EITC extends the current activities of the community workshops to include electronics, digital media and permaculture. Cultural production is intertwined with business development in order to guarantee a sustainable continuation of the project. The goal is to create an example with international relevance of how to encourage artistic creation, protect cultural identities and secure sustainable local economies.
FINDING OUR WAY HOME
How do we move beyond one-way patterns of migration and movement, into a richer flow of people and culture, within and between countries? This is a question which is as relevant to the experience of artists in Europe as it is to residents of a place like Zegache, the township in Oaxaca with which we have developed this project. Through our collaboration, we seek to learn how better to contribute to one’s society as a creative practitioner, building sustainable and meaningful economic foundations for local communities.
EITC examines pre-industrial craft production in relation to post-industrial electronics, digital media and permaculture. By bringing together models from both sides, we seek new models for cultural regeneration.
In Europe, the pattern of the artistic career frequently involves a movement away from one’s place of origin, to study and practice in a major urban cultural hub. This can be a deeply enriching experience, yet the return journey to the place of origin is less commonly undertaken. Indeed, it is often seen as undesirable: a sign of failure, a cultural impoverishment. We wish to explore and question this framing, and in so doing to reconceive the role of the artist within society and her contribution to the social and economic wellbeing of her place of residence.
In our programme of residencies, we ask what it means as artists to reside - literally, ‘to remain behind’ - and how this relates to the transiency which is often more characteristic of our lives and careers. How might our cultural practices embody a deeper feel for what it does to us and to others, when we plant or transplant ourselves like this? How do we learn to do both things - to move on, and to stay put - with greater awareness of their causes and effects?
The objectives of the project are:
• To create long-term collaborations and creations in contemporary practices merging expertise in art, media technology and electronics with traditional craft production.
• To create local work opportunities; and to integrate the community in all aspects of the work.
• Develop models for social entrepreneurship, resilient cultural economy and livelihood of cultural operators.
• To enable the people of Zegache and Etla to reinterpret their historical, ecological and cultural heritage and put it in relation to their social reality.
The means of the project are:
• To create several art pieces as crucial contributions towards the further sustainability of the community workshops
• To research holistic and resilient approaches to living & working for SMEs and cultural collectives, looking at transforming a culture of wasteful consumption to a culture of responsible participation of all ages and cultural groups.
• To provide professional development and collaboration opportunities in the field of contemporary media-/design artefacts for Mexican artisans.
• To ensure broad influence and take-up of projects’ results before and after the project’s end date.
Case study 1:Venerative artefacts and narrative objects – the “made in Oaxaca”-story (Performing Pictures) - The case study will develop technology enhanced ‘craft noveau’ in relation to narrative and drama. It will merge media technology and craft into new forms of popular art objects
Case study 2: La Fiesta de Maguey (FoAM) - As the outcome of this case study, an experimental dining landscape will be created as a medium to communicate principles of resilience and interdependency. The centre of investigations and starting point are local plants (such as the Maguey (agave) with properties suitable as human and insect food, beverage and domestic materials such as textiles, dyes for solar cells etc.
Case Study 5: Co-Wastl (nadine) - In the case study called Co-Wastl the community workshop of Zegache will be invited to participate on developing Local crafts, and ornament styles will decorate the recycled plastic (from recycled materials) Mobile Growing Units connected with intelligent monitoring and irrigation systems, bottles and other materials that growing units are made out of.
Case Study 6: El Castillo (nadine) - nadine will organize a workshop building a large pinhole camera and set up a try-out version of the Hotel des Rêves; a large scale camera that serves as a room where people can sleep, while outside “their” dream is being re-created, and captured
Case study 7: Maquila Zegache (Cuartielles) - This case study will create an electronics laboratory in the community workshop of Zegache. The case study is going to be developed as a series of educational actions in the scope of electronics and fabrication. The lead of this case study is performed by one of the creators of Arduino, an open source physical computing platform based on a simple i/o board and a development environment that implements the Processing/Wiring language.
Performing Pictures (Coordinator)
Talleres Comunitarios de Zegache A.C.
Vidrio Artesanal Xa Quixe
Foundation of Aperiodic Mesmerism (FoAM) vzw
Cuartielles Enskild Firma
Space Makers Agency Ltd
HUB Oaxaca, MX
Royal University College of Arts, Stockholm SE
Tours Beyond, Oaxaca, MX
Museo Textil de Oaxaca,MX
Etno-botanical Gardens, Oaxaca MX
Faro de Oriente, MX
STPLN, Malmö, SE
BlackBox / LaPiztola, MX
PixelAche, Helisinki, FI
FoAM Lab, Amsterdam, NL
SCENE Thinking, Stockholm, SE
HUB Brussels, Brussels, BE
Kaunas Botanical Gardens, Kaunas, LT
Kollektivet Livet, Stockholm, SE
The Swedish Museum of Architecture, Stockholm, SE
Finspångs kommun (Municipality of Finspång), Finspång, SE
Dark Mountain Project Ltd, UK
UniTierra, Oaxaca, MX
La China Sonidera
Supported by the EU Cultural Programme 2007-2013, Stockholms Stads Kulturförvalningen, Kulturrådet and the Swedish Arts Grants Committee (Konstnärsnämnden)