Sabu Kohso and Jason Waite: Confronting a Catastrophic World

Political and social critic, scholar and activist, Sabu Kohso, will give a lecture and then be in conversation with curator Jason Waite, a member of the Don’t Follow the Wind curatorial collective. Kohso regards the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor meltdown and release of radionuclides into the environment as an ongoing and unfolding disaster, one among many disasters across the globe caused by the intensifying development of extractive capitalism across the planetary body. As such, it embodies the collapsing world and the omnipresent life-as-struggles on the earth.  


Sabu Kohso is a political and social critic, translator, scholar, and a long-time activist in the global and anti-capitalist struggle. A native of Okayama, Japan, Sabu has lived in New York City since 1980. He has published several books on urban space and struggle in Japan and Korea, and has translated books by Kojin Karatani and David Graeber. He has written extensively on the Fukushima disaster from the perspective of global anticapitalist struggles.

Jason Waite is an independent curator focused on forms of practice toward forming agency across diverse fields such as art, society, politics and critical theory. He has co-curated Don’t Follow the Wind, an ongoing project inside the uninhabited Fukushima exclusion zone, The Real Thing?, Palais de Tokyo, Paris, Maintenance Required, The Kitchen, New York, and White Paper: The Law by Adelita Husni-Bey at Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory, Utrecht where he was curator.

 

 

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Gallery tour of the Story of E.A.T Barbro Schultz Lundestam

Joins us for a gallery tour with Swedish journalist and independent documentary director Barbro Schultz Lundestam who was responsible for the re-emergence of documentation of the seminal performances by E.A.T. in 1966.

Please RSVP admin@artscatalyst.org

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Experiments and Incidents - Julie Martin and Barbara Steveni in conversation

A reunion between two pioneers in experimental and incidental art practices 

CREAM / Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture at Westminster University and Arts Catalyst are delighted to host a reunion between two pioneers in experimental and incidental art practices, Julie Martin (Director of Experiments in Art and Technology) and Barbara Steveni (Artist Placement Group / O+I), chaired by Professor Neal White (Westminster University).

Pushing at the limits of radical ideas and art practice since 1966, these two women have helped change the landscape of where and how art has been made. This is a unique opportunity to hear both in dialogue, reflecting on not only the past, but the future for art which has an experimental and incidental focus.

This collaboration between University of Westminster and Arts Catalyst has been developed as part of Arts Catalyst season of events that mark the 50th anniversary of E.A.T. and the project the led to their founding 9 Evenings: Theatre and Engineering, titled 9 Evenings: Theatre and Engineering Revisited 1966/2016.

In addition to this talk, the programme also includes an exhibition reflecting on the work of Experiments in Art and Technology at Arts Catalyst Centre for Art Science & Technology, a talks programme developed in collaboration with Afterall and Side Effects, a major new performance commission by Robert Whitman (co-Founder of E.A.T.).

 

This 9 Evenings: Theatre and Engeneering Revisited 1966/2016 programme is supported by Arts Council England, Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, The London Community Foundation, PACE, Afterall, Central Saint Martins, UAL, King’s Cross and Goldsmiths, University of London, University of Westminster, London: The Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM) with the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture (IMCC) and The Performance Studio.
 

 

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Exhibition Histories - Art and Technology Talk: Catherine Wood

Afterall and Arts Catalyst are pleased to announce two talks developed as part of Afterall’s research strand in Exhibition Histories and presented within Arts Catalyst’s current season 9 Evenings: Theatre and Engineering Revisited, 1966/2016

Using the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the legendary 1966 events and the founding of Experiments in Art and Technology, the talks will reflect on the histories of art and technology in performance, on transdisciplinary collaboration and the influence of the 1960s on contemporary art today.

For the second talk Catherine Wood, Senior Curator, International Art (Performance) at Tate, will host an evening of screenings, showing films of Robert Rauschenberg’s Open Score and Yvonne Rainer’s Carriage Discreteness, both works produced as part of 9 Evenings: Theater and Engineering in 1966. The screenings will be followed by an informal talk from Wood reading both pieces as well as the broader practice of Rauschenberg and Rainer within the context of dance.

This event builds on Wood’s ongoing interest and in-depth knowledge on both artists' practice, having curated the critically acclaimed retrospective Yvonne Rainer: Dance Works at Raven Row in 2014 and as co-curator of the forthcoming Robert Rachenberg Retrospective at Tate Modern, opening in December 2016.

The first talk will be Exhibition Histories - Art and Technology Talk: Jeremy Millar on Thursday 13 October.

Listen to the recorded talk here

This programme is supported by Arts Council England, Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, The London Community Foundation, PACE, Afterall, Central Saint Martins, UAL, King’s Cross, Goldsmiths, University of London, University of Westminster, London: The Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM) with the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture (IMCC) and The Performance Studio.

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An Atomic Memoir

Julie Salverson reads from her new book, Lines of Flight: An Atomic Memoir, is a memoir of atomic poetics seen through the eyes of a Canadian playwright and theorist. In conversation with British author and journalist James Flint, author of The Book of Ash (Viking Penguin, 2004), which was inspired by the life of atomic artist James Acord and the forthcoming Midland (Unbound, 2017).

Salverson’s Lines of Flight asks the question, “How do we live, knowing what we know?” Salverson, whose parents were prominent artists during the golden era of CBC radio and television, struggled to find stability in a turbulent childhood. Obsessed with safety and overwhelmed by the world’s tragedies, she became an anti-nuclear activist, determined to help save the world. She gradually lost faith in activism, and in her forties, on the verge of giving up belief in anything, she discovered a little known connection between Canada’s north and the atomic bomb that fell on Hiroshima. This story follows her travels along the Highway of the Atom and her quest to find beauty in a tragic world.

This book is an atomic poetics, a piece of travel writing, the chronicles of a lost tourist and ethnographer. Gathered together in this way these narratives amount to a highly unique piece of personal and intellectual work, the sober work of mourning for what has been lost and hope for what has not.
 

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Graveyard of Lost Species Launch

Arts Catalyst announces the launch of Graveyard of Lost Species – join us to launch an anti-monument, artists talks and outdoor reception at Focal Point Gallery and Leigh-on-Sea Marshes


Graveyard of Lost Species Launch event programme
2.30pm – 3.30pm Artist talk, Focal Point Gallery, Southend
3.30pm – 4.30pm Travel to site of Graveyard of Lost Species installation at Leigh on Sea
4.30pm – 6.00pm Reception and installation viewing on site

Graveyard of Lost Species, Artists Talk
2.30pm - 3.30pm
Focal Point Gallery, The Forum, Elmer Square, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS1 1NB
Free entry, booking required
With artists Yoha (Graham Harwood and Matsuko Yokokoji) and Critical Art Ensemble (Steve Kurtz, Steve Barnes and Lucia Sommer), chaired by Claudia Lastra, Programme Manager, Arts Catalyst

The artists will discuss their long-term project Graveyard of Lost Species, an anti-monument inscribed with lost and disappearing species of the estuary based in Leigh-on-Sea. The anti-monument is a 30ft boat wreck that will slowly corrode. It is now installed publically on the salt marshes near to the gateway to the Thames. The artist duos will discuss their unique collaboration, as well as processes and production of the project.

Emerging in the late 1980s, Critical Art Ensemble and YoHa are pioneers in a radical art practice that deployed new media as a tactical tool to re-claim, rethink and re-envisage the politics, popular media and artistic practice of the time.

Critical Art Ensemble’s ‘Tactical Media’ has questioned political, scientific and military hierarchies of knowledge and power through developing counter information tools, performing technological process with the public, and presenting scientific experiences as installations.

YoHa create what can be called ‘contraptions’ or allegorical machines which uncover data as a powerful tool that government’s or authorities use to abstract knowledge and implement systems of power through bureaucratic forms of governance.

Travelling to Leigh-on-Sea for drinks reception

3.30pm  4.30pm 
Travel from Southend Central to Leigh-on-Sea by Train (approx. £2.70)

Reception
4.00pm – 6.00pm
Location Leigh-on-Sea marshes, Southend, Essex.
Ordinance survey Grid Reference: TQ 82738 85478
Google Maps: 51.539479, 0.633687

Join us for local beer and Leigh-on-Sea cockles by the artwork.

Instructions
Please bring waterproof footwear as the marsh area is very muddy. The location is less than 10 minutes walk from Leigh-on-Sea train station, there are parking bays at Leigh-on-Sea station and Leigh Marshes car park.
 
Arrive at Leigh-on-Sea train station, when exiting turn right towards the Estuary, walk past the car park (on your right) and walk towards the estuary path. Walk along the estuary path (west) towards Benfleet, you will come to a cross path and a hard standing where the boat is situated.
 
Sponsors
This project is sponsored by Cory Environmental Trust and Arts Council England
 
Thanks
Focal Point Gallery and Southern Borough Council
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Kota Takeuchi in discussion with Eiko Honda

Artist Kota Takeuchi in conversation with curator and writer Eiko Honda chaired by artist Kaori Homma from Art Action UK

During his time in the UK, Kota Takeuchi will be researching the deep time concerns of monuments, site markers and memory around the UK and Belgium. He will undertake field research at the Belgian underground research laboratory for the geologic storage of radioactive waste in partnership with Z33 and the Belgian nuclear waste agency NIRAS / NIROND.

On Saturday 16 July curator and writer Eiko Honda will be in discussion with Kota Takeuchi, chaired by artist Kaori Homma from Art Action UK. Kota Takeuchi's residency has been organised by S-AIR in Japan in partnership with Arts Catalyst, supported by the Sasakawa Foundation and Agency for Cultural Affairs, the Government of Japan.

Event schedule
 

3pm – 4pm KotaTakeuchi Open Studio

4pm – 5pm Eiko Honda in conversation with Kota Takeuchi, chaired by Kaori Homma.

5pm – 6pm Discussion and drinks

 

Biographies

Kota Takeuchi is an artist based in Tokyo / Fukushima, Japan. He produces performative videos and oil paintings about how we physically view images of public scenery, social events, and their memory. His work explores the loop of digital image capture and distribution.
His solo exhibition Open Secret, 2012, explored the labour problems at the Fukushima Dai’ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. Takeuchi acts as the agent for Finger Pointing Worker (a man who pointed at the public live camera at the Fukushima power plant after the disaster in 2011). 
 
 
Eiko Honda is a writer and curator of contemporary art and transnational intellectual history. She is the 2013-2016 curatorial fellow of the Overseas Study Programme for Artists, Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan. She is a contributor to The Nuclear Culture Source Book, edited by Ele Carpenter, forthcoming September 2016. Recent papers include: 'Political Ecology of Art and Architecture in Japan: 100 Years Ago and Now' in Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art (Intellect, 2016). Her curatorial work is driven by the idea of history as an enquiry that unravels potential new understandings of the planetary past, future and present. Recent exhibitions include Saya Kubota: Material Witness, Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation, London; and Missing Post Office UK, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham. 
 
Kaori Homma is an artist and co-founder and co-ordinator of Art Action UK. Homma is Associate Lecturer at University of Arts London at Central Saint Martins and Camberwell, Chelsea and Wimbledon Colleges (CCW), her art practice includes social engagement, fire etching and video exploring time, and reflecting on nuclear concerns. Art Action UK was established in response to the 2011 Japanese earthquake, tsunami and subsequent Fukushima nuclear fallout. The project supports artists who have been affected by natural and manmade disasters to undertake residencies in London including: Kyun Chome, Yoi Kawakubo, Komori & Seo, Hikaru Fujii, and Kaya Hanasaki. 
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Actinium – Residency, Exhibition & Fieldtrip, 2014

The Actinium publication is an account of the exhibition, field trip and discussion forum for Nuclear Culture during the Sapporo International Arts Festival in Japan, 2014.

Artists are making the nuclear economy increasingly visible by rethinking nuclear materials and architectures, decay rates and risk perception; questioning the 20th Century belief in nuclear modernity. As the international population becomes more aware of their role as participants in nuclear culture, this exhibition aims to create a space for open discussion.

The Actinium exhibition was an international hub for discussion about contemporary nuclear culture. The exhibition took place during the opening weeks of the SIAF 2014, and was the base for film screenings, discussion forum and field trips exploring the relationship between the metropolis and nuclear sites in rural Hokkaido.

Actinium is a radioactive element named after the Greek word ‘aktis’ a beam or ray, but its name reveals how little we know about the behavior of different kinds of alpha, beta and gamma radiation. Today the word actinium conjures ideas of action in response to radioactive materials as they enter the public realm through the nuclear cycle of weapons, energy, pollution and waste. Today artists and geologists explore the human time of the Anthropocene as the nuclear industry tries to reverse-mine radioactive waste back into the ground. The geological time frames for radioactive decay are beyond human comprehension and challenge the limits of knowledge and not-knowing.

The exhibition included works by artists James Acord (USA), Shuji Akagi (J), Chim↑Pom (J), Crowe & Rawlinson (UK/De), Karen Kramer (USA/UK), Cécile Massart (Belgium), Eva & Franco Mattes (USA), Thomson & Craighead (UK/Scotland) and was curated by Art Catalyst's Associate Curator, Ele Carpenter.

Actinium was curated by Ele Carpenter, Arts Catalyst, produced by S-AIR; and took place during the opening weeks of the Sapporo International Arts Festival (SIAF) in July 2014. The project was organised by NPO S-AIR, Sapporo. Supported by: Daiwa Foundation; Pola Foundation; The Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan; City of Sapporo; Arts Council England; Goldsmiths College, University of London.

 

Publication details

Actinium – Residency, Exhibition & Fieldtrip, 2014
Edited by NPO S-AIR and Ele Carpenter
Published in 2015
Cover design by Theodore Gray
Translated by Emi Uemura and Kyoko Tachibana
Colour and monochrome, 24 pages, softback and electronic

This publication has been made available as a PDF.

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Planting in Concrete

Dimitri Launder has been invited to contribute to Notes from the Field: Commoning Practices in Art and Science, as speaker and workshop leader. In this talk Dimitri will talk about his work as Artist Gardener.

Dimitri’s projects as Artist Gardener offer a gentle provocation to an apocalyptic view of urban ecological sustainability. His work often explores the liminal issues between public and private use of space, aspiring towards transformative urban propagation. Launder’s project Apothecary Arboretum is featured in Arte Util’s archive the aim was to create a garden both medicinal and edible, in a concrete neighbourhood. From this living eco-system of vertical, apothecary sculpture: prototype 1.0, he discusses his approach to his merging medicinal, historical, social knowledge in an urban context.

His experience in this grafted practice has developed over 15 years expertise as a garden designer and as an artist with inherent interests in ecology and socially engaged practices.

Notes from the Field: Commoning Practices in Art and Science is multi-faceted project that investigates the notion of art as a tool or tactic for action with communities, with a focus on projects involving science and technology or driven by ecological concerns.

Advance tickets are £5. Booking is essential as space is limited.

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Agroecology a new kind of Neo-Pastoralism

 

Artist, Fernando García-Dory, has been invited to contribute to Notes from the Field: Commoning Practices in Art and Science, as a resident researcher, speaker and workshop leader. His work engages specifically with issues affecting the relation between culture-nature now, embodied within the contexts of landscape, the rural, desires and expectations related with aspects of identity, crisis, utopia and social change. He studied Fine Arts and Rural Sociology in Madrid, Spain and Ritveld Akademie Amsterdam.

In this talk he will discuss his work on agroecology and his current sociological and technical collaborations with engineers, communities and  other specialists.

His work stems from an interested in the harmonic complexity of biological and technical forms and processes, his work addresses connections and cooperation, from Microorganisms to social systems, and from traditional art languages such as drawing to collaborative agro ecological projects, actions, and cooperatives.

Engaging directly with issues affecting rural communities, García-Dory develop his "ethical-aesthetical" agroecological projects, such as working with shepherds who are trying to preserve their rights and way of life in the face of EU and tourist industry pressures, directing a Shepherds School there, and building huts open for newcomers; seed savers networks linked to hackers working to counteract patents on life forced by agribusiness and genetic engineering firms; and diverse interventions projects in Europe, India, Mauritius, Equator and other places.

Recent projects have been with Casco, Utrecht, Insite Casa Gallina, Mexico, Betonsalon, Paris,  Istanbul Biennale and he is working towards the upcoming intervention for Gwangju Biennale. 

 

Notes from the Field: Commoning Practices in Art and Science is multi-faceted project that investigates the notion of art as a tool or tactic for action with communities, with a focus on projects involving science and technology or driven by ecological concerns.

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