MOUNT SENSE, JOANNA LALOWSKA AND LAIA MIRET
HD SINGLE CHANNEL VIDEO / COLOR / ENGLISH / 01:54
Ritual of Longing
PROPOSAL FOR DGTL FMNSM WEB RESIDENCY - AKADEMY OF SCHLOSS SOLITUDE
UNDESIRED BY THE MARKET: RESTING!
Labour and rest seem to be two fundamentally contradictory notions of human existence. Work is associated with activity, which on a psychological and emotional level makes us feel needed and in search for meaning in spending time while producing. Rest is often referred to as passive action, when one does not do anything in order to exercise one's right to regenerate physical and mental strength. However, these two apparently independent activities are interwoven together and codependant in the sistemic context of capitalism.
The politics of boredom
How can we avoid allowing the seeming dichotomy to become instrumental to the neo-liberal obsession of producing and the persistence of societal judgment? How can we protect ourselves from becoming exhausted by the constant struggle? How much risk is there in being resilient within taking a break? HOW MIGHT WE TAKE ACTION TO CREATE BETTER INACTION?
We had to go as far as our childhood in order to find memories of deep resting – and deep boredom. We both reminiscenced how we used to build shelters, caves, castles with our friends. Play was the result of boredom, and boredom was the result of profound rest.
Nowadays we lack the connection to boredom. Capital needs us to be working or consuming, or doing both things at the same time. It is by the meanings of production that capital flows. So even when we need to rest, an infinite spectrum of entertainment possibilities is offered to us and monetised through us.
It seems that in adulthood, the only way to rest is by defining limits and by setting a rigorous time frame, one that isolates us from the entangled and accelerated pitch we live in and, perhaps, protects us from capitalistic inercia.
We perceive friendship as a shelter –the importance of finding our safe haven beyond the traditional understanding of safety, which often comes with family. During a few day stay at the Montseny mountains we built a physical shelter in the woods as an embodiment of our search for play and self-expression. Our aim is to reflect on artistic and political resistance around inproductivity utilising play as our method. Returning back to playfulness as the core of our existence might become a form of social rebellion.
Using this performative work as a starting point, during our residency we would like to question the politics of boredom in our times in relation to the individual and collective psyche. For us, boredom is now a social luxury as well as an intellectual one, and we would like to digg deeper into the intrinsicaties of the dynamics between labor and play.
For this application, we have been revisiting the Xenofeminist Manifesto by collective Laboria Cuboniks, and found in there a number of interesting and inspiring ideas to pursue further through our practice. In adition, we looked at the recent history of the area, and found relevant documentation about the anarcofeminist movements of Barcelona during the 1900’s. It is La “virgen roja” barcelonesa – The red virgin of Barcelona– who inspired our garments for the video proposal embeded above.
Daisies (Sedmikrásky), from director Věra Chytilová has been also a reference as an unsettlingly powerful example of humour’s ability to elicit critical thought. Whilst exploring the complexity of the subject of this residency, we found that the farcical elements of our perfomance add an extra potency to the philosophical and political questioning of unproductivity through rest and boredom, employing hyperbolic presentations of our character’s mannerisms and our world.