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Video still: Advanced Chemistry,
Fremd im Eigenen Land

Reading Babylon
Reading group with Amal Alhaag and Maria Guggenbichler
Text by Fatima El-Tayeb

Monday 21 January 2019, 7pm
At Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

The Euro-American world provided the model by which the Western subject canonized art histories and their confinements. Regardless of the current waves of a globalized art market, the reference system remains Euro-centric and male-dominated. The rest is either reduced to othering, marginalized or neglected. The cycle and scope of the canon of art history, methods and concepts limit our possibilities, literacy/eloquence and the inclusion of global perspectives that foster diverse notions of histories, representation, art forms and aesthetics.

Reading Babylon examines (im)materials in a variety of formats and situate them in their often-changing historical, cultural, and sociopolitical context. We will focus on (im)material forms of cultural production and their relationship to ethics, politics, economics, questions of property, ownership, use and sharing. Intersectional historical dimensions are central to such questions.

On Monday 21 January, we will read together and talk about Fatima El-Tayeb’s
European Others: Queering Ethnicity in Post-national Europe (2011):
Introduction: Theorizing Urban Minority Communities in Postnational Europe
and chapter 1: “Stranger in My Own Country”: European Identities, Migration, and Diasporic Soundscapes.
If you would like to receive the texts/materials, please e-mail us via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

You are welcome to drop into any or all reading group session(s).

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 22 January 2019, 6pm
At Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

Hodan Warsame
is an educator, organiser and moderator working in the areas of gender, race, class and citizenship inspired by queer and decolonial feminisms. Through organizing workshops, consciousness-raising groups and making media, she creates spaces for herself and others to develop critical and liberatory understandings of ourselves and the world that form the basis for radical change in our for everyday actions and relationships. She is a co-initiator of Decolonize The Museum, an intervention aimed at uncovering and subverting colonial narratives within ethnographic museums. Hodan also founded Redmond, an intersectional feminist collective active between 2013 and 2017 that created critical online and offline spaces for women and queer people of color to share new understandings of Dutch politics, pop culture and colonial history. Hodan currently focuses on strategies for radical institutional change for justice, both from the outside and inside of organisations.

Ayesha Ghanchi
cares about pedagogy as a means of empowerment and fun. Her academic work academic examines critical pedagogy in arts practice. In her research she looked at how radical and critical philosophies stemming from the 1968 moment influenced art education practices in informal learning situations in London. She has also worked within the cultural and community sectors as an artist and educator in different ways and in different places from youth centres in inner city London to a refugee centre in Beirut. She is also a yoga teacher and uses yoga techniques in her arts and pedagogy practices.

 

Website-Quinsy

Film still:
Theodoros Bafaloukos, Rockers

Chanting Down
Workshop with Quinsy Gario

Wednesday 23 January 2019, 1pm-4pm
Teatro Munganga, Schinkelhavenstraat 27 hs, 1075VP Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

The stories surrounding the fate of Babylon are multiple. Even the origin of its name itself is an academic guess because of the loss of information through time and force. In this workshop Quinsy Gario will facilitate a speculative exploration of its future and current use. Through writing prompts and movement improv a collective performance will be negotiated.

The workshop aims to center non-dominance and self sabotage as a response to living among tactics and strategies of domination.

Quinsy Gario
is a visual and performance artist from the Dutch Caribbean. His most well-known work, Zwarte Piet Is Racisme (2011–2012), critiqued the general knowledge surrounding the racist Dutch figure and practice of Zwarte Piet (Black Pete), later bringing into the open the governmental institutional support that keeps the figure alive in the Netherlands. He has an academic background in gender studies and postcolonial studies and artistic research. Gario is a board member of various institutions and a member of the pan-African artist collective State of L3, and is a recurring participant of the Black Europe Body Politics biannual conference series.

 

Website-Lara-Quinsy

Image: Grand theatre hall,
Stadsschouwburg Amsterdam

Decolonizing Theater & Performance Practices
Conversation between Lara Staal and Quinsy Gario

Wednesday 23 January 2019, 7pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

This event explores the possibilities of a critical performance geography, practices and practicing. In what ways can we speak of horizontal histories as structural interventions into the canons of theater, art and performance? 

Looking at the roots of European, Dutch and Western theatre, like many other fields, is to dismantle, de-root, raise complex questions and reimagine references, concepts, listening and doing practices. To practice decoloniality is to develop simultaneously emergent strategies to undo how Eurocentric theater world conceptualizes the center of knowledge and practice and its peripheries.

For this evening, artist and researcher Quinsy Gario offers a propositions that feeds into a conversation on decoloniality, whiteness, theater, performance practices between him, curator, artist and researcher Lara Staal and audience members.

Lara Staal
is an artist-curator, researcher and writer. She studied theatre pedagogy in Arnhem and theatre science and dramaturgy in Amsterdam. Between 2013 and 2016, she worked as a programmer where she developed various socio-political programmes in which alliances were created between art and other fields on the basis of shared urgencies. Since 2017 she has been working as a freelance curator in the performing arts and has developed works such as “The Evening of the Anger” (together with rapper Gideon Everduim) and “Europe on Trial” (together with human rights activist Yoonis Osman Nuur). In addition to her work as a curator, she writes for a diversity of platforms about art and politics.

 


Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 24 January 2019, 2pm-5pm
Meeting point: Lobby of Tuinstadhuis, Plein ’40-’45 1, 1064 SW Amsterdam – here

 
The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.
The series of workshops kicks off with special guest urban planner and researcher Joachim Meerkerk.

 

Image: Katherine MacBride

Political Listening
Workshop with Katherine MacBride

Friday 25 January 2019, 10am-5pm
Teatro Munganga, Schinkelhavenstraat 27 hs, 1075VP Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org


This practical workshop will involve doing and reflecting on a range of listening exercises drawn from musical, activist, and caring practices. We will relate them to performance via queer feminist quantum physics, and genealogical and poetic analyses of race, racism, and coloniality. We will explore methods for listening across difference, listening to what cannot be heard, listening to oppressed narratives, listening to what isn’t being said; listening to the world and each other to reflect on what it is to be together, and how we might be together differently. During this workshop we will also consider listening in relation to a range of bodily capacities and experiences, decentring the often-assumed norm of an ‘able-bodied’ listener, and introduce ways that performance practices can become more accessible to audiences with a wider range of sensory experiences.

Katherine MacBride
is an artist. She works with performance, installation, writing, video, and event making, with and without institutions. Collaboration and supportive practices are important to her: she prints small edition feminist publications; edits other people’s writing; works in a drop-in art studio for homeless people; and is learning to host with Tender Center, a collectively-run venue for queer events in Rotterdam. Much of her practice focuses on relational entanglements, listening across and being attentive to difference, and working creatively towards an ethics of inseparability and interdependency.

 

Reading Babylon
Reading group with Amal Alhaag and Maria Guggenbichler

Monday 28 January 2019, 7pm
NieuwLand, Pieter Nieuwlandstraat 93-95, 1093XN Amsterdam – here

The Euro-American world provided the model by which the Western subject canonized art histories and their confinements. Regardless of the current waves of a globalized art market, the reference system remains Euro-centric and male-dominated. The rest is either reduced to othering, marginalized or neglected. The cycle and scope of the canon of art history, methods and concepts limit our possibilities, literacy/eloquence and the inclusion of global perspectives that foster diverse notions of histories, representation, art forms and aesthetics.
Reading Babylon examines (im)materials in a variety of formats and situate them in their often-changing historical, cultural, and sociopolitical context. We will focus on (im)material forms of cultural production and their relationship to ethics, politics, economics, questions of property, ownership, use and sharing. Intersectional historical dimensions are central to such questions.

On Monday 28 January, we will read together and talk about Danielle Allen’s
Education and Equality (2014)
Chapter 2: Participatory Readiness
If you would like to receive the texts/materials, please e-mail us via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

Final_ASHG_Cover_lgCover of The Amsterdam Slavery Heritage Guide,
co-authored by Dienke Hondius, Nancy Jouwe,
Dineke Stam, Annemarie de Wildt, Jennifer Tosch (2014)

Black Heritage Amsterdam Canal Tour
Boat ride with Jennifer Tosch

Tuesday 29 January 2019, 2pm
Please RSVP: maaike[dot]boot[at]ahk[dot]nl

The Black Heritage Tour is about the ‘hidden histories’ of the African Diaspora from the 17th century to the present and is for everyone who is interested in learning more. Researcher and founder Jennifer Tosch guides us along significant sites while traveling through the city canals on-board a classic canal boat as we trace the history visible in the landmarks, architecture, canal houses and art.

Jennifer Tosch
is a Surinamese-African American born in New York City to Surinamese, South American parents. Her divergent experiences at academia in Amsterdam and Utrecht inspired her to found the Black Heritage Tours in Amsterdam. In 2014 she co-authored the Amsterdam Slavery Heritage Guide, and launched Black Heritage Tours in New York State in 2016. She co-authored: Dutch New York Histories in 2017. She is also involved with the Mapping Slavery Project, a project portraying historical places relating to slavery on the map of the Dutch colonial empire.

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 29 January 2019, 6pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

ReneImage: Police intervention in the Van Bossestraat,
Hans Foto, 2007

Walk in Amsterdam’s De Staats & De Spaarndammer neighborhoods
With René Boer

Wednesday 30 January 2019, 4pm
Meeting point: tbc

In this walk, we will roam the streets of the ‘Staatsliedenbuurt’ en ‘Spaarndammerbuurt’ neighborhoods, just outside Amsterdam’s historical core. Originally built as working class districts from the late 19th century onwards, both areas are now full on the gentrification frontier. We will visit radical social housing experiments from the 20s and the 80s, and follow the traces of these neighborhoods’ unruly past, all the way into the present.

René Boer
works as a curator, critic and researcher in the fields of architecture, urbanism, heritage and art. He is part of the Amsterdam-based Non-fiction collective, managing editor at Failed Architecture and affiliated with various urban social movements. He is currently working on the long-term research project ‘Architecture of Appropriation’, which has been shown in exhibitions in Rotterdam and São Paulo, shaping a new research hub on ‘the commons’, and developing an autonomous platform for alternative urban practices in both Amsterdam and Cairo.

 

Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Meet-up with artists and activists Yara Siad and Shailoh Philips
Convened by Josien Pieterse and Anne de Zeeuw (Framer Framed, Netwerk Democratie)

Thursday 31 January 2019, 7pm
Studio Yalla, Derde Kostverlorenkade 35, 1054TS Amsterdam – here

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists?Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

In-between: reflecting on building an artist-run platform with the Salwa Foundation

In the winter of 2015, Shailoh initiated offering studio space to newly-arrived artists in the Kostgewonnen collective, an artist-run autonomous space with over 20 studios and a theater in Amsterdam West. The first artist to respond to this Open Call was Yara Said, a visual artist from Syria. Over the past three years, they have worked together with a dedicated team of people in building a platform for artists in this in-between zone: arriving new in the Netherlands and finding their way in the art scene. In this conversation, we will openly reflect on what we’ve learned about building an inclusive community, issues of prejudice, the conundrums of grappling with the “r” word, the importance of eating and dancing together, developing a visual identity, working the system, building support structures and coping with our vulnerabilities, our many failures and what we learn from them, celebrating our continued existence, the ongoing work of radical solidarity. And of course also share the upcoming events in the program we are developing: How Wow Now and GYST (get your shit together).

Yara Said
is a Syrian visual artist based in the Netherlands.  As a result of personal experience, she is aiming to connect art with social development. By immersing herself in disciplines such as politics, psychology, sociology, and theology, she endeavours to pinpoint the position of artists in society and the perception of that same society on artists. With this goal in mind, the Salwa Foundation was established. Named after Yara’s grandmother, Salwa is a name for girls in Arabic. Salwa means: “consolation”, “that which brings happiness”, “something that makes you forget your sadness and worries”.

Shailoh Phillips
is an artist, researcher, educator and community organizer. She has spent the past decade working in the field of digital media and design education. Her practice revolves around fostering playful forms of collaborative resistance and seeking out pressure points to act in the face of social inequalities and unfolding ecological disasters. In 2016, she co-founded Studio Yalla, offering support and studio space to artists restarting their lives in the Netherlands.
She is also a part of the collective Toos for Action, working with inflatable sculptures in public space in collaboration with social movements and activist groups.

 

RomyImage: Romy Rüegger

The Image Is Broken / Das Bild ist unterbrochen (Sequences and Involvements)
Workshop with Romy Rüegger

Friday 1 February 2019, 10am-5pm
NieuwLand, Pieter Nieuwlandstraat 93-95, 1093XN Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

This workshop proposes to listen to images, (dis-)appearances, (un-)records – found in or speculated about in historical or state archives as well as in orally transmitted stories and memories. To listen to these materials is to work with and through the national/personal archive as well as their discontents. Listen to what is broken, interrupted or silent/silenced, yet nevertheless can perform as active witnesses of the criminalization of non-settled ways of living in central Europe; and act as testimonies of the racialisation of classist violence that was employed to construct both the nation state as well as an ethnically homogenous and settled population. These silences tell the stories of a genocidal white washing and its function in the construction of modern nation states, their borders, bureaucracies, vocabularies and ideologies.
We will listen to images, breaks, cuts, glitches in memory – also in order to develop alternative practices of relating: how can we think care as confrontation, tabu as entanglement, montage as choice of sequence that is always in relation to our own and our shared experience. How is involvement a question of ethics and what does involvement mean for the critique of racist violence?
Starting point of the workshop is the performance “Back Sides and Phantom Files” originally developed for the former Bundeshaus, Aarau, place of conception of the modern Swiss national state. The workshop will involve close readings and listenings together as well as building sheets and screens in order to experiment with different narrator-viewer positions, non-embodiment, non-performance and (disembodied) voice channeling.

Romy Rüegger
is an artist and writer, working with and through the inter-related questions of archives, language, the disembodied voice, as well as the circulation of intersectional and feminist histories, their genealogies, and also their interruptions.
Romy works with performances, audio installations and choreographed spaces; is the author of experimental audio pieces, staged conversations, notations and texts that have been performed, read, published and broadcasted. Romy often works in collaboration with other artists, hosts and organizes performances, lectures, seminars and film evenings.
Romy’s writings for performances can be found in the recently published publication “Language is Skin – Scripts for Performances”.



Reading Babylon
Reading group with Amal Alhaag and Maria Guggenbichler

Monday 4 February 2019, 7pm
Werkplaats Molenwijk, Molenaarsweg 3, 1035EJ Amsterdam – here

The Euro-American world provided the model by which the Western subject canonized art histories and their confinements. Regardless of the current waves of a globalized art market, the reference system remains Euro-centric and male-dominated. The rest is either reduced to othering, marginalized or neglected. The cycle and scope of the canon of art history, methods and concepts limit our possibilities, literacy/eloquence and the inclusion of global perspectives that foster diverse notions of histories, representation, art forms and aesthetics.
Reading Babylon examines (im)materials in a variety of formats and situate them in their often-changing historical, cultural, and sociopolitical context. We will focus on (im)material forms of cultural production and their relationship to ethics, politics, economics, questions of property, ownership, use and sharing. Intersectional historical dimensions are central to such questions.

If you would like to receive the texts/materials, please e-mail us via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org
You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 5 February 2019, 6pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

MomtazaPhoto: Lee Townsend

A Theory of Diasporic Entanglement (I)
Writing workshop with Momtaza Mehri

Wednesday 6 February 2019, 12pm-5pm
De Fabriek Volkskamer, Van Ostadestraat 233, 1073TN Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

This workshop by poet and essayist Momtaza Mehri consists of two sessions and incorporates poetry, theory, film and sound. Together with participants, Momtaza Mehri seeks to interrogate the intramural in all its limitations. What is left unsaid when we speak to and past each other? From Jasmine Gibson to Haile Gerima to Édouard Glissant and Warsame Shire, how do we diasporically and imaginatively navigate captivity and enclosure from within. This workshop centers our own complicated and often ruptured gaze.

Workshops are open to everyone! Participants are encouraged to attend both workshop and to please sign up via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org. The second workshop session takes place on Friday 8 March 2019.

Momtaza Mehri
is a poet and writer who remains unsure which world came first. Her work engages with inheritance/ psychosomatics/ ugliness/ biopolitics and digitalised diasporas. Her chapbook sugah lump prayer was published by Akashic books in 2017. Her work has been translated into Arabic and French, and published in magazines and publications across the world. Momtaza also edits Diaspora Drama, a digital platform showcasing international immigrant art.

 

Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 7 February 2019, 2pm-5pm
Location: tbc

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

 

ZinziImage: Zinzi Minott

The Unruly Body
Workshop with Zinzi Minott

Friday 8 February 2019, 3pm-7pm
DAS Graduate School, Overhoeksplein 2, 1013KS Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

This workshop is for those bodies that cannot be ruled, are tired of being ruled, exhausted by being rule or not fitting into the rules. Born out of Minott’s own experiences of living with, in and through an unruly body both within and outside the dance world you will spend time exploring notions of bodily unruliness.
Artist and dancer Zinzi Minott leads this movement-based workshop. Using elements from her practice around dance as a political tool Zinzi Minott has developed a workshop that allows participants to engage with her work, practice and process.

Zinzi Minott’s

work focuses on the relationship between dance, bodies and politics. She identifies as a dancer, she seeks to complicate the boundaries of dance and the place of black female bodies within the form. Her work explores how dance is perceived through the prisms of race, queer culture, gender and class. Zinzi is interested in the space between dance, performance and other art forms, and though her practice is driven through dance, the outcomes range from performance and live art to sound, film, dances and object-based work.

 

FrancoisePhoto: Nicolas Lo Calzo

Seminar with Françoise Vergès

Monday 11 February 2019, 7pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

Françoise Vergès presents a seminar that touches on the themes of European Others, white Europeanness, specifically in artistic and cultural practices and contexts. What are the responsibilities of artists and their practices? Vergès will offer possible decolonial contexts, strategies how artists and activists have subverted the dominant hegemonic cultural practices.
After the seminar there will be space for conversation to discuss how artistic and cultural practices and research contribute to and can benefit from decolonial methodologies.

Françoise Vergès
is a feminist and antiracist activist, scholar and curator. She has been Chair of Global South(s) at the College of Global Studies, House of Human Sciences Foundation, Paris, since 2014. Vergès has served as vice-president (2004–2009) and then president (2009–2012) of the Committee for the Memory of Slavery in France.
Françoise Vergès has published extensively on postcolonial theory, the ambiguities of abolition, slaverly remembrance, colonial and postcolonial psychiatry, Frantz Fanon, Aimé Césaire, the economy of predation and globalisation, the postcolonial museum, migration politics and contemporary forms of colonization and racialization.

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 12 February 2019, 6pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

SandsImage: Sands Murray-Wassink

This Bridge Called My Horse : (Pro)Feminist Horse Drawing Workshop : Joyous Horse Hip Action in a Pink Spotlight
Workshop with Sands Murray-Wassink

Wednesday 13 February 2019, 11am-5pm
DAS Graduate School, Overhoeksplein 2, 1013KS Amsterdam – here>
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

Why are horses good for you? 
I put my body where my work is. Art becomes an existential tool, useful and meaningful – a belief system, a structure.
The horse as a symbol represents for me a corrective as I was always told growing up in Topeka, Kansas, USA that “horses were for girls”. I never found this fair. The equine is a strong, muscular presence in our world and the horse embodiment represents a sense of endlessness and continuity and a reaching beyond the possible horizons of experience. The horse combines with words floating through consciousness and becomes me, but it is also not me. The drawn or painted horse is independent and speaking for itself. The horse becomes everyone / every body. Humans have a tendency to anthropomorphize other living creatures and the planet itself. I play on this tendency and use my biggest “secret” public weapon: my sense of humor. Without this the work would be dead. My intention in this ‘horse drawing workshop’, which is the starting point to address existential foundations, is to empower the participants to think about their connections to themselves, each other, and the world they exist and find themselves in, with all its specificities and background stories. Freedom is the goal.
Everything I do is an experiment and the result should always remain unknown. Sometimes something we experience only makes sense over a period of months or even years. I like the concept of “radical narcissism” where the involvement of and in the self is a way to develop a sharp precision in behavior when interacting with others on all scales in the world. Dance and performance are integral to this process, as the brush or pencil moves across the page and even handwriting becomes drawing as the head is connected to the heart is connected to the hand is connected to the soul.

I am a painter and perfume collector, manic-depressive, queer, profeminist, interested in decolonial thinking and examining and exposing white cis-masculinities and non-binary femininities from a personal perspective. My living body and lived experience are my main materials. Essentially I am not a visual artist but interested in survival, transformation, development (personal and societal, and why societal development is not linear), behavior and expressing emotions and feeling and expressing feelings. I consider my interactions and relationships in a dynamic way with the social body at large and I am interested in micro- rather than macro- and in concrete change over time. I am interested in adding joy and good energies to the world through a strongly enthusiastic approach.

 

Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 14 February 2019, 2pm-5pm
Location: tbc

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

 

 

JoyImage: Joy Mariama Smith

Shame Disco
Workshop and party with Joy Mariama Smith

Friday 15 February 2019, 4pm-9pm
Vrankrijk, Spuistraat 216, 1012 VT Amsterdamhere
Please RSVP for the workshop part: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

Starting with re-framing shame as a departure point for pleasure, we will draw from Dr. Morgana Maye’s notion of shame as an aspect of a state of arousal as well as Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s writings on shame, theatricality and queer performance. Through using objects, movement and co-working we will plunge deeply into the transformative nature of taking a shameful experience and turning it into pleasure. In conjunction with the somatic research, students will also compose a manifesto to be presented and performed at the end of our time together. We will actively engage with shame intellectually and somatically, beginning with autonomous research that culminates in a collective moment of dancing through shame. We will sweat, move, contemplate, evoke, empathize, and play with the goal of examining and dismantling shame as a oppressive force on our bodies. The trajectory of this workshop will begin with clear movement research and critical thinking around shame and evolve into a dance party. While this workshop is all inclusive, members of marginalized communities have priority. Specifically: People of Color, Womxn, Femmes*, Trans*, Queers*, Non-Binary people.




Joy Mariama Smith
A native Philadelphian currently based in Den Haag, NL, Joy Mariama Smith’s work primarily addresses the conundrum of projected identities in various contexts. A sub-theme, or ongoing question in their work is: What is the interplay between the body and it’s physical environment? Rooted in socially engaged art practice, they are a performance/installation/movement artist , activist, facilitator, curator and architectural designer. They have a strong improvisational practice spanning 20 years.  When they choose to teach, they actively try to uphold inclusive spaces.

Reading Babylon
Reading group with Amal Alhaag and Maria Guggenbichler

Monday 18 February 2019, 7pm
De Fabriek Volkskamer, Van Ostadestraat 233, 1073TN Amsterdam – here

The Euro-American world provided the model by which the Western subject canonized art histories and their confinements. Regardless of the current waves of a globalized art market, the reference system remains Euro-centric and male-dominated. The rest is either reduced to othering, marginalized or neglected. The cycle and scope of the canon of art history, methods and concepts limit our possibilities, literacy/eloquence and the inclusion of global perspectives that foster diverse notions of histories, representation, art forms and aesthetics.
Reading Babylon examines (im)materials in a variety of formats and situate them in their often-changing historical, cultural, and sociopolitical context. We will focus on (im)material forms of cultural production and their relationship to ethics, politics, economics, questions of property, ownership, use and sharing. Intersectional historical dimensions are central to such questions.

If you would like to receive the texts/materials, please e-mail us via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org
You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 19 February 2019, 6pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).

 

Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 21 February 2019, 2pm-5pm
Location: tbc

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

 

 

biljmer-viewImage: Queen Juliana visits De Bijlmermeer, 1971
Amsterdam City Archive

Walk with René Boer and Vinger members Sara Mattens, Jeffrey Croese and Rachel Tokromo

Monday 25 February 2019, 2pm
Meeting point: 

Metro station Nieuwmarkt

During this walk, we first meet with architecture researcher René Boer at metro station Nieuwmarkt in the center of Amsterdam to take together the metro to De Bijlmer neighborhood. According to René, the Nieuwmarkt metro station has been significant to the development of De Bijlmer as a neighborhood. The walk in De Bijlmer will be framed by members of the Vinger crew in their neighborhood, around Kraaiennest metro station.
The tour brings together the combined knowledges and minor histories of the Vinger crew and René. Together they will interweave stories, memories, knowledges, places, music – the/their history of the neighborhood, from its construction in the late 1960s as social democratic utopia, the ramifications of De Bijlmerramp (Bijlmer Crash) airplane crash in 1993; through waves and waves of brutal sloping and redevelopment of the neighborhood from the 1990s onwards; to the present day, the arrival of We Are Here group, the first large-scale self-organization of refugees in limbo in the Netherlands; and when rampant gentrification forces its way even to this formerly considered dis-connected and unworthy neighbourhood.

René Boer
works as a curator, critic and researcher in the fields of architecture, urbanism, heritage and art. He is part of the Amsterdam-based Non-fiction collective, managing editor at Failed Architecture and affiliated with various urban social movements. He is currently working on the long-term research project ‘Architecture of Appropriation’, which has been shown in exhibitions in Rotterdam and São Paulo, shaping a new research hub on ‘the commons’, and developing an autonomous platform for alternative urban practices in both Amsterdam and Cairo.

Vinger
Since 1997, Vinger has been an hyper-active, committed and caring part of and contributor to cultural self-organisation and self-expression in De Bijlmer, initiating, activating, connecting, sharing forward, providing and celebrating the joy of urban and street culture, Hip Hop, being together, doing things yourself/selves and doing things together. During the walk Vinger members will share their experiences from the past to the present to the future of having grown up, lived, loved and worked in De Bijlmer.

 

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Tuesday 26 February 2019, 6pm
Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier, Hoofddorpweg 25, 1059ED Amsterdam – here

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).


Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 28 February 2019, 2pm-5pm
Location: tbc

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

 

 

EmkalImage: Em’kal Eyongakpa

Introduction to Mbi-eshobi Intersessions
Sonic workshop with Em’kal Eyongakpa

Friday 29 February 2019, starts at 10am
Location: Mbi Esobi surround lab (studio of Em’kal Eyongakpa)
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

For the past year Em’kal Eyongakpa hosted together with sonic collaborators gatherings that play with improvisational sonic conversations. For this specific workshop, Em’kal will offer an introduction to sonic methods, tools and their relation to juju technology and recordings, and how these different tools can feed into a sonic conversation.  After this brief introduction, participants will be encouraged to play with sounds, rethink ways of being in conversation by joining and contributing to an improvisational sonic dialogue.

Em’kal Eyongakpa
approaches the experienced, the unknown, as well as collective histories through a ritual use of repetition and transformation.His interwoven and immersive installations, sets, which could be experienced as paradoxical systems, not only blurs the boundaries between employed media, but could also alter the notion of the real and the illusory. Em’kal Eyongakpa’s recent ideas increasingly draw from indigenous knowledge systems and aesthetics, ethnobotany, applied mycology and technology, in his explorations of the personal and the universal. He is also known for self organised community research platforms and autonomous art hubs, from KHaL!SHRINE in Yaounde (2007-2012), to the recent Sound art platform ɛfukuyu.

 

WaterStill image: Barbara McCullough,
Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflections on Ritual Space (1981)

Screening of rare early work
by Barbara McCullough

blending Black feminism
with experimental cinema


Date and time: tbc (Monday 4 March 2019, 7pm)
Location: tbc

The screening is followed by conversation
between Barbara McCullough and a special guest

Barbara McCullough
is an experimental film and video artist seeking to ‘tap the spirit and richness of her community by exposing its magic, touching its textures and trampling old stereotypes while revealing the untold stories reflective of African American life.’ She is considered one of the leading directors of the so-called “LA Rebellion,” an independent movement that emerged out of University College Los Angeles in the late 1960s to the late 1980s; a critical mass of filmmakers of African origin or descent who committed themselves to depict the everyday lives of Black communities in the U.S. and worldwide.
Among the school’s first wave are Charles Burnett and Haile Gerima, filmmakers who employed the neo-realism of Third World Cinema as a model. McCullough belongs to the second wave (Julie Dash, Alile Sharon Larkin, Ofunmilayo Makarrah), characterized by more personal, feminist inspired, and experimental modes of filmmaking. Melding the avant-garde strategies of Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage, and Shirley Clarke (McCullough’s friend and mentor), with the non-Western politics of African filmmakers like Ousmane Sembene, McCullough’s films have examined the unexpected terrain of African American life, history and cultural memory.
McCullough’s film and video projects include: Water Ritual #1: An Urban Rite of Purification, Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflection on Ritual Space, Fragments, and The World Saxophone Quartet. Recently she completed Horace Tapscott: Musical Griot, a documentary on the musical genius, community activist and mentor to a generation of accomplished jazz musicians.

Screened films:

Water Ritual #1: An Urban Rite of Purification (1979)
Barbara McCullough’s Water Ritual is one of the most original films from UCLA and a landmark of Black feminist and experimental filmmaking. Working in collaboration with the performer Yolanda Vidato and filmed by Ben Caldwell, Peter Blue and Roho, Water Ritual explores the struggle to mark and create spiritual space within the blighted urban landscapes of Los Angeles. Consisting of a series of symbolic actions drawing on African traditions and iconography, the film seeks to active the viewer as a participant and redeem the landscape through ritual. As McCullough has stated her work is driven by an attempt to ‘extract the magical from the seemingly mundane.’

Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflections on Ritual Space (1981)
“Barbara McCullough’s journey as a film- and video-maker has focused less on finished products and more on processes, at once aesthetic and spiritual. Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflections on Ritual Space represents a significant stretch along McCullough’s path, where she conversed with other LA-based Black artists about the role of ritual in Black life and creative practice. Visual artist David Hammons likens his activities to vanguard musicians as he improvises an outdoor composition of found objects. Poets Raspoeter Ojenke, Kenneth Severin, K. Curtis Lyle and Kamau Daa’ood describe and display their synergistic approaches, as do improvisational musicians Freedom in Expression, accompanying one another with voice and percussion. Kinshasha Cornwill and Houston Cornwill describe their performance/visual art collaborations. Senga Nengudi recalls feeling “possessed” while dancing in costume at the collaborative performance she staged to open her “Freeway Fetishes” installation at a Los Angeles freeway underpass. And in an intimate conversation, Betye Saar offers McCullough an inspiring definition of ritual: It is not just a rite, but also what feels “right,” a process that builds the artist’s confidence and the traditions that can be passed along to future generations.” (Jacqueline Stewart)

A public seminar with Barbara McCullough takes place on the day following the screening (date and time tbc). All welcome!

 

Water2Still image: Barbara McCullough,
Water Ritual #1: An Urban Rite of Purification (1979)

Seminar with Barbara McCullough

Date and time: tbc (Tuesday 5 March 2019, 7pm)
DAS Graduate School, Overhoeksplein 2, 1013KS Amsterdam – here

During this seminar, Barbara McCullough will show examples of her own and her befriended artists’ work to discuss her film and video practice, which always stayed close to her own community, exposing and narrating the African American community to itself, revealing its untold stories, magic, genius and (inter-generational) activism.

Barbara McCullough
is an experimental film and video artist seeking to ‘tap the spirit and richness of her community by exposing its magic, touching its textures and trampling old stereotypes while revealing the untold stories reflective of African American life.’ She is considered one of the leading directors of the so-called “LA Rebellion,” an independent movement that emerged out of University College Los Angeles (UCLA) in the late 1960s to the late 1980s; a critical mass of filmmakers of African origin or descent who committed themselves to depict the everyday lives of Black communities in the U.S. and worldwide.
Among the school’s first wave are Charles Burnett and Haile Gerima, filmmakers who employed the neo-realism of Third World Cinema as a model. McCullough belongs to the second wave (Julie Dash, Alile Sharon Larkin, Ofunmilayo Makarrah), characterized by more personal, feminist inspired, and experimental modes of filmmaking. Melding the avant-garde strategies of Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage, and Shirley Clarke (McCullough’s friend and mentor), with the non-Western politics of African filmmakers like Ousmane Sembene, McCullough’s films have examined the unexpected terrain of African American life, history and cultural memory.
McCullough’s film and video projects include: Water Ritual #1: An Urban Rite of Purification, Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflection on Ritual Space, Fragments, and The World Saxophone Quartet. Recently she completed Horace Tapscott: Musical Griot, a documentary on the musical genius, community activist and mentor to a generation of accomplished jazz musicians.

A public screening event of rare early work by Barbara McCullough takes place on day prior to the seminar (date and time tbc). The screening is followed by a conversation between Barbara McCullough and film maker Bibi Fadlalla. All welcome!

Image: Tara Jaffar

Let’s get (un)comfortable: Conversations on Art, Power and Difference
With Hodan Warsame and Ayesha Ghanchi

Date and time: tbc (Wednesday 6 March 2019, 6pm)
Location: tbc (Buurtkamer HoofdKwartier)

We will examine how a critical consciousness – that is, knowing what and how you think – relates to art making processes. Specifically we will playfully explore what our implicit assumptions are, of ourselves, each other, and the world. We’ll ask such questions as: Where do your influences come from, what in your life has shaped you – what is specific and what can be related to more structural/socio-cultural?
We will look at the importance of voicing and active listening – why these are both valuable and how they can be problematic. We will unpick, unsettle and explore what it means to politicise the personal so we can empower ourselves and form solidarity with others. We will do all of this through seven sessions of collective dialogue, listening, drawing, writing and yoga.

You are welcome to drop into any or all session(s).


Photo: Marlise Steeman

Citizenship and Cultural Production
Workshop with Josien Pieterse/Framer Framed and Anne de Zeeuw/Netwerk Democratie

Thursday 7 March 2019, 2pm-5pm
Location: tbc

The Citizenship and Cultural Production workshop series investigates how citizenship informs cultural production and how different forms of social engagement and place-making are currently developed by reclaiming and rewriting democracy through cultural self-representation and production.

What can cultural practitioners learn from social movements, hackers, squatters and open-source activists? Each week Josien and Anne invite a different guest to look into themes such as authority of the other, oral history (listening and power), radical openness, choices and consequences.

 

MomtazaPhoto: Lee Townsend

A Theory of Diasporic Entanglement (II)
Writing workshop with Momtaza Mehri

Friday 8 March 2019, 12pm-5pm
De Fabriek Volkskamer, Van Ostadestraat 233, 1073TN Amsterdam – here
Please RSVP: people[at]sideroom[dot]org

This is the second workshop hosted by poet and essayist Momtaza Mehri that incorporates poetry, theory, film and sound.  This workshop seeks to interrogate the intramural in all its limitations. What is left unsaid when we speak to and past each other? From Jasmine Gibson to Haile Gerima to Édouard Glissant and Warsame Shire, how do we diasporically and imaganrovrly navigate captivity and enclosure from within. This workshop centers our own complicated and often ruptured gaze.

Workshops are open to everyone! Participants are encouraged to attend both workshop and to please sign up via: people[at]sideroom[dot]org. The first workshop session takes place on Wednesday 6 February 2019.

Momtaza Mehri
is a poet and writer who remains unsure which world came first. Her work engages with inheritance/ psychosomatics/ ugliness/ biopolitics and digitalised diasporas. Her chapbook sugah lump prayer was published by Akashic books in 2017. Her work has been translated into Arabic and French, and published in magazines and publications across the world. Momtaza also edits Diaspora Drama, a digital platform showcasing international immigrant art.

 

End

Broadcasting From Babylon
Closing ritual(s) and party

Friday 15 March 2019, 8pm-12pm
Butcher’s Tears, Karperweg 45, 1075LB Amsterdam – here

Broadcasting from Babylon ends with a closing ritual and party hosted and organized with participants, contributors, students and strangers. Expect performances, gatherings and dancing for the joyful, mourning, theatrical, sadness, loving and depressed.

Babylon-design-poster-F41

– Good bye! –