LONGITUDES

Longitudes cuts across Latitudes’ projects and research with news, updates, and reportage.

Latitudes’ (extended) Environmental Policy Statement

“Postpetrolistic Internationale” choir performance by Christina Hemauer & Roman Keller on Maasvlakte, Rotterdam, 8 November 2009. Commissioned and produced by the Port of Rotterdam as part of “Portscapes”, with support and advice from SKOR and curated by Latitudes. Courtesy: SKOR / Photo: Paloma Polo.


Latitudes recently published an Environmental Policy Statement on the website, below is an extended version which we invite you to read:

Since its beginning in 2005, Latitudes’ curatorial practice has critically engaged with environmental concerns through contemporary art. This has included curating ambitious group exhibitions including 4.543 billion. The Matter of Matter” at the CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux in 2017, and Greenwashing” at the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo in 2008, or solo shows such as “Christina Hemauer & Roman Keller: United Alternative Energies” at Kunsthall Århus in 2011, as well as convening the three-day symposium “Art, Ecology and the Politics of Change” for the Sharjah Biennial 8 in 2007. 

Cover of “LAND, ART: A Cultural Ecology Handbook” edited by Max Andrews, and coordinated by Mariana Cánepa Luna. Published and commissioned by the Royal Society of Art in partnership with the Arts Council England, 2006. Photo: Robert Justamente.

Spread of UOVO magazine #14, a 500-page issue + two CDs guest edited by Latitudes, 2007. Photo: Alexis Zavialoff.

Cover and back cover of the exhibition catalogue “Greenwashing” (Archive Books, 2008), Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Torino. The 192-page full-colour catalogue embraced environmentally-conscious design with a degree of irony, each of the book's thirteen sections was printed on a different 'eco-paper' such as Shiro Alga Carta (produced by harvesting algae from the Venetian lagoon), KeayKolour Recycled Honey or Shiro Tree Free Naturale, alongside their corresponding eco-credentials. Photo: Latitudes. 

Pages of Lara Almarcegui's first monograph “Lara Almarcegui. Projects 1995–2010” (Archive Books, 2011) covering 15 years of her artistic practice, with commissioned texts by Cuauhtémoc Medina and Lars Bang Larsen, and an introduction by Latitudes. Photo: Latitudes.

Latitudes edited the landmark publication “Land, Art: A Cultural Ecology Handbook” in 2006, the 500-page green issue of UOVO magazine in 2007, and Lara Almarcegui’s first monograph in 2011, as well as writing texts including a catalogue essay for TBA21’s exhibition “Abundant Futures” entitled “Soil for Future Art Histories” (2023), and presenting the lecture “Curating in the Web of Life” for Garage Museum of Contemporary Art’s exhibition “The Coming World: Ecology as the New Politics 2030–2100” (2019). 

View of “Ocells perduts” (Stray Birds) (2021) by Laia Estruch in the exhibition “Panorama 21. Apunts per a un incendi dels ulls” (“Panorama 21: Notes for an Eye Fire”), MACBA Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, 22 October 2021–27 February 2022. Curated by Hiuwai Chu and Latitudes. Produced by MACBA Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona with the support of PUBLICS, Helsinki. Research supported by a Premis Ciutat de Barcelona 2020 grant from the Barcelona City Council. Photo: Roberto Ruiz. 

In terms of related public-realm commissions, we worked with Danish artist Tue Greenfort for The Royal Society of Arts’ pioneering Arts & Ecology programme (2005–2008) and curated ten public art projects around Europe’s largest seaport, the Port of Rotterdam (“Portscapes” in 2009–2010). We have also organised thematic curatorial residencies around geological agency (“Geologic Time”, Banff Centre, 2017) and a touring film programme on the legacy of Land Art (“A Stake in the Mud a Hole in the Reel”, 2008–2009).

Last but not least, since 2008 we have been custodians of the website of RAF/Reduce Art Flights, a reference resource about the campaign initiated by the late Gustav Metzger (1926–2017).

RAF/Reduce Art Flights website reduceartflights.lttds.org

Latitudes’ environmental impact is small, yet we acknowledge that the largest impact comes from flights and the disproportionate mobility practices of the sector we work in. We believe that art and culture have a role to play in bringing about ambitious change, applying best practices and setting a positive example to position the climate crisis at the centre of the political and social debate.

In January 2023 we became individual members of the Gallery Climate Coalition (GCC) and began to work with colleagues to set up the Spanish volunteer team, GCC España, that meets regularly to track progress on environmental targets and actions


Making of Jan Dibbets’ film “6 Hours Tide Object with Correction of Perspective” (1969–2009). Commissioned and produced by the Port of Rotterdam as part of “Portscapes”, with support and advice from SKOR, curated by Latitudes. Documentation included in the multi-part publication box “Portscapes” designed by Ben Laloua / Didier Pascal, launched with the opening of the exhibition “Portscapes” at the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam, 2010. Photo: Latitudes.

Editors of Rotterdam-based magazine Fucking Good Art were ‘embedded’ in the port's Yangtzehaven for a month in the summer of 2009 from where they produced ‘Portscapes_ON AIR Station Maasvlakte’, a series of audio walks, field recordings and conversations with guests from different disciplines for the “Portscapes” website. Photo courtesy: FGA.


We will measure and publish our carbon footprint every year to comply with the GCC targets and commitments of reducing carbon emissions by 50% by 2030 (when compared to a 2019 baseline). Rather than purchasing carbon offsets, and following GCC guidelines on this matter, we are also setting aside a fund (€50 per tonne of emitted CO2 per year) to be spent on low-carbon purchasing options that would otherwise be unaffordable. Our intention is to eliminate unwarranted air travel, and we do not take flights when there is an alternative rail or sea route that takes less than 7 hours. The latter policy follows one adopted by the Ajuntament de Barcelona (the City Council) in 2020.

Latitudes requests external collaborators opt for train or alternative low-carbon transit and freight options in line with GCC’s guidelines (as well as Gustav Metzger’s RAF/Reduce Art Flights campaign) and this is reflected in work contracts. We hope to lead by example in implementing a sustainability strategy in the planning of exhibitions from an early stage, and whenever curating projects we always try to build the minimum necessary temporary architecture and ensure that any exhibition-related production is entirely locally tuned. We ask that collaborators use no plastic or other single-use materials when transporting works or for events.

Hike with “Geologic Time” participants to Stanley Glacier in Kootenay National Park, as part of the residency programme curated by Latitudes at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Banff, Canada, 11 September–6 October 2017. Photo: Latitudes.

Latitudes’ website runs on sustainable energy. According to websitecarbon.com (see stats below), LTTDS.org produces 16.76kg of C02 equivalent per year, roughly the amount of carbon that one tree would absorb in the same time, and it consumes 44kWh of energy (equivalent to 280km in an electric car). 


In our personal lives, we prioritise the 5 Rs: Refusing, Reducing, Reusing, Repurposing and Recycling. We do not own a car and use public transport networks. Other practical actions we undertake include periodically donating household or clothing items to charity organisations that offer support to vulnerable communities in our neighbourhood (including Fundació Roure and El Trampolí). And last but not least, since 2013 Latitudes banks with an ethical bank which finances initiatives that contribute to ecological, social and cultural change.

Left-sided entrance to the exhibition “4.543 billion. The Matter of Matter” with the participation of over thirty artists and the presentation of over a hundred works, CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux, June 2017–January 2018. Photos: Latitudes / RK. 


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2021 in eleven monthly cover stories

Since Spring 2015, Latitudes has published a monthly cover story on its homepage www.lttds.org featuring past, present or forthcoming projects, as well as ongoing research, texts, artworks, exhibitions, films, objects, or travel related to our curatorial practice. Here's how 2021 looked like on our homepage.

Cover Story–January 2021: ‘Things Things Say’: ‘VIP's Union’, 1 Jan 2021


Cover Story—February 2021: ‘Straits Time: narrative smuggling in Singapore’, 1 Feb 2021


Cover Story—March 2021: Eulàlia Rovira's ‘A Knot Which is Not’ (2020–21), 1 mar 2021 
Cover Story – April 2021: Lara Almarcegui at La Panera, 2 Apr 2021
Cover Story–May 2021: RAF goes viral, 2 May 2021

Cover Story–June 2021: Fitness food: Salim Bayri's Amsterdam, 31 May 2021.

Cover Story, July–August 2021: A wide view from a fixed point, 1 July 2021.

Cover Story–September 2021Cover Story, September 2021: Erratic behaviour—Latitudes in conversation with Jorge Satorre

Cover Story–October 2021: Fear and Loathing in Lebanon, 1 Oct 2021

Cover Story–November 2021: Notes for an Eye Fire, 2 Nov 2021 

 Cover Story, December 2021: Between Meier and Meller: Toni and Pau at the Teatre Arnau, 1 Dec 2021


→ RELATED CONTENT

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Cover Story–May 2021: RAF goes viral

May 2021 cover story on www.lttds.org

The May 2021 monthly Cover Story ‘RAF goes viral’ is now up on our homepage: www.lttds.org

RAF / Reduce Art Flights is a campaign imploring that the art world (artists, curators, critics, gallerists, collectors, museum directors, etc.) should diminish its use of aeroplanes. It was initiated by the artist Gustav Metzger (1926–2017) on the occasion of the artist’s participation in Skulptur Projekte Münster in 2007, during which 5,000 leaflets based on a 1942 Royal Air Force poster were distributed.

 Continue reading

→ After May 2021 this story will be archived here.

Cover Stories' are published on a monthly basis on Latitudes' homepage featuring past, present or forthcoming projects, research, texts, artworks, exhibitions, films, objects or field trips related to our curatorial projects and activities.


→ RELATED CONTENTS
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Reduce Art Flights website refreshed

https://reduceartflights.lttds.org/

The Reduce Art Flights website has had a long-overdue refresh (the first version is from 2008 and originally at reduceartflights.com): it now features a new exhibition history, bibliography and a transcription of the interview with RAF's instigator, the late artist Gustav Metzger (1926–2017).

RAF / Reduce Art Flights is a campaign which upholds that the art world—artists, curators, critics, gallerists, collectors, museum directors, etc.—could or should diminish its use of aeroplanes.

“...it’s a nudge in the ribs as it were to remind people there is a problem and let’s talk about this problem of endless flights here and there. What particularly annoyed me originally was the statement by the organisers of the [2006] Basel art fair that when it comes to taking the fair to Miami, which was planned, everybody could get a 50% reduction on the aeroplane flight. I thought that is just over the top, pumping up the possibility of aeroplane use. So for me, this has very much to do with a rejection of mass transport through the air of course, and through cars and buses, and also a criticism of the art world where everything is out for maximizing everything and in every direction.” — Gustav Metzger

The site is maintained by Latitudes as a resource for the initiative and as a location for future elaborations of its aims.


The website in 2008.
Pages of the exhibition catalogue ‘Greenwashing. Environment: Perils, Promises and Perplexities’, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, edited by Latitudes & Ilaria Bonacossa, published by The Bookmakers Ed., Turin, 2008, ISBN: 978-88-95702-01-8.

RELATED CONTENT:
  • 'THE LAST MONITOR' AVAILABLE NOW! #5 issue of the 10 Latitudes-edited newspapers for 'The Last Newspaper' exhibition, New Museum 30 October 2010 
  • Reduce Art Flights leafleting campaign by Gustav Metzger at the Serpentine Gallery, London 21 October 2009
  • Gustav Metzger's RAF / Reduce Art Flights campaign initiative changes URL to www.reduceartflights.lttds.org 28 January 2009
  • “Greenwashing update: RAF / Reduce Art Flights. Gustav Metzger interview”, Latitudes blog post, 6 March 2008 
  • Exhibition ‘Greenwashing. Environment: Perils, Promises and Perplexities’, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, 2008. 
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Reduce Art Flights leafleting campaign by Gustav Metzger at the Serpentine Gallery, London

Photo: Latitudes, Barcelona.

The Reduce Art Flights (28.02.2008, Turin) leafleting campaign has been included in the exhibition 'Gustav Metzger, Decades 1959–2009' at the Serpentine Gallery in London (on view until 8 November 2009). 

The leaflet was produced in the occasion of the Latitudes-curated exhibition 'Greenwashing. Environment: Perils, Promises and Perplexities' that took place between February and May 2008 at the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo in Turin, Italy. 

For the occasion, the invitation mailing was accompanied by the pamphlet encouraging visitors to arrange alternative travel to the exhibition.

For further info check http://www.reduceartflights.lttds.org

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