Education from Below is a two-year collaborative programme organised between the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, MACBA, Barcelona and WHW, Zagreb.
Education from Below explores art as a place for dialogue, collective learning and imagination. Education doesn't belong only in institutions, but it can be horizontal and come from below, from communities.
The project recognises that art practices can dislocate the usual hierarchies of what should or should not be learned and traditional divisions between theory and practice, and that knowledge does not have to be based on accumulation, but rather on sharing and mutual learning.
The partners will explore new models of art practice based on collective learning and will generate a network of institutions and professionals for sharing methodologies.
Education from Below links three independent programmes for artists, Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, PEI at MACBA, and WHW Akademija that each provide important opportunities for artistic development outside of formal education systems. The project will be realised over the course of autumn 2019 – autumn 2021 through seminars, study groups, artist residencies, exhibitions, series of lectures, an international conference, a collective reader and a common web platform, involving many artists, thinkers and educators.
Deviations and interruptions to Catalan conceptual art
How should we read, from the position of what affects us and worries us in the present, those artistic practices that have been defined historiographically as “conceptual” in this context? The aim of the seminar is to offer re-readings and updates that affect and distort the account of contemporary art history in Catalonia and the Spanish State.
What are the effects of looking at the practices of artists such Fina Miralles, Eulàlia, Àngels Ribé and Carlos Pazos from a perspective of feminism or queer thinking? If historiography tended to suggest parallels with American conceptual art, what deviations from the hegemonic narrative are produced if we relate these practices to conceptualisms in Latin America, where, in several countries there were also dictatorial regimes? If the story of conceptual art has focused on the axiom of dematerialistion, how should one read the importance of the material component in much of what Catalan conceptual art offers?
Directed by Maite Garbayo Maeztu. With the participation of Andrea Valdés, Pilar Bonet, Fernando Davis and El Palomar.
Maite Garbayo Maeztu is a Serra Húnter professor in the Department of Art History at the University of Barcelona and academic director of the master’s degree in Artistic Practices and Cultural Studies: body, affects and territory (UPNA, UPV and CACH). She is a doctor in research and creation in art from the University of the Basque Country and a teacher in Art History at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM). Until 2021 she was a postdoctoral researcher at the UOC. Previously, she held an academic position at the Department of Art at the Universidad Iberoamericana (Mexico) and was a postdoctoral researcher at the Instituto de Investigaciones Estéticas at the UNAM. In 2016 she published her first book, Cuerpos que aparecen, performance y feminismos en el tardofranquismo (Consonni, 2nd edition, 2019). She has published numerous articles and book chapters, and has curated various exhibitions. Her main lines of research are contemporary art and gender studies in Spain and Latin America, and performance studies.
Andrea Valdés has a degree in Political Science (UPF) and is a former bookseller. She is author of the essay Distraídos venceremos: usos y derivas en la escritura autobiográfica (Jekyll & Jill, 2019). She often collaborates with artists in catalogues and exhibitions, and has written for various types of media, including the Babelia supplement of El País, Contexto (CTXT) and El Estado Mental. She has also given several seminars and courses in centres such as the Institut d’Humanitats de Barcelona, Escola Eina, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and Espai Crisi.
Fernando Davis is a full professor, holding the chair in the Theory of Artistic Practice at the Faculty of Arts at the Universidad Nacional de La Plata (UNLP). He currently leads the Sexual Misalignments in the History of Art from the South research team. Archive Technologies, Critical Visualities and Queer Temporalities, based at the Institute for Research in the Production and Teaching of Latin American Art (IPEAL) of the FDA - UNLP. Among his latest exhibitions as curator are !QUEER! Disolvencias opacas, poéticas torcidas y otras fantasías insurgentes (La Plata, UNLP Art Center, 2018), La mala letra. Papeles de Alberto Greco (Buenos Aires, Galería Del Infinito, 2019), La herencia indócil de los espectros. Obras de Cristina Piffer (Buenos Aires, Fundación OSDE, 2019) and Inventar a la intemperie. Desobediencias sexuales e imaginación política en el arte contemporáneo (Buenos Aires, Parque de la Memoria - Monument to the Victims of State Terrorism, 2021). He is currently curator of the Alberto Greco exhibition to be held in 2023 at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. Since its foundation in 2007, he has been a member of the Red Conceptualismos del Sur.
Pilar Bonet [Visionary Women Art-Research Group] is a professor of Art Criticism at the University of Barcelona. A critic and curator, in recent years she has dedicated herself to studying “artists who did not want to be artists”, highlighting her contributions towards the creativity of visionary European authors born before 1950, initiating a new critical space on graphic creation, and the textile and literary work of liminal women in the history of art from a feminist perspective, among them, the Catalan Josefa Tolrà (1880-1959) and the Aragonese Julia Aguilar (1899-1979).
El Palomar is a collective created in Barcelona in 2013 by Mariokissme (Mario Páez, Campillos, Málaga, 1980) and R. Marcos Mota (Rafa Marcos, Tarragona, 1988). After studying Fine Arts, they both came to the conclusion that there was no room in art institutions for a certain type of aesthetics and politics associated with queer practices. They opened a space in a small flat in Barcelona’s Poble Sec with the aim of generating projects, processes, references and networks related to sexual dissidence and heterodox sexualities. The space remained open for four years and later became a collective promoting research and artistic productions. Multidisciplinary in nature, they support video, performance, music, publications and curatorial projects, based on an artistic practice rooted in a critical discourse on the different ways of being and acting.