round table: commoning / communing
Ulrike Hamann (sociologist, postcolonial theorist, urban activist) / Kotti & Co
Zuzana Tabačková (architect, urban planner) and Zuzana Révészová (cultural sociologist) / Spolka Collective
Erden Kosova (art critic)
What practices constitute the commons? What are the conditions of the situated processes of commoning? What and how do we thereby learn? What would constitute a new sense of sharing, distributing, partaking? And, how can we take the idea of relationality serious and institute structures of reciprocity between art, academia, and activism? To address these questions the round table commoning / communing brings together three projects focusing on urban practices of commoning: the tenant’s initiative Kotti & Co fighting locally (inBerlin-Kreuzberg) for rent controlled social housing and against racism, Spolka a collective of urbanists, architects, and sociologists who try to reintroduce the idea of collectivity (mainly in Košice, Slovakia), and SiS collective, a group of artists from Turkey, who met when living and working together at Berlin-based art space Apartment Projectand tackle the limited modes of public (artistic) expression under „the accelerating trans-geographic state of exception“. Together we will discuss how different methods of communing (can) respond to different neoliberal conditions – a highly-trimmed welfare state, post-socialism, and, authoritarian capitalism, and to the question of how to protest.
Ulrike Hamann is a postdoc researcher at the department "Diversity and Social Conflict" at the Institute for Social Sciences at Humboldt University Berlin. She researches and teaches on questions of racism, migration and the city. She currently leads two larger research projects on conviviality, housing, refugees and neighborhoods, partly at the Berlin Institute for Empirical Integration and Migration Research (BIM). In 2016 she published her book Prekäre koloniale Ordnung: Rassistische Konjunkturen im Widerspruch. Deutsches Kolonialregime 1884-1914. In 2018 she co-edited with Gökçe Yurdakul the Special Issue Refugees and the Re-Configuration of Migration Societies (www.cogitatiopress.com/socialinclusion/issue/view/84). As part of her activist work she co-founded the neighborhood initiative Kotti & Co in 2011 (https://kottiundco.net/), where she is still an active member.
Spolka is a collective of architects, urbanists and sociologists dealing with the production of space and engaging the public in the collective making of our cities. Focusing on the Central and Eastern Europe their aim is to cultivate the public realm through educational activities, artistic and architectural interventions, and institutional and public dialogue. Spolka’s projects address issues related to the city, public spaces, participation, co-creation, (in)equality and communication. Officially started in 2015, Spolka’s activities are until now mainly centered on Košice, Slovakia, the hometown of its members, who currently live in Berlin, Prague, Brno and Košice. More at www.spolka.cc.
Erden Kosova is an art critic who currently contributes to the organisation of Young Curators Academy, a side event of the forthcoming Herbstsalon 4 at Maxim Gorki Theater Berlin, which will be held in October 2019. Last year, he received the “Weltoffenes Berlin” fellowship of the Berlin Senate by the support of Apartment Project Berlinand Artists at Risk. He recently published the Sessnewspaper in the frame of Sis Collective's exhibition In the Blink of A Bird, which was hosted by nGbK this spring. Kosova is in the organisational board of the Meduza Foundation (Amsterdam) initiated by Galit Eilat, and in the editorial board of Istanbul-based e-journal red-thread.org.