Wednesday, 24 September 2014

New GUESTures | GOSTIkulacije catalogue published

New bi-lingual publication GUESTures | GOSTIkulacije (English, German) draws upon Margareta Kerns’ long term project and engagement with the overlooked histories of migration and 
their reverberations in images and stories. 

It includes insightful texts by Natalie Bayer, Nanna Heidenreich, Katja Kobolt and Branislava Kuburović, who probe the issues of feminist (living) archive, spaces of precarious histories, exhibitions and regimes of knowledge on migration (especially in relation to museums), and the space for/and role of fiction in migration stories and its representations on screen and in photographs.

"The publication GUESTures is a documentation, elaboration as well as a discursive and visual continuation of an eponymous art project by Margareta Kern. The project is generating forms of “visibility and intelligibility” (Rancière, 2009) and thus generates agency of a group whose existence the grand histoire has continuously overlayed, erased and rendered unimportant and invisible. GUESTures | GOSTIkulacije is thus an art installation/archive on “Gastarbeiter” or women “guest workers”, who came to West Germany from the Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia during the wave of mass migration from the late 1960s, for (temporary) work. This publication documents the genealogy of the project, which the artist started during her residency in Berlin in 2009." Katja Kobolt, curator, editor and producer of GUESTures.

The publication also brings together personal material from the women that Kern interviewed, as well as the material from the collective reading workshops that were staged with different groups and generations of migrant workers and gallery visitors, during GUESTures exhibitions in Munich, Zagreb, Ljubljana, Banja Luka and Berlin (2009 - 2013). 

Published by Balkanet e.V Munich and Margareta Kern, with the kind support of Kulturreferats der Landeshauptstadt München and in collaboration with Red Min(e)d and Galerie Kullukcu & Gregorian, Munich and Myrdle Court Press, London, 2014. 

Please see preview of selected pages below.

ISBN: 978-0-9563539-9-3

82 pages, paperback, full colour, June 2014. 
Edition: 180 copies. Limited edition of 50 copies with GUESTures video DVD
Price: £8 plus postage and packaging.
Limited edition with DVD: £15 plus postage and packaging.

GUESTures | GOSTIkulacije (select option 2 for DVD)

Thursday, 1 May 2014


April 11, 2014 – September 7, 2014
Opening: April 10, 2014, 7 p.m.
Shedhalle, Zurich

Exhibition participants: Pauline Boudry/Renate Lorenz, caring labor: an archive, Julia Glaus, Keine Hausarbeiterin Ist Illegal, Margareta Kern, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, Radical Practices of Collective Care (Julia Wieger & Manuela Zechner)

Curated by Katharina Morawek, co-curated by Manuela Zechner

“They say it is love, we say it is unwaged work.
They call it frigidity. We call it absenteeism.”

Thus begins a text by Silvia Federici (Wages Against Housework, Power of Women Collective and Falling Wall Press, 1975) which was part of a larger campaign demanding “wages for housework.”

The goal of the campaign was to expose the supposed “self-evidence” of work carried out at home or in private (raising children, washing clothes, emotional devotion, cleaning, cooking, and sex) and to first even recognize it as work. The demand for pay did not aim at establishing and institutionalizing the situation of the housewife, but rather, ultimately sought a general refusal of housework, a questioning of the gender-based division of labor, and an overthrowing of society. The realization that gender is something constructed, quasi “acquired,” as well as the expansion of what is understood as housework, from the kitchen to the bedroom, points to queer politics.

How – and with whom – do we want to live? How do we take care of ourselves and others? How do we want to be cared for? Who performs this care work, and who can afford to “outsource” care? The exhibition takes up these questions and refers to what Silvia Federici called the “incomplete feminist revolution” in 2012. The nuclear family remains a preferred model despite the establishment of new concepts for living. At the same time, care services are organized increasingly within the private market and carried out especially by immigrant labor, in most cases by women, often without working papers. The exhibition shows artistic works from 1969 until the present that take up different aspects of care work and offer insight into the crisis of social reproduction. It also opens a space for discussion around collective practices of care, as well as reflection on current (local) strategies of self-organization.

18 & 19 April 2014
We extend an invitation to two days of reflection and discussion of practices and problems of “care.” At the center are a few examples of organizing and disorganizing of care relations as well as strategies of knowledge production and the narrating of histories related to care, work, and immigration.
In the course of the massive dismantling of the social state, which has been taking place in Europe under the motto “crisis” since 2008, questions pertaining to “care” and “social reproduction,” have become increasingly urgent. How do we sustain our society? What happens to those who fall out of the net or have been excluded to begin with? Who carries out care work and who can afford to “outsource” care?
Cut-backs to social states are accompanied by the neo-liberalizing of fundamental areas of human social reproduction (health, care, education). Found in these areas are not only lonely “clients,” but also increasingly, exploited workers - and for that reason, dynamic battles for dignified and just care. The role of care givers - especially of women and immigrant workers - is central in this, as are their forms of resistance. Who looks after whom in globalized everyday life? How can community and society be rethought along the lines of collective care and responsibility?

Further info 

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

GUESTures in 'Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour)' Art Gallery Windsor, Canada

Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour)
January 25 – April 13, 2014
Art Gallery Windsor, Canada

Participating artists: C.A.M.P. (India), Sam Durant (USA), Philip Hoffman (Canada), Marisa Jahn(USA), Reena Katz (Canada), Margareta Kern (UK), Kero and Annie Hall (Canada), Vince Kogut(Canada), Min Sook Lee and Deborah Brandt (Canada), Ken Lum (Canada), Dylan Miner(Métis), Precarious Workers Brigade (UK), Martha Rosler (USA), Andrea Slavik (Canada), David Taylor (USA)

Margareta Kern, GUESTures 2011 (right), Ken Lum, Melly Shum Hates Her Job, 1989 (back)

Following the launch of the multi-year Border Cultures series with the award-winning Part One (homes, land) in 2013, the AGW continues its research and discussion around the geographic, political and socio-economic context of the Windsor-Detroit region with the second edition of the series. Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour) examines the changing labour market in our globalized economies and the in-between space of the borderlands where free-flowing capital and the uneasy movements of the stratified work force encounter one another. Capital flows more easily than people to fulfill the demands of our consumer-based societies. Corporations set up factories and sweatshops across the world, employing thousands of people under precarious conditions at low wages. Similarly, while outsourcing North American jobs has adversely impacted its working and middle-classes, there is continued dependence on migrant workers in the agricultural, domestic and service sectors that are invisible in the public realm. 

Part Two draws inspiration from the history of social struggles in the region, such as the Underground Railroad, the anti-segregation protests in the auto factories, and generations of migrant workers who contributed to the regional economy. The artists examine these histories that have crossed boundaries and brought people together, highlighting the strategies used by them to survive and thrive. By expressing solidarity through DIY kits to humorous posters that riff on pop culture and street art, the artists look back through official labour archives and respond with personal histories. For Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour), the gallery will transform from a performance space to a place for discussion and community gathering to paying homage to the labour of artists, organizers and everyday folk whose work obscure the confines of national boundaries. 

Curated by Srimoyee Mitra