Following our major expansion in January 2014, Delfina Foundation has been considering the role of artists and arts institutions in developing strategies to address wide-ranging issues. Recurring thematic programmes — The Politics of Food and The Public Domain — have drawn on the concept of the commons to reflect on the past and collectively imagine the future through artistic action and public participation. Acts and aspirations of claiming autonomy have been central, and at times contradictory, to our discussions about these concerns.
In autumn 2014, Delfina Foundation will further examine what autonomy means today by unravelling historic moments of liberation and the aftermath of cultural movements and colonialism. Screenings, seminars, meals and lecture-performances will explore the often uneasy relationship between the notion of autonomy and the critical issues that form part of our thematic programmes.
Delfina Foundation has invited The Otolith Group and Associação Cultural Videobrasil to present separate programmes over the autumn period that relate to the notion of autonomy.
The Otolith Group: In the Year of the Quiet Sun
13 October–8 November, Monday–Saturday, 11–18h
In the Year of the Quiet Sun (2013) is an essay film that takes its name from the decrease in solar surface temperature that occurs every 11 years. From November 1964 to November 1965, the nation states of the world issued postage stamps to commemorate the first scientific expedition to study the sun. As the stamps turned their face towards the sky, they overlooked the unstable land of Africa’s newly independent states.
To complement In the Year of the Quiet Sun, The Otolith Collective—the name adopted by The Otolith Group for its public programming—has curated films and videos that dramatise the contingency of anti-colonial struggles through forms of travelogue and children’s drawing and modes of clandestinity and translation. With works by Rene Vautier, Yann le Masson & Olga Poliakoff, Harun Farocki, and Benjamin Tiven.
Videobrasil: Tales of an Imagined City
11 November–19 December, Monday–Saturday, 11–18h
In collaboration with Associação Cultural Videobrasil, Delfina Foundation presents a compilation of video works selected by João Laia, member of the curatorial team of the forthcoming 19th edition of the Contemporary Art Festival Sesc_Videobrasil.
This display draws together some of the most pressing topics that emerged during the last edition of the Videobrasil Festival such as subjective experience, identity and desire.
The videos investigate how urban contexts and their borders influence each individual’s perception of ‘self’, and at the same time may be altered through the workings of personal aspirations and beliefs. The characters wander through intimate portraits and emotional maps where present day reflection and reminiscence of the past blend into each other. Cities become imagined territories, newfoundlands waiting to be reclaimed. Affectionate gestures of emancipation emerge in a fragile equilibrium between physical location and immaterial consciousness, stillness and motion, disillusion and dream.
A full film listing will be available shortly.
In partnership with Goldsmiths College, Iniva and the Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, Delfina Foundation launches the fourth year of its joint Research Fellowship programme with Prajna Desai and Malak Helmy.
Events and activities that evolve from the residency programme will be announced in November in What’s on.