Performative conference

7 October 2017


Propositions #1:

What We Mean

  • Luigi Coppola, Popolazione Evolutiva (Evolutionary Population), Castiglione d'Otranto, Italy, 2016. Photo: F. Quarta Colosso

  • Schiphol airport cleaners prepare their banners and placards during the cleaners’ strike January 2014. Photo: Matthijs de Bruijne

  • Photo: Tom Janssen

  • Wendelien van Oldenborgh, Cinema Olanda, 2017, production still, photo: Daria Scagliola

  • Otobong Nkanga, Preliminary Recipe for a Support System, digital drawing, collage and acrylic on paper, 2016–2017

  • Marinella Senatore, Protest Forms: Memory and Celebration (Accoustic Version), 2016–ongoing, performance during Propositions #1: What We Mean on 7 October 2017. Photo: Tom Janssen

  • Kader Attia, Reflecting Memory, 2016, single-channel HD digital video projection, colour, sound. Photo: Kader Attia, courtesy of the artist, Galleria Continua, Galerie Krinzinger, Lehmann Maupin, and Galerie Nagel Draxler.

  • Hiwa K, Pre-Image (Blind as the Mother Tongue), 2017, digital video, color, sound, courtesy the artist and KOW, Berlin

  • Amy Balkin, PUBLIC SMOG IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR DIRECT ACTION, billboard, Bonamoussadi, Douala, Cameroon, 2009. (Photo: Benoît Mangin, courtesy of the artist)

  • Tania Bruguera. Awareness Ribbon for Immigrant Respect Campaign, 2011. Awareness campaign. Metal pin, photograph: Camilo Godoy. Courtesy of Immigrant Movement International

  • Yael Bartana, What If Women Ruled the World, 2016, neon, 150.7 x 58.8 cm, Courtesy Annet Gelink Gallery, Amsterdam

  • Angela Dimitrakaki and Antonia Majaca in collaboration with Sanja Iveković, Art Of The Possible: Towards An Antifascist Feminist Front, 2017. Photo: Tom Janssen

  • Ahmet Ogüt during Propositions #1: What We Mean on 7 October 2017, photo: Tom Janssen

  • Danilo Correale, Reverie: On the Liberation from Work, 2017, audio record, each side 21:20 min., installation view

  • Koki Tanaka, Provisional Studies: Workshop #7 How to live together, and sharing the unknown, 2017, action, workshop, and video documentation

  • View of tent settlement in Çınar camp, Diyarbakir, 2016, photo: Pelin Tan

  • Film Poster of Lizzie Borden's Born in Flames, 1983, reprinted in The Independent: Film and Video Monthly, November 1983

  • Ola Hassanain, Back and Forth: Gender Politics and Khartoum, Dialogue 1, 2016, video still. Courtesy the artist

  • Karrabing Film Collective, Night Time Go, 2017

  • Karrabing Film Collective, Wutharr: Saltwater Dreams, 2015, film still

  • Photo: Tom Janssen

  • Pedro Reyes, Manufacturing Mischiefs (Working Title), 2017. Photo: Tom Janssen

Propositions #1: What We Mean begins from an urgency for—and uncertainty about—what living in non-fascist ways could and does mean. The gathering takes place in a makeshift environment amid the renovation of BAK’s new venue. Through impromptu artworks, lectures, readings, discussions, screenings, performances, and explorations of the assembly—of being together—as an art form, Propositions #1: What We Mean practices art as thought and action intervening in the contemporary. Artistic interventions and the screening program remain on view Sunday 8 October 2017.

View the press release

Suggestions from the archive

public editorial meeting

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17-21 July 2017

BAK Summer School: Art in a Time of Interregnum

The BAK Summer School: Art in a Time of Interregnum brings together artists, curators, art theorists, and academics to collectively think through, learn about, and imagine critical, politically-informed artistic practices that work to grasp and influence our dramatically changing times.

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17 March 2018

Unpacking Aesthetics and the Far Right

Propositions #4

This is the fourth performative conference within the series Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–2020). With contributions by Larne Abse Gogarty, Kader Attia, Angela Dimitrakaki and iLiana Fokianaki, Morgan Quaintance, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Harry Weeks, and Giovanna Zapperi.

Educational platform

Educational platform

Educational platform

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Talks and conversations

10 February 2018

Art as Commitment

Propositions #3

Propositions #3: Art as Commitment is the third convening platform in BAK’s long-term research series Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–2020), prompted by the dramatic resurfacing and normalization of historical and contemporary fascisms in our present.

13 February–28 December 2014


The project Future Vocabularies is initiated in 2014 with an opening vocabulary entry on survival. It is envisioned as a foundational sequence, evolving over the course of the full year and made up of multiple conceptual narratives from which to draw the subsequent themes and methods for both thinking and acting.

05 February–29 November 2015


Realized in collaboration with BAK Research Fellow Rosi Braidotti and the BAK team, this semestral program outlines potential artistic, intellectual, and activist itineraries of working through the contemporary realities, and attempts to create an understanding of the altered meanings of art vis-à-vis such critical present-day developments.

23 September 2014–01 May 2016

Future Collections

A long-term collaboration between BAK and Centraal Museum exploring various collaborative possibilities to rethink the mission of the art institution in today’s rapidly changing global condition.

08 September 2015–24 June 2017

Instituting Otherwise

In 2016–2017, BAK dedicates a series of discursive, educational, and exhibitionary projects to the notion of the institution and how to, amidst contemporary challenges, “institute otherwise.”

Performative conference

25 November 2017


Propositions #2

Propositions #2: Assemblism is a day-long gathering that addresses the current rise of the new authoritarian world order, and the millions of bodies that have gathered in resistance in liberated autonomous zones, occupied buildings, city squares, prisons, and cultural spaces to collectively enact a different demand for egalitarian society.





4-5 November 2017

Faust 3

Have we entered into a pact with the devil?

On Saturday 4 November and Sunday 5 November, Frascati hosts performances of the play Faust 3, written by Bread and Puppet Theater founder Peter Schumann, and produced and performed by Bread and Puppet Theater and local artists with migrant backgrounds. The event is a Frascati Session at Frascati and part of BAK’s long-term research project Propositions for Non-Fascist Living.


Education Program, Exhibition


Education Program

17-24 February 2017

The Southern Summer School

The Southern Summer School is a collective project that brings together art practitioners and cultural workers based in South Africa, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. It begins from the acknowledgment that the colonial involvement of the Dutch and the British empire in South Africa is not only a historical fact that may be consigned to the past, but that coloniality continues to operate in the present.

Education Program

Discursive, Conversation

Lecture-Performance, Performative

7 October 2017, 20.00-20.30

Whatever Floats Our Boats, 2017

Whatever Floats Our Boats sketches a decolonial positioning of Curaçao on the world stage in the twentieth century. Artist and BAK 2017–2018 Fellow Quinsy Gario presents three instances of resistance to colonial and dictatorial practices on and via the Dutch Caribbean island that had international consequences.

Discursive, Performative

7 October 2017, 21.45-22.15

Conversational Tones, 2017

Without any wish to undo difference, contradiction, or distance, artist Charl Landvreugd and artist and BAK 2017–2018 Fellow Wendelien van Oldenborgh generate a discourse through a playful “battle” made of musical and visual interactions, with a wide variety of questions, fragments, and choices from their respective and specific idioms: filmmaking, visual arts, theory.

Discursive, Performative

7 October 2017, 22.15-22.45

Germination, 2017

In the performance Germination, Otobong Nkanga evokes the previous phases of Carved to Flow and meditates on the networked geographies, traditions, histories, and people engaged in the production of soap, proposing it as a model of social, economic, and conceptual circulation.


7 October 2017, 22.45-23.30

Protest Forms: Memory and Celebration (Sonic Version), 2016–ongoing

Marinella Senatore brings together an impromptu assembly of Utrecht-based musicians to test questions concerning protest as part of her project Protest Forms (2016–ongoing). It is a modest way of continuing the legacy of the center of world cultures RASA, which formerly inhabited the venue at Pauwstraat 13a in Utrecht, and of connecting it to the site’s current endeavor as a platform for the contemporary.



Panel Discussion




7 October 2017

What If Women Ruled The World, 2016

In the film Dr. Strangelove (1964), Stanley Kubrick foresaw a post-apocalyptic future in which dominant male leaders would repopulate the Earth, with ten women allocated to every man. The neon sign by artist Yael Bartana presents the opposite scenario; imagining a condition in which women are in charge of a world in desperate need of a new vision.