New Series: Material Experimentation Lab
This series of workshops with guest artists invites everyone who is interested in questions of materiality. We will open up a spontaneous material experimentation lab at Corner College dedicated to what things can do. The idea of the lab is a communal sharing of techniques, of experimenting and tinkering together. So, bring your stuff!
Dealing with materials affords not only a specific knowledge of properties but also concerns the process of thought. Instead of presuming that artists form docile matter, one might assume that the material’s active role in the process of formation. From here, we might also consider the process of formation as being shaped by its very situated emergence. The lab aims at constituting concrete situations of artistic experimentation following the materiality of materials seeking out their aesthetic qualities rather than their scientific properties. How can we engage in a process of “material thought” and how do such thinking activities impinge on artistic practice? Further we wonder, how we can extend our sense of collaboration and of collectivity towards the more-than-human dimensions of existence? What would be the political consequences of such an approach?
This format derives from the field of artistic research but refuses to speak of “new forms of knowledge” and instead amplifies any form of experimental practice as situated, fragmented, and materially active. Initiators of the Lab are Amélie Brisson-Darveau and Christoph Brunner of the Corner College Collective, artist Nicole De Brabandere, and designer and architect Verena Ziegler. The lab invites artists, designers, architects, philosophiers and activists experimenting with materials and material thought in their practice. We will engage in “hands on” material experimentations, seeking out their potential, their capacity to evoke surprising and unforeseen constellations and experiences. Form here the process might take us into the development of a lecture performance, an installation or exhibition, but also text production or a publication.
For the first session the Corner College Collective and Nicole De Brabandere propose explorations of the Corner College’s material and spatio-temporal textures.
“We invite participants to activate the space of Corner College with us as an emergent technical and material ecology. We propose an engagement with the space that explores the multiple potential for qualities of relation and for relation of qualities. This will involve developing a sensitivity with the qualities of the space, which could include the hard concreteness of the floor or the large window vitrine that covers the entire length of one side. To treat the space simultaneously as a material and a relational practice, we propose the exploration of material qualities and textures in terms of how they afford and invite movements in the space. The available materials will include non-woven fabrics (including felt, Tyvek and paper); spreadable materials (such as graphite, charcoal, ink and chalk), liquids (water and ink) and movable projections of photographic footage from previous relational/material explorations. For example, the powdery qualities of charcoal invite different ways of spreading or fixing it with paper. The loose patterning of fibers that compose non-woven textiles invite different ways of opening up its' layers in new relational dynamics. The movable projections will activate the mediated qualities of archival footage as an immediate materiality of light, image and scale. Other processes could include spreading, covering, flowing, binding, blending and layering, among others, that explore both material, movement and spatial thresholds. The space will not be mute. Throughout the process of exploration we will both write and verbalize emergent thresholds as they are felt. This process of articulating while doing will help drive the continual evaluation of processes so that they can be individually or collectively reentered in a dynamic of mediated and immediated movements of thought and feeling. Put otherwise, by integrating conversation into the collective orientation of this phase, we aim to develop thought-traces, memory-artefacts, and lures for feeling.”
(Amélie Brisson-Darveau, Nicole De Brabandere and Christoph Brunner)