CANCELLED - Between Utopia and Failure

Saturday, November 3, 2012

ICI Curatorial Hub
Closed-door event

Between Utopia and Failure: Tracing Iván Illich in New York City

This think-tank session continues Olascoaga’s research project, Between Utopia and Failure, and will focus on tracing Iván Illich’s influence and experiences in New York City, where he lived and worked during the early 1950s. With a group of invited educators, artists and activists, influenced by Illich’s thinking, this discussion will explore the repercussion and relevance of his radical critique to institutionalized knowledge production and management in modern society, and the education alternatives proposed in his writings. The notions of Conviviality, Tool, and Deschooling will serve both as conceptual and practical keys to the design of this encounter.

About the project: Between Utopia and Failure assesses the productive tension between utopia and failure of intentional community models developed in Mexico in past decades. The project traces the work and influence of radical thinker Iván Illich at CIDOC, the intellectual community he started in Cuernavaca, and the role that model has played in the practice of many Mexican and international thinkers and artists (Susan Sontag, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Jimmie Durham, among others). Moreover, it approaches the questions and experiences posed by these initiatives as a way to respond to Mexico’s disrupted present.

For more information about this closed-door session, contact Misa Jeffereis, Public Programs & Research Coordinator, at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

ICI would like to thank The Mexican Cultural Institute of New York for their support of this fellowship.

November 3, 2012


Sofía Olascoaga

Sofía Olascoaga works in the intersections of art and education by activating spaces for critical thinking and collective action. Olascoaga is a Curatorial Research Fellow at Indpendent Curators International, was a Curatorial Fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program in 2010 and received her BFA with honors from La Esmeralda National School of Fine Arts (Mexico City). Olascoaga was Clinics Director for SITAC X the International Symposium of Contemporary Art Theory, in Mexico City in 2012 and works as advisor for the educational program at the Botanical Garden in Culiacán—a public cultural center created through the collaboration of Coppel Collection, local government, and civil organizations. This program is dedicated to integrating ecological education and contemporary art, while engaging local communities. Her main research is focused in critically assessing the productive tension between utopia and failure of intentional community models, developed in Mexico in past decades.

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