Maria Thalia Carras
Seminar: Anaxagora Calling > locus athens |
This course explores the possibilities and challenges of setting up an independent arts institution in a Mediterranean city like Athens: the multiple strategies involved in staying viable and relevant; in creating networks; listening whilst telling stories; reflecting on the social and political conditions and urgencies on the ground; creating links with like-minded institutions both locally and regionally; and reaching-out to communities whilst creating new ones and amplifying unheard local and regional voices.
Based on the nomadic curatorial practice of locus athens (2004) and its project space TAVROS (2019) as a reference, the course will at first explore different institutional models and modes of survival within a constantly shifting and precarious arts eco-system, from top-down to bottom-up. Using multiple case studies, the course will investigate alternate forms of story-telling through various models of exhibition-making and time-based projects, through research based exhibitions that reflect the complex historical stromatographies of the region and through interpretative subjectivities and fiction based practices. Furthermore, the course will look into community building whilst exploring how to connect and where possible represent and make visible local co-existing micro-communities. Finally, the course will look into how art institutions have a key role to play in responding to local and regional issues, reflecting on and producing relevant to the deepening climate crisis and its affects, issues related to states of exile and migration, land and labor rights.
The objective of the course is to develop a practical hands-on approach as well as critical thinking on institutional models in the Mediterranean basin, by looking at specific case studies and to promote lively debate on the role of institutions and how they can be useful for their respective communities.