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Self Mistake

Organizacja / Organisation Self Mistake Kraj / Country Portugalia / Portugal (PT) Strona internetowa / Website Kontakt / Contact Tânia Márcia Guerreiro,
[email protected],
Obszar grantowy / Scheme Projekty Współpracy Europejskiej / European Cooperation Projects Dziedzina / Field Sztuki Performatywne / Performative Arts
Taniec / Dance
Termin zgłoszenia się do projektu / Deadline for participation in a project 15.02.2022


The proposal is a provocation: inviting artists to create without developing a performance or a project. That they suspend their productive impetus and let themselves be carried away by the creation of something else.n the Japanese and Korean alphabet there is a character, mu, which means 'not' or 'without', but also 'nothing', 'not having', 'not being'. The Chinese character wu, that also indicates the absence of something, originally meant 'to dance'. Originally, the meaning of mu was thus associated with the act of dancing. Dance as non-action, as something that expresses what is absent it’s this original potency of dance that we would like to recover, as something that is outside what one is supposed to do, to better express and illuminate the meaning of belonging to this world and still wanting to take part in.

The working process will promote meetings, artistic residencies, sharing among the participants, debate, proposals, tests, assessment. Public sessions are expected to elaborate on the proposal. A report will be made about the process, just as a collection of interviews with the participants reflecting on their experience

The network of influence and programming in which the artistic community delves has been very active in defending the ecological causes and in criticizing capitalism, but still reproduces the same model of production based on exploitation and consumption. This bipolar attitude, of conveying a discourse that is contradicted by action, explains the growing discrediting of the artistic community outside its protective bubble.

Instead of providing the public with a space to imagine alternatives for this constant acceleration, always thirsty of new products and forms of consumption, the artistic community is instead following the same pattern of this unstoppable productivity.

The artistic community is one of the most dynamic in modern societies, just as one of the most unstable, due to the precarious state in which it operates. The ratio between demand and supply of work is disproportionate, and artists are compelled to produce work that the market barely absorbs. Regardless of this scenario, the community has not stopped growing, their members driven by a competitive logic of permanent production, reproducing the prevailing creative models, for fear of being excluded from the system.

The project launches a radical challenge: to gather artists and allow them to turn off the channels they usually activate to develop new shows. That they stop. And free from the demand to produce and feed the programming circuits, engage in exploring what still can be done. Is it still possible to rediscover the intuition that made them become artists?
What ideas might they come up with? What other activities and relationships will they get involved in? What are their needs to take this new direction? How fast and with what intentions will they now move? How will it affect their way of working?

Behavioral sciences have been arguing that motivation is essentially intrinsic when dealing with creative problems, and that new solutions and ideas for unsolved problems are not the outcome of systematic work based on extrinsic factors of motivation. The act of solving problems and coming up with new ideas and ways depends on our creativity, but it is not by working exhaustively, with known formulas, that we get closer to the solution. Motivation based on rewards and punishment, on the other hand, creates pressure, stress, which only blocks creative work and makes it predictable. Creativity depends on internal motivation. Those who work with defined goals, that are adjusted to established cultural values, have a hard time understanding this. Author Daniel H. Pink has reported new findings in the behavioral sciences that reinforce the idea of rest, both mental and physical, and the act of switching off, as an intrinsic part for effectiveness increative activities that involve solving problems for which there is no given solution. Studies on motivation at work have revealed distinct mental processes between the ability to create and the ability to produce. Problems that imply creative solutions are not solved when methods taken from the realm of productivity, based on effort, systematization, and repetition, are used. The inability to exchange old solutions for new experiences, when faced with challenges that are also new, results in exhausted and convulsed social groups consumed by apathy.
We can produce more, sometimes even better, but we still come up with ideas and objects that do not respond to our new
demands. What other discoveries, what other solutions await us as we suspend the need to produce and continue on feeding a saturated market? When we awake to our unperceived surroundings and are moved to act differently.


Self-Mistake. Support for development, research and presentations in alternative spaces

Data publikacji: 11/02/2022

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