The Hauntologists

The Hauntologists

BAK, basis voor actuele kunst

Design: Sean van den Steenhoven.

August 10, 2022
The Hauntologists
September 10–December 10, 2022
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The Hauntologists is a project that emerged through experimentation and collective research within the 2021/2022 BAK Fellowship for Situated Practice. Engaging “spectrality” as a tactic to investigate and redress the conditions of brokenness of the world, it takes place in Istanbul, Jakarta, and Utrecht from September 10 until December 10, 2022 as a continuously evolving and geographically distributed discursive, performative, publishing, and exhibitionary composition.   

Participants include: Özge Açıkkol, Merve Bedir, Kerem Ozan Bayraktar, cell for digital discomfort (Cristina Cochior, Karl Moubarak, and Jara Rocha), Dika+Lija, Philippa Driest, freethought collective, Ilgın Hancıoğlu, Alexandra Karyn, Gayatri Kodikal, Gatari Kusuma, Yen Noh with Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Rifandi Nugroho, İlyas Odman, Marina Papazyan, Anitha Silvia, and Zone Collective (Megan Hoetger and Kirila Cvetkovska), among others. 

At present, many find themselves haunted by the persisting brokenness of the world—inequality, war, racial and gendered violence, precarity, techno-colonialism, and other perpetual crises. Can one “haunt” back to intervene and redress this ongoing sense of dread? Could “spectrality” be embraced as an embodied cultural and political sensibility to experiment with? Can research be practiced as a “haunting” to overcome the limits of traditional categories of knowledge, knowledge production, and so-called artistic research?  

Based on these questions, The Hauntologists emerges from the collaborative work of the 2021/2022 BAK Fellows to test how various notions of spectrality and spectral tactics could engage with or fathom possible burgeoning futurities, the contested strategies for living a liveable life, and the unresolved tensions in troubled archives and languages, among others. Dwelling between gatherings, seminars, subcultures, and everyday moments, the BAK Fellows and their guests—“the hauntologists”—search for vocabularies that undo the abstract social forms that stand in the way of political imagination and agency. They are furthermore committed to proposing aesthetico-political positions that open spaces of possibility and collectivity through the rehearsal of new models of reading, interpretation, and sociality. Offering a framework for a plurality of artistic practices, The Hauntologists are not merely haunted—they haunt. 

The Hauntologists takes place throughout the different locations in which the BAK Fellowship for Situated Practice is established: in Utrecht at BAK from September 10–November 13, 2022; in Istanbul from November 18–20, 2022; and in Jakarta at Gudskul from November 26–December 10, 2022. Conceived as an unfolding score, the components of the program are presented in a staggered, situated way throughout the different geographical contexts, as well as on BAK’s digital forum Prospections

The Hauntologists is assembled by Julia Morandeira, curator of the post-academic program BAK Fellowship for Situated Practice and convener of the Utrecht cell, in dialogue with the local conveners: Zeyno Pekünlü, Istanbul cell hosted by the Istanbul Biennial Production and Research Programme, İKSV (Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts); Gesyada Siregar and Angga Wijaya, Gudsel hosted by Gudskul in Jakarta; and the 2021/2022 BAK Fellows. It includes a variety of collaborators, including freethought collective and Le Guess Who? festival in Utrecht. 

Join us on Saturday, September 10, 2022 at 4pm CEST at BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht for the opening and a welcoming word from Morandeira. 

The 2021/2022 BAK Fellowship for Situated Practice has been realized through a federated extitutional collaboration among research cells at BAK (Utrecht), Gudskul (Jakarta), the Istanbul Biennial Production and Research Programme at İKSV (Istanbul), and online. The conceptual framework was developed in conjunction with the “Spectral Infrastructure” research trajectory developed by freethought collective.    

BAK’s activities have been made possible through financial contributions by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the City of Utrecht. The Hauntologists has been made possible by extra financial contributions from the Programme for the Internationalization of Spanish Culture (PICE) granted by AC/E – Acción Cultural Española; the Arts Council Korea in collaboration with ISAC, the international partnership in support of arts creation; and the Marinus Plantema Foundation

BAK’s main partner in the field of education and research is HKU University of the Arts, Utrecht.

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August 10, 2022

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