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STONE, PAPER, SCISSORS - design event

After a first phase focused on generating a common territory both for the contexts and for the artists participating in the project, PLANT is in its second phase, focused on design, development of methodologies, and sharing tools that are circulating during the project. Thus, in this second phase taking place in Mieres and Athens at the same time, it is proposed to test a set of practices in context, which allow defining methodologies that will be implemented at the final phase of PLANT, during autumn 2024 in Porto.

PLANT builds on the heritage of the eco-communities of Raymond Duncan first established in Athens where the Duncan Dance Research Center is located today and where the Duncan family created their first eco-community. Plato's ideas on the indivisible bond between art (techni) and craft (techniki) were the cornerstone of Duncan’s thought on the synthesis of art and life. The major aim of his philosophy was the development of individuals through an energetic and productive process of actions (actionalism). ​​Raymond Duncan interviewed by Orson Welles (1955):

Raymond Duncan: My books are not whole books because I buy the paper

Orson Wells: You want to make the paper

Raymond Duncan: I make everything else, the types, the press… I have a press that I made it all, that I printed my books and my newspaper when I arrived in Paris. But I had not made the paper.

Raymond Duncan: Value in things is not to have the thing, but to have made them. And with letters it is very important, because every letter is a word, so each one of these letters has a curious sense to it, and a very strange power.

So, after reflecting in depth on the modes of production and how to socialize them, we approach this second phase from one of the contradictions that Raymond Duncan expressed himself. As a sustained action, we propose to make the paper that he did not create. Thinking of this paper as a physical and conceptual infrastructure for the manual that PLANT is creating in a participatory way. A paper made from plant fibers found around Mieres, an action that is (re)situated in our territory, and that becomes a metaphor for degrowth.

In theses on the philosophy of history, Walter Benjamin wondered if revolutions would not be the locomotive of history - as Marx said - but rather its emergency brake. For a few years now, the idea of degrowth as an emergency brake or new common sense towards the acceleration of the socio-ecological disaster has become popular, reaching significant international relevance both in the scientific and media fields and, more recently, even in institutional policies.

We propose to collectively ‘perform’ the two days of May 4th and 5th, in order to understand how degrowth could offer a series of tools to address the issues that PLANT puts into circulation. Indeed at the present time, degrowth requires a situated discussion of how to ground, articulate and nurture new ways of living in tune with human and planetary needs that are fair and desirable. In this way, we think that projects developed in context can be a rehearsal space for situated artistic and curatorial practices that propose these 'ways of living in line with needs that are fair' that are perhaps not too far from the actionalism that Raymond Duncan proposed in the middle of the 20th century.

Find the full program below and register to participate here:

Useful information on how to get there, contacts, and others is available here!