Tag Archives: Alice Creischer

Creative Time: Living as Form (New York City)


Living as Form is an unprecedented, international project exploring over twenty years of cultural works that blur the forms of art and everyday life, emphasizing participation, dialogue, and community engagement.

Living as Form provides a broad look at a vast array of socially engaged practices that appear with increasing regularity in fields ranging from theater to activism, and urban planning to visual art. The project brings together twenty-five curators, documents over 100 artists’ projects in a large-scale survey exhibition inside the historic Essex Street Market building, features nine new commissions in the surrounding neighborhood, and provides a dynamic online archive of over 350 socially engaged projects.

Living as Form will culminate with a book, co-published by Creative Time Books and MIT Press, that will highlight projects from the exhibition archive, as well as commissioned essays from noted critics and theorists in the field, including Carol Becker, Claire Bishop, Teddy Cruz, Brian Holmes, Maria Lind, and Shannon Jackson. Detailing some of the most important socially engaged projects from the last twenty years, this unique archive will provide key examples, allow insights into methodologies, contextualize the conditions of site, and broaden the range of what constitutes this form. Living as Form: Socially Engaged Art from 1991-2011 will be out in January 2012.

Invited artists, organizers, and groups include:
Ai Weiwei; Ala Plástica; Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla; Lara Almarcegui and Begoña Movellán; Alternate ROOTS; Francis Alÿs; Appalshop; Claire Barclay; Barefoot Artists; Basurama; Marilyn Douala Bell and Didier Schaub; BijaRi; Stephen Biko and partners; Bread and Puppet Theatre; CAMP; Cemeti Art House; Mel Chin; Chto delat? (What is to be done?); Colectivo Cambalache; Phil Collins; Complaints Choir; Céline Condorelli and Gavin Wade; Cornerstone Theater Company; Minerva Cuevas; Cybermohalla Ensemble; Decolonizing Architecture; Jeremy Deller; Mark Dion, J. Morgan Puett, and collaborators; Fallen Fruit; Finishing School; Free Class Frankfurt/M.; Frente 3 de Fevereiro; Theaster Gates; Paul Glover; Josh Greene; Federico Guzmán and Alonso Gil; Fritz Haeg; Haha; Harlem (Election Night 2008); Jeanne van Heeswijk; Helena Producciones; Stephen Hobbs and Marcus Neustetter; Fran Ilich; Farid Jahangir and Sassan Nassiri, Bita Fayyazi, Ata Hasheminejad, and Khosrow Hassanzedeh; Kein Mensch Ist Illegal (No One Is Illegal); Amal Kenawy; Suzanne Lacy; Steve Lambert, Andy Bichlbaum of The Yes Men, and collaborators; The Land Foundation; Long March Project; Los Angeles Poverty Department; Rick Lowe; Mammalian Diving; Reflex/Darren O’Donnell; Mardi Gras Indian Community; Eduardo Vázquez Martín; Angela Melitopoulos; Zayd Minty; The Mobile Academy; Mongrel; Anthea Moys and Bronwyn Lace; Mujeres Creando; Vik Muniz; NSK (Neue Slowenische Kunst); Nuts Society; John O’Neal; Oda Projesi; Wendelien van Oldenborgh; Marion von Osten and collaborators; Park Fiction, part of the Right to the City Network Hamburg; Pase Usted; Piratbyrån (The Bureau of Piracy); Platforma 9.81; Public Movement; Pulska Grupa; Navin Rawanchaikul; Pedro Reyes; Laurie Jo Reynolds; Athi-Patra Ruga; The San Francisco Cacophony Society; Katerina Šedá; Chemi Rosado Seijo; Michihiro Shimabuku; Andreas Siekmann and Alice Creischer; Buster Simpson; Slanguage; Apolonija Sustersic; Tahrir Square (2011); Taller Popular de Serigrafía (TPS); Mierle Laderman Ukeles; Ultra-red; United Indian Health Services; Urban Bush Women; The U.S. Social Forum; Voina; Peter Watkins; WikiLeaks; Elin Wikström; WochenKlausur; Women on Waves.

The 15,000 square-foot historic Essex Street Market building in the Lower East Side of Manhattan serves as the hub for Living as Form. An architectural environment designed by the collective Common Room houses the Living as Form archival exhibition, a vast collection of documentation of 100 socially engaged projects from the last twenty years and from locations around the globe. In addition, the exhibition space will be activated by a series of events and performances, and offer dynamic areas for artists and collectives to present new work throughout the show.

September 24–October 16
Thursday–Sunday, 12–8 PM
The historic Essex Street Market
Southeast corner of Essex and Delancey Streets
(entrance on Delancey), NYC

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How Can We Sing the Song of the Lord in an Alien Land?

8 October 2010 – 2 January 2011

7 October 2010, 7 p.m.

Haus der Kulturen der Welt
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin


“The images of Potosí are a shimmering reflection of an extremely violent settlement policy, whose primary purpose was the reproduction and monopolization of labor. We make the claim that there are parallels between the ideological function of colonial-era painting and the modern-day function assumed by art—that of legitimizing the elite of globalization.”
The curators (Alice Creischer, Max Jorge Hinderer and Andreas Siekmann)

with: Sonia Abián, Barcelona / Posadas, Anna Artaker, Vienna, Christian von Borries, Berlin, Matthijs de Bruijne, Amsterdam / Beijing, Culture and Arts Museum of Migrant Workers, Beijing, CVA/ TIPPA , London, Chto delat, Moscow/St. Petersburg, Stephan Dillemuth, Munich / Konstanze Schmitt, Berlin, Territorio Doméstico, Madrid, Ines Doujak, Vienna, Elvira Espejo, La Paz, Marcelo Expósito, Barcelona/Buenos Aires, Harun Farocki, Berlin, León Ferrari, Buenos Aires, María Galindo/ Mujeres Creando, La Paz, Isaías Griñolo, Huelva, Zhao Liang, Beijing, Rogelio López Cuenca, Barcelona, Eduardo Molinari, Buenos Aires, PRPC (Plataforma de Reflexión sobre Políticas Culturales), Seville, David Riff/Dmitry Gutov, Moscow
Guest artists: Monika Baer, Berlin, Quirin Bäumler, Berlin, Luis Guaraní, La Paz, Sally Gutiérrez Dewar, Madrid, The Long Memory of Cocaine research group, La Paz/ London / Berlin
Correspondents: Matthijs de Bruijne, Amsterdam/ Beijing, Anthony Davies, London, David Riff, Moscow

Potosí, the famous silver-mining city, synonymous with immense wealth and unbridled exploitation, was the capital of the mining industry in Latin America from the 16th to the 18th century and played a crucial role in the development of European capitalism and the migrations associated with it. Even today, the expression vale un Potosí—worth a fortune—is commonly used in Spanish.

With this exhibition the Haus der Kulturen der Welt is marking a critical approach and another way of looking at the Bicentenario—the 200th anniversary of the independence movement in Latin America. It addresses the relationships between trade and art transfers and economic structures and ways of thinking in Latin America and Europe and their social effects on both continents, both before and after the citizens’ revolutions of the 19th century.

The “Andean Baroque” works presented in “The Potosí Principle” prove that cultural hegemony is a reflection not of cultural greatness, but of violence. The exhibition uses this form of painting to investigate structural similarities between the colonialism that brought forth Modernism and the current global regime of Neoliberalism. Contemporary artists respond to the baroque images with their own works. In this way, they create a link to issues still current today, such as the role of women in colonial society or the effects of the transnational soy bean monoculture on modern-day South America. A ‘Singspiel’ conducts a satirical examination of the energy oligarchy in St. Petersburg, while another project accompanies Chinese people as they seek to exercise their right to legal recourse. A traveling exhibition by the “Migrant Worker Museum” at the headquarters of the IG Metall trade union shows objects from the every-day life and culture of migrant workers and traces the ties between the modern-day exploitation of labor and resources and its roots in the 18th century, when it was already widespread from Bolivia to China.

The exhibition, which was previously shown at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid and will subsequently travel to the Museo Nacional de Arte and the Museo Nacional de Etnografía y Folklore in La Paz, draws its energy from continuously changing artistic dialogues, redesigned for each of its hosts in Spain, Germany and Bolivia. The Berlin focus is on the concept of “Kulturnation” (“nation of culture”).

Workshops on 8 and 9 October will give artists, correspondents and the curators the chance to discuss the Potosí principle in greater detail with academics and theoreticians, addressing the question of how to describe the Marxist principle of “so-called primitive accumulation” along with colonial and contemporary global interrelationships. (Admission free, prior registration required: www.hkw.de/potosi/arbeitstage)

The exhibition is accompanied by an eponymous catalog published by the Buchhandlung Walther König in German, English and Spanish. Edited by Alice Creischer, Max Jorge Hinderer & Andreas Siekmann, 304 pages with articles and a large illustrated section. ISBN (German) 978-3-86560-897-0.

Three Films on Sundays in November offer a view of the world from Potosí’s perspective:
07.11. 17:00 Petition, Zhao Liang, China/France 2009, 124 min, English subtitles
14.11. 17:00 La Nación clandestine, Jorge Sanjinés, Bolivia 1989, 128 min, German subtitles
21.11. 17:00 The Dubai in Me, Christian von Borries, Germany 2010, 78 min, English OV

Guided tours: Saturdays and Sundays, 3 p.m., www.hkw.de/potosi

Haus der Kulturen der Welt: 8.10.2010 – 2.1.2011
Admission: Wed – Sun 11 – 19h, admission free on Mondays
Further information : www.hkw.de/potosi
IG Metall Headquarters
Alte Jakobstraße, 8.10.2010 – 2.1.2011, Mon – Fri, 7 – 19h, www.igmetall.de

Further Destinations
Museo Nacional de Arte and Museo Nacional de Etnografía y Folklore, La Paz: Spring 2011
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid: 12.05.2010- 06.07.2010
Press material and photos ready for download: www.hkw.de/press

“The Potosí Principle” is a cooperation between Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid

Funded by Sociedad Estatal para la Acción Cultural Exterior, Madrid und Kulturstiftung des Bundes (German Federal Cultural Foundation)

Further supported by Embajada de España en Bolivia; Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID); Ministerio de Culturas República de Bolivia; Fundación Cultural Banco Central de Bolivia, The Embassy of Spain and Credinform Seguros y Reaseguros
In collaboration with IG Metall

The Haus is financed by the State Minister for Culture and Media at the Federal Chancellery in accordance with a resolution of the Deutscher Bundestag, and receives project-related funding from the Federal Foreign Office.

Further information
Feel free to write us your comments and questions at info@hkw.de

Anne Maier
Press Officer
Haus der Kulturen der Welt
+49 (0)30 39787.153

The Potosi Principle
Haus der Kulturen der Welt
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin

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Francisco Moyen: El Cristo de La Cruces

October 8–9, 2010
Haus der Kulturen der Welt
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin

Admission is free, but please register at anmeldung-arbeitstage@hkw.de.

Artists, curators, theorists, and “correspondents” will come together during the workshops which are part of the Potosí Principle exhibition to discuss and elaborate the following topics: How can we describe colonial as well as contemporary global contexts with Marx’s principle of “primitive accumulation”? How and where is cultural hegemony being produced? Which artistic interventions or practices and which dissenting voices can undermine the standards of a “universal museum” within an internationalised world?

With: Thomas Kuczynski, Silvia Federici, Peter Linebaugh, David Riff, Tom Flynn, Anthony Davies, John Barker, Edgar Arandia, Maria Galindo (Mujeres Creando), Elvira Espejo, Eduardo Molinari, Isaías Grinolo, Matthijs de Bruijne, Sonia Abian, Konstanze Schmitt, Christian von Borries, Zhibin Lin and Sun Heng (Migrant Worker Museum) as well as the curators of the project.

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The Potosí Principle (Madrid)

How can we sing the song of the Lord in an alien land? / The Potosí Principle

May 12 – September 6, 2010

Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid

The Potosí Principle (Principio Potosí in Spanish) can have two meanings. The first of these is temporal in the sense of an origin or beginning. On the other hand, the “Potosí Principle” can describe in a rather technical way a mechanical function that follows the principle of repetition.

But the Potosí Principle is also the name of a contemporary art project that will be presented in an exhibition and a series of talks in and around the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid.

In the beginning of the 17th century Potosí was one of the largest cities in the world – comparable to London or Paris. It is said that all the the silver mined there would be enough to build a bridge from the Andes over the Atlantic Ocean that reached Cadiz – the harbour in Spain where the silver arrived. The work in the mines, the treasures of gold and silver which were shipped to Europe initiated such a tremendous increase of accumulation that it can be seen as the birth of the modern capitalist system. Marx analyzed the principle of “primitive accumulation” in England which took place at the same time: the “disposal” of human beings from a feudal system, just to liberate and at once eliminate them in the process of exploitation. We think that this “primitive accumulation” is not a historical case. It happens virtually everywhere in the globalized world, now, at the same time and in all historical shapes. So one of the main questions of the project is to reflect on the fact that the roots of modernity and its art production do not lie in Enlightenment and rationalism, but in the process of colonialization, which has not yet come to an end.

The colonialization and proselytization of South America was a laboratory of the tremendous ideological function which – under the Counter-Reformation’s compulsion to act – was imposed on images after the Council of Trent. We claim that there are quite obvious parallels and interrelations between this ideological function of colonial painting and the function that art now takes on to vest the new elites of globalization with legitimacy. These connections form no linear, historical narrative. One can perhaps retrace a straight line drawn from the Conquista to the dominance of Euro-American corporations in South America and the persisting subordination of colonial/ex-colonial culture. But there is also a simultaneity and an unfinished aspect of history, allowing one to raise questions as to present artistic production using this painting. If parallels exist between the wealth and magnificence, as surplus value of meaning, in the 17th-century boomtown of Potosí and the current hotspots of accumulation of totalitarian capitalism and its biennales, then this also affects our own involvement in them.

The Exhibition: About 20 paintings of the Potosí painting school from the 17th–18th century have been answered by contemporary artists from La Paz, Beijing, Moscow, Madrid, Berlin, Huelva, Sevilla and London, taking into account the different political conditions in the surroundings their day-to-day, labour, and productions are located.

The Curators and the Correspondents: A team of curating artists-researchers, relying on an informal network of friendships, collaborations, correspondents, and travels. So-called correspondents were invited to transfuse the “Potosí Principle” into their local context and own political experience.

The Project is an ongoing process, which is not finished with the first exhibition in Madrid. After Madrid, the show will be presented at Haus der Kulturen der Welt / Berlin (October 2010), and Museo Nacional de Arte and MUSEF / La Paz (April 2011).

Artists and collaborators: Sonia Abian (Barcelona); Anna Artaker (Vienna); Christian von Borries/Alice Creischer/Andreas Siekmann (Berlin); Matthijs de Bruijne (Amsterdam/Beijing); Chto Delat (Moscow/St Petersburg); Stefan Dillemuth/Konstanze Schmitt/Territorio Doméstico (Munich/Berlin/Madrid); Ines Doujak (Vienna); Elvira Espejo (La Paz); Marcelo Esposito (Barcelona/Buenos Aires); Harun Farocki (Berlin); León Ferrari (Buenos Aires); Maria Galindo/Mujeres Creando (La Paz); Isaias Griñolo (Huelva); Dmitry Gutov/David Riff (Moscow); Rogélio Lopez Cuenca (Barcelona); Eduardo Molinari (Buenos Aires); Migrant Workers Museum Beijing (Beijing); PRPC Plataforma de Reflexión sobre Políticas Culturales (Seville); TIPPA (London); Zhao Liang (Beijing) + guests (Monika Baer, Quirin Bäumler, Luis Guaraní, Sally Gutierez Dewar).

Correspondents:  David Riff (author and art critic, Moscow); Matthijs de Bruijne (artist, Beijing/Amsterdam); Anthony Davies (author and cultural critic, London).

Curators: Alice Creischer (artist, Berlin); Max Jorge Hinderer (author and art critic, Berlin/Santa Cruz de la Sierra); and Andreas Siekmann (artist, Berlin).

Opening: May 11, 2010

Exhibition: May 12 – September 6, 2010, Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid


May 7–8, 7:00 p.m. Traficantes de Sueños

May 10, 7:00 p.m. Eskalera Karakola

May 12, 6:00 p.m. Museo Reina Sofía, Edificio Nouvel, Auditorio 200. Debate with the artists and exhibition presentation

September 2, 7:30 p.m. Museo Reina Sofía, Edificio Nouvel, Auditorio 200. Catalogue presentation

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Principio Potosí. Modernidad y la llamada acumulación originaria (Madrid)

(For the announcement in Spanish go here.)

imagen de Principio Potosí. Modernidad y la llamada acumulación originaria.
Melchor María Mercado, Álbum de Paisajes, Tipos Humanos y Costumbres de Bolivia.
Lámina 22. Carnaval, 1841-1869. Archivo y Biblioteca Nacionales de Bolivia, Sucre.

Principio Potosí. Modernidad y la llamada acumulación originaria

February 4–5, 2010
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía
Nouvel Building, Auditorium 200
Plaza del Emperador Carlos V, s/n
28012 Madrid
Tel: (+34) 91 774 10 00
Free Entry

Marx describes primitive accumulation as the destruction of solidarity and power structures in traditional society as a consequence of the dynamics of exploitation triggered by capitalism. As Immanuel Wallerstein emphasizes, this does not entail a historical fact at the origins of capitalism, but persists in global society today in the same way it occurs at the origins of modernity. This condition defines a cyclical, traumatic process of expropriation and social disarticulation, which at the same time involves the mobilization of new, vital flows and complex processes of subjectification.

Principio Potosí, an exhibition curated by Alice Creischer, Max Jorge Hinderer and Andreas Siekmann (Museo Reina Sofía; Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin and Museo Nacional de Arte and Museo de Etnografía y Folklore in La Paz), contends that modernity does not have it origins or foundation in rationalism and the Enlightenment’s promises of liberty, but in the process of expansion and exploitation initiated in the sixteenth century with the discovery of primordial wealth in colonial territory. The process instigated a mechanism of instrumentalizing the Other that in many ways is far from having ended. Even greater than Paris during the French Revolution or London during the industrial revolution, Potosí in the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries marks a paradigm of globalized modernity in its concentration of capital and machinery to produce hegemony. It constitutes a principle that has operated with continuous reterritorialization throughout history. This seminar, the first public presentation of Principio Potosí, will debate the foundations, transformations and continuity of the accumulation principle as key to understanding the relationships of domination and resistance, moving beyond arguments that have led debates on anti-globalization in the previous decade.

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