The Year 2017
A Collective Chronicle of Thoughts and Observations
Welcome to what is going to be a collective chronicle of the year 2017! This journal will follow the general change that we experience in our daily lives, in our cities, countries and beyond, in the political discourses and in our reflections on the role of artists and intellectuals. Originating from several talks and discussions with fellow artists and thinkers FFT feels the strong need to share thoughts and feelings about how we witness what is going on in the world. Week after week different writers, artists, thinkers and scientists will take the role of an observer as they contribute to this collective diary.
#23 June, 5th - 11th
5th of June 2017
I am writing this text in panic, not knowing what to eat, what to wear, how to travel. I am accumulating tons of facts concerning you. Fast fashion industries, GMO seeds, cobalt extraction under slave conditions, air pollution, global warming, birds dying from plastic, violence in refugee shelters...the list is getting longer everyday.
I realize how much my actions are involved in this chain of suffering. The guilt of knowledge is growing with every article, with every book I read. I want to resist the temptation of collapsing into certain discourses. I dearly empathize with proposals coming from feminist, queer, environmental and ecological theories. I respect all of them and I do believe they all come from the huge urgency and dear concern for what will happen with You. Does the fact that I will call myself queer-feminist-ecologist save me from the guilt I feel towards the world? Sometimes I have a feeling that I am in the middle of the battlefield of names and definitions but of course they bring temporary relief. Temporary relief. Temporary relief.
6th of June 2017
I want to place myself towards You, I want to situate myself in You.
The basic communication of my body with the ecosystems is an immunology system that in medical discourse is connected with a military language: attack, counter-attack, enemies, good and bad bacteria. According to this, human bodies are always at war with their surroundings. But the immunological system is not the system that protects us from the others. It does not recognize “enemies” but it recognizes where there is damage and what should be fixed. It is a system that tunes us with the ecosystem we live in. Even the smallest cell needs to act within the world; it does not do it as a machine, ad hoc. Immunological systems do not codify strong differentiations between me-other, moreover, everything is in the context. Immunological system is ontologically dependent on the ecosystem. In order to understand its work, it is to look at its environment. I coexist with the environment, I am intermingled, I do not, and I cannot act aggressively towards it. I am fascinated by the fact how much I have been already polluted. I have more microorganisms in my guts than I have cells in my body – I am crawling with bacteria and I am full of chemicals. Me, my bacteria, my dance.
7th of June 2017
after researching contamination, purification, bacteria, viruses, chemicals, I became a victim of my own fascination. On Monday - I got infected with streptococcus. Time passed slowly and I felt I was hallucinating. Fever: 38.5-39 degrees Celsius. Dry coughing, gastrointestinal, back and neck pain. I lay paralyzed in bed for days.
Slowly, I started to feel how my inflamed lung tissues were being infiltrated by neutrophils releasing mucosal hyper secretion. Goblet cells were causing further obstruction to the airways. I was in a critical condition. After two days this way, I had no choice but to take an antibiotic called CEFUROX Basics 250 mg. I got the medicine for free, secured by my health insurance. Soon, I became suspicious of the substances I was told to swallow. The effect of their chemical power was twofold: bactericidal (causing death of bacteria) and bacteriostatic (inhibition of bacterial proliferation). Invaded by the antibiotics, I started to be aware of how many times, in life, I am the invader, myself. As this idea entered my mind, my boyfriend fell on the bed. A hot wave fever had struck him. It was clear I had contaminated him, and then, I understood that I am dangerous.
8th of June 2017
I am standing in front of the most difficult questions: Why do I do what I do? Who needs my dance? Can art save the world? How to make art in compromised times?
I do not know what to do about these questions. I decided to place myself in the position (that is an expression I borrowed from Timothy Morton) of being a detective that discovers to be a criminal. If I am a criminal, whatever I do might be a crime. If I am a criminal, my dance is a crime. If I am dangerous, my dance is dangerous too. If I am responsible, my dance should be responsible too.
Art is not innocent. Dance is not innocent. When I am simply moving my right arm, it is not simply just that. It is a spectacle of death. 50 000 cells of my body die with every 4th movement of my arm. This dance is killing me, cell by cell. This death cannot be stopped.
And when I place my left foot on the floor, very gently, and the other one even more graciously, I am not making an attempt to a ballet dance. This is a MASSACRE. On my left foot there is 1 billion of bacteria, on my right foot there is another billion. Two billions of bacteria I am mashing with my every two steps. Having both feet on the ground, I am not realistic, I am a murderer, a bactericider.
Nearly one million animals have died for Damien Hirst’s art to live.
I will kill even more. Everything for art! Everything for dance!
9th of June 2017
I am dancing today in Nike shoes. They were produced in Bangladesh.
Is there any way out of this situation?
Last 20 years of political theory is calling into action:
to transform social relations: undermining hierarchies of power;
to bring new worlds into existence;
to create new ways of relating and being together;
to invent new modes of sensibility;
to enrich political engagements;
to produce new collective subjectifications;
to orient ourselves toward flourishing, toward the contingent proliferation of ways of being we cannot predict;
to envision futures different from our presents. Imagining other futures: we need images of tomorrow;
to inject/plant seeds for a new world into the soil of our society;
to reject here and now and to insist on potentiality and possibilities of another world;
to create actions that are designed to be political interventions to reshape the world;
to build a new world in the shell of the old;
to create structures that model a vision of a more just society;
to reform the system or to fundamentally change it;
to create criteria that decide which worlds deserve a future;
I do not even know what all that means!
Political theory is sterile!
10th of June 2017
I wrote a song today:
This dance is not a beauty declaration,
This dance is a world termination.
Every movement entails annihilation,
Earth extermination, species assassination.
Though I wish to be a sorcerer,
I am simply a slaughterer.
Dreaming all nights about many solutions,
eventually I can dance only executions.
Do not treat me as your offender,
but each is a murderer, being an audience member.
We are together in this situation,
there is no solution for a liberation.
An innocent position is a typically a victim position and I cannot claim a title of a victim. I am neither innocent nor guilty.
I am non-innocent.
11th of June 2017
it is the eighth day after the Inventur#2 conference. I remembered somebody's words that nothing is going to change. I agree with that – nothing is going to change. I cannot envision a change: I read lots of sci-fi books and still I cannot visualize a different picture than the current one. I do not want to live in paradise.
I am not going to change the world but I am going to do things differently. I will not set big goals, I will not ask the questions that I cannot hold. I will not wait for a better moment, the moment just passed and another one, and another one, and another one.
I am not proposing any universal solution, it is a VERSION. Version does not function within the logic of “either....or” - that would be just a poorly created reality. It is always “here”, never in general. I am here. Following the call of Isabelle Stangers and Vinciane Despret to think everywhere, I want to think with (almost) everything. I am not going to think about You anymore but only with You.
We are in this together.
Agata Siniarska makes works within formats of performances, events, practices, lectures, videos, others. Having given a chance to different kinds of theatrical forms, having studied choreography, currently she devises feminist fun studies and cultivates her yearnings for language and writing, cinema and animation in the scope of her practices. She is a founding member of female trouble - a friendship based collective revolving around identity, body, feminisms, pleasure, affirmation and love. Addicted to fiction, she conducts her investigations, fashioning herself as a tool of rhetoric, through the cultural structures inscribed to her. Every action she makes, fueled by the energy of profound theoretical hesitancy, she approaches with passion and intense fascination, acting many times not alone but in the company of many exquisite adventures.
#1 January 1st - 8th Jacob Wren
#4 January 20th - 30th Alexander Karschnia & Noah Fischer
#5 January 30th - February 6th Ariel Efraim Ashbel
#6 February 6th - 12th Laila Soliman
#9 February 26th - March 5th Gina Moxley
#11 March 13th - 19th Agnieszka Jakimiak
#12 March 20th - 26th Yana Thönnes
#13 March 30th - April 2nd Geert Lovink
#15 April 10th - 16th Iggy Lond Malmborg
#17 April 24th - 30th Jeton Neziraj
#20 May 15th - 21st Bojan Jablanovec
#22 May 29th - June 4th Segun Adefila
#23 June 5th - 11th Agata Siniarska
We are deeply saddened by the devastating news that Mark Fisher died on January 13th. He first visited the FFT in 2014 with his lecture „The Privatisation of Stress“ about how neoliberalism deliberately cultivated collective depression. Later in the year he returned with a video-lecture about „Reoccupying the Mainstream" in the frame of the symposium „Sichtungen III“ in which he talks about how to overcome the ideology of capitalist realism and start thinking about a new positive political project: „If we want to combat capitalist realism then we need to be able to articulate, to project an alternative realism.“ We were talking about further collaboration with him last year but it did not work out because Mark wasn’t well. His books „Capitalist Realism“ and „The Ghosts of my Life. Writings on Depression, Hauntology and Lost Future“ will continue to be a very important inspiration for our work.
Podiumsgespräch im Rahmen der Veranstaltung "Die Ästhetik des Widerstands - Zum 100. Geburtstag von Peter Weiss"
A Collective Chronicle of Thoughts and Observations ist ein Projekt im Rahmen des Bündnisses internationaler Produktionshäuser, gefördert von der Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien.