SELF-ORGANISING AS A FEMINIST STRATEGY? A PARTICIPATORY MEETING
HERE IS OUR WORKSHEET WITH NOTES ON THE PROCESS.

 [FEMINISM?] [FREEDOM] [RESPONSIBILITY] [INSTITUTIONS] [WORK] [SELF-ORGANIZING]


more notes coming regularly!

LINKS AND EXAMPLES

Self-organizing as part of (an artistic) practice –

Models of resistance or mode of survival?

Models of collectivities, modes of production?

Practical or political? What comes first?



FEMINISM?

IDENTITY POLITICS!? Can we find a common ground so it doesn't become about me vs. you and us vs. them or I'm more oppressed than you or you're more oppressed than me? At the same time how do we not dismiss what have been important social struggles?

> YES - When mis-representation or lack of representation is argued as a question of 'quality'

> NO - This is not 'our' problem

'Feminism' as a context of discussion, a history of actions and interventions;

Feminism is a construction (as well as notions of quality), and its history has many examples of power structures and hierarchies - but does that make feminism non-valid as a ground from which to discuss?

The role in history of the avant garde; this is a history of exclusion and to a large extend the basis of contemporary (modernist) notions within the art world. But to dismiss avant garde movements is the same as dismissing feminism as a source of inspiration in terms of strategy and/or methods and/or politics and/or action...

It is (everyday life) bio-politics, like questions of 'ethnicity'

As anti-individualism!?

Non-hierarchical structures have a history in feminism as other social movements (self-organizing);

The non-patriarchal perspective can't be claimed by feminism alone.


EXAMPLES FOR DISCUSSION FROM THE REALM OF STATE / BIO POLITICS:

Sweden: A new law accepting having a 'maid' in the house so that women will have time to make a career;

The new government changes unemployment laws, making it more difficult for people in part-time and contract job situations to qualify for social welfare;

Denmark: The minister of 'family and consumption' (!) has proposed a 'three kids politics';

General: precarity seem to affect women more than men; women tend to be in situations of short term jobs and contracts (all over the world...).


FREEDOM

> IDENTITY Creating identity / identifying with a collective (union, org, group). On what basis are we acting within a group? – As part of a collective/community or as individuals (within)? And what influence does it have on responsibility and (freedom of) acting.

The identity of the collective; Does it dominate? In what ways? Is it narrowing or expanding opportunities of acting - as a group/as an individual? Does it have to be flexible, does it have to be steady? Look at internal as well as external mechanisms.

> CONFLICTS The bigger the better?

> Does the identity of a group (re)present a larger problem in the world community? needs; desire; opportunities; necessities; limitations; EMPATHY??

>in a neoliberal society, how do we avoid reducing the group to the corporation?


RESPONSIBILITY

Towards personal/collective practice; towards community; colleagues etc.

Does responsibility become personalized?

 The term 'responsibility' is often used by neoconservative governments to mean social normalization, 'family values' etc. It is also used by neoliberal governments to mean the individual bearing what was once the responsibility of the state, as public services are privatized. Can we recuperate this term?

Artists are conventionally supposed to play the transgressive, careless 'enfant terrible' role, and to not be concerned with the wider implications of their work and where it is (re)presented, who it is for. What publics are produced? What is the relationship with the acting out of this role, or the vicarious living through of this role, to neo-liberal or neo-conservative society?


INSTITUTIONS

* The important role of the museum in the creation of a public or publics around art/education!

* Identity – as an artist, a curator, a spectator, a critic ect. – comes pre-defined in the institutional framework;

* Institutional critique is relevant as long as there are institutions!

* A lot of the ‚new institutions’ seem to appear in former factories, in old power plants and the like industrial sites; to call this 'cultustrial' environment post-industrial or post-fordist is to escape some essential aspects of modes of production – also in producing publics.

 *Do these new institutions really bring art to a wider section of society or just to a wider section of the upper middle class? Is it part of producing new 'classes'?


WORK

/ Identity; for whom, when, where, why...?

"Professionalism" / "amateurism" - Who defines and what is the purpose? Acting as a group in an individualized context.

Do we organize as workers, as individuals, as women, as outsiders, as citizens, as political subjects... or as something else?


(SELF-)ORGANIZING

Is organizing based on? -

> A PROBLEM (common)

> Claiming a right (that others have/might not have)

> EXCLUSION

> OPPOSITION / HEGEMONY / POWER

What structures are working in what contexts?

Micro-administration

When self-organizing - are you then already marginalized? By claiming a non-existing space – and a need for this space – is it then already political?

With the perspective of precarity; the problem is that work - from the perspective of the contemporary labour marked – defines your identity by including all activities around work. The downside of 'flexicurity'... Then, how to organize, and as what??

A way of engaging in a surrounding society

Representing a collective? Who gets the credit?... How is it possible to keep insisting on the collective - collective ways of thinking, producing, organizing in non-hierarchical structures.

Non-lasting projects are the most interesting! Splits, fractions ect. - What is empathized when writing history? History as a construction...

Is the fear of making mistakes internal or external? Is it the professionalization of the art field, or a wider shift towards social conservatism?

Within the art context, collective organizing is for the most part an underhistoricized field. So this means there are a lot of arguments about the validity of self-organizing. On one hand it's very easy for us in self-organized contexts to pat each other on the back and say it's all great--and that's as far as it ever gets. On the other hand it's also very easy to dismiss self-organizing as amateurish, a coopted avant garde, lifestyle politics etc--and it doesn't help that sometimes self-organized spaces work in an entrepreneurial way, operating as a 'feeder system' for commercial galleries and larger institutions, and aren't a genuine alternative. How do we take the discussion forward, beyond just whether it's OK to organize or not?



TOP

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WE WOULD LIKE TO CONSULT A LOT OF PEOPLE, HERE ARE A FEW OF THEM TO BEGIN LOCALLY...

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Malmö Fria Kvinnouniversitet

Women Down The Pub; in between ‚generations’

Kirsten Dufour; YNKB; Kanon Klubben; experiences, who are your collegues?

Learning Site; A continuous collective practice, redefined based on experiences

Eva Egerman (own experiences)

Kuratorisk Aktion;

KRAN; gender as politics...

 

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IDEAS...

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Actions, re-enactments of interventions

The sound of…

(Also, ”Working 9-5”, ”Work, Work” ect.)