Zone d’Utopie Temporaire (Z.U.T.) residency – Part II
The Koppel Project Hive, 26 Holborn Viaduct, London EC1A 2AQ
For its opening to the public in August 2016, the Koppel Project Hive will be hosting the second edition of the Zone d’Utopie Temporaire (Z.U.T.) summer residency program. The residency stands as a social and creative experiment whereby a group of selected artists accept the challenge of working together during three weeks to create a Temporary Utopian Zone.
Last year, fifteen artists and two theorists were invited to take part in the first edition presented by curator Alice Bonnot at “L’Amour”, Paris. Day and night, together or alone, each artist participated in forging a Temporary Utopian Zone that came to occupy every last corner of the vast space. The theorists Lucien Labroue and Déborah Bucchi accompanied the fifteen artists through both structured conferences and more informal discussions. Many works were created in the given time period, each a singular fruit of the projects’ multidisciplinary nature and each addressing Utopia differently.
The desire to initiate an itinerant Zone d’Utopie Temporaire, with a second edition in London and later across Europe, stems from a deep appreciation for the focus to be gained when exposing oneself to unfamiliar environments and/or constraints. In the context of this project, “Utopia” is approached as ‘a distance a society is capable of taking from itself to feign what it could become’ (Lucien Labroue, 2015); hence the particular necessity for the artists involved to take their surrounding and related realities with them when searching for utopia within themselves.
Arguably, the core format of the Z.U.T. residency programme is itself Utopian. Is it achievable for a group of artists to work together during three weeks in order to produce an exhibition as the result of those collaborations? When the first edition of Z.U.T. was successful in Paris last year that opened the door for the upcoming edition in London. Who knows, perhaps Temporary Utopian Zones can take shape anywhere? This question can be asked until the world is turned into an intercontinental Permanent Utopian Zone.
PARTICIPATING ARTISTS AND THEORISTS
Julia Dreiski is a French artist taking on the role of a storyteller, a scientist or that of an explorer to represent stories inspired by cinema, tales or science fiction narratives. Through her sculptures she plays and assembles modules to form unreal architectures in suspension; and through her drawings and embroideries she expresses the antagonism of attraction and repulsion.
Julia is a graduate of L’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs de Paris, (with MA in Fine Art and Space).
Maxence Hamard is a French artist whose practice crystallizes moments of action and experimentation. Through the creation of machines, objects, sculptures and videos he tries to capture instants of interstice, surprise or mistake in order to achieve the production of a poetic cycle.
Maxence will graduate next year from the Paris National School of Art (MA).
Through installations, performances and digital pictures, the Parisians artists Galdric Fleury and Antoine Fontaine, known as fleuryfontaine, questions the interactions between man and its close environment, using information technologies as their field of investigation.
“fleuryfontaine’s work fully participates in this history to witness “the shift from modernity to algorithmic governance”. The theory of knowledge, combined with that of Capital, finds expression in the work of fleuryfontaine through the metaphor of liquidity, the fantasy – shared by teenagers, engineers andpreachers – of a borderless, water-tight world in constant regeneration.”
Alexis Jakubowicz, member of Critic College, Montrouge Art fair, 2015
Antoine and Galrich are graduates of the Paris-Cercy National School of Art and Paris-Malaquais School of Architecture (MA).
Thomas Langley is a fine artist working with an interdisciplinary practice that includes painting, sculpture, performance, drawing and installation.
The breadth of his working methods is a means to discover and explore new territories for artistic comment. He is interested in the idea of manual thought – how thinking gets into an object. In parallel, he likes the idea that this manual thought could blur the boundaries between an artwork and the artistic life that gives rise to it. The material expression of consciousness also turns into a question about the physical/spatial boundaries the artwork occupies, and the status it maintains in the wider world.
His work is often self-referential although approaching certain universal truths through that; the human condition, or more specifically the artistic condition, are what he strives to make contact with.
Thomas is currently in its first year of Master at the Royal Academy.
Kurst Krapperz is a British artist working with an interdisciplinary practice that includes performing, improvising music and writing. A constant in his process has been to set up parameters that allow chance to act as a fundamental component in the generation of a work. He is interested in the possibility of creating intentional environments (personal / public), which allow for undetermined outcomes to transpire, and the revelations that can be conceived from this. For this reason he values experiment and failure.
Kurt is a graduate of the Goldsmith University (with an MA in Performance and Culture).
Faustine Levin is a Parisian visual artist roving throughout Europe and continuously looking for new adventures. While studying photography she assisted Cathleen Naundorf in the dark chamber using original and ancestral processes. Later she opened her own photo studio that a large variety of artists visited during three years and where she also experimented a broader artistic practice including drawing, sculpture and video editing.
Faustine Levin is also an actress and a film director. She is currently working on a documentary about the French countryside and its farmers.
Orly Orbach is a British artist creating open books, performance graphics and visual narrative landscapes, using diverse interactive and participatory methods. She is interested in creating new myths and reinterpreting existing ones, as a response to different social and environmental contexts.
Handmade processes are central to her practice, as is the physical participation of people in the production of the artwork. In many projects she explores new possibilities of creating participatory books, finding innovative and alternative means of assembling and disseminating stories. Her projects include permanent and semi-permanent site-specific public artworks such as wall drawing and furniture. Temporary interventions for public spaces, museums, galleries, libraries and schools, ephemeral and transient books, collaborations with theatre companies and architects, community-based residencies, socially-engaged regeneration projects and consultations.
Orbach is a graduate of the Royal College of Art and Brighton University. She lectures part time at the Cass School of Arts and other educations institutes. She is currently training in Social Anthropology at Goldsmiths University.
Rafal Zajko is a Polish artist living in London. He works in a variety of media and plays with the traditional roles of varying artistic mediums. In this manner his sculptures become props, his performances become documentations of actions and his films (through a process of layering, repetition and re-recording) become a physical manifestation of an idea.
Rafal often plays with ambiguity and objects he creates can either be centre stage (playing the role of a character in a film) or totally hidden (as a series of props or backdrops).
Rafal is a graduate of the Central St. Martins and Chelsea College of Art (with a BA in Fine Art).
Currently, he is participating in the Syllabus programme, organized by six prominent art institutions across the UK, including Wysing Art Centre, Studio Voltaire, East Side Projects and New Contemporaries. The programme selects ten artists and provides an alternative art education with bimonthly seminars over a twelve-month period.
Lowri Evans (theorist)
Lowri Evans graduated in 2016 from Goldsmiths University of London. Whilst studying anthropology she has engaged in local and national campaigns for social justice and environmental activism. She also has a background in theatre; she trained for a year at RADA in acting and pursued a professional career for a few years afterwards.
Lowri sees her involvement in the Z.U.T residency as an exciting opportunity to collaborate with artists, exploring alternative social constructions of communities, and challenges to the status quo.
Hannah Corrie (theorist)
Hannah Corrie is currently studying Psychology (BSc) at Goldsmiths University, London, having spent her childhood in Europe, North America and South Africa and it was this early exposure to different cultures that sparked her interest in human behaviour. Before University, she worked in several care homes specifically engaging with individuals with Dementia and/or Alzheimer’s that not only began her interest in neurological disorders but also instilled in her the importance of care and compassion in society. During Hannah’s time at university she has been involved in a short film project, which is being submitted to summer film festivals in 2016.