sonic science fiction transmission

12 September 2020, 12.00-21.45

Propositions #12: Waves Breaking Walls, Futures in Movement

A culmination of the post-academic BAK 2019/2020 Fellowship Program in the form of a sonic science fiction transmission from BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht

The BAK 2019/2020 Fellows dreaming of time travel with the particle accelerator at the University Museum, Utrecht, 2019, photo: Whitney Stark

BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, broadcast through radio and streamed via, Berlin

TICKETS: link 
click here, and see here for a program addendum for Act IV

BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, proudly invites you to Propositions #12: Waves Breaking Walls, Futures in Movement, a culmination of the BAK 2019/2020 Fellowship Program. In the course of the past year, the Fellows individually and collectively developed their research engaging with the pressing issues of the contemporary in concert with BAK’s research focus, Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–ongoing). Propositions #12 synthesizes the research and learning trajectory of the Fellowship and addresses it through “an acoustic choreography.” Consisting of a series of experimental scenes presented in four acts, devised by one or more of the Fellows through direct and indirect collaborations, this acoustic choreography includes sonic works, radio plays, music, interviews, conversations, and more. Breaking out of spatial constraints through the use of a radio broadcast, streaming, and collaboration across distance, Propositions #12 can be attended physically at BAK in small groups, listened to online, or tuned into via FM radio.

The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns have caused a loss of “the spatial” as we know it. Social distancing and dangers that come with a physical co-presence opened up new questions as to how to collectively resist the divides and massive inequalities in the world. If these conditions have been met with an even stronger collective resistance, it is because new approaches had to be opened, leading to changes in duration, sensation, and thus the texture of collectivity. In making this program with BAK, the Fellows embrace the anxiety that distance creates and intensifies and seek to put forward propositions for proximity beyond physicality. Using science fiction as a speculative form of reimagining presents, pasts, and futures, the Fellows foreground the concept of the wave as a unique form of movement and materiality. The tradition of “the spatial” gives way to “the sonic” in sound waves, in which forms of being together otherwise allow the emergence of other ways of assembling. The scenes in Propositions #12 “sonify” visions, practices, and forms of being-in-common, unlocking different potentialities to “re-group”: as new ways of returning to each other in times of social change.

Propositions #12: Waves Breaking Walls, Futures in Movement is the 12th iteration of BAK’s long-term research series Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–ongoing), which seeks to collectively think and act out ways of being together otherwise. It follows Propositions #10: Instituting Otherwise, as Propositions #11 was lost to the circumstances surrounding the outbreak of Covid-19.

Program, streaming & tickets
A schedule of the acts and scenes can be found here. You can view the full program, with descriptions, here. The entire program is broadcast and streamed via, Berlin — a link to the livestream will be made available at the top of this page, prior to the start of the program. For the first three acts, limited in-person spots are available: please book your tickets via Eventbrite (more info below)

BAK 2019/2020 Fellows include Mijke van der Drift (philosopher and educator; Amsterdam and London); Mitchell Esajas (anthropologist and curator; Amsterdam); Katia Krupennikova (curator and critic; Amsterdam); Diana McCarty (independent media producer; Berlin); David Muñoz Alcántara (artist, architect, and researcher; Helsinki); Oleksiy Radynski (filmmaker and writer; Kyiv); Reem Shilleh (researcher, curator, editor, and artist; Brussels and Ramallah); Urok Shirhan (artist and researcher; Utrecht); Joy Mariama Smith (performance, installation, and movement artist and educator; Amsterdam); and Grant Watson (curator; London).

PROGRAM SCHEDULE (full program here):
11.30–12.00 hrs Doors open for those attending in person; audio stream begins at 12.00 hrs

12.00–12.05 hrs BAK Welcome and Introduction, Whitney Stark, Research and Fellowship Program

12.05–14.15 hrs Act I
Prologue: Red Star 2.0, BAK 2019/2020 Fellows
SCENE I: Reproductive Collective Memories, Diana McCarty
How We Behave, Grant Watson
SCENE II: Of Quiet Whispers and Loud Speakers, Urok Shirhan
How We Behave: Fight, Grant Watson
SCENE III: Black Voices from the Past, Present, and Future, Mitchell Esajas
How We Behave: Kick Out Zwarte Piet, Grant Watson

14.15–14.45 hrs Musical/Acoustic Interlude by the BAK 2019/2020 Fellows 

14.45–16.45 hrs Act II 
How We Behave: Ramallah, Grant Watson
SCENE IV: If Humans Acted as Plants. A conversation about Care and Gardening, Katia Krupennikova
How We Behave: Burnout, Grant Watson
SCENE V: Rooted in Uncertainty, Reem Shilleh
How We Behave: Squat, Grant Watson

16.45–17.15 hrs Musical/Acoustic Interlude by the BAK 2019/2020 Fellows 

17.15–19.00 hrs Act III
How We Behave: Landslide, Grant Watson
SCENE VI: Regrouping: Energetic Materialism, Mijke van der Drift
How We Behave: Viral, Grant Watson
SCENE VII: Sondland, Oleksiy Radynski
19.00–19.30 hrs Musical/Acoustic Interlude by the BAK 2019/2020 Fellows 

19.30–21.45 hrs Act IV
How We Behave: Consent, Grant Watson
SCENE VIII: E.C. C. O.—Extended Choreographies of Consent, Joy Mariama Smith — PROGRAM UPDATE: Due to personal reasons, Maria F. Scaroni unfortunately cannot perform during this scene. Her understudy, David Bloom, will perform in her place instead – read his biography here
How We Behave: Cruising, Grant Watson
SCENE IX: The Interstellar Revolutionary Ensemble! Feat. Tlaloc Subsonic, David Muñoz Alcántara
How We Behave: Art, Grant Watson
Epilogue and Outro, BAK 2019/2020 Fellows

The link to the livestream of the event, broadcast via, is made available here prior to the event.


Tickets can be booked for the first three acts of the program.
Cost: €6 regular ticket/€4 student ticket per act. Some (free) solidarity tickets also available, meant for those who cannot otherwise attend. | Click to buy tickets (Eventbrite)

If you wish to attend more than one act, you can book separate tickets.

Covid-19: important notes before booking tickets (please read)
If you are attending as one household, you can include multiple tickets in one booking. If you are attending as separate households, please book your tickets individually. This is so we can ensure Corona-proof seating arrangements in advance.

If you show any Covid-19 related symptoms, such as a cold, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat, a light cough, or high temperature (up to 38 C°), please make sure to stay at home. To ensure the safety of our visitors and staff on location, BAK has prepared a number of Covid-19 guidelines, including hygiene, keeping 1.5 meters distance at all times, sticking to your allocated seating, following staff instructions, and more. A full list of guidelines will be sent to you via e-mail in advance. If you book tickets for an event at BAK, you agree to respect these guidelines, and we hope you join our effort in creating a safe environment for yourself and all those present.

On the BAK Fellowship Program
Since 2017, BAK conducts a post-academic Fellowship Program with, at its center, research on reframing and rethinking conditions of the contemporary through politically driven art-making and inquiry. The Fellowship Program offers research positions to Netherlands- and internationally-based practitioners at the intersection of art, theory, and social action, with specific affinity to BAK’s current trajectory Propositions for Non-Fascist Living (2017–ongoing), which engages aesthetico-political experimentation to engage the urgencies of the present. The Fellowship Program develops talent and critical practice, and fosters artistic and theoretical inquiry in concert with the public projects of BAK, advancing the notion of art as a public sphere and a political space.

The realization of this project has been made possible through financial contributions by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the City Council, Utrecht.

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

Made possible by

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