Week 45: Cittadellarte


Female Speaker: Hello.

Male Speaker: Hi everybody.

Male Speaker: Hello.

Male Speaker: Yes Scott are you going to tell us we have to mute our audios or can we leave it on this time?

Scott: You can leave it on until it starts getting crazy.

Male Speaker: Okay

[0:00:28] [cross talk]

Myla: Okay welcome everybody I am Myla Shoemaker and I am member of the staff for division of education, I am the head of education here at the art museum and we are delighted you are here. This program and this evening belongs to Basekamp and [0:00:44] [inaudible] and I am going to turn it over to him in just a second. And I thought I might say a minute’s worth about where we are sitting. I am also sitting with Erica Battle who is one of the curators of the Pistoletto Adult Education exhibition and Adelina Vlas who is – will be back, who is another curator in the modern and contemporary art department.

Anyway we are delighted that you are here with the lot especially the Basekamp is here. I am going to lead this in a conversation tonight. We are sitting in one of the exhibitions that represents the works of Michalangelo Pistoletto and it represents his current collaborative effort which he calls Cittadellarte his invention of a word in fact I believe it’s a real word now, it’s real to us. Cittadellarte is a combination of the words citadel for art, a safe place for making art and city of art with the implication that art has a responsibility to engage with society.

I have some pictures of what Cittadellarte looks like in Biella if Scott wants to go there. Cittadellarte is actually a place in Italy where the artist Michalangelo Pistoletto to lives. Let’s see if it can hold up. You know can you [0:02:04] [indiscernible]. I never do it on Mac so will just keep talking. Oh go to slide show, go one more, one more there you go. Just say slide show, it will go. Okay so Biella is in Northern Italy, right against the Apse. It’s got the pied mark on one side which is great place for growing delicious food and one of the offices of Cittadellarte is a nourishment office and a small food restaurant and you can see the apse right behind it. This is what the place looks like. It is Biella the city, where it’s located was once a big wool and cloth manufacturing town now superseded by Milano and other places. So a lot of these new buildings are empty and Michalangelo Pistoletto has acquired some of them and is building this place.

Why don’t you go to – sorry, there is one more I think? It’s on a river; you can see there are some other new building which are currently unoccupied. There is Scott’s family, huge you have to admit. So in any case, it’s a place and it’s also an idea. I hope that you will all go and see the exhibition on the other side of the museum which is the historic exhibit of Pistoletto’s work representing what he did between about 1960, 56 to 1974. We are here to talk tonight or to let Scott talk with us and everybody tonight about the Cittadellarte. I want to introduce one more person…

Male Speaker: Okay Scott just [0:03:50] [indiscernible] by the way.

Myla: I know you will say all that – which is Camille De Galber [phonetic] [0:03:50] if you want to raise your hands. Camille is here, she has come from New York tonight because she was an artist in residence at the Cittadellarte for four months so she will bring her perspective having lived there and worked there in this city created by Michalangelo Pistoletto. So I am finished with everything I have to say. Oh Michalangelo Pistoletto designed this room, let me just say a little about the two mirrored table. This is the Caribbean Sea that we are sitting by, that’s the Mediterranean Sea over there. One of the early offices that became part of Cittadellarte offices sort of was about political engagement around the cultures of Mediterranean.

So the Mediterranean mirror table became a place to have conversations. He made this one especially for this exhibition, he caused this one to be made I would say represents his design for the Caribbean Sea which is the sea in this Hemisphere that is surrounded by land, Mediterranean in between the laths and we will be having a number of conversations like this when – pick up a brochure those orange brochures if you are engaged by the thoughts and the actions of tonight and want to do this again, they will be throughout the exhibition. I can’t think of anything else. Okay so I am going to close my mic off. But we may ask you just because it’s hard to hear because the ceilings are so high in this room, we may ask you to use a mic when you ask a question or something so that everybody can hear it and we have lovely people Perak and others who will bring a mic to you. So thank you for coming and enjoy this evening, enjoy both the exhibitions and we hope of see you often.


Male Speaker: Is it okay to share the images with people aren’t here or are they copyrighted? Is it okay to share the images with people aren’t here so that we can potentially email them to some and they can upload them? Okay. It’s funny using a mic to talk to someone who is sitting two feet away. Great well I actually got a mic here, I am sort of…it was. Hi everyone, welcome to a follow up to what we did this Tuesday which was another week in a series of weekly discussions that we have about what we are calling plausible art worlds. Normally we wouldn’t expand too much on that because what we generally do is talk with representatives of different, of different art worlds, ones that we, that are arguably plausibly excuse me and have a conversation with them at Space Around the Corner and Artist Run Space around the table sort of like this except instead of being mirrored and shaped like a sea, it’s more like a picnic table and we have the series of conversations.

So yeah this Tuesday, we talked to a number of people about Cittadellarte and one of the things that we want to do is look at or get a better understanding of Cittadellarte from the point of view of imaging this as a kind of art world in itself. So I think what we usually do is ask someone to give us a description of Cittadellarte which I can’t really adequately do. We generally jump right into the discussion. I think so since we are doing a follow up we’ve already had that, we might many of you weren’t here, some of you were, thought we might as well do the same thing.

Female Speaker: [0:08:19] [inaudible] Basekamp

Male Speaker: Sure, yeah. I think I ought to turn it around because it’s kind of, its kind of strange talking to you guys behind me. Basekamp and artists groups and a number of us are here right now, Michael who is over there is part of our group and Greg who is online and Steven and Hanken should be here somewhere and there are a number of people that we work with generally, yeah hey. And Basekamp is also the name of an art, a mini art institution I guess you could say that sort of, a sort of alternative art center that focuses on collaborative and collective practices that has a kind of exhibition space or an exhibition program literally.

Mainly it has been an event program for this year. We have a shop, a residency program where there are spaces for 10 artists, international artists and residence, they are local people if they want to come and we have two international artists and residence here too right now, Clinton and Mathew from Nice. And there are a bunch of other residence that are here. What else is Basekamp? We opened in 1998 so we’ve been looking – well we‘ve been working as a group even though some of the people in Basekamp have rotated a bit. We also specifically look at groups and group activity.


We are interested in taking a critical point of view when – we are both fulfilling a supportive role for other groups and looking critically at what does it mean to be a group or work within a group because it’s not all – just because we are working collectively doesn’t automatically make it liberatory somehow. But it’s a worthwhile thing to do somehow. And anyway if anybody has any questions, I think maybe somewhere near the end might be end because I can go on about Basekamp really for about 12 hours and I think we have an hour and 15 minutes exactly, right? Or from 15 minutes ago. So yeah I love it if someone who feels like they would like to, would like to start just give a brief example of Cittadellarte and we can have…

Female Speaker: [0:10:54] [inaudible]

Male Speaker: Cool and we probably would just like to have questions for you, we will probably bring up some of the, some of the things that we talked about on Tuesday and just kind of restate them here so no one is lost halfway part of the conversation but also kind of get more in-depth about how true the dellarte works and what its structures are like and that sort of thing.

Female Speaker: Okay I was – I have been to the Cittadellarte for a visit for five days just as an observer and Camille will tell you as an artist in residence what it felt like to be there. They take as their philosophy, the notions of making art the center of a socially responsible transformation of society, what would it look like and there is an essay by Michalangelo on our website which you can read where he talks about this in the office, what would it look like if art could be the place from which transformation of society grows, what do artist have to contribute, what does art have to contribute.

And their logo looks like sort of a self structure and they started one way and they continue to sort of move out – oh there it is, yeah thanks Esperanza Altmar also from the museum. He is holding it up there kind of like a self structure and it winds up, they are divided into offices but Michalangelo who also designed this which has some of the names of the offices that they work in. you might say what has art have to do with economics? What does art have to do with – well particularly economics is sort of the one that catches people, it’s about creative thinking and thinking creatively about solving both macro and micro economic problems both in Italy and around the world. But using creativity to engage with that idea and Camille will say more what actually happens when the artist come.

But Michalangelo said he built, he designed this structure because he wanted to make it clear that the offices were sort of have porous borders. So for instance there is an office at Pert and obviously that affects everything and there is an office of sustainability. And all of them are trying to live in a sustainable way. So you can see the names of the offices there sort of built into this structure, this skeleton here in the middle of the room.

So our curator Carlos was Waldo who began these searches to do this exhibition said when he was teaching in Venice which he does part of the year, all the young students 10 years ago or eight years ago or five years ago were talking about this place Cittadellarte. All the young art students at Venice he was teaching. And so he had to go there and find out and that sort of started his journey to study this particular artist and ultimately offer this two exhibitions, a historic show and this representing this idea that people should come together and talk about important things and they should talk about whether art matters, how it matters, when it matter and how art can address societal issues. So I am going to stop with that and take the mic over to Camille or maybe talk experientially about the teaching.

Camille: So I’m Camille De Galber, I’m French and I was resident at Cittadellarte in 2009 and I [0:14:26] [inaudible] installation. And so basically I was in the branch of the [0:14:33] [inaudible] so the residence parts based as a branch knowing the foundation and I don’t really know what you want to know but…

Male Speaker: I think just for anyone here they may not know really much about Cittadellarte we are going to start talking about some of the details that might be good to know, you know what your experience of it, what’s like a little bit…

Camille: So basically we were 15 artists from different countries and we all arrived with a project that we had in mind but it’s not only artists, it is also curator. So its curators and artists and researchers so some people are coming to write, some people are coming to – there is photographer, video artists and so we all meet there, we are there for four months and we try to develop projects and we have also not [0:15:33] [inaudible] guest so artists, curator and socialogue so it was sort of like a university summer university, so it’s very intense.


So you at the end you have more time to actually work on your own project but the beginning of the residency its only like talk, you know exchange in the workshop. Not a very good [0:16:06] [indiscernible]

Male Speaker: And by the way if it wasn’t clear, everybody at this chance is welcomed to ask any questions or say anything at any time. Generally we don’t have mics like this, but you are welcome. I mean – and I think we are only really probably don’t need it in a group like this, but we are only really using it so that the people that are joining from elsewhere can hear us plus we record this, I probably should mention initially so if you don’t want anything you say to be recorded, I guess don’t say anything or let us know and we will take it out.

Female Speaker: We might mention there is another artist Skyping in who just is as I see Maggie that you said you’ve just got back from Cittadellarte from the summer residence of 2010. So she is another person who had lived there for four months in Kent at her box.

Male Speaker: Cool, yeah I am kind of curios what the tone of the place is like, like one question that came up and I guess we can get more into it later is what, what is the general feeling of the people that are going through there about the relationship between the artists who started this you know sort of God Father figure costileto [phonetic] [0:17:39] yeah and the other people there as if, you know because there is sort of a feeling that this is a collective thing, you know and we are curious about that, what happens when a single artist an incredibly famous single artist or very well respected single artist so creates an institution you know that his tied to. And what's the feeling of that? Because it sounded like there is an independence there and we are really interest you know – don’t mean to say this in any negative way but just really interested how that plays out, what that’s like and yeah, how that felt.

Camille: After four months, it was very intense because we were all together for a long time. That Michalangelo was – so he lives in the foundation so he’s with us and basically he is there if you need help for your project, he is completely open to talk to you and we were having dinner with him at their home, you know his Maria and of course it’s after four months at some point it’s hard because I don’t want to say negative things…

Male Speaker: You can say anything I mean it doesn’t have to be positive or negative, it’s….

Camille: Yeah no problem its.

Female Speaker: I can say something, can you hear me?

Male Speaker: Were you still thinking of working on your thought though [0:19:25] [inaudible]

Male Speaker: Yeah go ahead Maggie.

Maggie: I am sorry, it’s hard to know if she was [0:19:29] [indiscernible] or not

Male Speaker: There is not a good visual picture but just jump in any time.

Maggie: Okay, definitely. You know my feeling is that Cittadellarte is Michael Angelo’s art project. Like he is really the directing lead artist and I think the projects that come out of Cittadellarte are social projects in a lot of ways. So they are stocked, people that run the projects for him but I really think the final creative decision come from him. That was my impression, you know that was my feeling and I think a lot of people are invested in his ideas. You I mean they really invest in his vision for the center, for the work, they are really committed the people that work for him are really committed to working with him and for him but I mean it’s like, it’s kind of like a nonprofit that is run like an art project. But it’s a mastermind of Michalangelo that was my impression you know.


Camille: And I also think it was very hard when you it’s given to do which are coming to do but if you are a photographer or a video artist, you cannot write like very strong ID and being like okay, I am going to do that. It’s more like I think a residency for people who need to write, to sing and really developing making projects. Like it was hard for [0:21:08] [inaudible] find the [0:21:11] [inaudible] in front of the computer.

Male Speaker: Sorry I can’t hear what you are saying, you are fading out.

Camille: Sorry? Sorry.

Male Speaker: Maybe if you could repeat that last record, try to paraphrase it if…

Camille: Yeah I was saying that it is very hard for a photographer or video artist or I mean there were no musicians there or dancer or those but I think it is a residency for people who really want to develop project to write but not to really create it and do it and have the matter out there, it’s not really easy. You have to leave the space; you cannot stay for four months when in the foundation I think. So it was hard sometimes you know all that.

Male Speaker: That’s interesting, I mean I don’t know it’s – how long do people really stay?

Camille: How long?

Male Speaker: Yeah for like the length of time that people usually stayed?

Camille: Four months.

Male Speaker: You were there four months, okay.

Female Speaker: No comment.

Camille: People were leaving during the weekend and coming back.

Female Speaker: I have a question for, to artists that I had the residency, I did Cittadellarte where Camille and Maggie you just, you kind of bring up an interesting thing which is you as an artist, the individual practice are coming to Cittadellarte, you know work here against kind of a collective arts practice. So I am just suggesting if you can elaborate on that a little bit more and perhaps also start from what motivated you to come to Cittadellarte, how did you hear about it, what was that process like, you know even practically speaking but also conceptually for you as an artist, what did you hope to get from it and you know kin of where did it take you in the end. And also the that tension between your practice as an individual artists and kind of coming into this collective, this area of collectivity to me is really interesting  and maybe some people also from Basekamp can talk about how they deal with that because that is also something you guys are doing.

Female Speaker: Shall I start.

Female Speaker: Sure.

Camille: Well basically I heard about Cittadellarte through a friend’s writer Ancalas [phonetic] [0:23:30] and she was doing a project about correspondence and she brought me to the Cittadellarte and then I asked for a grant and finally I went to the residence and I did a collaboration with her during the residence and I made 12 videos, it was a video installation and this videos I actually made it with [0:23:55] [indiscernible] residence, it was a collaborating project. So basically all I have done there as a residence if it was their voice or their have or the – you know so we all worked together for me. but then some people worked alone and it was with lots of different projects or – but for me it was a very good experience and I mean all the artist, not all of them but a couple of them were like still there in contact and…

Male Speaker: Maggie did you have anything to add or was that sort of…

Maggie: Sure I can add some. Yeah the residency is kind of a separate project and it takes a place over the course of four months and [0:24:49] [indiscernible] be part of the residency you propose a project before you come or some artists come with a portfolio and do say specific work and I do art at occasion and I am also an artist and a woman here in Oakland and from California and a woman here in Oakland had to have her residency last year and wasn’t an artist and I was really interested in how a non artist became part of an artist residency and she is an acquaintance and a colleague of mine and I started an art project, a nonprofit project here in  Oakland for artists supporting artists and I was really fascinated by the idea that this artist had started a nonprofit and was running this projects – yeah I wanted to see what it looked like basically.


You know and I got the residency and I also created a project, it was a game and so the work will continued through into 2010 and hope there will be several auditions of it. The graphic design was, I worked with another one, the artist there had to do some of the design, the carpenter helped me create the actual some of the game pieces. And then we did a week long collaborative project in Sunraymore which is a town in the Mediterranean. But most the collaboration came out of you know we were living and working together, we eat three meals a day together, we lived in the same space, we worked in the same space. So it’s – you have more or less affinity with certain artists and everyone had the expectation that they will come and see their own project but you just can’t help but not interact about the work. You know the space is there for collaboration and cross pollination and you know it’s just, it’s the nature of how we were living and working for that time and Camille is right, it was very intense because we were also doing workshops together and you know we are in a small town in Italy where we don’t know anyone else except for each other.

So I think that is kind of, it’s kind of organic. The collaboration there is no fixed, there were no fixed agreements about how we would collaborate or what the final project would look like but it happens, it’s inevitable.

Female Speaker: Are you friend with [0:27:18] [indiscernible]

Maggie: I’m sorry?

Female Speaker: Do you know Esiar from Oakland?

Maggie: Yeah Esiar is the one who…

Female Speaker: Okay [0:27:29] [cross talk]

Maggie: Yeah

Male Speaker: Steven did you want, did you feel like elaborating a little bit on that or…?

Steven: Elaborate on it, I mean I just think it’s a kind of an issue that can’t be avoided by talking about you know how I mean the subjective nature of the experiences that one has in this kinds of residencies. The statement that is kind of often repeated that the object here is to make art the center of socially responsible transformation of society. I mean it raises the, it jolts sort of imperative that artists were to edify society by showing the good, the true, the beautiful and there was kind of a break with that towards the end of the 18th century with romantism a break that art in fact would even go beyond that but would show a different kind of good, true and beautiful kind of provide a messianic model for the radical transformation of society, I mean the radical responsible transformation of the society.

And I mean I kind of – I hear that very much in the Cittadellarte sort of manifesto in the tax that was put up on the website. But ultimately I think you have to wonder whether that is just sort of a necessary but in fact ultimately diluted corrective to the rather uncomfortable role that artist often times have and I think in this case its sort of undeniable have is the hand maintenance to wealth and power. Now obviously you don’t start a Cittadellarte of art you know without a certain amount of complexity from the powers that be and from capital and so on. And so I don’t see how we can really avoid the question, I don’t want it to sound like a nasty attack, it’s not at all.

I mean but how I mean how can we square that circle, I mean how can we talk about serious transformation of society when we were to that extent in bed with capital and you know and wealth and just symbolic capital and I mean I ask that question and I am going to stop now but I am asking that question from the position of what a plausible art world would be because you know obviously that sounds kind of like the good intentionalism that exist within the mainstream in our community.


Male Speaker: Well I think one of – just to piggy back on slide one of the questions might be how is Cittadellarte re-emergening society. Isn’t re-emergening every part of the society except for the structures that support art? I guess those are some of the questions that I have. I don’t think – it sounds like that’s not the case but we are super interested in that because you know like what Mark is saying, there is subsition of course everybody’s embedded in the structures of the world, that’s definitely true. I think our interest is you know not that’s evaluated you know how well or poorly someone is doing at proposing an alternative. But to discuss that specifically, it seems like what Cittadellarte is doing, he’s imagining a kind of alternative experimenting with in a sense that its built, its lived out, people are testing it, people come there from all over the place to test it out as well and try and contribute to that and to try and contribute to the thoughts behind it too, you know.

And I think you know what this series of talks that we are having with a bunch of other people that other people are having too completely separate from us but we like to link with that is about we want to say when we are doing something, when we are proposing a certain kind of alternative or a certain kind of option that maybe didn’t exist before, maybe wasn’t as elaborated as our proposal is to really take it seriously and to look at the entailments of this, what comes along with that proposal. I think Tuesday we, everybody pretty much agreed that this, it’s pretty undeniable that Cittadellarte is a kind of model that it is, is a parasitical one.

You know that is not in itself bad, you know it’s just we need to understand it for what it is. It’s funded by someone who is making a good amount of money out of the sale of art work in the mainstream art market and funneling those funds into something else. And what we are interested in is okay let’s acknowledge that that is happening and that’s an interesting thing in itself too. You know what if every artists is making tons of money or you know some money by the sale of their work through most standard, more standard channels that we know, we are taking that and trying to imagine something completely different with it.

I mean that’s petty miraculous and what is made to accomplish with a bunch of other people’s help is miraculous too. I think what we really want to do is look at what it is that they are actually doing, you know what is it that’s made and if we were to imagine that it could be reproduced elsewhere you know is it something that we should just, you know something we should just keep doing and try to make more of this or do you see what I mean?

Camille: And also its very hard because Biella is a very small city and to do a social transformation in Biella and work with community  when actually there is no one and when you walk on the street with Esiar from Oakland with black and Boner with Asian and whatever and all the people are like wow it’s like [0:33:57] [indiscernible] commercial you know, like it would never happen in US or you know is a very small town so it’s very hard to be like what are we going to be able to do. I mean in Torino at least its bigger so you can maybe you know but Biella is like wow, okay so let’s have coffee here and then go here and go home to bed.

So it’s not very hard to try to change things when you are – but I think Cittadellarte is very very good for the city because a lot of things are happening during the summer but for us it was hard sometimes you know like to social transformation you know and you are like thinking what you can do and you know like…

Male Speaker: Oh yes would you give, would you like to ask [0:34:46] [inaudible]

Female Speaker: Well my question is I am curious how is Basekamp similar to Cittadellarte? Because what I love about this exhibition is the fact that the Mediterranean table over there, we have the Caribbean table here and they represent different countries, different people coming together to talk to have a dialogue and I feel like when we get lost in that wealth and power dichotomy and privilege. I mean we are all privilege. Anyone who has this kind of [0:35:11] [indiscernible] is coming from a privilege position.


I mean I myself being an immigrant is very lucky to study art. So I think that debate to me is not new or interesting. To me what’s interesting is what this camp is doing and how that can change these models are really, create those models for more people and more artists.

Male Speaker: I mean yeah definitely would want to train from the same kinds of questions being directed back at us as well. I mean that’s definitely – you know when Mark who I think has left now, yeah who runs machine projects in LA was, was just describing that he thinks that there is a lot of, there are a lot of points in between decision making happening by a single sort of strong arm and some kind of idea of what I am paraphrasing in that but like some kind of the idea this you know completely open democratic or whatever benevolent process yeah, where everybody gets to have a say and everything is fair and equal and perfect.

In my experience, it’s definitely been the case. You know I mean there is almost none of our collaboration have been a real success in my point of view. I think on that level, no way I mean it’s really hard. I mean working in groups is, it can be a difficult thing to do especially when, what you are trying to do is re-think the interrelation dynamics, how people work and live together generally speaking more specifically in certain areas or in certain dynamics or in certain fields like the general field of art or even within very specific things like well we are working as part of the collaborative group or we are working as an [0:37:13] [indiscernible] or we are working as an architect group by a couple of principals and some intrinsic, you know it’s very tough and like often art position has been mis-read as being 100% celebratory of all collective endeavors. I mean it’s not the case you know.

There is no more success, I mean a corporation is a group, one of the most – it’s probably the most you think with this kind of group that there is but there are sorts of groups and just because people are collaborating doesn’t necessarily mean what you are doing together is good. You can collaborate on you know a gas chamber; you can collaborate on all sorts of things you know. It doesn’t mean that because you’ve made some kind of decision together even or even under the guides of consensus that consensus was actual or fair. I mean it’s – so anyway I just want to say that I don’t think there is any kind of assumption on our part that that’s ever going to be the case or that should be the case in Cittadellarte.

I think what we are interested in though, we are a little bit more dysfunctional in the corporation. Whenever efficient if you are to measure us by those kinds of standards as a group but I think one of the reasons that we are focusing on different examples of what we are strangely calling plausible art worlds every week this year for a year is because we actually want to look at what people are really doing and not to try and start mold, try to create sort of mold or creates you know specific, I mean we can make comparisons but we are not, we can’t really compare what someone else, what someone is doing and what someone else is doing because we don’t really want to look at what people are doing as a model exactly. I mean you can’t really stamp that out and redo it.

But at the same time, it’s really hard for me personally not to be interested in reproducibility or wonder about if what we are actually doing is making a proposal. I think what is so interesting about what happens when artists make a proposal is that they are, some are injecting it with symbolic value and part of what’s happening is not just that you are making, not just that you are having a party or making an agreement between a few people but you are proposing somehow that this is an agreement that you should consider, that you can possibly contemplate that possibly you should critique, that’s what this is for. That when you say this is an art work, that’s what we understand when I say we royally, what is generally understood to be one of the most basic guys where artist sort of, just contemplate a value you know and the symbolic value that is carried with it.


So we have to think about this, if we are going to take it seriously as in our project which somebody like Michalangelo Pistoletto wants us to do and what other groups that we are looking at and talking with and working with directly what us and everyone else to do, then we have to think about this stuff, we have to wonder what would happen if you were to expand the ship. Is it something that could be expanded like sort of a city, should it be a continent you know or should it shrink down, what happens if there are more of them? So that’s our reproducibility question. That’s one way that people often think of plausibility is, is we reproduce for, it is expandable, if it is sustainable, is another thing you know could keep going. I think that’s where the I am not trying to break it down for everyone else, I think people will have their say and I don’t want to keep rambling on but just really, just a sort of tie what I meant together if you will indulge me for a second.

I think when we were talking about the parasitical nature of this, imagination but the city of art, how it really can only exist as a kind of, as a sort of love this sort of I don’t know unclaimed love child of mainstream art world, of an art mainstream art market. You know, it wouldn’t exist financially without him right? So it is that, you know that’s part of their sustainability question. And I think one of the other things we are looking at when we are thinking about what makes something plausible is, is it substantively different from what’s already currently on offer in a mainstream. Because if – or what is currently accepted already. If something is already accepted as being absolutely definite like oh like this is the way something is done, right and this will work then you wouldn’t call plausible, you will say oh sure.

You know plausibility it means something that is either just out of reach or something that you are not quite sure of you know, it has some chance but you are not sure how much, maybe it’s very plausible, maybe – oh that’s plausible, it has the slimmest chance. But you know – so I think that’s why we look at that rather. So if you see what I mean those are the reasons like I think why some of these questions were being raised. Not so much to create dichotomy like a black and white but just to look at what that model is in those terms. You look like [0:42:37] [inaudible]

Female Speaker: Yes I was really interested in what you said about how it was hard for people with a certain medium to come and picture of you in that medium and I guess what it kind of makes me think of a little bit is the difference between collective brain storm, idea generation, plan generation versus collective action and I see this as relevant in two ways there might be more than that but one, in kind of the way that Basekamp with this model of the plausible art worlds project where it is really about dialogue and discussion and idea exchange and a lot of the ways that I have experienced Basekamp working have been idea bring collective brain storming and I wonder also if this is what in a sense we could say makes the project plausible in that its intangible in this world somewhat because it is idea generating.

And so it’s plausible because we’ve created something but it’s not tangible because it’s not here. I don’t know I just kind of wanted to just that I really like what you said.

Camille: There’s 15 people from different country and even if you want to do a collective you know it’s like if you – there is one Palestinian, one Israeli, one Indian, one Korean, we are all so different from different country and it takes time but at the end we made it but it was not easy at the beginning. For me actually it was okay. But some of the people it wasn’t, it was hard but I believe what you say is to create a common ID which is I think it’s really dependant on the character and the [0:44:48] [inaudible] even if you really want to, sometimes it is hard. So we understand [0:44:57] [inaudible]

Male Speaker: Actually I think I said that if Steven wanted to elaborate on this, he was next to the queue and is that okay Chris?


Male Speaker: Steve did you want to follow up on that or just kind of add that to the conversation that will roll it, how do you feel?

Steven: No if somebody has a pressing question I am happy to step back but otherwise I would like to say something but it’s not urgent.

Male Speaker: Okay, let’s just have Chris.

Female Speaker: How long is this supposed to last? Is this going to be keep going on or is this a short term project? Yeah.

Male Speaker: Does anyone know?

Female Speaker: We have talked about this Erica, I mean I think that’s an open question of how long can it sustain itself. Right now it is sustained by Michalangelo and by himself financially and also by grants that they get from the regional government just the same way that the art museum is sustained by grants that we get from the regional and the federal governments and I am sure that you guys get grants too etcetera you know from Pew or whoever the local foundations are. So I think that they struggle, they struggle to find are there versus they opened the slow food restaurant which we talked, the sustainable slow food restaurant. They are right in – it’s just if they are in the middle of New Jersey the garden state, they are riding the garden basket there of a very flat and fertile  ground.

So I think the restaurant is pretty successful whether it actually turns but with the restaurant turn of profits. We heard last week, we held a conference at Warden school to talk about this creative ideas for sustainable development and we – one of the people that talked to us was Stone Barrens, Stone Barrens up in New York and they occupy this building, series of buildings built by the Rockefellers but no longer belonging to them and they are trying to sustain themselves by having a restaurant which then supports the forum etcetera. I mean there is who knows and they are trying product, you know they design projects for some of the local companies there and seeing if they can sell those. But I think I mean Erica would agree, it’s a struggle and how will it continue. I don’t know exactly. Yeah, yeah just like everybody else who are trying to figure out is this plausible? As you say is this a plausible thing? Could this exist for another 20 years or 10 years or whatever?

Female Speaker: And I think just [0:47:46] [indiscernible] saying is I think the question of longevity is kind of what we left off with Michalangelo and Paulo and Francesco and the people from Cittadellarte that were here especially for the conference and the question is what is the longevity of Cittadellarte? How well will this sustain but also in what form. I mean there will be – will it have a life after Michalangelo and if so what would the function, will it change the function, will it change the forum of the place? They certainly have a property, they have a structure of what they do within that, space may change, I mean it may be different and I think that we definitely gave Michalangelo a lot to think about when he was here both within the Warden conference and the talks with [0:48:29] [indiscernible] and I think you know we will be seeing some interesting things in the future for them.

It has been a formal foundation since 1998 just like Basekamp [0:48:40] [indiscernible] in 1998 as well. So the question of what is next for this collective and collaborative practices whether you call them a foundation or a project or whatever is always the question. We can’t really answer with the sustainability of this is but I think those are things to kind of think about and I know that Michalangelo was thinking about that as well.

Male Speaker: So Steven I think you had something that you want to say, a sense of what you are thinking.

Steven: Yeah I must say that I am a little bit perplexed because – but I – I am often perplexed when art worlders start talking about the role that they play or intend to play in the field they are playing, in the transformation of society and then it actually comes down to something that resembles to some extent the United Nations with the successful restaurant. I think we need to be more specific about exactly what it is, I mean beyond like asserting things about what art can do in terms of its transformative value. Exactly what are we talking about that art can bring to the table for the point of view of Cittadellarte.


You know because the use of art and creativity in transformation of society has been absolutely devastating. You know it’s been used as a – it’s been instrumentalized and uses the tool by finance capital to you know literally destroy the life world of people and so it doesn’t, I mean it’s not, it’s a mute point to know whether art does play a role, it does play roles. It’s played in a particularly perfidious one and so you know when you say that it needs to play a responsible and then you need, I think it’s incumbent to actually specify just exactly what that role would be.

And so far I haven’t really been able to understand in what way it’s not merely sort of a factory of immaterial labor that’s moved in to a factory, into a former industrial area and has upgraded it into a new form of capital accumulation. It doesn’t work like a factory anymore which is why I quickly typed in that quote from [0:51:04] [indiscernible] because we think there are no factories anymore because they’ve been socialized into museums and other places of immaterial labor production but which do contribute fundamentally to the production of social relations values and profits.

So you know I am not – it’s not like, I don’t want to appear to be the prosecutor here. But there is some prosecution to be done when and I think you would all agree with that when you talk about the need for social, responsible social transformation and the role that Cittadellarte wants to play in that, but in what way is it not, is it playing that and what in way is it not merely contributing to the reproduction of or the displacement of capital accumulation process to a different sector of effective labor.

Male Speaker: Yes, yes but Maggie you were saying you need more time? Do you still one more time or has this been the [0:52:15] [indiscernible]? Okay no rush, yeah I mean anything you want to say is great.

Myla: I guess Steven this is Myla. What I want to say is then where would you have art reside? In other words is you know if you have one at one end of the spectrum making pretty things all by yourself with the door close behind you and selling that. I mean I am not a philosopher of art so I can’t argue that way except that you seem to be, there seems to be a hidden message under what you are saying is an appropriate place for art and for artist and that Cittadellarte so I want to say if not this then what? Just Steven well [0:53:08] [cross talk]

Steven: Thank you.

Male Speaker: I don’t think I have ever heard you saying that Steven that there is a…

Myla: Let me hear from Steven.

Male Speaker: Okay cool.

Steven: Oh thank you Myla it’s a good question and I think my prosecutorial tone probably begged that question. No I am not saying there is one good place to do art. I’m just, I am wondering, I just think that these are the kinds of questions that not only do we need to ask but we also need to answer. I mean we do need to – Greg made a quip a little earlier on. Let me just try and find that one. That basically I forget what it was but that the way that Basekamp where the plausible art world is far more dysfunctional than a corporation.  You know that it was a just a quip but in certain sense it has a true meaning because that would suggest that we are dealing with a different type of an economy, we are dealing with a different kind of – we are not dealing with managerial logics of the same not only the same scope or the same kind actually.

So the whole point of plausible art worlds has been to identify a polarity of places where art could take place in a responsible way but to look at it in very specific ways not just saying oh yeah we are going to create this really great utopian internationalist kind of a structure but actually what are they doing, what is going on and we never want to run away from this kinds of questions but what we really want not run away from away is the kind of answers.

So it really was, you know it sounded like I was asking a mean spirited question but I was really just asking  to one to try and get to the I don’t know the core of this was what exactly is Cittadellarte contributing, what has it tangibly and measurably contributed and what could it be said to be contributing to the transformation of public space or I mean by public space, I mean the kind of debate around social and political and economic concerns that it legitimately identifies as being high priority. I mean has it done that or has it – I mean in a way the testimony of the two residence which I have heard sort of waivers between yeah it was really cool and well it was kind of frustrating. But I actually haven’t had what potentially I mean any kind of – what kind of teeth does it have towards – I mean we are talking about a protofascists government in Italy, it’s no joke.


So what have they done in terms of disturbance towards the extremely racists politics towards immigrants, the devastation of new liberalism of finance capital, what are we doing, what kind of responsible action is actually going on the ground and what does art have to say about it. because if you can’t answer that question, then I really think it’s just window dressing around art usual position of you know being sort of smoke screen for the other sectors of symbolic capital accumulation.

Female Speaker: I will just say that once again we are sort of not the right people to answer this question. What I would say is just because we have artists who have lived there for four months in a very highly specified way as a residency. We need someone from Cittadellarte, we need Paulo or Emma or some of the people that are leading various offices there to answer your question. I guess I think about it in terms of project by project, they’ve done interesting work. But I am not the right person to tell you the details of it and what because it is through the details that either becomes authentic or not, yes they have worked with issues of immigration in the Mediterranean, yes. I am the wrong person to talk about it. So I am just going to pass the [0:57:39] [cross talk]

Male Speaker: Not even necessarily even what [0:57:41] [indiscernible] or not but just what could be useful to us too.

Male Speaker: Since we are not experts on Cittadellarte or expert enough, we do have experts in Philadelphia. We spent a year talking about plausible art worlds. So instead of answering the question in terms of Cittadellarte why don’t you tell us about some of the plausible art world you found for Philadelphia and the conversations you’ve been having over the last year?

Male Speaker: That’s a great question. Interestingly enough we haven’t – well it’s certainly we haven’t found any but we haven’t really talked much about any specific examples of art world like [0:58:26] [indiscernible] of many our experiments here in Philly though I think we could. I know that there are a lot of awesome things going on here and interesting things. We spent a good amount of time trying to reach out to people in Philly a few years ago and just haven’t really taken that route recently, not for a lack of interest. We just, there are a couple of reasons just too sort of let you know so that it doesn’t seem like some kind of – and we don’t Philadelphia sometimes hands off. Our like [0:58:59] [indiscernible] are open to anybody to come in. it’s obviously not, it doesn’t have a great PR engine behind it so we can’t really be like you know more inviting than just simply opening our doors and trying to distribute it.

But our choice of looking at this example of last year and mostly then we were looking at trying to look at different kinds of art worlds and its really then hard to identify substantively different kinds of art worlds. At first we thought oh well there is going to be a staggering number of this. And then we started kind of looking at them and saying oh well this is in a [0:59:36] [indiscernible] solely around a kind of alternative autonomy that it is proposing or this is a full blown session shoot out or another kind of social experiment or this kind of art world is an organizational art system that is being proposed as kind of tying in with existing organizations kind of lectured in art you know.


Except in many of these examples we’ve looked at in the past they’ve been tying in with very specific organization. We’re sort of parasiting off that or sort of in the process of instituting some other, transforming some other existing organizations. So it’s like the opposite of a succession. It’s like a Trojan horse we’re embedding. We’ve looked at art worlds that, what we’re calling art worlds or fledgling art worlds in some cases that are premised around the open source ideas. So like really we keep looking at these and I mean more than just like as many as you can fit weekly in a year and they keep kind of falling into the same sorts of categories if you call them that or tie ins.

And so we’ve tried to spread some duprecy around that just to look at a bunch of different examples so we’re not like accidentally focusing too much on one kind of art world. And also we’ve tried to look, have some geo diversity, not so much that so that we can claim to be global or something like this but so that we can actually find different, the kinds of experiments that people are doing that might be informed by location.  You know because it is. If everyone we’re looking at was on the East Coast of the United States or something like that we’d get a much different impression than if they were all in the Balkans you know.

So I think since we’ve tried to spread it around a lot we’ve looked, a few of them have been from the US and a few of them have been from the East Coast. One of the examples that we looked at was, I mean I can give you a few now that I think about this. One was an example called FEAST. It was based in Brooklyn but there is a Philadelphia chapter that’s really going strong and that’s really interesting. I think people from Lodren organizations are involved in it. I would say it’s a sort of, I don’t know how I can; I don’t want to say Metagroup you know. But it’s definitely not an isolated group. There are people who are involved in peace from, I think from I’m not sure but I would guess from some of the people that are here or at least it would be likely if they were.

And there was another organization that was local in Philadelphia that’s also rather fledgling called the public school. It started as a project in LA and had, didn’t exactly franchise itself but it was formed around people, I’ll briefly describe it just so you get some kind of sense of what I’m talking about. A zero, a no membership quasi group that’s formed on a really simple idea that anyone can propose a course or whatever that means to them. Some of them are really elaborate, some are like, you know I’ve seen some courses proposed like “How to get in and out without being seen” or “ how to pick locks” and others are a film series or a Lucerne reading group or something like this. You know it’s like the really wildly, I mean and there have been hundreds and hundreds of these quasi proposals and a bunch of them happened.

Without going on too long about this, the idea is that people will use this website to try to, anyone can propose a course and then anyone can express interest in any course proposal when there are enough people that want to do it. Then you make arrangements and it happens, almost always face to face with people. And so because of that it’s happened in a number of different cities and it’s happened in Philadelphia as well. That’s one of the other examples. I’m sure there are more, I can’t think of them right now. But we really want to connect with anybody who’s interested in these sorts of endeavors. I mean and really I think in some ways like us who want to consider what role we play in the world and what kinds of plural worlds that we’re making. And specifically when we’re doing that what our role as artists is and what we can bring to the table, what kind of competencies as artists we can bring from our field or from our experiences to other needs.

Male Speaker: Which one Scott? Which exactly ones are we talking about?

Male Speaker: Which competencies?

Male Speaker: Yeah. I mean because which incompetence’s, but what are we talking about?

Male Speaker: I don’t know, I definitely don’t want to make, when I’m holding the microphone I’m taking up line sure of this side of the conversation. But I don’t really why that is actually but I guess I wouldn’t want us to sound like some kind of, I don’t know some kind of summary of project or anything like that because we’re really interested in finding out what those are and there is a lot of examples. But I can think of some. I’d like to think, I’d like to hear what other people think as well. I mean I can just throw out one so that I think one of our competencies as artists is to be intra disciplinary. To be completely promiscuous in that sense, you know to tie together different fields, to steal, to borrow, to instantiate them elsewhere and to heavily use metaphor in that way. And I’m sort of using metaphor metaphorically in the sense that when you say what a metaphor is it’s really just talking about one thing and that we’re thinking about one thing or doing thing cultured in the terms or the ideas or the context of some other thing.


So I think artist’s metaphoric thinking historically can be very useful. And now it can be useful for all sorts of reasons I mean. Artists are like hired by corporations to brainstorm their products all the time. I’ve done that you know. That’s a competency or maybe you could say an incompetency. But anyway…

Female Speaker: In terms of examining all collectives that all artists there’s like what do we leave behind? When we have program in our city like the mural arts programs, we have murals that are a tangible thing. But when we do a lot of things that are more intellectual property or think tanks, I mean where then is there something that lives on beyond us? And I think we’re talking about worlds in way but in another way we’re really talking about material world and intellectual or spiritual, whatever you want to call the other world of that. And one on my favorite books is The Gift by Lewis Hyde which is the gift in the erotic like property which really looks at these two sources of commerce. There’s the economic physical market commerce and then there is the spiritual community building, idea sharing world of commerce and how do collectives function with that. Is there mission to have something tangible finished accomplished or is there mission just to have a dialogue keep the ideas flowing and how do those ideas then continue.

And my question is because I’m thinking Rick Low with project Row House in Texas or Lilly Yeh with Village of Arts and Humanities in North Philly, people who can say these are the things they did and kind of check those boxes, houses were built, Meltians project with Vendredi, you know raising money for education. Is that the goal of collectives to have social change or is it more in the idea and in the artistic world of intellectual properties? No I mean I was going, my comment was very related to that and also related to kind of the question or statement that I said before and that is that I think for me personally plausible art world has been about personal change and dialogue like you were saying and less about leaving about something behind. So for me it’s less important to answer your question by saying, alright, this is what we physically left behind and these are projects that we’ve done which is also another way to respond to it.

But for me it’s more about like the change individual based on the conversations and the dialogues that have happened through the discussions that we have every week. And to me what was said before about this group coming together and idea generating and brainstorming together kind of collectively is really for me personally what this project, what excites me about this project. And also it did sort of seem that I caught a glimpse of somebody who was pulling up the one of the first lines on the description of, I can’t pronounce it, and it said something like the production of dialogue. Like how is dialogue productive and that’s what both of these projects that we’re talking about tonight for personally are and that’s really I think gets what you’re kind of saying that distinction between the physical world and the kind of idea spiritual world.  And also to me what I didn’t really quite understand Steven’s comment about well I mean for me you have to work in the system that you’re given and regardless of the fact that we’re using the monetary system to do this project it’s still producing something outside of that.


Female Speaker: I guess I was going to take their conversation in a little bit different direction I think. One of my criticisms of Cittadellarte in my experience there is that it’s really, well to start with the positive it’s really connected on an international level to the international art market. I mean like Michelangelo is really well known artist who obviously selling his work. And like internationally I think that it’s recognized probably more than it’s recognized in the region where it’s at. I think people are talking about the project may know about it. But it’s like I didn’t really understand living in the other, people like I would say I was living at [1:11:08] [inaudible] saying and they had an idea about that. But they weren’t coming to public programs very often. I mean there’re people from that program that come to their public program that comes to our exhibitions. But mostly they are attended from people outside that community.

So it’s I guess I was always really, I don’t have the answers but I was really interested in like the integrity in that and having a program that’s a project or it’s about social transformation and then kind of the folks, you know the regular folks that aren’t artists aren’t  really accessing the project. Like there’s some discrepancy there for me at least. It’s a huge resource to the community you know and I just, I wonder how I can, for me it needs to be more accessible to the community.

Male Speaker: Yeah that’s definitely true.  I mean arguably Philadelphia struggles with this as well. I wouldn’t want to say that to any from Philadelphia. I’ve lived here for 15 years so I kind of feel like I’m from Philadelphia, I don’t know ish, you know like if you ask me where I’m from I often say that. But yeah it’s definitely true and when you are collectively as a city generally eclipsed by sort of brighter neighboring stars it’s you know often your audience when you have a “high level contemporary art program” people are from all over the place. And I mentioned the mass mock effect only because that’s sort of a largely written about example where some planners wanted to put a center and then it was supposed to boost economics and there’s…sorry…oh and build value yeah, exactly.

It’s I mean I guess then when you start talking you get into regional politics and how good is this really for the community and then the conversation is all about that. And that is definitely an interesting conversation. I think it’s a different one than this but that is super interesting.

Male Speaker: I was going to ask, is there space for me to say something or have I said too much?

Male Speaker: I guess it’s up to you, you guys we officially ended four minutes ago so I guess it, yeah the answer is yes.

Steven: Okay. I’ll be less long winded than usual. No because I, the previous speaker one before said something which appears to be intuitively self evident that we have to start with the system that exists which is given. So you don’t just sort of make up something else, well of course I disagree with that. Of course I think that nothing interesting could ever, I mean that’s just my point of view but nothing interesting could ever possibly happen with the way that pie is currently being divvied up. You know there’s all sorts of points of view, it’s in the mainstream art world it’s not a homogenous place by any means. It’s extremely heterogeneous. There is a great deal of heterogeneity, there is a great deal of animosity and enmity and conflict and so on.


So but even within all of that of course you’re really just remaining within one framework of the art work can mean. One place where expert culture can encounter expert culture can challenge each other. And so I want to say something actually interesting about, I mean I want to say something more generous about that art. I don’t really know more about it than what I’ve heard this evening and on Tuesday night but what it seems to me from what I can hear is that it’s really attempting and it is attempting to do it within the system. And of course that’s not something which I think is you know the route that I want to go. I mean plausible art worlds is interested in people who’ve simply like left the attention economy and have gone to other routes and other ways of imagining what art can be.

But I think what Cittadellarte has done is taken the pulse of that change and it’s taking the pulse of the word art itself has been given an incredibly heavy burden to bear. It’s come to mean so many different things and I think that it attempts to in its experimental mode of kind of embodying that shift in the usage of the word art. And I think that’s probably the sense of why it’s bringing these people together in this sort of, in a sort of unpredictable way because it doesn’t, I mean as far as I can get, it doesn’t really like particular line of what art is supposed to be viewing. But it’s somehow by not knowing what it’s supposed to be doing but doing something, something good will become of this. Well this is like a very new; I mean art historically is an extremely new kind of a concept. I mean it seems goofy from an older perspective and it seems not really, it seems a bit defanged from my perspective.

But if you put it in a contemporary perspective what it looks like even though it may not be engaging with the local communities, it does seem like an attempt to democratize taste as a kind of prelude to the democratization of politics which is something that Italy is certainly in dire need of. So I see it as at once extremely contemporary and an attempt probably to take, well work on all the possible art worlds and gently ease them into a mainstream framework while we might want to see that as being a kind of a form of co-optation. But it also might be a way of, I mean it would a shame to see it as a cynical strategy it might be a potential strategy for, I don’t know not only just taking a measure of the shift in the word art but kind of pushing it gently in another direction.

Male Speaker: Yeah. Actually I think that’s what we, that was sort of how left the last chat wasn’t it, that there is this sort of like, there is a sort of gently nudge in a way, sort of an open ended gentle nudge where a lot of them, I don’t know, the procedures for closing down questions or closing down conversations are kind of left out and that’s one of the things that seems really interesting about Cittadellarte, it may not be the answer to all world’s problems or anything like this and I think we need to discuss how it closely resembles some of the larger power structures that we have and many people are struggling with all the time, in and outside of circle art practices. But also I think we also want to take a look at the other things that are happening there that are, I wouldn’t know if I want to go so far as to say miraculous but…

Steven: It’s gone; I meant to say one more thing. It just gone, because you just attributed to me. You know my Brian Holmes who was a guest Plausible Art Worlds and it’s week four, he’s written an interesting text about what he calls liars poker. And he uses that term to describe how political artists engage with would be political institutions like the Cittadellarte and other museums, you know the Macabre in Barcelona and so on. They play this game of liar’s poker so that the artist always pretends that they have a political ace in their sleeve. And the museum goes along with that bluff. But if the artist, this is Brian’s point, if the artist actually has a political ace in his sleeve  in other words if the artist is ready to engage in live politics then he or she gets carried out by the bodyguards right out of the museum and right out of the institutions.


So I think that very probably if anybody, any artist ever dared to bring real politics inside the citadel of art that would be the end of their residency. And I’d be very interested to hear someone contradict that point of view.

Female Speaker: Well I feel that if a museum is this structure of the art world, if that’s the system, the corporation whatever you want to call it I feel responsible in myself and I feel as a society that we have to hold those institutions accountable and responsible to change. I mean if we just form these art worlds as completely separate, as completely a universe dismissing the entire world that exists then they can do whatever they want and my sense of justice is that’s not fair. I know that I don’t have the ability to change overnight or that a few people are going to change overnight but I want to go down fighting and maybe that’s like the rocky Philadelphia side of me you know.

Female Speaker: Okay. I was just thinking about I work with puppets and I have one particular puppet that was always saying, I can get away with things. I’m cute people don’t listen to me; I can say whatever I want. Whereas if you, like everybody else could do he could go in there and slip a political idea right in there, right under people’s noses and it happened.

Male Speaker: Did you want to say something? Yeah.

Camille: Also from like a community arts standpoint if you work completely outside of the system you’re discounting people who aren’t even considered artists by the art system which I think that’s also why it’s important for me to try to what you were saying bring justice to the systems that already exist because it also includes people who aren’t even considered by like the elitist “art world” as artists that are artists and just need to be told they are.

Male Speaker: Should we go on with this…

Steven: Hang on, I just, I wasn’t talking about that I mean I wasn’t saying that we’re talking about artists that are recognized as such, I mean whose self understanding as artists and who are recognized as such by museums. But the, our experience in Europe has been that when those artists actually show their teeth, when they say okay this is a show about responsible transformation of political transformation of society so we’re bringing in the equipment right? Well no they’re not. No I mean that’s when the museum says no. You know we’re not talking about they’re doing some sort avant-gardist activity that nobody can understand. We’re talking about they’re saying, you just said we were going to do a show about or we’re going to do a project or the whole initiative is about social transformation. So we’re going to do that. Well as long as they talk about it that’s one thing. But when they actually have live content no way.  I mean there has been no exception of that.

Male Speaker: Yeah I mean it’s like what happened Steve Kurtz; I mean the FBI came in. It’s like what happened with b.a.n.g. Lab, these are highly respected art groups and artists and are supposedly and it’s you know, I think I get the point that Steven is making is that when we’re talking about the department of politics I just linked it here you know I think what you might be asking is how far can that go. We also have a lot of directions which we [1:24:28] [inaudible] but yeah.

Female Speaker: [1:24:35] [inaudible]

Male Speaker: Oh definitely. And also if I can just contextualize this a little because we are students out our normal context in the sense that we often discuss that out of our space and refer to past discussions, just a couple of things that came up real quick.  From the overall point of view of this project there isn’t any judgment that everyone should abandon all institutions. Just to let people know, especially when questions of legitimacy for people who don’t have visibility yet come up. I mean channels for visibility that already exist that are kind of, that are mainstreams that are pipelines for visibility can be very helpful definitely and anyway I don’t mean to be an ultimate apologist for anything that we say.


But just sort of, I mentioned earlier that there different kinds of plausible art worlds that we were looking at and some of them are completely antagonistic to any existing institution I mean to the point where they only barely reluctantly agree to talk with us, because somehow we’re tainted you know.  I mean and others who are incredibly enmeshed with the idea that somehow I think like Steven had said earlier that you start making “compromises” and you somehow become a double agent in an institution with the idea of transforming it and suddenly you become a triple agent. You don’t really know who you are anymore.  It’s, and there is a lot of not only in between but alternate kinds too that we’re looking at that might help something in case there is an impression that this last string of conversation summarizes the project entirely. It is one head of this multi headed hydra.

There is a book or a publication anyway, we don’t really know exactly what it’s going to be that’s already paid for like he said by the Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative which is awesome that the people that were on that panel to decide what should be funded decided to fund something like this as opposed to another blockbuster show which is cool. And our basic idea with that is we’re going to try, what we propose we’re going to print 2000 copies. We are going to donate half of them as much as possible to every institution that we can, formal or informal that where people are taught about what art is supposed to be because we feel that the core key point of view is not that it’s a sociological project per se that we are looking in art worlds. And it’s also not just a conceptual art project even though we are working with a number of people art worlders and art groups and we’re an art group ourselves and I mean Steven is a writer and a philosopher but other people do all sorts of different things and so I think there is certainly a point of view that this is a project.

But I think specifically there are cocky perspective that we’re trying to or the lens that we’re trying to look at all these various things through is that it’s not just the things that we do because we can do all sorts for things and find cracks and fissures in any existing structure and not even think much about the structure because we’ll just assume that we’re not going to change it and let’s do what we can within it. There is a lot of different, what am I trying to say, that is a way to do things. What this project is mainly doing is looking at all those structures and saying, hey the structures that we’re building to support creative life are as important, or as much a part of what art is as the actions or the performances that we do as artists, as the objects that we make as artists or the processes or the writings that we do or the criticism that is written is just as worthy of discussion and even exhibition like inquiry which is not really a normal way to look at it.

So that’s why we’re, but the fact remains that from out, I think we’re trying to make a strong case for this sort of through exhibits as we’ve discussed like kind of exhibit A, exhibit B, you know kind of proof in a way that this is a major part of what many artists are doing. It’s developing structures that support creative life and we’re thinking, hey it would be awesome, it would be interesting and hopefully valuable for people that are learning about what art is to see a bunch of different kinds of options when they’re learning about that because let’s face it we’re going to insert ourselves or find ourselves in one structure or another we’re going to believe we have some degree of influence of what those are. And largely on how we talk. So whether these people have already gone through some formal education or not.

So that’s the point of the book anyway and that’s at least we’re getting started on that with again like I said and it’s not just, well what Steven calls a pseudo demographic bluff, it’s not just a I hope a lip service to say, hey you’re all invited to the work with us when we really have no intention of doing that. We really actually do. We have a certain set of pages I think that we can afford to print that many copies of based on the target that we have. But it’s still relatively up in the air where that’s going to be. It’s still one of the major components of it is a glossary that don’t even have, we hardly have started yet because from almost every single person that has, we’ve been in contact with or had these discussions with, there’s always these questions about what does that mean and I think this means something different than you and somehow we often get to the issue that we don’t have adequate language to really build the kinds of worlds that many of us want. And we also don’t have adequate language to describe them and understand them mutually.

So we are really, we’re trying to build a glossary and we want people’s help with that. And we’d like to also mention that we, and I see what many other people are already doing like what you had asked as plausible art worlds themselves are, you know already plausible art worlds we’re not trying coin it, we’re not interested in coinage of some phrase or trying to stake some kind of territory. In fact many people are already much more invested in doing that than we are and we just want to meet you, you know people that are doing these kinds of things and know more about it. So is that enough of a wrap up that, okay. Thanks everybody for joining us on Skype and we’ll see you next week.

[1:32:02] End of Audio