all photos by Carla Cruz

A project by Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado
No Soul for Sale – A Festival of Independents at Tate Modern, London

No Soul For Sale – A Festival of Independents
May 14 – 16, 2010
10 AM – 12 PM (May 16: 6 PM)


Lisbon, May 10 – The Lisbon-based curatorial collective Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado is presenting “The Unsurpassable Horizon”, a project organized for NO SOUL FOR SALE – A Festival of Independents at Tate Modern, London. This project brings together works by Carla Cruz, Ruth Ewan, Runo Lagomarsino, and Lotte Lindner & Till Steinbrenner. The works on view respond to, comment, and speculate on the potential of the communitarian ideal in contemporary society. This project thus addresses the social fabric in which both artists and non-profit organizations/curatorial collectives operate, considering consider the public sphere as an arena of individual participation in the collective future.

In one of the most acknowledged books by the French philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy, The Inoperable Community (1982), he sets himself the task of redefining community beyond a cultural, economic and political dimension. To be operative, the community needs a substance, a sense of communion, and this is the intellectual framework that shapes “The Unsurpassable Horizon”. These artists deal with community as something that either has been disintegrated or that is in a process of rebuilding. Their practice thus reflects the entropic current state of affairs that Nancy encapsulates with his reference to the contemporary “unsurpassable horizon” of political, economic, and cultural regimes.

Cruz’s demoCRACY (2010) consists of a typical voting scene: a ballot box and two piles of ballots on each side of it. The ballots have a question addressed to the potential voter: “Would You Like To Participate?” Three possible answers are given: “Yes”; “No”; and “None of The Above”. What is not made clear is on what the viewer would be voting on. In addition, there are no pens available and the ballot box doesn’t even have a slot where one could insert the ballot. Alluding to the mixed feelings of hopelessness expectation of change through the electoral process, the artist examines issues of civic participation and citizenship in liberal democracies.

Ewan presents a series of drawings created between 2006 and 2009 that are available as stickers sold at cost price. These works are informed by a range of sources referencing several British socially radical groups. Among these organizations is The Plebs League, a political association inspired by Marxist ideals founded in 1908 at Ruskin College, Oxford, which attempted to create a brand new educational system, free from capitalist ideology. The drawings were made by young people, aged 12 to 14, as a result of a series of one-to-one workshops done by the artist. In this learning context, she examined how ideas are disseminated and systems of belief are created, thus addressing the ideological dimension of any educational process.

Lagomarsino’s Notion of Conflict, Dance of the Piñata (2004) explores the dynamics of oppression and resistance by alluding to an ancient, popular Latin American game – the Piñata – that was used by European colonizers to “Christianize” indigenous populations. In this video, a blindfolded male character attempts to hit a piñata figure shaped as a human body dressed in a military uniform. After finally succeeding it with extreme violence, the image slowly fades to black, leaving the viewer to ponder what happens after. The work reflects the era of colonization as the institutionalization of state violence and the subsequent means of collective opposition and cultural hybridization that accompanied the de-colonization of Latin America.

Lindner & Steinbrenner’s Start Spreading the News (2010) consists of a printer connected to the Internet continuously printing on A4 sheets of paper everything that is worth being reported by Thomson Reuters, the world’s leading press agency. This device is located on top of a ladder, so every minute 2/3 sheets of paper will tumble into the ground, each containing absolutely unfiltered news from somewhere in the world. These are words that have no feedback from the audience, allegorically replicating the way most information is circulated on a global scale. Through the poetic image of “falling news” that they created, the artists question the power of the media in the shaping of the current visions of the world.


NO SOUL FOR SALE is a festival of independents that brings together the most exciting not-for-profit centers, alternative institutions, artists’ collectives and underground enterprises from around the world. Neither a fair nor an exhibition, NO SOUL FOR SALE is a spontaneous celebration of the individuals and groups that live outside the market and that animate contemporary art. To celebrate Tate Modern's 10th anniversary, the second edition of NO SOUL FOR SALE, organized by Cecilia Alemani, Maurizio Cattelan and Massimiliano Gioni, and produced by Tate Modern, is bringing together 70 of the world's most innovative independent art spaces and teams to take over the Turbine Hall. The festival will fill the iconic space with an eclectic mix of cutting-edge shows and events on 14-16 May 2010.

Participants in the second edition of NO SOUL FOR SALE include: 2nd Cannons Publications (Los Angeles), 98weeks research project (Beirut), Alternative Space LOOP (Seoul), Arrow Factory (Beijing), ArtHub Asia (Shanghai/Bangkok/Beijing), Artis - Contemporary Israeli Art Fund (New York/Tel Aviv), Artists Space (New York), Artspeak (Vancouver), Auto Italia South East (London), Ballroom (Marfa), Barbur (Jerusalem), Black Dogs (Leeds), Capacete Entertainment (Rio de Janeiro), casa tres patios (Medellín), Cinématèque de Tanger (Tanger), cneai= (Paris-Chatou), Collective Parasol (Kyoto), Dispatch (New York), e-flux (Berlin), Elodie Royer and Yoann Gourmel - 220 jours (Paris), Embassy (Edinburgh), Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado (Lisbon), FLUXspace (Philadelphia), FormContent (London), Galerie im Regierungsviertel / Forgotten Bar Project (Berlin), Green Papaya Art Projects (Manila), Hell Gallery (Melbourne), Hermes und der Pfau (Stuttgart), i-cabin (London), Intoart (London), K48 Kontinuum (New York), Kling & Bang (Reykjavík), L'appartement 22 (Rabat), Latitudes (Barcelona), Le commissariat (Paris), Le Dictateur (Milan), Light Industry (New York), Lucie Fontaine (Milan), lugar a dudas (Cali), Mousse (Milan), Next Visit (Berlin), New Jerseyy (Basel), Not An Alternative (New York), no.w.here (London), Or Gallery (Vancouver), Oregon Painting Society (Portland), Para/Site Art Space (Hong Kong), Peep-Hole (Milan), PiST/// (Istanbul), Post-Museum (Singapore), PSL [Project Space Leeds] (Leeds), Rhizome (New York), Sala-Manca & Mamuta (Jerusalem), Sàn Art (Ho Chi Minh City), Scrawl Collective (London), studio1.1 (London), Swiss Institute / Contemporary Art (New York), The Mountain School of Arts (Los Angeles), The Museum of Everything (London), The Royal Standard (Liverpool), The Suburban (Chicago), The Western Front Society (Vancouver), Thisisnotashop (Dublin), Torpedo - supported by the Office for Contemporary Art Norway (OCA), Tranzit.cz (Prague), Viafarini DOCVA (Milan), Vox Populi (Philadelphia), Western Bridge (Seattle), White Columns (New York) and Y3K (Melbourne).

Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado is a Lisbon-based curatorial team that started out in 2004 with the programming of different alternative spaces in Lisbon. They have organized series of solo shows by Portuguese emerging artists that have stirred up the city’s traditional art scene. They have been working internationally since 2009, having shifted their focus from conventional exhibition formats to critically engaging, participatory projects informed by the relationships of aesthetics and ethics within artistic practice.

/////////////MAKING A LIVING \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\



"We don't really cherish our artists to the degree we should."
Sir Nicholas Serota, Director of Tate, quoted in the Evening Standard 23.04.10

As a grouping of national and international artists, we publicly challenge No Soul For Sale (NSFS) at Tate Modern over the weekend of 14th-16th May 2010.

The title No Soul For Sale re-enforces deeply reductive stereotypes about the artist and art production. With its romantic connotations of the soulful artist, who makes art from inner necessity without thought of recompense, No Soul For Sale implies that as artists we should expect to work for free and that it is acceptable to forego the right to be paid for our labour.

It has come to our attention that many participants are not being paid by Tate Modern for their efforts. In fact, most are self-funding their activities throughout the weekend. Tate describes this situation as a “spirit of reciprocal generosity between Tate and the contributors”. But at what point does expected generosity become a form of institutional exploitation? Once it becomes endemic within a large publicly funded art space?

Reciprocal generosity is the lifeblood of independent art communities throughout the world. This spirit is not however the property of any one institution, artist or curator and it is complacent for Tate to believe that their position is comparable to ground level arts activity. It therefore seems disingenuous for Tate to claim that their hosting of NSFS is somehow altruistic or philanthropic. Tate publicly has the most to gain, yet we have discovered that Tate’s reciprocity does not even extend to the provision of basic resources, such as the use of chairs and tables for some of the participants in NSFS. Tate will commercially benefit from NSFS through increased audiences and the inevitable increase in the sale of books, magazines, merchandise, refreshments, donations and exhibition entry fees. Is the nature of this exchange really occurring on a level playing field? Is the relationship as reciprocal as it could be?

As many of us in Making A Living have worked with Tate and other major art galleries, we understand that the expectation of free labour and self -funding is not exclusive to NSFS. During our discussions it has come to light that Tate has not paid artists for some exhibitions, workshops and events, including last year’s Tate Triennial, and that this policy has existed over a considerable period of time, long before the current economic crisis became an issue for arts institutions.

We call for an end to this poor practice and manipulation of generosity as Tate Modern celebrates its 10th birthday. We call on Tate to make public its policy in regard to artists’ fees.

If artists continue to work for free, or are expected to pay for their efforts when working with our major art institutions, then we deny opportunities to the great majority of artists who simply cannot afford to take such financial risks. Tate and other major publicly funded galleries risk spoiling their good work by unwittingly limiting their pool of future exhibiting artists to individuals who can afford to pay for the privilege, or who are content or able to work for little or no pay. If NSFS manages to start a productive conversation about this 'elephant in the room' then we think it may yet be described as a success.

(Making A Living: A discussion group of Arts professionals currently active across the UK)


O colectivo curatorial Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado apresenta “O Horizonte Insuperável”, um projecto desenvolvido para o evento No Soul for Sale – A Festival of Independents. Este evento reúne cerca de 70 dos mais inovadores espaços alternativos e colectivos curatoriais do mundo e realiza-se na Tate Modern, em Londres, no âmbito da comemoração do 10º aniversário desta instituição.

Lisboa, 3 de Maio – O colectivo curatorial Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado apresenta “O Horizonte Insuperável”, um projecto desenvolvido para o evento No Soul for Sale – A Festival of Independents. Este evento reúne cerca de 70 dos mais inovadores espaços alternativos e colectivos curatoriais do mundo e realiza-se na Tate Modern, em Londres, no âmbito da comemoração do 10º aniversário desta instituição. Após participações na primeira edição de No Soul for Sale – A Festival of Independents (Nova Iorque, 2009), na Frieze Projects da Frieze Art Fair (Londres, 2009) e na Curators’ Desk da Just Madrid (Madrid, 2010), “O Horizonte Insuperável” é o quarto projecto recentemente organizado por Filipa Oliveira + Miguel Amado em contextos de excelência internacionais.

O Horizonte Insuperável” inspira-se no pensamento do filósofo francês Jean-Luc Nancy. No livro La communauté désoeuvrée (1982), este definiu comunidade para além da sua dimensão cultural, económica e política. O projecto compreende obras de Carla Cruz, Ruth Ewan, Runo Lagomarsino e Lotte Lindner & Till Steinbrenner que exploram o potencial do ideal comunitário na contemporaneidade. À natureza ontológica de colectivos curatoriais subjaz a relação com o tecido social em que operam, assim considerando o espaço público como uma arena para a participação individual no devir colectivo. Sob esta premissa, reuniram-se artistas que abordam a comunidade como uma realidade tanto em desintegração como em construção. Assim, as suas propostas enquadram as palavras de Nancy, para quem “o testemunho mais doloroso do mundo moderno (...) é o da dissolução, deslocação ou conflagração da comunidade.”

Carla Cruz recria uma mesa de voto; porém, os boletins contém uma pergunta – “Gostaria de participar” – com respostas múltiplas e a urna encontra-se selada, impedindo o gesto democrático. De Ruth Ewans vende-se, a preço de custo, um conjunto de autocolantes com desenhos alusivos a diversos grupos radicais britânicos, incluindo a The Plebs League, inspirada pelo ideário marxista. Aludindo ao popular jogo “pinãta”, o vídeo de Runo Lagomarsino analisa as dinâmicas de opressão e resistência resultantes do colonialismo na América Latina. Lotte Lindner & Till Steinbrenner compõem um dispositivo tecnológico através do qual se imprimem continuamente, em folhas de papel A4, as notícias geradas pela agência noticiosa Thomson Reuters.

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