A REAL WORK OF ART
Corina L. Apostol (ArtLeaks), Nikolay Oleynikov (Chto Delat), Federico Geller, Iulia Toma, Fokus Grupa, curated by Rena Rädle & Vladan Jeremic
2.september - 20.september 2015
The programm Art and Work in Times of Restriction - New Production Strategies and Coalition Building comprises two phases: the exhibition A REAL WORK OF ART at RAM Gallery, Oslo and a 3 days seminar organized by LevArt, Levanger.
Curators and editors of the programme are Vladan Jeremic and Rena Raedle.
The programme titled Art and Work in Times of Restriction - New Production Strategies and Coalition Building wants to bring together both theoreticians and practitioners dealing with questions of art and work in order to discuss new ways of production and coalition-building in an increasingly restrictive contemporary international and local environment for art and culture.
One of the major common characteristics of contemporary artistic practices is the precarious condition of artistic work. In order to understand what is precarious work and what kind of precarity is on stake, one needs to investigate forms of precarious work on various levels. Obviously, we should distinguish between different levels of precarity: for example, berry pickers from Thailand working in the forests of Finland for example are in a completely different precarious situation than art workers are. The intensity of precarity should be measured by the position of the worker in the process of production and by the degree and quality of exploitation.
Social institutions of the welfare state are in poor condition in the East but also in the West thanks to the neoliberal offence that is taking place since decades; still it seems that the west offers better working conditions and more sustainable labor codes. In eastern Europe, the labor code was changed in order to maximize exploitation, and therefore unskilled workers are under huge pressure. This also influences art workers.
In the so called "creative" European cities like Berlin work huge numbers of registered artists, that function as a “reserve army” for cheap or even volontary work. One of the problems lies in the fact that artists usually do not understand themselves as workers, but see themselves in concurrency against each other and feel that art production differs from the capitalist working relations of the greater economy. The challenge is to question the autonomy of artistic production and to demythologize the production process of art itself. Besides a general discussion about art and work, the key issue the project Art and Work in Times of Restriction - New Production Strategies and Coalition Building wants to tackle is the question if it is possible to make an international coalition of artists on the basis of art workers solidarity and to struggle for better material conditions? And if so, then what could be the mechanisms to spread the network and to perform stronger demands? Are there modes of production that can support coalition building?
The Seminar: Art and Work in Times of Restriction - New Production Strategies and Coalition Building
The first day of the seminar that will be organized by Levart in Levanger/Trondheim will be reserved for theoretical inputs on the respected subjects.
Invited speakers will be: Gregory Sholette (US), Marina Vishmidt (UK), Marius Lervåg Aasprong (Norway), Vesna Vukovic (Croatia), Kuba Szreder(Poland), Andrey Shental (UK) and Jelena Vesic (Serbia) (all to be confirmed)
The representatives of the following five collectives or activist groups will be invited to the seminar to discuss their positions and have a 2 days workshop in order to develop joint strategies.
Haben und Brauchen (Berlin), W.A.G.E. (New York), Hidden Economies (Copenhagen), Precarious Workers Brigades (London) and ArtLeaks (Belgrade, St. Petersburg, Bucharest).
The exhibition A REAL WORK OF ART
The exhibition A REAL WORK OF ART at RAM Galleri will bring publications, artifacts, historical perspectives of artists' struggles and specially designed artworks on the topic of art and work.
Participating artists will be: Société Réaliste (France), Nikolaj Oleynikov (Russia), Jesper Alvær (Norway), Frederico Geller (Argentinia/Germany), Stefan Tiron (Romania), Brett Bloom (Denmark), Danilo Prnjat (Serbia), Fokus Grupa (Croatia), MIKAELA (Russia) other Norwegian artists is also likely be included.