Installations, lectures and performances

#Commonings: Day 3

Fri, Sep 16, 2022
Lecture hall, Westgarten
10.30 am
Free admission, some workshops with registration

In English

Workshop “Code, Layers, Infrastructures” by Loren Britton, Isabel Paehr, Jörn Röder and Kamran Behrouz, New Alphabet School #Coding in New Delhi January 2019, Photo: Annette Jacob

What could a school look like that seeks to make both learning and unlearning a common interrelated practice? How can a space be built around care, refuge, implication and vulnerability, negotiating positions and responsibilities? How can (un)learners in this space challenge privileges and habits of hierarchy, as well as authorship, productivity and competition?

And how could such a school take place inside an institution and carve space for informal, convivial, horizontal modes of participation within it, allowing for gaps, mistakes and things left open. In the twelve editions of the New Alphabet School, the roles of curators and audience blurred. Thinking of knowledge as commons, they were constantly reverted in order to co-create shared space for networked knowledge.

As Fred Moten and Stefano Harney suggest in The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study “one can only sneak into the university and steal what one can”. The New Alphabet School sought to reflect on such concerns via fugitive encounters and instances of study as a coming and doing together. In this final edition on Commonings, the invitation is to carry on questions and incomplete dialogues, sharing practices from previous editions, the multiple locations and the different perspectives that emerged in the last three and a half years.

By convening again, the participants will explore together what these practices might institute and how they might form an ephemeral school of commoning.

Facilitated by Olga Schubert, Gigi Argyropoulou, Alessandra Pomarico, Mahmoud Al-Shaer and Rahul Gudipudi

With collective practices and workshops by all active New Alphabet School members

With conversations between Silvia Federici and Peter Linebaugh, Avery F. Gordon and Natasha Sadr Haghighian, Mahmoud Al-Shaer and Majd Kayyal, Irit Rogoff, Gigi Argyropoulou and Rahul Gudipudi, P Sainath and Habib Ayeb, with performances by Mour Fall, Marinho de Pina, Ivonne González, Tomás Espinosa, Jorge Gómez & Ana Bravo Pérez and others and installations by Pallavi Paul & Hajra Haider, Shareef Sarhan & Rana Batrawi, Cléophée Moser, Mukhtara Yusuf, Júlia Souza Ayerbe, Chto Delat, Meltionary, Field Narratives and others

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5

Friday, Sep 16

10.30 am–1 pm
Workshop in the Assembly, Hirschfeld Bar, with registration
The body as an archive
with Carolina Mendonça
In English

The boundaries beyond performances, workshops, collective meetings, as well as writing, listening and reading sessions are fertile ground to think and study collectively. In this workshop, participants will investigate the possibilities of such expansions. In Mendonça’s artistic practice, she focuses on what she calls Impossible Practices as a way to move beyond these formats and investigates telepathy, levitation, invisibility, hypnoses, among other practices. Impossible Practices is not interested in the virtuosity of reaching the impossible, but in what happens when a group of people try, together. How does addressing the impossible pave ways to imagine other realities?

Investigating the ways in which bodies are affected by different forms of violence, this workshop will share this research in a performatic gathering where participants will engage in practices of perception and collective modes of conversations. Participants will speculate together how to imagine and rehearse different forms of fighting through a feminist perspective on violence. What histories, stories, narratives and perspectives are stuck to one’s flesh? How can participants get in touch with the weight they carry in their bodies? Can the training of imagination be a political work? What kind of traces does such a conversation leave behind?

10.30 am–1 pm
Workshop in Conference room, with registration
Radical Empathy Lab
with Berit Fischer
In English

How can new forms of being together allow for reflection and re-feeling? Radical Empathy Lab seeks to activate the affective inter-space of relationalities in the process of commoning. It is an experimental lab that calls to imagine social and ecological relationality otherwise and tries to undo a reactionary an-aesthesia (Greek: an-aesthēsis: without sensation) that is often incited by neoliberal capitalism and by dominant, separationist logics and systemic structures. It practices how to activate a critical consciousness towards interconnectedness and what Brazilian theorist Suely Rolnik calls an “active micropolitics.” Inspired by Deep Listening, radical and feminist pedagogies, it challenges the metric-driven notion of a laboratory in that it activates holistic knowledge production. Radical Empathy Lab invites the participants to an affective encounter that embraces a relational –versus informational– learning and that in-corpo-rates the sensing body through transdisciplinary holistic advances.

10.30 am–1 pm
Workshop in the Lobby, with registration
Martian Regenerative Development Goals
with Catherine Sarah Young

How can people work towards a planetary commons? The Martian Regenerative Development Goals is a proposal to criticize and revise the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) by juxtaposing these with our long-term ambitions of using Mars as another habitat. In this space/philosophy workshop, participants will strive to become a unified human species as they attempt to land on the Red Planet and create their own Mars Regenerative Development Goals (Mars RDGs). 

12 noon–5 pm
Two-Day Interdisciplinary Performing Workshop in the Lecture hall, with registration
Migro, Ergo Sum
With Marinho Pina and Sergio Carlitos Pereira
In English and Portuguese

Second date: Saturday, Sep 17, 12 noon–4 pm in the Lecture hall, Jam Session in the Assembly from 8 pm

“Our bodies are older than borders.” – Susana Ferreira

Migrating is a common practice; those that dream and hope are driven to dislocate themselves to new landscapes. Today, migration in all its forms is not only a socioeconomic phenomenon – a matter of geography – but mostly a political one.

The participants of this workshop will explore several variations of migration through forms of storytelling to find common ground. The aim is to diminish the tension created by migrations, its departures, arrivals and belonging, even its non-belonging and spaces in between. Believing that this understanding is possible having fun and sharing love, this workshop will be a playground to address serious issues like religion, creed, gender, race and others issues to find some sort of safe space where everybody can use their own voice and languages to promote togetherness.

On the first day of the workshop, participants will discuss migration employing the medium of drawing, writing and filming. On the second day, they will use instruments to produce a musical take on migration. The outcome of the workshop will be presented as a live jam session in the public assembly.

2–5 pm
Discussion and Workshop in the Assembly, Hirschfeld Bar
Archiving the Future
with Amaury Pacheco del Monte, José Luis Aparicio, Fernando Fraguela, frency and Juliana Rabelo
In English and Spanish

There is no such thing as an innocent presence that isn’t composed of an ambiguous interplay of pregiven reality and futural projection. This exercise of moving between past and future stresses the element of experimentation present on the critical interpretation of the past. The experimental part does not try to draw a utopian future and the critique of the past does not seek to disqualify it. Rather, the sequences of thinking, memory and premonition allow one to take distance from the historical and biographical time, and position themselves between the things that either do not exist anymore or do not yet exist.

Mixing processes and methodologies from visual arts, poetry, film, philosophy and performance, this interdisciplinary workshop shares experiences and practices from very diverse artists and intellectuals. The civic art of OMNI – Zona Franca, produced with greater intensity during the last turn of the century, is the starting point for conceiving possible futures. The documentation of this work, carried out in Alamar, a failed urban project conceived in Cuba as "the city of the future," will be reimagined as an archive of (dys/u)topia. Through fiction, poetic image and estrangement, participants will explore the sense of a community and its temporal limbo. The resulting pieces will be impossible relics – as Chris Marker would put it: a remembrance of things to come.

3–5 pm
Reading Group in the Resting Place in Conference room, with registration
Could the journey sometimes be more important than the destination?
with Júlia Ayerbe
In English

How do people usually get to the destinations they have to? What details do they have to pay attention to in the journeys of everyday life? What kind of impact has the journey had on the experience of the destination? These questions emerge from considerations about the strategies disabled bodies and other so-called “minorities” create to reach their destinations through routes designed and inhabited by normative bodies. This reading group aims to collectively investigate ideas and feelings around the experiences of the journey. This session will be held in the Resting Space, where participants can be comfortable and safe after their journey

6–8.30 pm
Conversation in the Assembly, Hirschfeld Bar
with P Sainath, Habib Ayeb and Rahul Gudipudi
In English

6–8.30 pm
Film Screening and subsequent conversation in Lecture hall
In the wake of Arche: The possible(d) utopias
with Özlem Sarıyıldız, Shohreh Shakoory and Vinit Agarwal
In English

The two films, Oyoyo (1980) and Your struggle is our struggle (1973) unveil and shed light on different moments of German history of migration – a country that has opened its doors to workers and students from the geographies of the global South since the 50s. The international solidarity of the protagonists in these two films leads to moments of students and workers coming together through topics of desire, politics and economics that stem from anti-colonial, post-colonial, anti-capitalistic and international concerns.

D: Chetna Vora, GDR, 1978, 48 min, German with English subtitles

Your struggle is our struggle
D: Edith Marcello & David Wittenberg, FRG, 1974/75, 49 min, German with English subtitles

8.30–10 pm
Conversation in the Assembly, Hirschfeld Bar (realized originally in St. Petersburg)
Archive of an Emergency Commune
with Chto Delat collective: Tsaplya Olga Egorova and Dmitry Vilensky
In English

Chto Delat is currently starting an art commune in a village near St. Petersburg and are implementing a combination of a shelter that implements anti-war resistance practices and rituals, as well as agricultural, educational and artistic activities. The commune consists of a core group of about 10–12 people who organize and share everyday activities and involve others on a temporary basis. The commune embraces general ideas of commoning during moments of war, and economic and ecological states of emergency.

For the Commonings edition, a conversation will be held about the commune as an artistic, resistance project. The commune will produce different types of artistic statements – performances, actions and object-conceptual work –that will be discussed and shown in an effort to archive them.

8.30–10 pm
Screening and Discussion in the Lecture hall
Better Science
with Walter Solon (live) and Jorge Loureiro (via Zoom)
D: Jorge Loureiro & Walter Solon, Germany/Brazil, 2021, 29 min, German with English subtitles

How does the Bayer company deal with its Nazi past? Better Science is a short experimental documentary investigating the mysterious disappearance and reappearance of statues from a park just meters away from the global headquarters of the Bayer chemical corporation in Leverkusen, Germany. The sculptures had been commissioned in the 1930s to Fritz Klimsch, a German sculptor included in Goebbels’s "Gottbegnadete" list of crucial artists to Nazi culture. Shot over the course of three years with the background of Bayer’s 2018 acquisition of Monsanto, the film sheds new light on the relationship between the German agrochemical giant and its Nazi past as part of the chemical conglomerate IG Farben. Featuring dialogues with lawyers, activists, a bomb disposal expert and Bayer's CEO, Better Science is a take on the company's current massive expansion of its global agricultural and pharmaceutical power.

New Alphabet School

#Commonings: Day 1

Installations, lectures and performances

Sep 14, 2022

New Alphabet School

#Commonings: Day 2

Installations, lectures and performances

Sep 15, 2022

New Alphabet School

#Commonings: Day 4

Installations, lectures and performances

Sep 17, 2022

New Alphabet School

#Commonings: Day 5

Installations, guided tours

Sep 18, 2022