Mythology for Queer Futures
Oct
17
7:00pm 7:00pm

Mythology for Queer Futures

Anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss wrote in the introduction to “Mythologiques”: “I therefore claim to show, not how men think in myths, but how myths operate in men's minds without their being aware of the fact” [1]. The political is present in the very fabric of cultural matter and its roots are deeply embedded in mythology. Hesiod wrote in “Theogony” that the Muses gave him “the awareness within himself of a new ability to compose poetry about matters past and future” [2]. Before we will be able to legitimise alternative socio-political systems, we need to push the mythological narratives further beyond both ancient and contemporary variations of Zeusian Justice “…it would perhaps be better to go still further … proceed as if the thinking process were taking place in the myths, in their reflection upon themselves and their interrelation” [1]. What signs of possible futures the works of the ancient poets can contain?

The focus is on the two paramountly important protagonists. Athena leaped out from Zeus’s head after he swallowed his first wife, that was promised to deliver him son who’d overthrow him from Olympus just as he did with his father Kronos. Zeus therefore became mother and father to the Olympian goddess, who never married or mothered a child and was the only one to be entrusted with his thunderbolts. Dionysus, the son of Zeus and the only half-mortal member of the Twelve Olympians, was torn apart and resurrected twice (once by Athena saving his heart), was mocked by elder gods and turned the insult into the weapon and the symbol of power. 

What could the lost and silenced narratives of the epic past tell us about possible futures?

[1] Marcel Hénaff. Claude Lévi-Strauss and the Making of Structural Anthropology. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, London, 1998. p. 108. 
[2] Glenn W. Most (ed.). Hesiod: Theogony, Work and Days, Testimonia. Harvard University Press, London, 2006. Introduction, xiv.

(by Denis Maksimov)

Image: collage of marble head of Athena with Corinthian helmet (reign of Hadrian, AD 117-138) and marble head of Dionysus from Piraeus, late 4th century BC

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This Storm is What We Call Progress
Oct
10
6:30pm 6:30pm

This Storm is What We Call Progress

  • 87 Crampton Street London, England, SE17 3AZ United Kingdom (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

The lecture-manifesto "This Storm is What We Call Progress", reflecting on the essence of political plasma, will be presented in the context of the opening of the total installation "Storming" by Alexander Shishkin-Hokusai at the Elephant & Castle Experimental Space. 

In a theatrical manner, the co-curator (Denis Maksimov) will deliver the public original text, combined out of the quotations from some of the world’s best speeches. The selected authors, among whom in particular are Pericles, Socrates, Elizabeth I and Queen of the Crime Council O-Ren Ishii, represent political, social, apologetic, personal and other modнes of storming the convention, idleness, oppression, ignorance for the sake of utopian emancipation // В театральной манере cо-куратор тотальной инсталляции прочитает публике оригинальный текст, представляющий собой коллаж цитат из лучших мировых речей. Избранные авторы, среди которых в частности Перикл, Сократ, Елизавета I и королева совета токийской мафии О-Рен Иши, представляют разнообразные аспекты (политические, социальные, апологетические, личные, др) призыва к штурму как утопической эмансипации от конвенции, безделья, угнетения, невежества.

The performance starts 18.30 sharp and lasts just over 5 minutes. 

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(Im)Perfect Futures
Sep
13
4:00pm 4:00pm

(Im)Perfect Futures

  • 17 ulitsa Gorkogo Yekaterinburg, Sverdlovskaya oblast', 620075 Russian Federation (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

with Ivar Maskutov (PostNauka), Denis Maksimov (Avenir Institute), Agency of Singular Investigations, Benjamin Bratton (Strelka, The New Normal), Aris Komporozos-Athanasiou (Radical Imagination, UCL and The New School), Natalia Akhmerova (Agency Mars Dreams), moderated by Igor Akhmerov

Screening of videos artworks, curated by Avenir Institute, in the intermissions between speakers’ addresses: “Pandemonium” (each about 5 mins) by GVN908, «Кровь, что течет в нас» by Sonny Sanjay Vadgama, the teaser of “Hypernormalisation” by Adam Curtis

Do you remember the future? The dreams of interplanetary escape from the Earth and its problems are not a novelty. Utopian thinking is a form of critical dissection of the real, as well as mental escape from the political impotence. What the the utopia of leaving the Earth tells about our present? The convention and normality are in the centre of preserving everlasting stability of the everyday. The reluctance to change and fear of conscious adaptation to rapidly changing environment is enforcing the wall of ignorance, which finds its most vivid visualisation in recent political turbulence. The end of history hasn’t happened: instead ‘the real’ had scattered in pieces like a broken looking glass, opening potentiality for infinite subjective interpretations. How the promise of multiplicity of possible futures is reflected in arts and engages with the disciplines beyond it? 

In the context of the launch of Agency Mars Dreams this year, the invited speakers represent the broad spectrum of contemporary approaches to futures as a subject of transdisciplinary investigations. Each of them is invited to shortly address the raised questions in individual and free form. The only limitation is time: 10 minutes. After the panelists will join the conversation, moderated by Igor Akhmerov, and after the floor to the questions from the audience

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documenta: learning from Balashikha
Sep
10
5:00pm 5:00pm

documenta: learning from Balashikha

  • 1 Kotelnicheskaya naberezhnaya Moskva, Moscow, 109240 Russian Federation (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Avenir Institute, Oleg Borodin, Anton Zabrodin, Katya Isaeva, Sergey Kischenko, Ikuru Kuvajima, Grisha Munrikov and Ira Tsyhanskaya, Maria Kapajeva, Natalia Timofeeva, Asya Zhetvina and others

Critical theory can be compared with ouroboros - a snake that is devouring its own tail. One of the most anticipated events in contemporary art world, documenta, has been taking place in sleepy Kassel since 1955. In 2017 we experience “art eclipse”: Venice Biennale, documenta and Skulptur Projekte Münster all are in conjunction. 

“Learning from Athens” is the topic of “ecliptic” documenta14, for the first time taking place in two cities simultaneously. The capital of Greece and motherland of democracy became the point of departure for the curator Adam Szymczyk. Still-the-centre-of-the-(art)-world-Europe faced historical “eclipse” of crises: economic as a consequence of global financial collapse of 2008; political, in the result of Brexit; geopolitical, caused by turmoil in Ukraine, Middle and Central East[ migrational, with the largest registered wave of migrants and refugees from Africa and Eurasia in the recent history; and as well religious, ideological, etc. Moralistic context of the documenta14 curatorial concept offers to reflect on the subject of collective and universal values, formulated thousands of years ago by free citizens (although slave-owning ones) of the Ancient Greek poleis. How unique this period of “super-crises” and how acceptable is the euro-centric outlook on the the course of the “ship” in the midst of storms of contemporaneity? Is it possible “to learn” somewhere else now, for instance in Balashikha? 

The group of artists, researchers and curators have decided after visiting documenta14 or learning about it from numerous reviewing and critical sources to have a look at the “eclipse” without protective glasses, just as Donald Trump from the balcony of the White House. 

text: Denis Maksimov

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(Im)Perfect Futures: utopia as escape, inspiration, critique and danger
Sep
10
4:00pm 4:00pm

(Im)Perfect Futures: utopia as escape, inspiration, critique and danger

Discussion. Participants: Ivar Maskutov (PostNauka), Denis Maksimov (Avenir Institute), Hani Rashid (Asymptote Architecture), Dr Maya Van Leemput (ReelFutures), Natalya Akhmerova (Mars Dreams Agency). Moderator: Igor Akhmerov.

Do you remember the future? The dreams of interplanetary escape from the Earth and its problems are not a novelty. Utopian thinking is a form of critical dissection of the real, as well as mental escape from the political impotence. What the utopia of leaving the Earth tells about our present? The convention and normality are in the centre of preserving everlasting stability of the everyday. The reluctance to change and fear of conscious adaptation to rapidly changing environment is enforcing the wall of ignorance, which finds its most vivid visualisation in recent political turbulence. The end of history hasn’t happened: instead ‘the real’ had scattered in pieces like a broken looking glass, opening potentiality for infinite subjective interpretations. How the promise of multiplicity of possible futures is reflected in arts and engages with the disciplines beyond it?

The invited speakers represent the broad spectrum of contemporary approaches to futures as a subject of transdisciplinary investigations.

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The Bitter Plums of Chelsea Manning: An Opera in Three Acts
Jun
22
8:15pm 8:15pm

The Bitter Plums of Chelsea Manning: An Opera in Three Acts

Deyson Gilbert with collaborators Avenir Institute (Denis Maksimov & Timo Tuominen), Gabriel Francisco Lemos and Tom N presents The Bitter Plums of Chelsea Manning: An Opera in Three Acts. Two panellists present images on a screen and talk about the contradictory parts of an amputated body. A singer struggles to remember an unknown hymn. In the backstage, an audio technician controls a radio while a cameraman thinks about Ivanka Trump. A libretto handed to the audience quotes Richard Wagner: "Joy is not in things: it is in us".

RSVP:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/re-collections-tickets-32720933192

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Temple of Futures Thinking
Jun
16
to Jul 2

Temple of Futures Thinking

  • Elephant & Castle Experimental Space (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

After presentation in Sao Paulo earlier this year, the Temple of Futures Thinking will be mounted in Elephant & Castle Experimental Space in London. 

"As a summary of the think tank’s transdisciplinary researches between 2015 and 2016, Avenir Institute presents the total installation Temple of Futures Thinking. The political theologist Carl Schmitt argued about the nature of political as inherently religious. The belief in the sacred nature of the non-visualisable notions of ‘social contract’ or ‘democracy’ is quite proximate to the assurance in life after death, the existence of karma and so forth. Why then to settle for a limited one-dimensionality of monotheistic and autocratic teachings of the books?

The Temple of Futures Thinking is critical: it does not o er answers on the eternal questions, but it twists the processes of re ection about their roots. Knowledges are in nitely plural as are the possible interpretations of thinking patterns. Just like in Ancient Greek mythology, the literal is poetic and the poetic is literal. It is the superposition of human intellectual and emotional intelligence. The total installation consists of 7 brass mind maps with the core terms for contemporary futures thinking introduced by the Institute, the lecture- performance “The Epistemology of Border”, which digs critically in the nature of enclosed systemic thinking, and the publication “Against the Future or Building the Temple of Futures Thinking”.

In the midst of the socio-political search for a new modernity, triggered by the perceived collapse of the postmodern promise, and the settling for the convenient refuge in nostalgia, we o er a focus on futures thinking as the way to replace the blind simplicity with a beautiful and multidimensional complexity. If we are anthropologically inclined to believe in something, let it be the belief in the limitlessness of human potentiality."

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 EUROVISION / European narratives and speculative fictions
Apr
20
7:00pm 7:00pm

EUROVISION / European narratives and speculative fictions

Eurovision is a conversation about ideas, fictional representations of real and imagined European histories. Take the concept of Europe, deconstruct it and rebuild it. The objective of the talk is to bridge a speculative theoretical investigation about post-nationhood with the construction of European narratives, in art, literature, media and politics. These representations of Europe interact with the concept of the future, and the tension between utopia-dystopia, hope-despair, given the current political and social framework. The talk will contribute to the writing of DISCO SOUR, a novel I’m currently writing, which is set in a civil war ravaged Europe where nation-states collapsed, a rump EU just about prevents anarchy, and tinder-like apps replace elections. It is a story about Bastian Balthazar Bux, a space-lover, a smartphone addict, a young political leader on the verge of a breakdown.

Reading of excerpts from the draft manuscript of DISCO SOUR by Giuseppe Porcaro

Lecture-performance "State of Noland" by Denis Maksimov, co-founder, Avenir Institute

Conversation between: Teresa Cos, Artist in residency at Wiels contemporary art centre, Brussels, Giacomo Filibeck, Deputy Secretary-General of the Party of European Socialists, Ryan Heath, Senior EU Correspondent at POLITICO Europe

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Potentiality in Grey Zones
Mar
29
7:30pm 7:30pm

Potentiality in Grey Zones

The spaces where the rules are uncertain and the boundaries can be compromised open the portals for shifting expected, normal and predictable in the position of productive confusion. “Grey Zones” wear no ideological colours and positions: they are the spaces of possible. METASITU and Avenir Institute embarked on the journey of transdisciplinary research of the notion of “greyness” in personal, spacial and political dimensions, which are intersecting with one another in synergic way. Can “greyness” be a transitional space from hierarchical to rhizomathic formation of institutions? Is it a lifestyle, a combination of life hacks, a space of authentic freedom? Can it be wielded in a concious strategy of acquiring power? 

The lecture is a result of the first stage of the joint research of METASITU and Avenir Institute started at the Penthouse Art Residency. 

METASITU is transdisciplinary collective of Eduardo Cassina (ES) and Liva Dudareva (LV), based in Athens.

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Against the Future
Feb
16
to Mar 11

Against the Future

The future is a pastiche of relational and extrapolative images of expectations, desires and fears. Avenir Institute was founded in summer 2015 with the mission of exploring the questions on potentialities in possible futures. This was a gesture towards challenging the prevailing linear thinking in philosophy, politics, technology and arts.

As a summary of the think tank’s transdisciplinary researches between 2015 and 2016, Avenir Institute presents the total installation Temple of Futures Thinking. The political theologist Carl Schmitt argued about the nature of political as inherently religious. The belief in the sacred nature of the non-visualisable notions of ‘social contract’ or ‘democracy’ is quite proximate to the assurance in life after death, the existence of karma and so forth. Why then to settle for a limited one-dimensionality of monotheistic and autocratic teachings of the books? 

The Temple of Futures Thinking is critical: it does not offer answers on the eternal questions, but it twists the processes of reflection about their roots. Knowledges are infinitely plural as are the possible interpretations of thinking patterns. Just like in Ancient Greek mythology, the literal is poetic and the poetic is literal. It is the superposition of human intellectual and emotional intelligence. The total installation consists of 7 brass mind maps with the core terms for contemporary futures thinking introduced by the Institute, the lecture-performance “The Epistemology of Border”, which digs critically in the nature of enclosed systemic thinking, and the publication “Against the Future or Building the Temple of Futures Thinking”. 

In the midst of the socio-political search for a new modernity, triggered by the perceived collapse of the postmodern promise, and the settling for the convenient refuge in nostalgia, we offer a focus on futures thinking as the way to replace the blind simplicity with a beautiful and multidimensional complexity. If we are anthropologically inclined to believe in something, let it be the belief in the limitlessness of human potentiality.

--

Opening of the exhibition and lecture-performance 'The Epistemology of Border': February 16, 19.00 - 22.00 (Projeto Fidalga, Rua Fidalga 299, Vila Madalena, Sao Paulo. 

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Do You Remember the Future?
Jan
27
7:00pm 7:00pm

Do You Remember the Future?

"It may be that the growth of science and engineering inevitably outstrips the development of political expertise, leading to disaster" - recently noted Brian Cox, an Advanced Fellow of particle physics in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester. One of the paramount issues about futures of humanity is its possible resilience to the socio-political paradoxes of behavioural (ir)rationality. While technological progress constantly multiplies the speed of changes and expands the vision of 'possible', political staleness and supported by it illusion of everlasting present of anthropological time keeps the common conciousness (even if it exists) in a flat state. What are the perks of expanding distance between technology and politics? Can epistemology and hermeneutics become pro-active agents? What role plays art in the constant misbalance?  

Avenir Institute was established as a think tank at the intersection of aesthetics, epistemology, politics and technology by Denis Maksimov and Timo Tuominen in summer 2015. The duo, following phisophical speculations of Jacques Derrida, introduced the term 'avenir' as an event, a rupture, an obvious crack within the  physiologically comforting illusion of relative predictability. The path towards it's inception in the current form of post-disciplinary, extra-territorial entity started 6 years before, when Timo and Denis met first time in Berlin. 

In the lecture they will actualise the agenda and problematics of the Institute, including methodologies and research inquiries. They will touch upon the possible, the preferable, the probable and the plausible futures of contextual environments. 

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Fauna for Futures
Jan
7
11:00am11:00am

Fauna for Futures

When the going gets weird, the weird gets pro (Hunter Thompson)

Old traditions don’t seem to work anymore while new ones haven’t yet established. The pertaining state of uncertainty becomes uncomfortable. Rapid advancement of formal acceptance of otherness causes alienation and a renaissance of nostalgia. 

Black swans, elephants, jellyfish, (white) ravens, etc. are used not only as the metaphors to highlight possible emerging issues, but as alter-egos for the protection of otherness. They represent the internalised and externalised challenges and potentials that keep futures rich. 

Fusing futures, aesthetics and critique, Agence Future and Avenir Institute organise an experience of creating the (un)familiar Other, that speaks of reality and ways of writing yesterday, today and multiple tomorrows. 

The workshop is invitation-only and is a part of Uncertainty Scenarios project of Enough Room for Space.

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Moirai Realität
Dec
1
to Dec 31

Moirai Realität

The exercise of constructing reality through the gaze of the viewer is the focus of the installation and performance developed by Avenir Institute for Platform Berlin. "Moirai Realität" is a critical reflection on the process of narrating, legitimising and consuming the subjective "real" in the age of media. As Nietzsche murdered the divinity and post-modernism granted access to ultimate freedom in designing one's values and perceptions, the new normal shifted towards somewhat confusing personalised pick-and-choose 'curation' out the randomness of ever-increasing information flow. Welcome to my official very own reality as your Instagram account proclaims.

Moirai are the goddesses-witches in the Greek Mythology that stitch the carpet of fate for both wo(man) and Gods. They are among few characters feared even by the Olympians. 

The installation consists of the set of printed statements on the walls of the Platform and the numbered balls, which are drawn from the bowl to be turned into a fresh narration of a constructed reality. The order of drawing the balls by the performers sums up in a reason-consequence sequence, which is in fact randomly composed by impartial "moirai": beyond morals, strategies and schemes.

Performance will take place at the opening on December 1 and will be accompanied by Filthy French music interventions, which were composed specially for the event in collaboration with Avenir Institute. 

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Post-VR: Society and Politics
Nov
23
7:30pm 7:30pm

Post-VR: Society and Politics

Advent of the Virtual Reality (VR) challenges the structures of society and political system with new opportunities and risks. At the same time the coefficients of 'happiness' gradually replace the GDP per capita as the indicator of prosperity of the nation states: the fortune and luck are unacceptable notions in the society where you 'can' design your well-being. What role the VR can play in the possible futures of society? 

The talk will take place at Futurice offices in London, the UK. 

(image: Seraph's program code appearance, The Matrix Trilogy)

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The Game of Futures #2
Nov
1
10:00am10:00am

The Game of Futures #2

  • ul. Bolshaya Pushkarskaya ulitsa 32 Sankt-Peterburg, Saint Petersburg Russian Federation (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

During the month of the residency in St Petersburg, Avenir Institute developed 'The Game of Futures #2' together with the members of the youth club 'Sreda’.

The project departs from the critical theory and the theory of futures,  embedded in gamification mechanisms from popular board games, played by the people of all generations, the young people in particular, in St Petersburg and beyond. 
‘The Game of Futures #2’ is an installation, a sculpture and a board game that consists of a game board the shape of the map of the modern Russia, game pieces of several types, representing the various centres of possible futures (medicine, communication technology, energy, etc.). It also includes score coins that are distributed by chance, and political leader figures, whose function in the game is to close the towers of futures into ‘the future’ and claim the scores for players. Each player places pieces on the grid of the map, which is carefully balanced on an elevated stand. The higher the tower and the further from the centre of the map it is built, the more points the player claims at the point of closing the tower with a political leader. The players can build on each other’s towers, but the one who started the tower and the one who closed it with the political leader gets the most points from the tower. The players cannot put coins on the map arbitrarily, but can move like in Draughts (of Checkers). The players, while building towers, have to mind the balance of the platform: in case towers are not evenly built, the platform can incline and collapse the game of futures for everyone. The winner in ‘The Game of Futures #2’ defines the core of the desirable future scenario: based on the type of events (avenirs) his/her coins represent. 
None of the scenarios of futures is right or wrong: the competitive character and the critical nature of the game are reflected in the relativity of the gameplay and the role of luck along with strategic considerations - crucial for the resilience and balance of the platform. 

A political leader closes a tower in order to allow the players to collect points. In line with one of the primary functions of politics, the institutionalisation of the everlasting present as a form of stability, a political system produces an illusion of the end of history and all alternatives to the current are presented as dangerous, even apocalyptic, unless they are not constructed above the established basis. Any disruption to the established order as ‘the Other’ is perceived as alienating, risky and unfriendly by default. The finished towers allow to determine the winner in the race of futures, but at the same time they fixate the future as the everlasting present. 

The installation/game is produced at the Fab Lab in the St Petersburg State Polytechnic University. 

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Be a Guest in My Possible Future
Oct
14
to Oct 17

Be a Guest in My Possible Future

  • Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS
http://www.wasbiennale.com/about/

http://www.wasbiennale.com/about/

curatorship - Denis Maksimov

artists and collectives
Avenir Institute / Grisha Mumrikov / Danila Tkachenko / Igor Samolet / Katya Anokhina / Katya Isaeva / Kostya Grebnev / Oleg Borodin / Pavel Grishin / Sasha Elina / Sergey Prokofiev / and others

Authentic artistic journey is constantly defined by precariousness, risk and entering the field of unknown. Pushing the personal boundaries can be more challenging than changing the course of the history. 
Although the concepts of medium and authorship had already been blown up, the institutions that possess the power of definition are surprisingly stable in form of their reincarnation. The history of art is written a posteriori: what is 'new', 'defining' and 'seminal' for the era is rarely assessed by contemporaries at the time of conception.
The experimentation that leads to non-strategic innovation however happens in the intimate environment, where the artist feels safe to work on something that might be easily defined and appropriated. 
'Be a Guest in My Possible Futures' creates the context, where 'familiar' becomes 'strange' and 'known' ceases to be 'certain'. An artist is destined to act in a position of the Other: however making a concious choice to generate estrangement takes an act of courage and self-determination. 
The exhibition features works in unfamiliar mediums and forms of presentation by the artists, collectives and performers, who dare to play a trick with a possible future.

image: Kostya Grebnev. Untitled 1, 2016.

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Critical mass: Youth, Public Space and Mindsets
Oct
4
7:00pm 7:00pm

Critical mass: Youth, Public Space and Mindsets

‘I believe that children are our future... unless we stop them now!’ Homer Simpson 

The organisation of youth is a strategy for designing the desirable future. Though mediated by the political intention route of self-development, the new generations are meant to become a clay for sculpting societies that are better. What needs to be preserved and what needs to be improved alongside the future skills set is defined by the planners with already defined set of ideological positions. The notions of collaboration, unity and common vision of reality are in the basis of the mission ahistorically. 

However in post-Internet age the traditional forms of mediation, mastered by nation states in 20 century, is challenged by the vast ocean of scattered pastiches of references. Creating ‘public spaces’ in the time of radical privatisation of everything, individualisation of learning and growing illusion of possible absolute autonomy is a gregarious task. The Adornian totality of contemporary society dims the vision of possible futures, shuts out idea of a free time and makes way for the constantly looping march of ‘everlasting present’.

How can youth organisations, based on the traditional idea of physical public space, remain attractive in the hyper-individualised future of possible absolutization of subjective reality of a young beholder? What formats of future generations public spaces can be feasible: pokemon hunting fields? Second Life cities squares? 

Avenir Institute will present the concepts of ‘avenirology’ and ‘everlasting present’, that it has been working on since it’s initiation, as well as some of the projects it has been working on. The Institute Subjective Future Scenarios department’s methodology is the basis for developing the collaboration with one of the St Petersburg youth clubs as a part of the fourth season of The Critical Mass.

Avenir Institute was invited by TOK curatorial collective to lead the art & theory laboratory as collaborative working process with local St. Petersburg youth club. The process will result in presentation of subjective future scenario(s), developed from the application of avenirology as methodological approach, in a form of performance, lecture or exhibition. The process will be based on critical reflection within the socio-political and cultural context.

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Facing the Future: EU-Russia round tables
Sep
21
to Sep 22

Facing the Future: EU-Russia round tables

  • Centre for Fine Arts (BOZAR) (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Denis Maksimov will participate in closed door round tables on future of cultural diplomacy in relations of Russia and the European Union by invitation of the director of Centre for Fine Arts BOZAR.

The key objectives of these roundtables are on one hand, to explore and raise awareness on the state of play of cultural relations and cultural diplomacy between Eastern and Western Europe, including Russia, and on the other hand, to contribute to developing and promoting the notion of shared history and common future. Holding roundtables in parallel to the exhibition will also allow to continue the conversation launched by the curators of the exhibition among the participants of the project “Trauma and Revival” and further underline the importance of such cultural dialogue bridging East and West.

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Sep
4
to Sep 18

[Sao Paulo] Bureau for Public Insecurities

logo design by Luiz Guilherme

logo design by Luiz Guilherme

conceived and curated by DNV [dan'etvɐzmoʐnə], curatorial duo of Caroline Carrion & Denis Maksimov

Participating artists
Bogomir Doringer (NL), Foundland Collective (NL), Giuditta Vendrame (IT/NL), Bernd Oppl (AU), Avenir Institute (BE/UK), Bruno Baptistelli (BR), Jaime Lauriano (BR), Tiago Mestre (BR), Sonia Guggisberg (BR), Bruno Moreschi (BR), Carla Chaim (BR), Thiago Navas (BR), Fabio Tremonte (BR), Clarice Cunha (BR), Alessandra Duarte (BR), Lais Myrrha (BR), Mano Penalva (BR), Deolinda Aguiar (BR), Ivan Padovani (BR)

The Bureau is as a combination of multidisciplinary mechanisms, designed by the artists and curators, to mitigate growing political, social, economic and cultural precariousness, and consists of departments that address the most urgent public inquiries. Precariousness has never been an imperative for creation in Brazil and Latin American cultures in general; that is, in societies where precarious conditions are more often the rule than the exception. The Bureau is hosted by precarious, independent cultural spaces, many of them ran by artists and based on political will instead of institutional power. ‘Mitigating insecurity’ does not mean ultimately resolving it: mitigation is a provision of understanding, reflection and critical definition of the condition of existence and living in the environment of failed predictability. The insecurities that are addressed by the Bureau relate to local, national and international contexts, which are interconnected, interdependent and referential to one another.

When arriving to Bureau, the visitor will be faced with something that does not look like an exhibition: a waiting room with an installation, where they will get a number and a questionnaire with the intention of placing them in one of a few "insecurity profiles". Each profile gets a referral to a different “department” (each of them working at one of the associated spaces and created by invited artists), and, therefore, to a different exhibition parcours. The system of distribution and assignment is an artwork in itself by the invited artists and curators, as a result of collaborative process. 

The project is aimed at generating discussion, critical thinking and reflection on the subject of precarious existence, risk-taking, illusive control and poetic ways to address it through the language of contemporary art. Universality of problematics addressed is demonstrated through multiplicity of mediums (installation, sculpture, painting, workshop, lecture-performance, street actions, etc.) and diversity of origins and practices of the invited Brazilian and international artists. 

Spaces:
- Sao Art Space (Bureau) 
- Ateliê Fidalga + Projeto Fidalga
- Espaço Vitrine
- Aquário
- Public spaces of Vila Madalena area 

Context

The exhibition will take place in the context of Sao Paulo Biennial ‘Live Uncertainty’, one the most important and prestigious contemporary art platforms in Latin America and the second oldest in the world after Venice. The dialogue with the Biennial (some of the invited artists are participating in the Biennial main project as well) and themed events will secure publicity and necessary attention for providing the best possible impact. 

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Present Visuality and Thingness of Trans-Ethnography in the Context of Unrealised Future of the Past
Aug
5
3:30pm 3:30pm

Present Visuality and Thingness of Trans-Ethnography in the Context of Unrealised Future of the Past

Unless the Soviet Union had not been formed in 1922 on the basis of national self-identification of the ethnicities populating its territories, the country could have made the case for trans-ethnographic appropriation of cultural artifacts. What does it mean for the narratives of connections between material objects as evidence of history, aesthetics and alternative story-telling? How do these objects manifest themselves in the context of advancing globalization? 
The artistic investigation of Liva Dudareva (METASITU), Denis Maksimov (Avenir Institute) and Rana Ozturk presents an analysis of potentialities within the alternative cartography of Eurasia. Material, visual, representational, etc. fluidity manifested in migration, transition and conversion of thingness in the objects of ethnographic museums and beyond them is approached from a speculative perspective of trans-historicity in the present and in possible futures. This project also refers to the cultural geographer Doreen Massey's idea that "identities/entities, the relations between them, and the spatiality which is part of them, are all co-constitutive" and cannot be based on distinctiveness of places, cultures and nations. The Moscow Museum of Oriental Art is approached as an object in itself for post-disciplinary analysis of contemporary cultural discourse pastiche. Critical demystification of political and cultural identity through the objects is achieved by means of deconstruction of their 'secondary' layers of thingness.

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The Epistemology of Border: Futures of bio-geo-techno-Politics
Jul
15
to Jul 16

The Epistemology of Border: Futures of bio-geo-techno-Politics

The border is an invisible, imaginary, fictional line which essential to the process of self-identification, the basis of socio-political hierarchy. What does 'border' mean in complex societal context now and how it can diverge in possible futures? 
Rigid borders and poor existentialism of modern biopolitics is challenged by cyborgization, advancement of AI (artificial intelligence), medical research and other technological developments. The evident crisis of geopolitics as well as of the concept of nation state highlights overdue outdatedness of 'national border'. 
In the course of the lecture-performance, Denis Maksimov & Timo Tuominen will depart from analogy of borrowed from Thomas Hobbes visual concept of Leviathan in order to reflect on radical changes, that the idea and materialisation of 'border' went through in modernity. 'Bio-geo-techno-political' is proposed by Avenir Institute as a format of shaping the point of departure in conversation and reflection on the changing nature and multifaceted nature of the application of the term 'border'. 

The lecture-performance is part of programme of Nationless Pavilion 2016 'Embodying Borders' and 1st Biennale Urbana in the context of 15th Venice Architecture Biennale and builds up on art & theory laboratory 'The State(?)-after-State: Future Potentiality of Post-Nation', that was held in Nationless Pavilion in the context of the 56th Biennale Arte 'All the World's Futures' last year. 

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Dec
28
11:00am11:00am

Starbucks franchises personally managed by Joseph Stalin and the other avenirs of the Internet

Departing from the text of Hito Steyerl 'Too Much World: Is the Internet Dead?', the lecture-workshop focuses on further analytical and philosophical speculations on subject of potentialities ('avenirs'), that the Internet still might deliver in order to disrupt society, politics and economy. The methodology of avenirologic analysis of futures was presented as the strategy for post-disciplinary inquiry. 

Read more - "The Mosque of Pokemon Fan Clubs".

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Aug
10
7:00pm 7:00pm

Presentation of Avenir Manifesto

http://creativetime.org/summit/venice-2015/auxiliary-programs/

http://creativetime.org/summit/venice-2015/auxiliary-programs/

The first version of the Avenir Manifesto is presented by Denis Maksimov and Timo Tuominen to the participants and guests at the opening of The Creative Time Summit at the 56th Venice Biennale 'All the World's Futures' in presence of the curator Okwui Enwezor. 

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