Thrilled to be a part of the Debt Positive show for the month of June at Flux Factory in NYC*! [*Long Island City in Queens, to be exact, but – same dif.]
Debt Positive brings together artists making work in response to our shared, irrational, financialized realities. From the curators’ statement: “Through an evolving exhibition, performances, and workshops, Debt Positive beckons people to re-envision debt, sublimate it, and consider possibilities for eliminating its wasteful implementations.”
I have, almost gleefully, gone into more credit card debt, myself, in order to get more “Debtor” pins made [by a business in Florida, manufactured by factory workers in China, shipped to NYC]. These pins will, in the instance of this show, be given away for free. But you have to show up to experience the rest of the show in order to get one.
I’m really looking forward to meeting the other artists working through this quagmire.
In the last year, I’ve been most compelled by Fred Moten and Stefano Harney’s chapter on “Debt & Study” in their book The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study. They have, awesomely and almost unbelievably, made their whole book available for free, online, as a pdf. That’s what I’ve linked to, above. The whole thing is complex and amazing, requiring many moments of re-reading just to comprehend it, or comprehend it differently, the interview at the back is transcendant, and the chapter I’m speaking of is pg 61-68. Throughout the book, the way they frame social debt as positive debt, the kind that is unrepayable and borne by us all, the kind that keeps each of us afloat – debt as the social fabric of kindness and favors done with the expectation only of its acknowledgment, never as a thing to be paid back – and especially this kind of living as a way (and sometimes the only way) of surviving in a world where you and your people might have very little or very inconsistent access to capital in all its forms – has profoundly affected me. There’s so much else to recommend this book – please do yourself a favor and read it. And let me know what you think!
If you’re in NYC, stop by the gallery at Flux Factory between June 3-24 (open Weds-Sat, 12-6) – schedule of events for the duration is here.