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Report of ArtLeaks Activities at Truth is Concrete, Graz, September 21 – 28, 2012

October 14, 2012

ArtLeaks members participated in Truth is Concrete, a 24/7 marathon camp on artistic strategies in politics and political strategies in art, a project by steirischer herbst in Graz, Austria from September 21 – 28, 2012. On September 22nd, we gave a presentation of our activities on the panel “Art and crime. Legally on the edge,” hosted by curator Joanna Warsza. Corina L. Apostol, Valentina Desideri, Vladan Jeremic, Vlad Morariu and Dmitry Vilensky participated in this panel, giving an overview of the urgency that brought ArtLeaks into being, its goals and presented a couple of concrete cases that were published in the year since the platform was launched. We also underlined some useful resources which we made available for the community, such as a Further Reading section which we update regularly with critical texts that relate to our struggle and the  No Fee Statement (initiated by the Bureau of Melodramatic Research and Paradis Garaj) through which we encourage cultural workers to use in order to make visible corporate and publicly funded institutions’ inequitable compensation of their workforce. We also reported on the outcomes of our previous three working assemblies in Berlin, Moscow and Belgrade this year and introduced our forthcoming ArtLeaks Gazette.

During our stay in Graz, ArtLeaks members met together with representatives of international platforms who share some of our concerns – among these: Carrotworkers’ Collective, Critical PracticeFree/ Slow University Warsaw, Haben und BrauchenMinor CompositionsPrecarious Workers’ Brigade (PWB), W.A.G.E. (Working Artists and the Greater Economy). For us this was a great opportunity to brainstorm with these groups, with the intention of working together more closely in the near future. Among the most important topics we discussed were: the possibility of building together on a common tool box, which can be customized according to working conditions in local contexts; building an enlarged mailing list of supporters from different countries  and different precarious workers’ associations, so that moments of whistle-blowing could be transformed into moments of mobilization, open debate and protest; setting up a regular exchange of information on the organizing tools we develop, sharing the analyses we produce individually and collectively around culture, work, precarity and announcing initiatives and campaigns. Currently, we are using the connections which were established in Graz as a way to find our what concrete problems each of us is confronted with in their context/country and how we are trying to organize in order to respond to them. Based on the overlaps between our efforts, our aim is to see through to an international effort that goes beyond general precarity of cultural workers.

Also with the occasion of Truth is Concrete, Corina L. Apostol, Vladan Jeremić & Rena Rädle put together The ArtLeaks Zine #1, which highlights some of our most significant activities in the past year and includes our ArtLeaks Gazette Call for Papers. Graphics for this zine were produced by Zampa di Leone.

You are welcome to download, print and disseminate our zine here (the cover) and here (the body). The ArtLeaks Zine #1 is distributed under the Creative Commons attribution noncommercial-share alike 3.0

Many thanks to the team of Truth is Concrete for hosting us in Graz and to all our friends, comrades and colleagues who made our stay memorable! 

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