20-21 May 2022


Symposium: No Linear Fucking Time

Design: Sean van den Steenhoven


Click on the image above to view the full program

Friday 20 May and Saturday 21 May 2022

Friday 16.30–22.00 hrs
Saturday 10–22.00 hrs

Location: All presentations are presented simultaneously at BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht and streamed online


BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht proudly presents Symposium: No Linear Fucking Time. Coinciding with the exhibition closing of No Linear Fucking Time, this two-day symposium, taking place on-site at BAK and online, gathers several methods of thinking and practice geared toward equitable and sustainable socio-temporal models. In keeping with the motivation of the overall project, which is grounded in understanding and challenging progressive, abstract, and “western” formulations of time, the symposium engages with the histories of linear time in concert with various alternative scales that manifest across different lived experiences. Temporal concepts like seed time, space-time, visionary fiction, anticolonial agencies, and ancestral presents mingle here with historical, industrial, and financial hauntings.  The presentations also grapple with contemporary urgencies such as refugee and border time, debt, the blurred boundaries between labor time and rest, and ecological extraction.

With contributions by: Isshaq Al-Barbary (artist and researcher, Amsterdam), Clara Balaguer (community editor, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht), Merve Bedir (architect and researcher, Rotterdam), Sarafina Paulina Bonita (performance artist, Rotterdam), Olga Bryukhovetska (cultural theorist, Kyiv), Zoénie Liwen Deng (coordinator of civic praxis, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht), Anfisa Doroshenko (researcher, Goor), Andrea Elera (artist and curator, Amsterdam), Elvira Espejo Ayca (artist and poet, La Paz), Gabriel Fontana (artist and researcher, Rotterdam), Max Haiven (writer and educator, Lakehead Bay), Nicoline van Harskamp (artist, Amsterdam), Jeanne van Heeswijk (artist, Rotterdam), Femke Herregraven (artist, Amsterdam), Maria Hlavajova (general and artistic director, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht), Walidah Imarisha (educator, writer, and artist, Portland), Jerrau (DJ, Amsterdam), Wietske Maas (curator of research and publications, BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht), Jumana Manna (artist, Berlin), Claudia Mártinez Garay (artist, Amsterdam), Natasha Matteson (curator and director, Afghan Refugee Resettlement at Uplift Afghanistan Fund, New York), Jason-Allen Paisant (poet, researcher, and educator, Leeds), Yuri Pattison (artist, Paris), Amanda Piña (artist, Vienna and Mexico City), Rachael Rakes (curator of public practice, BAK basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht), Susan Schuppli (artist and researcher, London), Timur Si-Qin (artist, New York), Rolando Vázquez (writer and educator, Utrecht), and Evelyn Wan (researcher, Utrecht), among others.

Book launch Toward the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice

The symposium includes, on Friday 20 May, the public launch of Toward the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice (2021, BAK/MIT Press). Edited by Jeanne van Heeswijk, Maria Hlavajova, and Rachael Rakes, the publication gathers artistic and cultural practices that are future-oriented, yet abandon a “universal” progressive route forward, instead enlivening a different chronopolitics: that of the not-yet. 

No Linear Fucking Time

No Linear Fucking Time (3 December 2021–22 May 2022) is an exhibition with gatherings, an online publication, and a symposium. The project proposes to unsettle dominant temporalities and model alternate forms of livable time. Convened by BAK’s curator of public practice Rachael Rakes with artist-interlocutors Femke Herregraven, Jumana Manna, and Claudia Martínez Garay, as well as writer Amelia Groom, No Linear Fucking Time calls upon a wide range of practitioners who examine and embody alternate scales, rhythms, and conceptions of temporal experience in order to explore how looking and working beyond linear, progressive, and globally-synchronized time can contribute to a more plurally-determined and sustainable lives. The project posits that just as time has been a homogenizing imperial force, the rethinking of time can be a key function of anti-colonial presents. 

You can view the Prospections “No Linear Fucking Time” online publication here


Ticket prices (tickets can be purchased by clicking the buttons at the top of this page): 

Friday: €10/€7.50
Saturday: €15/€10
Combi: €20/€12.50
Online, both Friday and Saturday (Zoom link): €5

BAK offers a small number of free solidarity tickets to those who would, for financial reasons, not otherwise be able to attend this event. If this applies to you, you can select this option on the ticket page.

On Saturday, there is the opportunity to purchase lunch tickets for €5. These tickets need to be added o your entry ticket when purchasing via the links above. 

During the event at BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, it is also possible to visit the exhibition No Linear Fucking Time.  


Schedule subject to change. All times are CEST. 

FRIDAY, 20 MAY 2022

16.30–17.00 hrs: DOORS OPEN  

Maria Hlavajova and Rachael Rakes 

17.45–19.30 hrs: OPENING SESSION 
Disjunctive Temporalities of Migration and Refuge 
A roundtable discussion with Isshaq Al-Barbary (online), Merve Bedir, Olga Bruyukhovesta (online), and Anfisa Doroshenko, moderated by Natasha Matteson with Rachael Rakes

Forced displacement has been an endemic part of ongoing imperial violence through multiple generations—and flares up, especially, when that violence surges. The act of leaving or migrating is attended by multiple specific temporalities: the right to leave, when there is a right to leave, is disintegrated by being forced to wait. There is the scramble of fleeing from home, city, or country; the haze of living in hiding; and the limbo of the lily-pad country or the camp. Seemingly endless bureaucratic delays extend life into a daily impermanence: waiting for visas, for embassy interviews, and for biometrics collection. The intermittent relief of departing is matched with the incessant news of brutality and erasure close to home. A kind of time-dislocation occurs between family members at home and those abroad, over years, over decades, fueling a sense of separation. The contributors to this discussion bring their own experiences of and on displacement, doing so with the heavy weight of time in mind and with consideration for those who are left behind.

19.30–20.00 hrs: BREAK 
Light catering provided 

Toward the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice 
Lecture on ”visionary fiction and Black subversive time travel” by Walidah Imarisha (online), followed by reading and discussion with Towards the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice (2021) editors Jeanne van Heeswijk, Maria Hlavajova, and Rachael Rakes, and contributors Clara Balaguer, Merve Bedir, Gabriel Fontana, Nicoline van Harskamp, and Jun Saturay (for the basic activist kitchen)

This presentation includes a lecture by Walidah Imarisha titled Notes on Black Subversive Time Travel and Visionary Fictions, which is followed by a reading and discussion with editors and contributors to the book Toward the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice. The publication combines handbook, dictionary, and anthology, and gathers artistic and cultural practices that are propositional, collective, and centered on the yearning for a just life-in-common. While future-oriented, these practices abandon a “universal” progressive route forward, instead enlivening a different chronopolitics: that of the not-yet. Powered by imagination-as-practice and the commitment to decolonial futurity, the contributors—among them artists, scholars, activists, poets, writers, and organizers—reflect on and propose forms of practicing equitable life in relation with one another, Earth, and time; models for safer spaces for humans and nonhumans; ways of radically shifting policies and planetary priorities; and tactics and methods of creating sanctuary. Catalyzed by the work of artist Jeanne van Heeswijk, which focuses on radicalizing situated civic processes, Toward the Not-Yet: Art as Public Practice imagines and enacts alternative ways of being together.

21.30 hrs: RECEPTION  


10.00–10.30 hrs: DOORS OPEN  

Maria Hlavajova, Rachael Rakes  

11.00–12.30 hrs: PANEL  
The Techno-Colonization of Time: On Clocks, Zones, and Regimes of Precision 
Yuri Pattison and Evelyn Wan, moderated by Femke Herregraven with Zoénie Liwen Deng

This presentation pairs artist Yuri Pattison (whose work World Clock (True Time Replica) is part of the exhibition No Linear Fucking Time) with industrial and algorhythmic time researcher Evelyn Wan. Through artistic and discursive methods, Pattison explores the relationships and entwined histories that the development of precision timekeeping share with exploration, colonial conquest, and extraction. Wan, meanwhile, looks at clockwise and anti-clockwise motions embedded in folk beliefs, witchcraft, and early science and technology in the west, alongside othered narratives in the development of contemporary internet and data infrastructure which build upon the colonial capture of time and capitalist time disciplining. 

12.30–14.00 hrs: PANEL 
Debt as Future Haunting: Banks, Insurance, and the Unpayable 
Femke Herregraven and Max Haiven, moderated by Rachael Rakes 

Artist and No Linear Fucking Time interlocutor Femke Herregraven and writer and educator Max Haiven each deal in their work with the way that the financial structures established in the colonial past foreclose the future. Taking activist and scholar Ruth Wilson Gilmore’s observation that financialized systems of prisons in the United States “fix” capitalism’s crises at the expense of poor, working, and racialized people, Haiven suggests that profound global violence is continually unleashed in order to appease the providential market through a million minor acts of risk management. Herregraven explores the origins of ABN-AMRO bank, first established during the Atlantic slave trade, and shows how the debts and accumulations created at that time overabundantly persist today. These presentations excavate some of the historical and structural foundations of the current hyper-capitalist condition and offer provocations of common struggles to abolish it. 

14.00–15.00 hrs: LUNCH BREAK 
Lunch available for purchase at BAK or in advance online (€5)

15.00–16.30 hrs: PANEL 
Soil Times: Anti-extractive Life with Lands 
Jason-Allen Paisant (online) and Timur Si-Qin (online), moderated by Jumana Manna with Wietske Maas

The contributors to this panel consider how human relations toward land and landscape and understandings of autonomies and temporalities of non-human beings relate to shaping the worlds. In artist and No Linear Fucking Time interlocutor Jumana Manna’s work, such as the recent films Wild Relatives (2018) and Foragers (2022), seeds, plants, and territories are understood in complex and politically motivated contestation that determines future claims to land, home, and traditions. Jason-Allen Paisant’s essays and poetry apprehend colonial history and antiblackness in terms of severed ties with the landscape and “the robbery of time from Black life.” He meanwhile posits how poetry can offer a practice of slowness and a deepening of time, through which new forms of connectedness—amongst and beyond humans—become possible. Artist Timur Si-Qin, in his ongoing series Heaven is Sick (2020–ongoing), writes about how Christian ideology and values have promoted an extractive attitude toward nature. Westerners are raised to regard nature as a soulless and limitless resource for humans to use and to hold in dominion, whereas several indigenous and native worldviews have recognized nature as not only alive and sentient, but a critical part of ecological time.  

Echoes and Presages: Ancestral Knowledges in Time 
Elvira Espejo Ayca (online), Amanda Piña (online), and Rolando Vasquez, moderated by Claudia Mártinez Garay and Andrea Elera with Rachael Rakes

This roundtable discussion brings together cultural workers whose practices seek to survive in time, questioning and investigating dynamics around cultural objects and ancestral knowledges. Focusing particularly on Indigenous and inherited practices in Latin America, the artists and thinkers here discuss the complexities around abandoning traditions to make way for progress and modernity; cultural racisms; and ways of working against the extirpation and erasure of traditional knowledges, while seeking spaces to inhabit life and work amongst these erasures. Practicing, remembering, and reconnecting are creative and insurgent ways through which the encounter with what comes before can be revived, and challenge progressive, western, and so-called normative readings and representations of art and knowledge.  

18.00–18.30 hrs: BREAK 
Light catering provided 

18.30–20.00 hrs: ILLUSTRATED LECTURE 
Exposure Time
Susan Schuppli (online), followed by a conversation moderated by Maria Hlavajova

Ice cores are distinguished by their frozen stratigraphy, whereby each successive layer of snowfall that compresses to form polar ice contains an atmospheric archive of planetary processes. They are the key materials that have enabled the provocative claim that the Earth contains the modern human construct of “history.” Yet, as is shown in artist Susan Schuppli’s recent environmental video works, the time of ice is itself not contiguous and is subject to complex englacial foldings that also trouble the modelling of the Earth’s past climates. In Cold Cases (2021), for example, the temporal strata of events are deeply entangled with the material and political conditions the works seek to unpack. This illustrated lecture explores the weaponization of temperature and the utilization of the convention of the timeline, not to demonstrate a linear movement toward the present, but rather as a way to play back history; to enter into the long durée of events; and to expand and contract the time of events. This is done in order to investigate the ongoing legacies of settler-colonialism, wherein seemingly disparate cases of violence can be seen to produce connections and continuities over time. 

20.00–20.30 hrs: ECHOPHONIC ENDNOTES 
Clara Balaguer, Jeanne van Heeswijk, and Sarafina Paulina Bonita

This choral reflection by cultural worker Clara Balaguer, artist Jeanne van Heeswijk, and performance artist Sarafina Paulina Bonita culminates the discursive part of the symposium. Here, the three practitioners gather up, process, respond, and react to the several strands, attitudes, and ideas proposed over the previous minutes, hours, and days. These annotations are an offering to process, be present, and move into a phase of repose, and then repositioning. 

20.30–22.00 hrs: DJ SET AND RECEPTION  
Music by Jerrau

Project support: The realization of this project has been made possible with the financial support of the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science; the City of Utrecht; and Stichting Zabawas, The Hague. BAK’s main partner in the field of education and research is HKU University of the Arts Utrecht, Utrecht.

Suggestions from the archive

Public Program

09 September–29 October 2023

To Watch the War: The Moving Image Amidst the Invasion of Ukraine (2014–2023)/Public Program

To Watch the War: The Moving Image Amidst the Invasion of Ukraine (2014–2023) involves a hybrid off- and online sequence of conversations and screenings around discursive and artistic interventions that reimagine the social implications of watching the war through ways that disrupt, subvert, resist the media’s incessant spectacularization of war.