WE ARE NEVER ALONE
WE ARE NEVER ALONE
URBANISM RESIDENCY ON PARTICIPATORY PRACTICES IN IVANO-FRANKIVSK
10.06 - 14.07.2019
Cities are spaces for friction. But also for care.
For exploitation, and for engagement.
You witness racist rallies, you might be part of a community where you do not know all the members by name or looks but you feel genuine love , you have been displaced by increasing rents, you decided to start a local currency to support small businesses in your area.
We cannot think of urbanism without the built and virtual environments where social tissues are constantly being woven, and dissolved. As individuals operating in the age of (insert overused word here: anthropocene, globalisation, 2.0, neoliberalism …) we are, whether we like it or not, part of intricate social and capital networks. Establishing new connections between singular persons, or determining frameworks around the bonds that may already exist between them, can be an act of resistance, or change, or emancipation - or fail at it.
The rise of ‘socially-driven’ practices which focus on ‘social-sculpting’, ‘participation’ and ‘community engagement’, particularly in the realm of urbanism, have led to the rise of a general awareness of the transformative qualities that art practice can have as a tool for creating kinship, but also its pitfalls.
Artistic interventions that parachute into an unfamiliar context, disruptive projects that can foster new discursive frameworks, artists whose responsibility ‘ends’ at the same time as the project’s budget timeline, individuals whose lives are positively transformed forever, toxic hierarchies being validated and perpetuated unintentionally, cognitive emancipations, and unforeseen limitations.
The success of these practices is often quantified through tangible outcomes, such as spatial interventions or ephemeral performances, yet it is their non-material aspects that often have the greatest impact, and leave the strongest legacy. The individual experiences and the social bonds, created and destroyed, framed and carved, that brought together different individuals under a common umbrella.
WE ARE NEVER ALONE is a residency project curated by METASITU within the context of the second City Scanning Sessions urban festival, MANUFUTURING, in Ivano Frankivsk. We are inviting ten practitioners - activists, urbanists, cultural workers, artists, architects, researchers, writers, theorists, performers, scientists, among others - from Ukraine and abroad, to join us for one month to develop, reflect, criticise, experiment, and suggest new forms of urban participatory practices.
During this time, we may establish porous communities, among ourselves, and with others; groups based on affiliations and affections that will be formed in the city - on purpose, as a necessity, or as a form of resistance. With WE ARE NEVER ALONE we seek to establish these new grounds for relating, while understanding the limitations and threats of its own format, and maintaining a grounded self-awareness.
— How do we understand, translate, and interact with these processes ?
— What can we expect ?
— How do we measure success for these participatory practices ?
— Can we challenge the role of the artist/practitioner within this context ?
WE ARE NEVER ALONE will take place from 10th June until 14th July, its end coinciding with the City Scanning Sessions urban festival ( 11-14th July 2019)
This year’s theme, MANUFUTURING, organized by the Metalab urban laboratory of Teple Misto, addresses the potential futures of the Promprylad factory - a (post)industrial space in the center of Ivano Frankivsk which, as its industrial function gradually retreats, is undergoing a deep social and built transformation. How can collective strategies, tactics and approaches facilitate the interaction between the current (and past?) workers/users in this (post)industrial territory and its adjacent neighbors, as well as potential futures?
— How can participatory practices result in empowering discourses and provide social justice without falling in stereotyped discourses, whilst understanding the multi-dimensionality of the context(s)?
— What role can socially-engaged artistic practices play in the mediation between different actors?
— How are political, cultural and deeply personal agendas negotiated in space?
For the period of one month, the invited residents will engage with the territory of Promprylad and its adjacent neighborhoods through their research, proposed activities, public programs, and public events.
Some of the questions that we would like to address are how the different types of participatory practices could contribute to understanding the territory of Ivano Frankivsk, who has rights to it, and what are the potentials (and limitations) of artistic interventions in determining and bringing social justice, or questioning it.
We want to understand Promprylad, and its transformation, beyond established dichotomies, aware of a constellation of interactions and interests, tensions, opportunities, and what potential affiliations and bonds can be formed between individuals and groups, because we are never alone.
Each of the ten selected residents will receive a total of 11,700 UAH in PER DIEMS, to cover their day-to-day expenses in Ivano-Frankivsk for the entire duration of the residency (food, transport around the city, etc.); as well as a HONORARIUM of 12,000 UAH, which will be paid upon completion of the residency.
During the residency period, the selected residents will be provided with ACCOMMODATION in private rooms within shared flats, living together with other residents.
Upon arrival, the City Scanning Sessions Festival will reimburse the TRAVEL EXPENSES of the selected residents, up to 9,000 UAH each. The selected residents coming from abroad might want to fly to Kyiv or Lviv, as both cities have good connections by land with Ivano-Frankivsk, and are better serviced by airlines. Selected residents requiring a visa to enter Ukraine will be provided with invitation letters. Residents are responsible for arranging their own travel itineraries, visas when necessary, and travel insurance.
WE ARE NEVER ALONE will have a PRODUCTION BUDGET for whatever public events/process-based projects (such as, but not limited to, gatherings, horizontal workshops, experimental symposiums, ephemeral exhibitions, performance, reading groups, research alliances, … ) the residents decide to produce during their time in the residency - collectively or individually - of a total of 90,000 UAH. This budget will be distributed consensually by the residents and curators, among the different processual projects or events that the residents propose.
21st APRIL 2019, 23:59, Ivano-Frankivsk Time ( EET / GMT+2): application DEADLINE
25th APRIL: JURY DECISION. All applicants will be contacted by email regarding the status of their applications.
10th JUNE: START OF THE RESIDENCY.
11th JULY -14th JULY: City Scanning Sessions Urban Festival: MANUFUTURING
14th JULY 2019: END OF RESIDENCY
Selected residents are expected to be present in Ivano-Frankivsk throughout the duration of the residency.
Individuals (and duos) working with ‘participatory practices’ (in its broadest sense) in Ukraine and abroad, are welcome to apply. The working language of the residency will be English.
Please submit a single pdf file to email@example.com before the 21st April 23:59 EET.
The pdf should be named following this pattern:
Your single-pdf application (max 3 pages) should include the following:
Up to two A4 pages (max) where you describe your work with participatory practices.
We are interested in knowing what have been your major learnings in previous projects that you have done involving/creating communities, a major success and a major failure. Please, also include what are your main research interests, and how are you planning to approach the residency and interact with the public.
You may include both images of your work as well as text.
You may send links to videos or websites, but the jury will only base their decision on the information contained on the pdf. Be concise.
One page indicating your full name, email, and where are you based, as well as one image (yours or someone else’s) that best describes your practice & interests.
Please, understand that we do not need CV, extended portfolios, letters of recommendation, or any other document not specified above.
If you have any questions in the meantime, feel free to drop us an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
METASITU is a practice pendulating between Kyiv and Athens that establishes porous tribes. We usurp artistic roles (artists, curators, coordinators), using art as a strategy: a platform to support our research, a medium to reach different actors, and a tool to establish bridges across disciplines. This allows us to abuse urbanism discourses, develop new tools to empower individuals in the way they relate to the territory, and challenge spatial power hegemonies. Founded in 2014 by Liva Dudareva and Eduardo Cassina, METASITU was born with the goal of enabling cognitive emancipations around the (built) environment, by establishing new formats of knowledge exchange for understanding the urban condition today, for a queerer tomorrow.
METALAB is a city development laboratory run by Anna Pashynska, Anna Dobrova, and Anna Kusyshun. It is a community united by an interest in urban living, desire to learn and improve the urban environment, and a physical platform for communication, urban research and events at the same time. METALAB is a project within the urban direction of the platform Teple Misto in Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine and is situated on the premises of Promprylad Factory, where it serves as the urban laboratory for the Factory’s thoughtful revitalisation. To fulfill its vision METALAB has several programs like urban residency and festival “City Scanning Session”.
TBILISI ARCHITECTURE BIENNIAL was established in 2017 by Tinatin Gurgenidze, Natia Kalandarishvili, Otar Nemsadze and Gigi Shukakidze. TAB aims to bring together professionals from diverse disciplines united under one topic on a biannual basis. Policy makers, the local public and other stakeholders will present during the event, initiating and broadening the critical discourse on architectural and urban issues in Tbilisi and beyond. The TAB platform will include City Scanning Session 19 festival in Ivano-Frankivsk in it’s program and will join the festival to present the results of the first Biennial in Gldani district in Tbilisi, which approaches one of the topic of the festival: Decentralisation in the City.
DEPARTMENT OF CULTURE IN IVANO-FRANKIVSK as a partner of this edition of City Scanning Sessions Festival, the Department of Culture of the City Council of Ivano Frankivsk will facilitate contacts between residents and local cultural institutions. The Department of Culture will be represented by Hristina Stefaniv – specialist in Department of Culture.
This project is supported Program Culture Bridges funded by European Union.