What kind of we could we be?: Collective thinking by Collectives

11 September, 2022 
WH22 (The Question of Funding Space)

Building on Documenta XV’s focus on collective practice, this workshop “What Kind of We Could We Be?: Collective Thinking by Collectives” brings together representatives of artistic and intellectual collectives to reflect upon the practice of curating, making, and thinking together. The workshop is both theoretical and practical, building upon the proposal for praxis made by Practitheorizing counterinstitutions, and seeks to surface both a theory of collectivism as well as creating a toolkit for collective work. 

AM Session: 11.00am-1.00pm 

The first session of the workshop will take a more conceptual perspective on collectives, seeking to articulate a theory of collectivism. A first conversation will revolve around the question of “what/why collectivism?,” which considers the ethical, political, and intellectual contours and yields of collective practice. A second conversation exploring “How collectively?” will probe the relationship between the individual and the collective, imagining new forms of relation beyond capitalist modes of production, considering friendship as method, new forms of kinship, and contingent solidarity within transcultural perspectives. 

Contributors: Dr Eva Bentcheva (Worlding Public Cultures), Aria Spinelli (IMAGINART), Dr Minna Valjakka, Leiden University.

PM Session: 2.00pm-4.00pm

The second session of the workshop is more focussed on practice, and seeks to incorporate some of the more theoretical reflections from the first session in order to consider practical solutions for making collectives more equitable, resilient and sustainable. This second session will also take place in two parts, and is designed to build a toolkit for collective practice. The first part consists of presentations, conversation, and debate, which is followed up by a collective writing session intended to contribute to a published volume on collective practice. 

Participating collectives: ruangrupa, Asia-Art-Activism, IMAGINART, Kunci, Mai Ling, Project Art Works, Republic of the Other.

What kind of we could we be?: Collective thinking by Collectives is organised by Asia Forum x Worlding Public Cultures. It is the companion to the program Practitheorizing counterinstitutions, organised by IMAGINART in collaboration with lumbung inter-lokal members The Question of Funding and OFF-Biennale Budapest on September 9 and 10. Organisers: Annie Jael Kwan and Ming Tiampo 


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