DIY 17: 2020 — That’s Governance!

sketch for multi-headed puppet for several performers (2016), Gordon Douglas.

That’s Governance! with artist Gordon Douglas invites participants to work together and propose a non-human candidate to hold a position on Scottish Sculpture Workshop’s Board of Trustees. Applying games and exercises in deep listening and roleplay with puppets, the workshop will encourage a playful response and challenge to the perceivably immovable conditions of governing. What can we achieve by heightening our grasp of organisational advice from non-human actors, and what can we complicate by attributing social purpose to phenomena as critical or reformative tools? The workshop is open to participants with keen interests in performativity and who want to embrace further affinities with deep ecology, queer theory, actor network theory and alternative structures of governance.

The workshop responds directly to artist Jack Tan’s quotation that, “a truly queer, feminist, anti-racist, post-human Board would dance a tango with Governance– resisting, releasing, evading, acquiescing, rejecting”, and will expand outwards from SSW towards challenging broader conditions of governance. The resulting conversations and proposal will ruminate on the performativity of personhood, eligibility criteria and barriers to governing, anthropomorphic hierarchies relating to non-humans, and considerations within collaborative decision making.

Applications for this workshop are closed.

This DIY is free to attend and travel costs up to a value of £70 will be covered. There is also a small access budget of £75 per participant- we ask that if you do not need this additional funding to access the workshop, you opt out in your application.

Simple, shared accommodation on site at SSW will be provided for the DIY dates of Friday 27 — Sunday 29 November 2020.

Daily evening meals will be provided, which participants will prepare and eat together. Food for lunches, snacks and breakfasts will not be provided.

That’s Governance! is an in-person workshop and we will be following Scottish Government guidelines closely regarding ongoing public health concerns, to make this a safe workshop for everyone. For full information on COVID-19 safety measures at SSW, follow this link.

If you have any specific access requirements or concerns you would like to discuss prior to application, please contact jenny[at]ssw.org.uk. Information on accessibility at SSW can be found here.

If you have questions about That’s Governance! please contact SSW Programme and Communications Manager: jenny[at]ssw.org.uk.

This DIY invites applications from those who want to challenge the hegemonies of organisational performativity with a playful approach, from a decolonial, queer and post-human perspective.

The workshop may be of interest to artists who are invested in organising, who are/have been part of artist-led projects or Boards of Trustees; to those who have felt frustrated at conditions of organising and who are pushing to make change in their communities; to those who have attempted to instigate new things and those who are actively engaged in reforming the systems they hold stake in.

We have aimed to simplify the process of applying to this workshop to three questions. We acknowledge that there will be barriers to applying in this way, so if you would like to submit an application through any other means, please contact us to arrange a more suitable format.

Three or four participants will be selected by DIY artist Gordon Douglas and SSW Programme and Communications Manager, Jenny Salmean, with the intention of bringing together a group with diverse knowledges and experiences to participate in the DIY. All applicants will receive a response to their application by Friday 30 October.

Gordon Douglas is a performance artist based in Glasgow. He devises embedded positions, games and events that set out to reimagine organisations, and investigate the performativity of working together. His practice is founded on a commitment to (and scepticism of) collaboration, and aims to generate social byproducts by playing through, or exhausting, perceived institutional systems. This research has seen him take on a variety of roles including time spent with: The NewBridge Project, Newcastle (2016); Edinburgh College (2016-17); Travelling Gallery, Scotland (2018); and Cooper Gallery, Dundee (2019). Recently, he conducted an extensive ‘performative audit’ of power, access and accountability within CCA Glasgow’s open source policy (An Opposites Programme, 2018-19).

DIY is an opportunity for artists working in Live Art to conceive and run unusual research, training and professional development projects for themselves and other artists, supported by Live Art Development Agency.

2020 is the fourth year SSW have participated in the DIY network. Collectively we understand DIY is all about creating spaces to explore new ideas and test new methodologies. We want to hear from you if have an idea for an exciting, innovative and idiosyncratic professional development project that offers something different and is geared to the eclectic and often unusual needs of artists whose practices are grounded in challenging and unconventional approaches, forms and concepts.

This DIY forms part of BE PART, a large EU Cooperation Project that critically explores collaborative art-making and sharing through decentralised governance models involving local citizens, artists, partners and policy makers. We hope that the learning from this DIY will support the development of this long-term project at SSW.

  • Share