Making Worlds attempts to understand the context in which art is made and received, with the debate extending from contemporaneity to a cultural and contextual awareness of global transformations. Themes to be addressed will include Destructive Heritage, Global Transformation, Transgender Politics, De-colonised Institutions, Sustainable Resources, Activism and the Commons, technology & its use, Post-human…
The big question is how to continue to operate effectively and sustainably in a context of political and economic uncertainty; with diminishing resources, without building new structures, to recycle existing disciplines and institutions, and create other ways of seeing the future?
Richard Sennett will present a paper titled: Touch, ‘I want to use the occasion to talk about the physical work involved in making art’.
For Jonas Staal: ‘Making Worlds came to my mind. For me the key challenge of the past years has been to imagine and engage with forms of artistic practices that shape themselves specifically in relation to protest, social and revolutionary movements and organizations.’
The conversation will be lead by Mel Jordan, Senior Tutor and Reader in Art and the Public Sphere at the RCA School of Fine Art, Sculpture Programme.
Jonas Staal (1981) is an artist that has studied monumental art in Enschede NL and Boston USA. He currently works on his PhD research entitled Art and Propaganda in the 21st Century at PhDArts program of the University of Leiden NL. Staal is the founder of the artistic and political organization New World Summit that develops alternative parliaments for stateless organizations banned from democratic discourse and, together with BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, of the New World Academy, that researches the role of art in stateless political struggle. He is further the co-initiator of the Allegories project (2011-ongoing, with Carolien Gehrels and Hans van Houwelingen) that organizes debates between artists and political parties, as well as of the Artist Organizations International platform (2015-ongoing, with Florian Malzacher and Joanna Warsza), which connects artist-led organizations through conferences and international exchanges.
Staal’s work includes interventions in public space, exhibitions, theater plays, publications and lectures, focusing on the relationship between art, democracy and propaganda. He regularly publishes in books, newspapers and magazines – his written work appeared in e-flux journal, Manifesta journal, Frakcija magazine, Metropolis M, nY, NRC Handelsblad and de Groene Amsterdammer.
The first overview of the New World Summit was exhibited in Moderna Galerija, Ljubljana SL (Art of the Stateless State, 2015) and the first overview of the New World Academy in Centraal Museum Utrecht NL (New World Academy, 2015). Staal’s projects were further exhibited in the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven NL (Trickster’s Tricked, 2010; Freethinkers’ Space Continued, 2012); the David Roberts Art Foundation in London UK (History of Art, the, 2010); de Appel, Amsterdam NL (Vote Back!, 2012); Extra City Kunsthal Antwerpen BE (1:1, 2011; Allegories of the Cave Painting, 2014); Kadist Art Foundation in Paris FR (Enacting Populism, 2011); Lunds Konsthall, Lund SE (Don’t Embarrass the Bureau, 2014); Museum for Contemporary Art Belgrade (Invisible Violence, 2014); BAK, Utrecht NL (How Much Fascism?, 2012; New World Academy, 2013; New World Embassy, 2014); the National Gallery of the Arts, Tirana AL (Workers Leaving the Studio, 2015); the 4th Moscow Biennial (2011); 7th Berlin Biennale in Berlin DE (2012), the 1st Kochi-Muziris Biennial in Kochi IN (2013) and the 31st São Paulo Biennale in São Paulo BR (2014).
The artist’s work is represented in several collections, such as that of the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven NL; Kadist Art Foundation, Paris/San Francisco FR/US, Centraal Museum, Utrecht NL and Stroom, The Hague NL.
Currently Staal’s New World Summit is working with the autonomous Democratic Self-Administration of Rojava (northern-Syria) to construct a permanent public parliament in the city of Derîk.
Staal lives and works in Rotterdam NL
Richard Sennett is the Centennial Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics and University Professor of the Humanities at
New York University. He has explored how individuals and groups make social and cultural sense of material facts — about the cities in which they live and about the labour they do. He focuses on how people can become competent interpreters of their own experience, despite the obstacles society may put in their way.
His research entails ethnography, history, and social theory. As a social analyst, Mr. Sennett continues the pragmatist tradition begun by William James and John Dewey.
Richard Sennett has explored how individuals and groups make social and cultural sense of material facts — about the cities in which they live and about the labour they do. He focuses on how people can become competent interpreters of their own experience, despite the obstacles society may put in their way. His research entails ethnography, history, and social theory. As a social analyst, Mr. Sennett continues the pragmatist tradition begun by William James and John Dewey.
In the mid 1990s, as the work-world of modern capitalism began to alter quickly and radically, Mr. Sennett began a project charting its personal consequences for workers, a project which has carried him up to the present day. The first of these studies, The Corrosion of Character,  is an ethnographic account of how middle-level employees make sense of the “new economy.” The second in the series, Respect in a World of Inequality, [2002} charts the effects of new ways of working on the welfare state; a third, The Culture of the New Capitalism,  provides an over-view of change. Most recently, Mr. Sennett has explored more positive aspects of labor in The Craftsman , and in Together: The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation . The third volume in this trilogy, The Open City, will appear in 2016.
Follow the Visual Cultures:
Richard Sennett & Jonas Staal
RCA Visual Cultures Lecture Series 2015/16
Tuesday 19th of January, 6.30-8pm
Gorvy Lecture Theatre
1 Hester Road
RCA Dyson Building