An introduction to creative resistance strategies and tactics.
With the Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination
The Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination (L.I.I) exists somewhere between art and activism, poetry and politics. The L.I.I is in love with utopias, a builder of disobedience machines with bicycles, boats, ants or snowballs, the detonator of an army of clowns around the world, the designer of a global interactive game disobeying climate criminals and the co-constructor of a lighthouse on the site of the control tower at Notre-Dame-des-Landes airport.
Since 2004, it has brought together artists from diverse backgrounds (theatre, design, fine arts, cinema) and equally diverse activists (from grassroots movements to international NGOs) to create new forms of resistance together. The question at the heart of the L.I.I.'s work has always been to know what is the role of art and theatre at times of extreme social and ecological crises.
For them, the answer is not to be found in a new "political art" but in an artistic activism, a poetic politics: we do not want to show the world differently, but to transform it, together, here and now.
During this workshop, the L.I.I. invited participants to explore the synergies emerging from the fusion of art and activism. We developped strategies and tactics to create new forms of disobedience and creative resistance. Using collaborative games and methods, we explored the principles for creating powerful actions, both politically and aesthetically.
The workshop was led by Isabelle Fremeaux and John Jordan.
It took place on 25 September 2019 from 10:00 to 18:00 at la Bellone - Rue de Flandre, 46 - 1000 Brussels.
Free of charge.
John Jordan is an activist artist, a kind of "magician of rebellion" according to the daily newspaper Libération and an "extremist from the inside" according to the British police. He was co-director of Platform, a social art group from 1987 to 1995, before working with the direct action collective Reclaim The Streets (1995-2000). In 2003, he co-edited the book We Are Everywhere: The Irresistible Rise Of Global Anti-Capitalism published by Verso. He was professor of Fine Arts for almost ten years (1994-2003), and then left the university world to work on Naomi Klein's film The Take. In 2004, he had the ridiculous idea of founding the Clandestine Insurgent Rebel Clown Army, which he deserted a few years later.
Isabelle Fremeaux grew up in France before going on an adventure in London, where she worked as a freelance journalist, French teacher and administrator of a community arts company, while completing a doctoral thesis on the concept of community. She became a lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies at Birkbeck College-University of London (GB) where she practiced for 10 years, before leaving the University to breathe the wind of freedom and collective. Thanks to L.I.I, she has been successively (and sometimes simultaneously) a rebel clown, a pirate, a disobedient cyclist, a utopian... She pursues her action-research that explores popular education and collective dynamics, and lends her skills to various collectives, associations and institutions as a trainer and consultant.
John and Isabelle are the co-authors of the film/book Les Sentiers de l'Utopie (La Découverte, 2011) and now live on the zad of Notre-Dame-des-Landes.