Events > Symposium

01 - 02 Apr. 2005

Articles of Incorporation symposium

Participants
Luis Jacob, Mitch Robertson, Florencia Bernstein, Karl Beveridge, Artists Against War, Jewish Committee to End the Occupation, Ontario Coalition Against Poverty , and Inessa Peterson

Art Metropole is please to host Articles of Incorporation, a two-day symposium led by LA-based artist collective Ultra Red and Toronto artists and activists to discuss the politics of organizing. Participants representing Toronto included Clive Robertson, Luis Jacob, Florencia Bernstein, Karl Beveridge, Inessa Peterson, and members of Artists Against War, Jewish Women’s Committee to End the Occupation and OCAP.

Articles Of Incorporation is a collective exploration of the structural limits, constraints and facilitating conditions of the work of social transformation.

Over two days, representatives of Toronto artistic and activist collectives and LA-based activist audio group Ultra-red, will explore the political unconscious operating within organizations driving, structuring and even unraveling their work.

For over ten years Ultra-red (www.ultrared.org) have pursued a precarious but dynamic exchange between art and political organizing. Collectively, the group has produced radio broadcasts, performances, recordings, installations and pubic space occupations. Working within a variety of urban ambiences, Ultra-red have investigated the spaces of needle exchange (Soundtrax, 1992 – 1996), public sex (Second Nature, 1995 – 1998), public housing (Structural Adjustments, 1997 – Present), resistance to global capital (Value System, 1998 – Present), labor (Social Factory, 1997 – 2002) and education (School of Echoes, 2001 – Present). Founded in 1994 by two AIDS activists, Ultra-red have expanded over the years to include activists and organizers from a variety of social movements both in Los Angeles and abroad, forming partnerships with community-based organizations like the Union de Vecinos in East Los Angeles and, internationally, with Ballymun Women’s Resource Centre in Dublin, Ireland and the Germany-based migration and anti-racist network Kanak Attak.

Presented by Fuse Magazine in collaboration with Art Metropole with support from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Toronto Arts Council.

Art Metropole thanks the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council as well as private donors for their support.


Luis Jacob was born in Lima, Peru, in 1970. Lives and works in Toronto.

Luis Jacob is a Toronto-based multimedia artist and curator concerned with notions of collectivity, and, increasingly, with acts of looking and meaning-making. Jacob studied semiotics and philosophy at the University of Toronto in the early 1990s, and he soon became immersed in local politics and club culture, as well as the art world, all three coming into play in his first decade of output, which often included experimentation with relational aesthetics. In 2005, Jacob showed Habitat at the Art Gallery of Ontario; this, among other things, piqued the interest of then-visiting Documenta 12 curators Ruth Noack and Roger Buergel, who included him in the 2007 event. Since then, Jacob has shown internationally and with great variety, focusing on found objects (his Album series, for instance, part of which is now owned by the Guggenheim Museum in New York) and the nature of the image. A touring retrospective of his work was hosted by Montreal’s Darling Foundry and Toronto’s Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in 2010 and 2011.

Canadian artists Carole Condé and Karl Beveridge moved to New York City in 1969, and soon were at the centre of the burgeoning conceptual art movement. In 1975, they joined the Art & Language journal The Fox (with Joseph Kosuth and Ian Burn) and picketed the Museum of Modern Art to protest its lack of inclusion of women artists, while critiquing the apolitical minimalism of Donald Judd. This ferment culminated in a major museum show, It’s Still Privileged Art, at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 1976, just prior to the artists’ return to Toronto in1977.

By the late 1970s, Condé and Beveridge drew a focus on various issues that were urgent within the trade union movement. Their method of working dialogically with their subjects was invented for the landmark 1981 project Standing Up, and has been refined in numerous subsequent collaborations. In the past three decades, over fifty solo exhibitions of Condé and Beveridge’s work have been presented at major museums and art spaces on four continents, including: the Institute of Contemporary Art (London, UK); Museum Folkswang (Germany); George Meany Centre (Washington); Dazibao Gallery (Montreal); Centro Cultural Recoleta (Buenos Aires); Art Gallery of Edmonton; and the Australian Centre for Photography (Sydney).

Equally, and congruent with the artists’ commitment to accessibility, their work has been displayed in a host of non-art and public settings, such as union halls, billboards, bus shelters and bookworks. The artists continue to work and live in Toronto.

ArtistsAgainstWar.ca was once the base of operations for a group of 75 Canadians who form a group in 2003 who joined the global artistic outcry dedicated to protesting against the looming war in the Middle East. They were the ones responsible for planning and holding the One Big No peace festival in April 2003 that saw over 20,000 visitors and was organized in under 6 weeks.

As new owners of this domain name, the aim of our (currently small) organization is to carry their torch and continue to promote peace and cultural understanding. The content of the blog will on a variety of related topics including how to use art to stop wars and convince politicians, factors that cause and contribute to war and conflict and how someone can use their talents to promote peace.

The Jewish Women’s Committee to End the Occupation is a voice for peace in the Middle East along with other Jewish and Palestinian women’s groups in North America and Israel.

We in Canada are outraged that the Canadian Government and media again choose a morally unconscionable position and stand by silently while Israel perpetrates a massacre of civilians in Gaza, the West Bank and Lebanon. It is a repeat of Sabra and Shatilla, of the massacre at Qana in 1996, with the world leaders looking on.

After World War II at the Nuremburg tribunal, Nazis attempted to exonerate themselves by claiming that they did not know about the genocide. It is no longer tenable to claim “I didn’t know” about crimes against humanity. There is ample witnessing and documentation of genocides in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Rwanda, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guatemala and now in the Middle East.

We know from Israeli historians themselves about the ethnic cleansing of indigenous Palestinians in 1948, and we know from Israeli NGOs and journalists of the current massacre of civilians and destruction of the societal infrastructure and physical environment of the Palestinian people.

The language of propaganda and war is twisted so that aggressor appears to be victim. Language is sadistic when a “military operation” is called “Summer Rain” as a whole people are deprived of water in the intense heat of summer. Language is terrifying when Israel calls the current attack on Gaza “Samson’s Pillars” — Samson in myth was the biggest suicide terrorist of all — purportedly killing 3000 people when he committed suicide by tearing down the temple pillars.

We fear that Israeli crimes against humanity will persist when even speaking about them entails accusations of anti-Semitism.

Will Canada collude with state terrorism or will Canada adhere to the rule of law with respect to the illegalities of occupation and the physical and psychological tormenting and murdering of civilians? We call on Canada to call for an immediate ceasefire, observed by the U.N. and not NATO, and for the immediate restoration of aid to the democratically elected Palestinian government.

In a just world, Israel would make reparations, just as Germany did to Jewish people.

Elizabeth Block
Smadar Carmon
Judy Deutsch
Sue Goldstein
Rachel Gorman
Reena Katz
Deborah Mandell
Jill Rogin
Susan Starkman
Esther Vise
Naomi Binder Wall
Judith Weisman

for the Jewish Women’s Committee to End the Occupation, Toronto.

OCAP is a direct-action anti-poverty organization based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. We mount campaigns against regressive government policies as they affect poor and working people. In addition, we provide direct-action advocacy for individuals against welfare and ODSP, public housing and others who deny poor people what they are entitled to. We believe in the power of people to organize themselves.

We believe in the power of resistance.

Images

1: Dont, from Ultra Red asks participants to summarize on "Faith".
2: Michelle Jaques supports the efforts in long term documentation.
3: Azita supports as well! writing in the background.

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