A BRIEF HISTORY
The research group Body and Material Reinvented was established in 2015 as a cluster of individual projects on body-, material-, technical- and craft-related issues. Grown exponentially, we averagely have about 20 members who recently performed research, who are doing an ongoing research, or who will shortly start an artistic research. Since 2019, we are conducting a three-year action plan initiated by a strong urge to engage with each other's research projects and to combine efforts in common action. During 2020 we started with processes of team building and formulating mutual aims. Three open laboratory weeks in September-October 2021 will enhance our visibility within the Academy, including the inauguration of a long-lasting reference installation at the Academy Library. In 2022 all these will culminate into a printed publication, intended to be distributed widely. During the past six years Body and Material Reinvented was characterized by a strong openness and thematic diversity, a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary artistic research departing from body- or matter-oriented questions on the one hand. On the other, our issues became increasingly socially anchored, sometimes even socio-political. We consider this now to be an inseparable part of the group's identity, which should be cherished.
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RELEVANT THEORETICAL BACKGROUND
In recent decades, 'body' and 'material' have been the epicentres of stormy debates and pioneering research. What may have seemed like clearly defined concepts at the time the research group was set up, the notions of 'body' and 'material' now have become highly problematic and open to very diverse discourses, interpretations and speculations. Cultural studies and feminism made the body the object of groundbreaking discourse on representation, gender, cultural identity and diversity. At the same time, artists developed new theories on collectivism, with notions such as 'the social body' and 'social sculpture' becoming central concepts. At the beginning of the 21st century, Posthumanism and theories about the Anthropocene made their appearance. These movements, which criticise forms of anthropocentrism and universalism, further questioned humanity’s central and superior place in creation. New Materialism, which has far-reaching consequences for our perception of matter, creation and embodiment, also made its appearance.
OUR MISSION AND VISION
Against this turbulent background, Body and Material Reinvented appoints its substantive spearheads determining our profile at least for the years 2021-2024. With these themes we explicitly connect to current issues and debates within society and the art world. We specifically want to attract and support researchers who focus their artistic investigation on:
- Forms of social togetherness, global interconnectedness and ecological integrity. Contemporary artistic strategies with a strongly committed or activist character, in which ecology issues, the commons, rituals, sense of purpose and belonging, play a role.
- New conceptions of matter and embodiment, nourished by Posthumanism and New Materialism, movements that take mutualism and ethics beyond the human. New vitalist, inclusive worldviews, methodologies and ontologies, in which 'all the animate and inanimate makers of the world, including people' participate.
- Active contributions to our positioning as a laboratory for critical, interdisciplinary research into sustainable alternatives for the future, where artistic and scientific ways of knowledge production go hand in hand with other fields of enquiry.
HOW AND WHEN TO CONTACT US
Body and Material Reinvented sticks to communication, consultation and long term relationships. Before you might be supported by us for a research application, we strongly advise you to build up connectivity with us during at least 6 months.
Contact: Roel Arkesteijn - email@example.com
Currently active: Andrea Cammarosano (fashion), Giulia Cauti (costume design and performance), Anton Cotteleer (sculpture), Eline De Clercq (painting and ecoart), Mahmoud Saleh Mohammadi (insitu3 and artivism), Chris Snik (costume design), Edu Tarin (jewellery design) Vivi Touloumidi (jewellery design), Karel Tuytschaever (performance), Bart Van Dijck (sculpture), Xuanlin Wang (costume design and performance)
Recent past: Nicolas Baeyens (sculpture), Ines Ballesteros and Michela dal Brollo (in situ3), Janna Beck (graphic design), Ellen De Meutter (painting), Adam Galach (in situ3), Anna Godzina (in situ3), Karin Hansen (painting), Athar Jaber (sculpture), Valentine Kempynck (costume design), Renata Lamenza and Stefania Assandri (performance and costume design), Lavinia Rossetti (jewellery design), Lies Van Assche (costume design), Wim Wauman (photography and installation art)
Collaborations: Jo Caimo and Vincent Van Dijck (Samenschool), Adrijana Gvozdenovic and Vijai Patchineelam (coaching), Elisa Zuppini (dance coaching), Caroline Dumalin, Jean Bernard Koeman, Zeynep Kubat and Nat Muller (critical friends)
Coordinator until 2022: Ria De Boodt
Coordinator as of 2022: Roel Arkesteijn
ARCHIVE ON YOUTUBE
Watch recordings of Body and Material Reinvented events on YouTube
(Photo by Roel Arkesteijn)