paragraph for three imaginary institutions. (Named after the first three Pacific hurricanes of the 2014 season, no less.) Following the root of word "institution" (to establish, to set up), the task was not an architectural challenge nor a branding exercise, but one that first asked what practices are imagined to be initiated, how programmes are established and for whom are they set up.

Participants took into account the parameters we described for each of three art-institution typologies – a residency/studio programme; an annual festival and acommissioning body. After a one hour brainstorm within each group, participants came up with a paragraph that concisely communicated the "vision and values" of the new entities, responding to "what we do, how do we do it and why we do it that way".

The task wasn't oriented towards building a "business plan", though an integral part involved consideration of funding models, and who or what has a stake in the imagined organisation – city/state, philanthropists/donors, users/members/tickets, prizes/open calls, etc. We didn't expect job descriptions, but participants were encouraged to consider what kind of roles the staff within the imaginary institution might take up – would it have a core full-time team or occasional collaborators? What skills or roles would be taken up across curating, producing, publishing, researching, hosting, leadership, and so on?

The exercise was not to come up with a pitch to potential supporters (i.e. in future tense), but to exercise imagination in the present and to define what an organisation stands for and actually does in a succinct way. The aim was to think holistically about their "pet" organisation, its different programme strands and its relation to its local/international network.
  
1. CRISTINA – A residency/studio programme.
"Cristina provides residential, and studio facilities for national and international artists. It is based in several live/work spaces and as yet undefined rooms in a former school building in a small town on a remote island in an area of outstanding natural beauty. It is a day's travel to the nearest city. The local community of 800 people are mostly involved in fishing and farming."

2. AMANDA – An annual festival.
"Amanda is an event-based format and is based in a major densely-populated prosperous city with a strong corporate and media culture as well as several world-renowned museums,  contemporary art centres and universities. The events take place in a specific block of time and involve organised, extended presentations and places for viewing them."
 
3. BORIS A commissioning body.

"Boris invites artists to make temporary artworks in public spaces and locations that are not galleries or museums. It is based in a provincial port city that used to have a thriving economy based on heavy industry. The city is suffering from high unemployment, there are many abandoned buildings and wastelands."



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