January 13th
I’m taking in part in a DAI project curated by Renée RidgwayNegotiating Equity plans to ‘Address the ethics and practice of curatorship as a mode of art production, asserting that these terms of engagement imply rethinking the economic and social conditions of art.’
Mmmn… I think this is going to be an interesting project. Of the three on offer, I’ve chosen ‘Negotiating Equity’ because the one I ‘should’ have been doing – ie the public space one, was linked up with the Zuidas and I couldn’t bear the prospect of another project spent doing ideological battle. This project seems to include some degree of if not institutional critique, at least institutional unravelling.

As developments in the last group project I worked on turned into a kind of artists soap-opera, looking back I wished I’d blogged the whole thing from start to finish. That chance is past and gone, but I’m going to blog this project from the start, just in case….

But first, before the extended blog, here’s the latest version of my plans

Jimini Hignett’s proposal for ID-11 – latest version…

Despite usually taking a long time mulling over different options for a project – when heard I’d have an empty apartment to work in for 5 months I knew straight away what I should do: upon receipt of the key to the apartment I would offer it to a family of refugees so that they could live there! Although the most important thing would be that they would feel safe and comfortable in their temporary home, it would be great if they were also keen to participate more actively in the project and perhaps even open the apartment to allow the public to enter and view them in their home as an exhibit – hopefully provoking some debate around art, homelessness, exploitation, etc.

That was the original proposal…

Unfortunately, logistically this didn’t work out – instead of 5 months it was to be two… probably not worth it for a family of refugees, so, coming across B. a homeless Afro-American woman selling the ‘Z’ newspaper at the supermarket near my studio, I decided to offer it to her. She was delighted at the idea of a place to herself with free amenities, even if only for 2 months, and says she’ll start saving bits and pieces of household stuff she might need immediately.
B. at the supermarket

But then things changed again, instead of a whole apartment with all amenities, it turned into a shared apartment for only a week.
B. sensibly, wasn’t interested, but by this time we’d already talked about her being involved in the project, making a video about her life, so rather than search for a Delft homeless person who might just find it worth their while using the place for such a limited period, I thought about another plan with B.

Delft means nothing to B., she has never been there and the important things in her life are in Amsterdam, she’d love to have some stuff as memories of her time spent here, particularly as she’s now planning on leaving to go back to the US.
However, she does agree to come to Delft with me and spend a few hours videoing in the apartment.

So now the plan has been reduced to this – collaborating with B. videoing her in different locations, talking about her life and her time in the Netherlands, using the block of flats in Delft (which looks remarkably similar to the Bijlmer which she says she recognised from the dream God sent her) as one of those locations. It’s a bit of tenuous link to ID-11 but given the circumstances it makes sense.
That and documentation about the whole process of in the form of a blog/project-journal.
Read More in the Negotiating Equity blog
Here’s a clip from the video:

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