In this interview with Afterall's Paula Barriobero, Jaio and van Gorkum discuss notions of communities, social and activist practices and some of their projects, as well as their recent experiences at Occupy Amsterdam.
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A short fragment of video from the Police Training
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'De hoorzittingen zijn een vergrootglas op het proces van democratisering. Je legt alles bloot, ook de pijnpunten. De Occupy’ers zijn positief over de gesprekken. Het heeft ook een therapeutische functie: mensen zijn moe en wij luisteren naar ze.' Uiteindelijk willen de kunstenaars een compilatie maken van de twintig gesprekken en die op internet zetten. 'We leven in een WikiLeaks-tijd: we willen mensen toegang geven tot de kennis die hier vergaard is.'
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A series of hearings in the artists' tent in Occupy Amsterdam. Fellow Occupiers were interrogated by a rotating panel of four, on the dilemmas of maintaining a radically inclusive and participatory democracy, while keeping order in the camp and dealing with its social problems. The tribunal was set up to become a separate, legislative institution alongside the General Assembly, and to provide the camp with an autonomous space for arbitration. It was also an experiment in developing a structure that could serve as a model for popular tribunals beyond the perimeter of the camp.

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Vijf kunstenaars zijn sinds midden oktober gehuisvest in een grote tent in het Amsterdamse Occupy-kamp. Niet om hun werk te presenteren, maar om te onderzoeken wat kunst kan bijdragen aan de Occupy-beweging. - Milo Lambers
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We have been sitting in a big green army tent on the Beursplein in Amsterdam for three weeks now, thinking about the role of artists in the Occupy movement, and putting our thoughts into action. A new constellation of artists, poets, musicians and writers has formed around our tent, turning what initially seemed an impulsive intervention into a common project, the scope of which is growing by the day.
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In deze biotoop van de algehele shake-up van politieke en sociaal-economische sjablonen is de kunstenaarsaanwezigheid meer dan op zijn plaats. De kunstenaars van Artists in Occupy Amsterdam worden gedreven door het idee dat kunst en de samenleving nauw verwant zijn, er een symbiose tussen kunst en maatschappij bestaat. De rauwe condities van het plein waarbij logistiek alles van de grond af moet worden opgebouwd - verwarming, onderdak, veiligheid, stroom, overleg en besluitvorming - genereren meteen de nulgraad waarlangs een samenleving opnieuw kan worden vormgegeven.

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Two instructors from the police academy teach the art of interrogation to a group of artists and students. They are given a training in cross-questioning techniques, and in dealing with violence. Through screenings, debates and relevant literature, the participants are stimulated to apply this knowledge within their own practices.
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The Social Experiment collective (which comprises Wouter Osterholt, Elke Uitentuis, Klaas van Gorkum, Iratxe Jaio and Jonas Staal) organised a three-day experiment at the invitation of Studium Generale. To increase artists’ resilience, police academy lecturers held classes for participants at ArtEZ Enschede’s academy building. The aim here was to “break through passivity.”
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Saturday 10 December 2011 | 12:00 - 14:00
Nationaal Onderwijsmuseum, Nieuwemarkt 1a, Rotterdam

On 10 December ADA organizes the first edition of Breakfast at Noon, a new series of public events in which two or more guests are invited to ADA’s breakfast table to reflect on issues concerning the position of the artist and the way one speaks through his or her work.

For this first edition the guests will be the Belgrade based collective Škart and the artist duo Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum. Both guests have a practice, which connects exhibition making with working with groups and individuals in specific social contexts. ADA invites Škart, Jaio and van Gorkum to give a brief presentation of their work, and to discuss issues such as the collective art practice, the role of audience participation and the notion of free time in relation to artistic practice.

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