Gedeelde Grond / Future Telling

September 1, 2020 — January 31, 2021
  • Initiator, facilitator en mediator: TAAK (Theo Tegelaers) en WAZO (Judith Tholen)
  • Partners: Building Conversation, KAZERNE (Faou en Joy-Ann), Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, OBA
  • Conversation leaders: Lotte van den Berg, Jörgen Gario
  • Artists: to be announced

Amsterdam Museum and OBA are working together on the project Collecting The City: 750 Jaar Amsterdam. The goal of this collaboration is to collect objects and stories of residents in developing neighborhoods, which will then become part of the collections of the city and the renewed Amsterdam Museum. Collecting The City also aims to contribute to solidarity and cohesion in times of unrest and social isolation. TAAK is taking the lead of the project in the district Amsterdam Zuidoost, which focuses on youth growing up in Reigersbos. During the first phase, which takes place in the fall of 2020, we work closely with Building Conversation, a platform for dialogical art.

Gedeelde Grond: conversations with Building Conversation (6-8 November)
Together with KAZERNE, an urban resort for young and old in Reigersbos, TAAK is assembling a group of young adults with whom we will enter into conversation about the neighborhood and explore how young people can, and want to, contribute to their living environment. What would they like to see happening in their neighborhood, to create more possibilities for self-development? And how can they actively participate in shaping these solutions? The ‘performative conversations’ called Gedeelde Grond are being led by Lotte van den Berg and Jörgen Gario of Building Conversation. The first day will take place on location at the KAZERNE, and starts with an exploration of five shared values within the group. Building Conversation: “In the culturally diverse environment that we live in, moral indifference seems to be the simplest answer. Yet we need a shared ‘horizon of values’, a moral compass, however loaded these terms may be. How do we speak about the shared values of the group while also taking into account its internal differences?” During the days that follow, Building Conversation will work with innovative forms of conversation oriented towards encounter, exchanging perspectives, and conflict. While improvising and responding to the group, they reflect with the young adults on what it means to be the owner of the conversation you are having, and of the public space you are creating collectively.

Future Telling: workshops with artists
On the last day of conversations in the KAZERNE, several artists will be invited. The group shares the collected stories, experiences, and ideas with them. In the next phase, consisting of workshops, the artists will join the young adults to work on the artistic translation of their ideas through music, performance, text, and images — resulting in various public presentations.

Wij A’dam Zuidoost
TAAK works closely together with Wij A’dam Zuidoost (WAZO) and is part of the core group of this citizens’ initiative, which is drawing up a vision document for the municipality of Amsterdam about living standards in the neighborhoods. The vision of the young adults will be a leading component of this document. WAZO’s work in Zuidoost can only be successful if it leads to opportunities for youth to contribute to the creation of a new vision on the neighborhood. Shared creative agency and co-ownership are key principles of this process.

Starting points Amsterdam Museum and OBA
How are Amsterdam citizens dealing with the current situation? What effect does Covid-19 have on our relationships, work, and (mental) health? Can we speak of a stronger local identity? Which initiatives have emerged to help each other? In the developing neighborhoods Noord, Nieuw-West, and Zuidoost, which Amsterdam Museum ad OBA selected to be part of Collecting The City, key figures will be involved — including their networks and (artistic) working methods. Amsterdam Museum and OBA: “it is necessary to give complete trust to these key figures, because in times of social isolation we cannot simply start creating new informal network ourselves, but instead should use and invest in pre-existing networks.”