The book in your hands is a collection of essays and honest conversations with practitioners, based on experiences and observations of long-term processes taking place at the intersection of art, education, and activism.
When resources turn into commons, how can they be collectively activated in order to build a community? What role does art play in the process of commoning? Can art institutions contribute to social change?
Cooperation is something more than just a mechanism for collective management of resources, and so can be a way to overcome the systems that rule both the art world and everyday life, where capitalism and extreme individualism are leading to the decline of communities, a deepening of social inequality, and a degradation of the natural environment.
More and more frequently artists, activists, researchers and educators initiate social situations all over the world—when institutions fail them, they establish their own. They treat art as a tool for building long-term collaboration involving exchange, generosity, and trust. They are willing to bear the associated risks. They oppose the laws of the market and focus on teamwork, solidarity, and the gift economy. They redefine the concept of art and hack systems. They produce alternative systems for teaching and for unlearning, new economies and spaces of imagination. In their practice, the authors and protagonists of this post-reader use competencies from across a number of fields; they support and create communities around the world—in Ursus, Poland, in the Amazon in a village in Java or in the suburbs of New Orleans. COllected in this volume, the reports from many years of experience of practitioners from Ukraine, Poland, Indonesia, Mexico, the USA, and Brazil can be treated as a road map, a compendium of approaches, recommendations, and as inspiration for action.