A year ago, we asked Berlin-based artist-curators Prem Krishnamurthy and Asad Raza to think of a question around which we could collectively organize a project. They came back to us with: How can we gather now? Deceptively simple but rich in nuance, their question begs further questions in this moment of lingering health concerns and deep societal divides.
Over the past few months, Krishnamurthy and Raza have invited artists and organizers from around the world to respond to this question through a spectrum of scales and modalities. This weekend, they will be joined by a few of them: microsolidarity facilitator Richard D. Bartlett, Hong Kong and New York-based artist Tiffany Sia, and DC-based artist-organizer Naoko Wowsugi. They invite you to join them online in this congenial inquiry.
Graphics design by Mindy Seu. Please stay tuned for more details about the full project in the coming weeks and months.
About the Artist-Organizers
Richard D. Bartlett co-founded Loomio, a digital tool for deliberation and decision-making in groups of 3-300 people, and The Hum, a management consultancy for organizations without managers. His first book, Patterns for Decentralised Organising, offers solutions for common failure points of collaborative groups. His most recent project is called Microsolidarity.
Prem Krishnamurthy is based between Berlin and New York. His work across media explores the transformative potential of art and design by experimenting with presentational strategies, performative modes, and ways of communing. He currently directs Wkshps, a multidisciplinary design consultancy; is artistic director of FRONT International 2022, the Cleveland triennial of contemporary art; and organizes Commune, an emergent workshop that practices artistic tools for social transformation. In March 2021, Pompeii Commitment released his new digital artwork, Pompeii!, which reflects upon rituals, destruction, memory, and letting go.
Previously, Prem founded the design studio Project Projects and the exhibition space P! in New York. He received the Cooper Hewitt National Design Award for Communications Design in 2015 and KW Institute for Contemporary Art’s “A Year With…” residency fellowship in 2018. In 2019, his professional papers were acquired by Bard College’s Center for Curatorial Studies.
Asad Raza creates dialogues and rejects disciplinary boundaries in his work, which conceives of art as a metabolic, active experience. Absorption, in which cultivators create artificial soil, was the 34th Kaldor Public Art Project in Sydney (2019), and shown at the Gropius Bau, Berlin (2020). In Untitled (plot for dialogue) (2017), visitors played tennis in a sixteenth-century church in Milan. Root sequence. Mother tongue, at the 2017 Whitney Biennial, combines twenty-six trees, caretakers and objects. Schema for a school was an experimental school at the 2015 Ljubljana Graphic Art Biennial. Raza premiered Minor History, a dialogue with his 91 year old uncle, at the International Film Festival Rotterdam in 2019.
Raza’s works often inhabit intimate settings such as The Bedroom, at the 2018 Lahore Biennale. For home show (2015), which took place at his apartment in New York, Raza asked artists and friends to intervene in his life, while Life to come (2019) at Metro Pictures featured participatory works and Shaker dance. Raza was artistic director of the Villa Empain in Brussels in 2016-7. With Hans Ulrich Obrist, he curates a series of exhibitions inspired by Édouard Glissant, including Mondialité, Trembling Thinking at the Americas Society in New York and Where the Oceans Meet at MDC Museum of Art and Design, Miami. Of Pakistani background, Raza studied literature and filmmaking at Johns Hopkins and NYU, where he helped organize a labor strike.
Tiffany Sia is an artist, filmmaker and writer. She is the founder of Speculative Place, an experimental, independent project space hosting residents working in film, writing and art in Hong Kong. Sia is the recipient of the George C. Lin Emerging Filmmaker award in 2021.
Committed to multidisciplinary works and collaborative inquiries, Sia’s practice focuses on confronting the politics of placehood, exploring the relationship between affect and temporality and challenging the boundaries of print/media distribution. She graduated from the Film and Electronic Arts program at Bard College and has been the recipient of a Fulbright-Hays scholarship.
Naoko Wowsugi is a DC-based artist and educator. Her community-engaged art project, Permacounterculture (2016), advocated for communities struggling with the interconnected issue of gentrification and food injustice in DC. The project connected over 600 individuals and raised $1,800 to benefit Bread for the City, a nonprofit food bank in DC. Through this expansive art project, Wowsugi collaborated with diverse community members from toddlers to elders, activists, farmers, librarians, and punk musicians. During the pandemic, Wowsugi worked with Kyanite Kitchen, a POC women-run food pantry for weekly mutual-aid. They have delivered free fresh produce to Wards 7 & 8 of DC, where there is no access to affordable healthy food within a mile of each neighborhood. Wowsugi bridges art practice and advocacy activities to creatively empower marginalized communities.
This project is generously supported by the Goethe-Institute and Eaton Workshop.
Saturday, February 5, 2022 from 2:00–3:30 pm EST