WHILE WE WORK: A temporary state of affairs

facilitated by Judith Lavagna
May 2 – 27.

WHILE WE WORK is a month-long workshop facilitated by independent curator Judith Lavagna who invites participants to explore the intertwining between art practice with curating in a given practical context: the making of an exhibition together with selected Berlin-based artists and the expansion of this project online.

WHILE WE WORK intends to explore which fundamental roles artists take on as cultural producers, the merging of artists as curators and the interweaving of those 'junction-makers' in search for performative expression: a hybrid role that gives rise to new means of considering a set of practices that becomes porous while rendering the divisions between art and curating almost indistinguishable.

The applicants will be chosen for their interest in reconsidering 'the exhibition' as a critical medium and a process that ontologically and/or radically has been rethought outside of the conventional forms of the exhibition as such.

As a 'temporary state of affairs' (Elena Filipovic) structured towards active frameworks, case studies and research methodology, the purpose of this workshop is to conceive an exhibition as a final event which will investigate the context of Agora's new space - a former factory area of 2200sq meters - favouring the production of site-specific works and reenactments of existing artworks. WHILE WE WORK further aims to investigate on artistic practices in the field of critical curating towards different territories and formats of inquiries.

Furthermore, Judith Lavagna will encourage the participants to develop a work-in-progress that will navigate in an online/offline configuration: the materials produced and collected during the workshop will be tracked online, taking the shape of a performative documentation and a survey witnessing the production's process itself - a sort of online safety where the exhibition could be activated and backed up at the same time.

The participants are expected to 'leak topologies' (Mark Leckey) and shake up spaces for cultural production that reflect on the potentiality of their work in correlation with each other, challenging themselves in a context that still remains to be activated: a post-industrial neighborhood in current transformation with the redevelopment of the Kindl brewery area, the creation of a Center for Contemporary Arts and Agora itself.

WHILE WE WORK will take on a creative context in mutation that witnesses different momentums of work and labor: a wilderness machine of forgotten memories which both conveys relic and artefact, backstage and arena, raw material and resilience, decline and renewal. A living archive and ongoing history that is still yet to be written, where WHILE WE WORK will be the first public exhibition unveiling this space, and affecting its surroundings.

Program facilitated by Judith Lavagna with Berlin-based artists:

Nicolas Puyjalon (FR)

Michelle-Marie Letelier (CL)

Anne Fellner (CH/US) & Burkhard Beschow (DE)

Paul Barsch (DE)

About the facilitator
Judith Lavagna is a Berlin based independent curator.
Her work aims to create performative structures that investigate processual formats of exhibition-making towards collaborative forms of work. She curated several residency projects (AFFECT, 2014 ; Fugitif, 2011) and programs (Self-monitoring as a curatorial experiment, 2014 ; The performative curatorial studio, 2013), focusing on critical and creative contexts where the relationship artist / curator is challenged through active forms of inquiries.

Her exhibitions and workshops explore the collecting of resources and ever-changing formats in circulation, questioning the notions of multiple authorship and living archive (unbreaken, AFFECT, 2014 ; new atlantis, co-curated with Elisa R. Linn and Lennart Wolf, 2013; we outsourced everything and now we’re bored., with Clémence de La Tour du Pin and John Henry Newton, 2013).

Another area of her research within the field of performance art focuses on re-enactments of existing artworks and how to display time based performance in a durational context (Displaying the Instant, 2013 ; To perform an exhibition, 2012).

Judith Lavagna was co-curator and assistant director at L'Atelier-ksr, Berlin (2013), collaborator at the Month of Performance Art Berlin (2013-12) and co-director at Ars Longa's project space, Paris (2010-08). She holds a MA in Curating Contemporary Art (Paris-Sorbonne) and in Fine Arts (École Européenne Supérieure d’Art de Bretagne, Rennes), France.

DOCUMENTATION WHILE WE WORK: A Temporary State of Affairs

An exhibition project opened on Friday 27th May from 18:00 to 00:00
Agora Rollberg, Am Sudhaus 2, 12053 Berlin
Featuring participating artists:

| Nicole Economides (GR/US)

| Bea Rodrigues (BR)

| Clark Beaumont (Nicole Beaumont & Sarah Clark)(AU)

| Mo Ossobleh (CA)

| Yuliya Chernysh (UA)

| Johanna Gilje (US)

| Heekyung Ryu (KR)

| Kim Upstill (US)

Conceived as a time-based structure for one night, WHILE WE WORK operated as a storyteller and as a score that oscillated between the liveness and the memory of our work in relation to the building - a space in constant mutation, where working phases and changes of plans are part of its daily construction, as well as the multiple information, stories and rumors that we have been encountering. A work within a work that witnesses different momentums of labor in a vast area in the state of transformation (the Kindl Brewery). Curated and facilitated by Judith Lavagna, together with Berlin-based guest artists: Nicolas Puyjalon, Michelle Marie Letelier, Anne Fellner & Burkhard Beschow and Paul Barsch:

Visit the Project blog and the program website:


Facebook Invitation: www.facebook.com/events/522975947902581/

Photo credits by Joana Dias and Bea Rodrigues.