14 July 2017, 18:30-20:30 LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES
Closest stations: Whitechapel / Aldgate East
All welcome, no need to book
Buzzer located to the left of the entrance, we’re meeting in the office on the top floor
There are two main agenda items for this meeting, both will focus on self-organsiation and our intention to develop collaborative, cooperative and collective practices as part of our pedagogical remit.
In the first part of the meeting we will discuss our proposed research at LARC with a view to submit a proposal in early August 2017. The research is intended to help us learn from the organisational practices of the usergroups at LARC as well as the organisation as whole. This is also an opportunity to discuss our broader research project on alternative art education, radical pedagogy and self-organisation. For an overview of this project please see our recent unsuccessful research proposal for a residency at MayDay Rooms. We will outline our research objectives, identify actions, distribute roles and compile a schedule.
In the second part of the meeting we will discuss our ongoing plan to distribute and rotate the work that sustains [ART&CRITIQUE]. We will discuss the jobs, guides and handover procedures. After a one-month handover process and one month to practice our jobs do we feel that have learned anything? Have we had enough experience to handover the job to someone else? Have we identified problems or ways of making improvements? Should we extend the rota period to 4 months with 1-month handover at either end? Do we need more training? What skills do we need training in? Should we organise a skill-sharing workshop?
On Friday, 12 May 2017 we’re having an open meeting to lay the foundations of a new alternative art school, co-ordinate future projects and institute co-operative ways of working. If you’d like to get involved please join us! See below for the meeting agenda and if you’d like to add agenda items to the list please use the contact form to email them to us by 10 May 2017.
1. Report on [ART&CRITIQUE] participation, accounts and current productive tasks.
2. Distribution of tasks that keep [ART&CRITIQUE] running as a collective project. Co-ordination of roles and hand-overs. If there are not enough people to undertake the tasks we will consider adopting a different structure (e.g. yearly membership) so that we can pay people to undertake the tasks.
3. Future [ART&CRITIQUE] projects: book club, art crawl, studio crit and new projects or one-off events and workshops.
4. Discuss plans for an alternative art school running a yearly programme beginning in September 2018. How would this work and how would the participants be recruited? Should we have an application form/procedure or should participants be invited? An open call is more transparent but then we have the problem of selection criteria and having to turn people down. If we invite people we can all invite one person, which is more egalitarian, but then the project risks becoming a clique. In terms of structure, the programme would be a peer support group, meeting 1-2 times per week. To begin, we could incorporate the three irregular [ART&CRITIQUE] events (exactly as they currently run, open to the public etc.) and add seminars, lectures and/or workshops with guest tutors/practitioners, organised by and for participants on the programme, who will be responsible for developing the format of the programme and running it over time. We need to discuss funding (to pay guest tutors and cover expenses) and find a regular reliable and free venue if The Field doesn’t open again. Come with ideas for a name!
5. Plan to secure an empty building by negotiating a lease with the owners in exchange for maintaining the building. This would offer us a space from which to run all these projects, have exhibitions, run a cafe, workshops, courses, screenings and all manner of events for all ages to make an income to pay people and cover our expenses.
6. Start a workers’ co-op and create a transparent co-operative structure for all the above and any other projects that may develop over time, including an alternative art education network website to host organisations that offer alternative art education in the UK.
[ART&CRITIQUE] ART CRAWL Marylebone to South Kensington
Saturday, 30 September 2017, 1:45pm—5pm
Meet 1:45pm at Lisson Gallery 27 Bell Street London NW15BY
Curated by Anca Baciu and Mandy Wong
All welcome, booking not required
In December we’re heading to Crystal Palace to view and discuss the work of Johanna Kwiat. After graduating from Anthropology at Goldsmiths College, Johanna studied Fine Art at Working Men’s College in London. She is based in London and currently works from ASC studios. Johanna is a co-founder partner of Art Brixton.
Most of my practice happens outside of the studio and/or gallery context. My practice is rooted in my everyday life. My work is a material or intellectual explosion culminating a long process of analyses or annoyingly circular thoughts, images and tensions. I work with mixed media, often with what I find available, and select that which is relevant to communicate my ideas. I have been preoccupied with themes of cultural myths of identity, gender and the autonomy of reason, as well as the nature of reality we live in and the possibility of circumventing its constraints. I think a lot about alienation (self and structurally imposed) and especially the persistent and seemingly universal need of private ownership, its relation with everyday violence, specifically the unseen, hidden or unspoken. I am interested in violence as an inherent quality of relationships. And yet my work is most of all an intimate history. I rework my story, parts of which I find echoed in others’ histories: imposed gender, gender roles, sexuality and forms of representation. I look at relationships between people, natural forms, signs of social aspiration and financial standing. I tamper with them. Acting out in social, public space is what interests me, and describes the way I work. I steal estate agents’ signs from real life locations. I invade an environment, space or context and question its familiar set-up.
An opportunity for artists, curators, designers, film-makers and other producers to present their work to an audience of peers for discussion and feedback.
This event is free and open to everyone. Please book your place. If you’d like to show your work please scroll down for more information and the event archive.
Please register to book your place
Showing your work
STUDIOCRITS typically focus on the work of one artist at their studio or other appropriate venue. There is no standard format however, because everyone’s practice is different.
If you’re interested in showing your work at a STUDIOCRIT please download the infosheet and follow the directions to send us your proposal.
VENUE The venue will most likely be your studio. If you don’t have a studio don’t worry, we can find an alternative. You might have an exhibition on, you might show your work in your flat, community space or temporarily available space. The space needs to be appropriate for the display of your work with a capacity for about 10 people.
DATE & TIME We will set a date and time that is most convenient for you and your venue. Weekends and weekday evenings are convenient times for most people. The crit normally lasts two hours with a break in the middle. Please consider providing snacks and refreshments.
STRUCTURE Think about what work you would like to show and how you would like to structure and conduct the crit. We will discuss this and identify or develop a format that is suited to your work. Think about the practical or theoretical questions that you would like to raise, what aspects of your practice would you like to draw attention to and discuss?
DOCUMENTATION Please prepare a short bio and up to 6 images of your work for the website. This is to give potential audience members an idea of what your work, practice and/or research is about, attracting an audience with common interests. We will work together to present your work in the best possible way.
BIO Please prepare a short bio no longer than 250 words. This should outline your practice, background, education and what you are interested in exploring in the STUDIOCRIT, highlighting the topics and themes that you would like to address in the discussion.
IMAGES Choose up to 6 images that best represent the questions that you would like to raise about your practice. The maximum resolution for images is 923 pixels on the longest side, if in doubt and for the best results please send hi-res images. Please send captions with your images and include the title, date, materials and dimensions/duration for each one.
STATEMENT You might want to discuss an artist statement or application/proposal in conjunction with your work. Your statement should be no longer than 500 words, please print 15 copies and bring them along.
Maria Christoforatou lives and works in London. Her practice is concerned with the unnerving relation between belonging and unbelonging examined through the notion of one’s home. Maria received her BA (Hons.) in Fine Art from the Athens School of Fine Arts (ASFA) in Greece and her MA in Painting/Fine Art from Wimbledon College of Arts, University of the Arts London. She recently graduated from Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London with an MPhil in Fine Art Practice-based research. Her research focuses on narratives of home and displacement in contemporary art practice. She investigates experiences of displacement through the idea of home, where ‘home’ is identified, mediated and ‘re-made’ through media and materials of different kinds, and how objects both mediate for the artist and become agents of experience for the viewer.
Based in London, Jo Wolf works conceptually with mixed media. Although her pieces result from an act of inquiry, the consequent material form is equally relevant to the idea. Coming from a DIY culture and maker’s background, Jo studied at Camberwell College then Central Saint Martin’s and after graduating in 2005, has maintained a pre-emerging position of artistic obscurity. From 2008 she took an interest in the cause alongside the impact of the economic crisis and responded by creating a limited collection of 3D design and 2D depictions of mass circulated imagery. Her recent series sees a return to abstract compositions.
DATA: a series of observations, measurements or facts. From Latin: dare to give.
The DATA series consists of two sets of eight canvases, entitled DATA.0 and DATA.1, which were inspired by a reading of ‘The Death of the Author’. Written in 1967, the French literary critic and theorist Roland Barthes proclaimed, ‘a text’s unity lies not in its origin but in its destination’, and that ‘It is language which speaks, not the author’. He states that ‘a text is … drawn from many cultures and entering into mutual relations of dialogue, parody, contestation, but there is one place where this multiplicity is focused and that place is the reader…’
Bathes offers a theory that informs our understanding of this realm of reading and interpretation. Applicable not only to the written text however, which is open to translation and elucidation, it is also considered in the reception of a work of art. Yet the visual text or artwork often conveys information through media with the omission of written language. Our understanding of art is affected by what we know and believe, a perception based on learned assumptions regarding taste, truth, beauty, status, experience, etc. The authority of a work of art and its meaning alters according to the context in which it appears and although artists may give a rationalized explanation of their work, the gap between words and what we see may not be completely settled.
In the art world, critics hold the strongest platform from which to deliver their views of the artwork, beyond the artist, yet their opinions often expand or contradict the original said intentions. This process of presentation and judgment begins in art school, in the critique. DATA tells an abstract tale of one experience of this process, it also raises questions about the role of the crit and the significance of the rhetoric.
DATA.0: Eight relatively small square paintings consisting of the basic elements of painting, in an aesthetically purified abstract form, question the conceptual relationship between the object/canvas, text/title and meaning.
DATA.1: Constructed from silks of unrestricted colours, the larger canvases mirror the geometric compositions of the first series and although removed from the realm of painting, pose the same questions.
I am a London-based artist who is currently in the process of applying to MFA programmes. I was born in 1995 in Minsk, Belarus, and moved to the UK in 2009, at the age of 14. I am now in my third year of BSc in Philosophy at LSE. I received some formal art training in Minsk but have since practised independently and in the recent years my work has taken a much more conceptual turn. My research has been fuelled by the study of philosophy, critical theory and I have recently become fascinated by the notion of the abject. I work across a wide range of media and my practice could roughly be divided into two categories: institutional critique and the art driven by my preoccupation with human autonomy.
Through painting, video, sculpture and installation, I explore the relationship between subject and object. My departure point is the notion of the border of your own body. I am interested in the construction of psychological and physical barriers and in distancing yourself from the rest of the world as a necessary part of identity formation. Personal space, privacy, autonomy and the sense of your body as having definite borders, as being discontinuous from everything else around you, are some of the concerns which underpin my practice.
Some of the materials I choose to use, such as gloves or shower curtains, have a literal meaning as barriers but I also want them to evoke tactile associations. In the everyday life these are some of the things which are connected with disgust at touching something unpleasant, toxic, sticky, or wet. I want this tactility and also the scale of my work to act as a connecting link between the piece and the viewer, so that she can relate to it and measure it up against her own body.
A few worries arise: Do the tactile associations function in the same way for the audience as they do for me? Does the medium of painting divert the attention away from the conceptual issues and towards the formalist ones?
In my critical work I address the following questions: What does it mean for a work of art to be a success or a failure? What does it mean for text to be ‘about’ an artwork? How and why is an artwork legitimised through discourse? I reflect on the process of research and the constant chase after innovation. I also wonder whether addressing these worries should necessarily be branded as critique.
The book club will take place on Unison, a lifeboat-turned-project-space. We will meet at Yurt Café, located next to Limehouse station, between 1:30pm and 2pm and walk to the boat moored nearby.
DOWNLOAD Foucault, Michel (1986). Of Other Spaces, trans. Jay Miskowiec. Diacritics, 16/1 (Spring 1986), pp. 22–27. Originally published as Des Espace Autres (Conférence au Cercle d’études architecturales, 14 March 1967). Architecture, Mouvement, Continuité, No. 5 (October 1984), pp. 46-49.
The definitions of heterotopia given by Foucault contrast it with utopia. Utopia, for him, is an idealized model of society that does not exist in the world. Heterotopia, on the contrary, is a kind of actualised utopia, it is a real space but one that represents, contests and inverts other sites within society. Some of the examples he gives include the reflection in the mirror, the cemetery, the museum, the motel. Foucault views these spaces as microcosms where the usual social and technological rules do not apply, yet they structure and shape our perception of our own urban geography.
The term ‘heterotopia’ was first used by Michel Foucault in the preface to The Order of Things (1966) as a non-place, as something disturbing that has power to subvert language. He later discussed it in a twelve-minute radio broadcast, expanding his definition. To Foucault’s surprise (as he may not have intended a practical application to the idea), he subsequently got asked to repeat the lecture in front of an audience of architects in 1967. The paper we are reading is a transcript of that lecture.
Within the text, Foucault makes an important reference to Gaston Bachelard, whose 1958 book ‘Poetics of Space’ provides key context for the idea of heterotopia. In the book, Bachelard elaborated his ideas of applying phenomenology to architectural spaces, or, in other words, urged architects to develop buildings based on the lived experienced within enclosed or domestic spaces, on the emotional response to them, rather than on purely utilitarian or theoretical grounds.
Heterotopia remains a concept that Foucault never fully elaborated, yet it has, since the 60’s up to the present day, been appropriated, interpreted and re-interpreted by architects, theorists of the public space and artists alike.
The final passage of the paper concludes that ‘the ship is the heterotopia par excellence. In civilisations without boats, dreams dry up, espionage takes the place of adventure, and the police take the place of pirates’. This book club will take place on a former lifeboat that now functions as a project space. It was founded by Anastasia Freygang ‘to create a shifting pocket of enquiries’.
Moored at Limehouse, we will discuss some of the following questions and talk about the significance of the idea of heterotopia in relation to public spaces, institutions and our own lived experience.
why does Foucault call our (or his) time an ‘epoch of simultaneity’, and an epoch of space rather than time?
what is emplacement?
what would it mean for space to be ‘entirely desanctified’? (p.2)
how is a mirror both a utopia and a heterotopia?
what is the relationship between utopia and heterotopia?
how can the concept of heterotopia be related to the notion of public space?
does the idea of heterotopia survive in the age of augmented and virtual reality and the internet?
Johnson, Peter (2006). Unravelling Foucault’s ‘different spaces’ in History of the Human Sciences 19:4, pp. 75-90. SAGE Publications.
Foucault, Michel (1994). The Order of Things (Preface). New York; Vintage Books.
Bachelard, Gaston (2014). Poetics of Space. New York; Penguin Books.
Sorkin, Michael (1992). Variations on a Theme Park: The New American City and the End of Public Space. Hill and Wang.
Borges, Jorge Luis (2000). The library of Babel. in Fictions. Penguin.
Borges, Jorge Luis (2000). The Garden of Forking Paths. in Fictions. Penguin.
Monthly free and open-access reading group for artists, researchers and anyone interested in the intersections between art practice and critical theory. Everyone can propose a text and facilitate the reading group. Participants are requested to book a place and download the shared document. Please scroll down for more information and an archive of previous events.
Free & open access
The reading group is free and open to everyone who wants to join as long as they commit to the reading. Please register and arrive early, doors will close when we reach maximum capacity. Don’t forget to download the shared document and bring a hard-copy to the book club. Please consider leaving a small donation to cover our expenses and keep us going. Alternatively, you can donate via this link.
Discussion & decision-making
Texts are selected by group consensus on the basis that they reflect on the relationship between practice and theory. This includes a broad variety of texts, from philosophy to politics and aesthetics to science fiction – there is no limitation.
Facilitating the book club
[SYMPOSIUM] is a supportive community of peers who discuss and unpack their research interests. All participants have the opportunity to facilitate the book club on a text of their choice. If you would like to propose a text, you can start preparing right now:
 Decide on a text that you want to discuss.
 Do some background research and write a short introduction to provide some context, from your own perspective. When was it written? Why was it written? Who wrote it? Was it a response to something else? Why are you interested in the text? How does it relate to, or inform, your practice or your research?
 Pace the reading. How long is the text? If it is short, can we discuss the entire text in a 2-hour book club? If the text is long you may need to divide it up between two or more sessions.
 Write down some questions that you would like to bring to the discussion. Suggest some further reading and an image or two, with captions.
 Download the infosheet and follow the directions to send us your proposal.
Saturday, 30 September 2017, 13:45-17:00
Meet 13:45 at Lisson Gallery 27 Bell Street London NW15BY
Curated by Anca Baciu and Mandy Wong All welcome, booking not required
In September we’re meeting at Lisson Gallery to see an exhibition by Allora & Calzadilla and then walking through the park to the Serpentine Gallery to view an exhibition by Wade Guyton, ending the crawl with the LGBTQ Tour to explore gender and sexual identities in the Victoria & Albert Museum collection. Free, everyone welcome. No need to book, just join us at 2pm or along the way. Please see below for the itinerary and a map of the route.
Occasionally, on the last Saturday of the month from 2-5pm we visit three exhibitions within walking distance from each other. An opportunity to meet up, walk in the city and have a critical discussion about the exhibitions on route. Free, everyone welcome. No need to book, just join us at 2pm or along the way.
The crawl is curated by a different volunteer every time. If you would like to curate the [ARTCRAWL] please download the infosheet and follow the directions to send us your proposal.
In July we’ve been invited on an excursion to visit The Other MA (TOMA), a 12-month alternative art education model based at Metal Art School in Southend-on-Sea. Join us for a walking tour across the cultural landscape of Southend-on-Sea with the expert guidance of Emma Edmondson, founder and coordinator of TOMA. We will visit Focal Point Gallery and The Old Waterworks, Metal Culture – home of Metal Art School and TOMA – culminating the tour at TOMA artists’ studios.
The suggested travel route to Southend Central is via the C2C line from London Fenchurch Street, Limehouse, West Ham or Barking. A C2C train service departs from Fenchurch Street at 11:04am and arrives 12:18pm at Southend Central. Please purchase your ticket to Southend Central as we will be hopping on and off the train all day. The ticket will allow you to do this.
NB. We will be doing much walking in between destinations! Please get in touch if you have access concerns.
ITINERARY 12:20 Meet at Southend Central Station, Southend-on-Sea SS1 1AB 12:30 Have lunch in the Railway pub (best vegan food in town) 13:30 Head to Focal Point Gallery to see Maximum Overdrive 15:00 Catch the train to Westcliff-on-Sea station, half hour walk and head to The Old Waterworks for Alison Loyd’s show 16:00 Catch the train from Westcliff station to Chalkwell Park to see the home of TOMA and Metal, Chalkwell Avenue, Southend on Sea SS0 8NB 17:00 Walk to TOMA artist Richard Baxter’s pottery studio (TBC) 18:00 Grab a drink in the multitude of pubs on the seafront and take in the Estuary views!
Please register to book your place and receive updates
#11 Hampstead to Finsbury Park (via Mayfair)
Saturday, 24 June 2017, 14:00 -17:00
Starts 2pm at Freud Museum 20 Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead London NW3 5SX
Curated by Sophia Kosmaoglou Free, booking not required
In June we’re venturing on an ambitious tour of London and taking public transport to see exhibitions at the Freud Museum and Furtherfield – venues that are off the beaten path. On the way we will stop at Thomas Dane in Mayfair. Below is a map of the route and a schedule with links to further information on the exhibitions. We will take the Jubilee line from the Freud Museum to Thomas Dane, and the Victoria line from there to Finsbury Park.
Please note that entry to the Freud Museum is £8 for adults, free for children under 12, £6 for senior citizens, £4 for students, unemployed, National Trust Members & National Art Pass Members. More details here.
On Saturday 28 January we’re meeting 2pm at Sophia Contemporary to see the exhibition Recipe for a Poem by Azadeh Razaghdoost. Then we will head to Hamilton’s Cafe to listen to Transitivity of Implication by Daniel Toca at the Museum of Portable Sound, please bring your headphones! We will wrap up with a visit to Carroll / Fletcher for the group exhibition United We Stand. Below is the schedule with links to exhibition details and a map of the route.
Saturday 26 November 2016, 14:00 – 17:00
Curated by Katy Green Free, booking not required
On Saturday, 26 November we’re meeting 2pm at Camden Arts Centre to see and exhibition of Bonnie Camplin‘s work. Then we will head to Zabludowicz Collection for the exhibition Basement Odyssey by Willem Weisman. Our final stop will be the group show Streams of Warm Impermanence with artists who work with Networked-Flesh at David Roberts Art Foundation. Please see below for the schedule and a map of the route.
Saturday 29 October 2016, 14:00-17:00 Free, booking not required
On Saturday 29 October we’re heading south and meeting 2pm at the South London Gallery to see The Source of Art is in the Life of a People by Roman Ondak, followed by a stop at Arcadia Missa to see Amalia Ulman’s solo Labour Dance, ending at South Kiosk to see And the Earth Screamed, Alive, a multi screen 16mm installation by Emma Charles. Please see below for the schedule with links to exhibition details and a map of the route. Everyone welcome.
14:00 Roman Ondak South London Gallery 65-67 Peckham Road London SE5 8UH 15:15Amalia Ulman Arcadia Missa Unit 6 Bellenden Road Business Centre London SE15 4RF 16:15 Emma Charles South Kiosk Unit B1.1 Bussey Building 133 Rye Lane SE15 3SN
#07 Mayfair to St James (via Soho)
Saturday 24 September 2016, 14:00-17:00 Free, booking not required
On Saturday 24 September we’re meeting at Timothy Taylor to see Shez Dawood’s solo, followed by Mike Kelley’s 1999 installation Framed and Frame at Hauser & Wirth and Uri Aran’s controversial show at Sadie Coles, ending with the Jannis Kounellis retrospective at White Cube. We’re spoiled for choice this month so we’ve crammed four exhibitions into this one. See below for the schedule with links to exhibition details and a map of the route.
Saturday 30 July 2016, 14:00-17:00 Free, booking not required
On Saturday 30 July we’re meeting at at Simon LeeGallery to see the work of Bas Jan Ader who disappeared at sea in 1975. We will then head north to see the work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres curated by Julie Ault and Roni Horn at Hauser & Wirth. Our final stop will be at Carroll/Fletcher to see Abuse Standards Violations by Eva and Franco Mattes. Please see below for the schedule with links to exhibition details and a map of the route.
Saturday 25 June 2016, 14:00-17:00
Curated by Dasha Loyko Free, booking not required
On Saturday 25 June we will meet at The Residence Gallery to see Info Pura, a group exhibition on knowledge, information and experience. Next we will visit Salon des Refuses at SPACE to see the work of Dasha Loyko and other artists rejected from the Royal Academy summer exhibition. Last stop is Blood For Light by Nastivicious at Waterside Contemporary. Please see below for the schedule with links to exhibition details and a map of the route.
Saturday 4 June 2016, 14:00-17:00
Curated by Penelope Kupfer Free, booking not required
On Saturday 4 June we will meet at Cambridge Heath Station and set off for Vilma Gold to see the work of Oliver Stone and Luther Price. Next we will make our way to Espacio Gallery for a group exhibition titled Organism, featuring the work of Penelope Kupfer among an illustrious list of artists. Last stop is Paulo Nimer‘s solo show at Maureen Paley. See below for the schedule and map of the route with links to exhibition details. Free, no need to book.
Saturday 14 May 2016, 14:00-18:00
Curated by Penelope Kupfer Free, booking not required
On Saturday, 14 May 2016 we will meet at the Serpentine Gallery at 2pm to view Hilma af Klimt: Painting the Unseen and then make our way to the Sackler Gallery to view of the exhibition by DAS INSTITUT. Then we will head to the Rum Factory near Shadwell DLR station to see the work of Richard Burger. See below for the schedule and map of the route with links to exhibition details. Free, no need to book, just join us at 2pm. Latecomers can join us along the way.
Saturday 30 April 2016, 14:00-17:00 Free, booking not required
On Saturday, 30 April 2016 we will meet at the bookshop inside the Whitechapel Gallery at 2pm to view Harun Farocki‘s video installation Parallel I-IV and the archival exhibition Imprint 93 with prints by young British artists of the 1990s. Then we will head to Raven Row near Liverpool Street to see the work of Channa Horwitz. Please see below for the schedule and a map of the route. Free event, no need to book. Latecomers can join us along the way.
Saturday 19 March 2016, 14:00-17:00 Free, booking not required
On Saturday, 19 March 2016 we will meet at Hoxton Rail Station at 2pm. From there we will walk to xero, kline & coma to see Under the Shade I Flourish by Chris Alton. Heading east we will stop at Cell Project Space to see Ian Ball ‘s Praseodymium Intracrine Signal Aggregate and and we will end the tour with Park McArthur‘s Poly at Chisenhale Gallery. Please see below for the schedule and a map of the route. Free event, no need to book, just join us at 2pm. Latecomers can join us along the way.