- Weekly residential modules at Cittadellarte: a programme of seminars and laboratories open to students, professionals, social entrepreneur, activists and members of society, developed following a participatory teaching format, based on collective debates and knowledge exchange between mentor and participants. The modules draw some of their core case studies from Geographies of Change, a participatory online archive collecting and interlinking organisations active in the fields of governance and policy-making, alternative economic models, urban systems, environment, education and communication.
Mentors are often former UNIDEE residents, participants to visible project and to ARTInRETI platforms, ambassadors for Third Paradise, Cittadellarte’s current and past associates. Amongst the new collaborators, scholars and researchers, curators, cultural operators, agents of change within specific territorial realms.
Aimed at delving into three broad thematic areas, which represent the first lemmas for the construction of a Triennal (2015-2017) Shared Collective Vocabulary of Ideas on Cittadellarte’s Art and Social Responsible Transformation, developed across UNIDEE - University of Ideas’ educational programme. This Vocabulary intends to make available the theoretical and project materials used by the mentors and the speakers, and produced by the participants throughout the weekly modules.
- Residency programmes at Cittadellarte for international artists, organised in collaboration with institutional partners, e.g. RESO’ network, A. M. QattanFoundation (Palestine), Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation (India), Fundación Museos de la Ciudad (Ecuador), Yarat Contemporary Art Space (Azerbaijan), aiming at educating and producing.
During their stay at Cittadellarte the artists are accompanied along an educational path based on an in-depth analysis of specific issues in relation to a responsible social transformation. A flexible programme encompassing debate series, meetings with curators, artists and social entrepreneurs, experts’ studio visits, conferences with guests, visits to exhibitions and places relevant to the themes discussed, etc., will be the companion to this residential journey. In terms of production, the residency aims at facilitating the creation of new projects for exhibitions, events, public debates, publications etc.
- Connective Residency at Cittadellarte: launched in 2015, this residency programme of six months is open to Italian and international artists and collectives interested in exploring and expanding the themes of social responsible transformation, selected by direct invitation as well as via open call. The aim is to establish active “connections” between the resident artists’ own practices and the content and dynamics brought forth by the weekly residential modules and all relevant project activities developed within Cittadellarte.
The invited artists who took part in the Connective residency are: Andrea Caretto and Raffaella Spagna (2015); Leone Contini (2016); Mattia Paco Rizzi (2017).
Curating as a form of assembly
Taking from recent forms of anticapitalist protest, this module on exhibition practice wants to focus on alternative modes of thinking society. In reference to the political imaginaries that have been provoked by temporary occupations of public squares, through this week-long module we will embrace and analyse the notion of collective and political consciousness in the writings of J. K. Graham and Gibson, and transpose their methodology to the framework of curatorial practice. “Curating” here becomes a process of gathering, a situation of social engagement that should be declined under terms such as horizontality, transversality and cooperation. In this sense, the act of curation does not want to allude to a top down, authorial process of selection and installation, but a context-specific and reflective mode of positioning cultural production within a given situation.
The week will be fragmented into three different sessions: the assembly-building collective consciousness; curating: means and modes of addressing necessities; gathering: temporary situations of conscious and unconscious engagement. All three fragments will be composed by a series of actions, activities and readings, including a one-off workshop with Laboratorio di Comunicazione Militante (Tullio Brunone). By the end of the week, students will create their own form of assembly, embodying the week-long research and experience.
The module hopes to reflect its final stage on the potentiality of political imaginaries in a contemporary context, and how “Curating” in its broadest sense is key to shifting power relations between artists, authors and contexts, specifically through the use of imaginative forms of political emancipation.
Guided tour to Cittadellarte, including the Pistoletto, Arte Povera collections and temporary exhibitions (curated by Luca Furlan)
Workshop and group presentation
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities (Case study: A lived practice SAIC, Chicago)
The assembly-building collective consciousness - role taking: mediating/minute taking/questions manager
Gathering: temporary situations of conscious and unconscious engagement. exercises: Alan Kaprow; readings J.K. Graham and Gibson (reading groups - regrouping - collective discussions)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities (Case study: the 7th Berlin Biennale)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities (brainstorming, keywords, collective discussion)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities (exercises and short per-formances)
Gathering: temporary situations of conscious and unconscious engagement. exercises: Ultra Red; readings: Paul O’Neill (reading groups - regrouping - collective discussions)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities. (Case study: Democracy: a project by Group Material)
The assembly-building collective consciousness - role taking: mediating/ minute taking/ questions manager
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities with Laboratorio di Comunicazione Militante.
Gathering: temporary situations of conscious and unconscious engagement. exercises: Brett Bloom (reading groups - regrouping - collective discussions)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities. (Case study: Instituting - Simon Sheikh)
Curating: means and modes of addressing necessities - roundtable: thematic brainstorming
The assembly-building collective consciousness - role taking: mediating/ minute taking/ questions manager
Gathering: temporary situations of conscious and unconscious engagement. exercises: Amy Franceschini; readings JK Graham and Gibson (reading groups - regrouping - collective discussions)
final regrouping and organisation of assemblies
Self-organised assemblies (public or not)
The mentor will prepare a reader for participants with key texts, some of which will be discussed during the week. The reader will include pieces by authors, artists, curators and intellectuals such as Paul O’Neill, Irit Rogoff, Mick Wilson, Dave Beech, Mark Hutchinson, Simon Sheikh, Judith Butler, and J.K. Graham and Gibson.
Artists & Artists’ projects
Mosireen Collective [https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/mosireen-independent-media-collective-in-cairo]
Collectivo En medio [http://www.enmedio.info/en/]
Bruguera, T., Museo D’Arte Util, 2013 [http://museumarteutil.net/]
Grupo Ectera, C.R.I.S.I Bologna 2013 [https://crisiproject.wordpress.com/]
Fortune, B. & Bloom, B., The Library of Radiant Optimism… Guide, 4th & Final Edition, January 2013 [http://mythologicalquarter.net/2013/01/13/the-library-of-radiant-optimism-guide-4th-final-edition-january-2013]
“A Proximity of Consciousness: Art and Social Action”, September 20–December 20 2014, Mary Jane Jacob, Kate Zeller [http://blogs.saic.edu/alivedpractice/]
“Art Turning Left: How Values Changed Making 1789–2013”, Tate Liverpool: Exhibition 8 November 2013 - 2 February 2014 [http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-liverpool/exhibition/art-turning-left-how-values-changed-making-1789-2013]
“JO EM REBEL•LO, NOSALTRES EXISTIM” [http://www.fundaciopalau.cat/fundacio-palau/ca/exposicions-temporals/exposicio.html?title=JO%20EM%20REBEL%E2%80%A2LO,%20NOSALTRES%20EXISTIM&html=13230.html] 2013
ARTUR ŻMIJEWSKI, “THE 7TH BERLIN BIENNAL”, Associated curator: Joanna Warsza Associated curators: Oleg Vorotnikov (a.k.a. Vor), Natalya Sokol (a.k.a. Kozljonok or Koza), Leonid Nikolajew (a.k.a. Leo the Fucknut) and Kasper Nienagliadny Sokol from Voina [http://www.berlinbiennale.de/blog/en/1st-6th-biennale/7th-berlin-biennale] 2012
Group Material, “Democracy: A Project by Group Material - Discussions in Contemporary Culture 1987-89”, DIA:Chelsea New York (USA) [http://www.diaart.org/programs/main/70] / [http://eipcp.net/transversal/0910/ashford/en]
Martha Rosler, “If You Lived Here…Discussions in Contemporary Culture”, DIA:Chelsea 1987-1989 [http://www.diaart.org/programs/main/69]
Enrico Crispolti, Biennale di Venezia, sezione italiana, “Ambiente come sociale”, 1976
BIOGRAPHY AND STATEMENT
Aria Spinelli is an independent curator and researcher, currently a Phd Candidate at Loughborough University with a project on curatorial practice and the social imaginary. Her primary area of research is investigating the relationship between art and activism. Her research suggests that the “assembly”, as both a curatorial format and exhibition display, will possibly activate forms of agonistic politics that can potentially affect the social imaginary necessary for capitalist reproduction. She holds a BA and a MA in Art History, Visual Arts and Curatorial Studies.
Since 2009 she acted as curator at Isola Art Center, an open platform of experimentation for contemporary art that has developed in the Isola neighbourhood in Milan, Italy. In 2009, she also founded the art and curatorial collective Radical Intention and created long-term research projects on socio-political issues related to art and its practices.
Recent projects include: Decompression Gathering Summer Camp with Amy Franceschini (Corniolo Art Platform, FI, Italy); FLOAT residency at Luminary art centre, St. Louis (MO, USA); Marfa Dialogues, Pulitzer Art Foundation, St. Louis (MO, USA); Collateral Effects - Beyond a Radical Milan, Homesession, Fundacio Tapies, Sala d’art Jove Barcelona, Spain; Taking Positions-Identity Questioning Fare arte, Milan, Italy w/ACSL-Art and Cultural Studies Laboratory, Yerevan; Milano Radicale, Medionauta/Liceo artistico Caravaggio, Milan/Corniolo Florence, Italy.
Laboratorio di Comunicazione Militante was co-founded in Milan in 1976 by Tullio Brunone, Giovanni Columbu, Ettore Pasculli and Paolo Rosa, to unmask the ambiguous mechanisms of communication. Until 1978, LCM started a number of experiments, among which the noteworthy experience of Fabbrica di Comunicazione - in Milan’s occupied church of St. Carpoforo - an artistic endeavour deeply connected to that historical period characterised by political engagement and activism. Yet, Fabbrica di Comunicazione still stands today as an example of cutting-edge, stimulating research criticising those very means and strategies of communication that would later become central to political and social studies.