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Coffee Talks is the title of a project that aims to open up a discussion about the state of arts in public space of the city of Zurich. The intention is to seize the opportunity to create temporary interventions in the urban landscape of the city. This project started from a conversation between Candida Pestana (curator), Susana Pedrosa (artist) and André Catalão (artist). The main idea started in a coffee shop during a random discussion about the need to research and approach public space. Lately this necessity of presence in the space created a link involving the artists Cornelia Heusser and Niklaus Rüegg.
As site-specific and event-driven, Coffee Talks aims to address multiple audiences, shake up the city dynamics by occupying and creating small-scale events in the public domain, and open up the possibilities for sharing the vision behind those events, specifically through performative actions, with anyone who takes part.
The proposals of the involved artists challenges the public by raising urgent questions about the limits of the law. It is important to discuss public space as something that we are used to sharing. However, normally there are no references telling us how far we can go. The methodology applied in this collaboration is based on an exhaustive investigation about the relevant legal parameters centered predominantly on legal institutional entities; these are related to the notion and practice of justice, to the Swiss constitution, and to the cultural and subcultural urban groups whose primary nature is rooted in the visual arts. The research permits integration between the artistic context, on the one hand, and the context of the public law on the other, thus creating a natural platform for dialogue concerning the aforementioned issues.
The artists are working with a clear collaborative spirit, investing in strong community engagement as a part of their operations. This engagement will define the outcome of their joint work. The resulting work will manifest itself publicly in a series of events: a exhibition at Perla-Mode: message salon, located in one of core and fast-living areas in the city of Zurich (Langstrasse). This urban zone – an ideal location for critical observation of the issues of legality and power in public space – has been intentionally chosen as a main punctum of the final display. Given its local reputation (known for immigration, prostitution, second-hand shops, and art galleries) it becomes a zone of transformative potential, inevitably connected to the everyday life practices rooted in the politics of the place.
For this project to happen in these dimensions, it needs financial support. The involved parties already invested all available resources for this project to transpire. Without your help this project cannot achieve the proportions that we are working for, including the live events, the symposium, and the publication. Thanks to the true commitment of all artists involved and the other participants, this project has developed even further. At the moment we are working on a low cost basis: we already created a web-platform, and we are now looking to local sponsors, and to the goodwill of our associates, in order to finance the necessary materials.
We need your help to make this idea grow and to make it visible to the public, to be seen, to be discussed, and to create an impact in the local culture. Finding the resources to do a publication will permit an expansion of this local experience onto an international level. In advance I would like to thank all possible collaborators for believing in this idea.
What We Need
Our main financial goal is to pay for all of the material for this project, which includes:
Flyers (design and print): $200
Booklets (design and print): $300
Material for the artists: $200
Resources to document all the events: $200
Travel costs: $200
Transportation of the pieces: $100
If the goal is not reached the money will be used to cover the material for the artists and the transportation. The project will still happen but it will be limited according to the financial conditions.
Other Ways You Can Help
This project will take place in Zurich, and everyone is invited to participate and to be part of it. If you want to collaborate with us please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will update you about when and where the events will take place. Please also share this project with all your contacts.