Residencies Reflected, a symposium focusing on residencies and their critical role in the field of contemporary art today, invites residency professionals to Helsinki, November 16–18, 2016.
The symposium sets out to reflect on residencies as spaces for artistic development on cultural thresholds that have been opened up by accelerated globalization. It addresses the enduring significance and radical re-signification of mobility in relation to artistic practices by mapping historical trajectories, current economic and political pressures, as well as the impact of ecological and humanitarian urgencies, which position residencies today at the intersection of unsettled dichotomies of private and public, home and elsewhere, temporary and permanent. The symposium thus aims at articulating the position of residencies within the ecosystem of contemporary art while recognizing the ongoing processes of wider societal changes and their effects on the arts, professional practices and movement.
The symposium programme is built around two interlinked enquiries that map the shifting landscape where residencies are located: the notions and realities of artistic work on the one hand, and of mobility on the other. The opening day of the symposium will discuss European artists’ colonies in the 19th century, offering a resonant historical backdrop for the reconsideration of residencies. The second day looks at changes in artistic work within today’s context of the neoliberal work ethic and the potentiality of residencies for nurturing artistic development in more sustainable working conditions. The final day sets out to rethink in depth the significance of mobility in relation to artistic practices at present within the frame of acute questions about sustainability and access. What kind of futures can artist residencies envisage? Can they work towards new cosmopolitics today?
The keynote speakers of the symposium, art historian Dr. Nina Lübbren (Anglia Ruskin University) and Professor Dr. Pascal Gielen (Antwerp Research Institute for the Arts) are joined by a number of other speakers—directors of leading international residency programmes, researchers and artists—including art historian, Professor Hanna Johansson, Academy of Fine Arts, Uniarts Helsinki; Donna Lynas, Wysing Arts Centre; Adam Sutherland, Grizedale Arts; Laurel Ptak, Triangle Arts Association; Lex ter Braak, Jan van Eyck Academy; Barbara Hernandez, SOMA; Alma Heikkilä and Antti Majava, Mustarinda; Marie-Nour Héchaimé, Ashkal Alwan; Marita Muukkonen, Perpetuum Mobile; and Ika Sienkiewics-Nowacka, Centre for Contemporary Art Ujasdowksi Castle. A full programme will be announced on the first week of October.
Residencies Reflected opens with a welcoming event at the Academy of Fine Arts exhibition space in Helsinki and continues over two days as an intensive retreat at HIAP on the island of Suomenlinna. The symposium is co-organized by the Academy of Fine Arts Helsinki, Uniarts Helsinki, the HIAP – Helsinki International Artist Programme and Frame Contemporary Art Finland. It will be followed by a publication based on the symposium and drawing together the emerging critical discourse on residencies. The symposium programme is conceived and hosted by Irmeli Kokko (Academy of Fine Arts, Uniarts Helsinki), Taru Elfving (Frame) and Juha Huuskonen (HIAP).
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