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Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam, 5-17th February 2012
In collaboration with Edward Clive (PZI), Tom Jenkins (QMUL) and Jess Wiesner

‘Floating Ideas’
following Stefano Harney’s talk on logistics the group take a boat tour around the industrial port while collectively choreographing the next days activities.

    From ‘A speculative presentation on a forth-coming project’ performance for art Rotterdam.   The space set for the introductory session which featured an erratic timer and participants ‘three thinks’ (thoughts at their germination told via objects and gestures that represent them). Subtitles for a song from Bernd Krauss' performance ZVDHH. Jan Verwoert speaks on ‘Liars, cheats and the utopian figure of the idiot’, while Bernd Krauss performs his work ZVDHH unannounced. By dyslexics for dislecsics ‘Out Side of the Box’
10 part collective choreography with chairs (4 chairs making out in an adventure playground)
‘Speculation shout choir’
Shouting a text on speculation to see if it changes its reading.
'Mental notes' made during a talk on cybernetics (clay on board) Head dress during the sci-fi costume workshop Watching Tommy while preparing lunch, making costumes, and starting to edit the proceeding documentation. ‘Out Side of the Box’
10 part collective choreography with chairs (chairs on the roof of a car, just bellow the cameras view)
Documenting and processing the receding project in anticipation of a party ‘Hair cuts for artist by artist’,
chain of trimming and shearing in which the cut becomes the cutter.
The hurly-jane wirly Coyote and Kaninchen
Impromptu performance of sorts

The project redirected the schools amenities (time, space and people) towards the establishment of a concentrated knowledge exchange between students and from the institute’s Fine Art MA, and visiting tutors Bernd Krauss, Steve Rushton, Jan Verwoert (PZI) Stefano Harney (QMUL), amongst others. Rather than developing a typical symposium format, emphasis was on ideas at the start of their development with the inclusion of talks, seminars and artistic interventions contributing towards a collective body of research that exploited and examined the conditions of study at PZI.

The projects premise was to utilise the traits and coping strategies of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and other 'psychopathalogical conditions' as a methodology for collective production. We were interested in what might happen if the behaviours of individuals diagnosed with ADD, (hyper-activity, inattention, daydreaming, sensation seeking, etc.) were positioned as strengths or inherent methods of resistance, and whether it would be possible to produce collective coping strategies for work, life and artistic practice by encouraging and framing these attributes.

Contemporary left thinkers (Berardi, Fisher, Gabor) position these cognitive disorders as symptomatic of a society in which individual expression has been subsumed into the production of wealth, separating ‘cognitive functions and material sociality’ (Berardi 2007). Counter to this our approached suggested they might be latent and self generating modes of contingency. While the project playfully speculated around the potential merits of these disorders, it took seriously Berardi’s proposition that ‘general intellect needs to find the body’, by positioning the qualities of performance, (virtuosity, affect, embodiment and the co-presence of agents in time and space together) as a means for co-occupation. In doing so, it hoped to enact the divide between an enforced pressure to perform, and the role corporeal event plays in serving the commons. The project was exhausting including over 24 hours of programmed events and activities that provided participants with a space for speculation along with access to other bodies that might to assist in these research trajectories.

Derived by considering ADD through its qualities and coping strategies, rather than diagnostic framing, the projects methodology approached the following concerns:

- The effect of containment (framing, visibility, inside from out side, distance measure),
- The literal (what physically constructs this, how this relates to sincerity),
- Unwitting wit and innovation (disorder as reorder),
- Detail and attention to it (meta focus),
- The haptic (objects and physicality in terms of tangibility),
- A materiality of form (referencing collection and accumulation to view visible patterning, 'seeing' after being and the consequence on spectator ship)
- The body (energy levels, food consumption, the effects of enclose/open space),
- Kinaesthetic learning approaches (establishing alternative value for doing things, through doing things)
- Co-habitation (social interdependence for memory, cognitive mapping),
- Hyperactivity, de-centering (production as bi-producing)
- Reliance on performance (immanent tactics moving towards affect rather than performativity)
- Puns and mis-asociation

Thinking Big
Random Play
Fiddling with the Faculty (w/ Edward Clive)
Draft 1, 2, & 3 (w/ Jane Frances Dunlop)
Liberate Labour
Triggering Diagram
The Enormous Space

88 Hight Street
Flat 4
CT11 9RX

Fiona James