Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

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cloud city

Tomás Saraceno, Observatory, 2008

Tomás Saraceno, Observatory, 2008

Curator Rosana Sancin developed this proposal during the Fall 2012 Curatorial Intensive in New York.

Floating cities of the future, whose structures are similar in construction to cells or clouds, means that the inhabitable platforms can subdivide and re-emerge, allowing them to change their form and composition constantly.

cloud city is a durational event taking place at Kino Siska, Ljubljana in 2014. Borrowing its title from one of Tomás Saraceno’s works, it explores the relationship between contemporary art and utopia. The project aims to intervene in the public sphere and engage the public in critical thinking and production of discourse. The 24-hour artistic and intellectual storm will have a follow-up at the Academy of Visual Arts.

The true utopia is when the situation is so hopeless and impossible to resolve within the coordinates of the possible that you have to invent a new space purely for survival. Utopia is not a matter of imagination-it's an emergency one is forced to imagine as the only way out, and this is what we need today.

Belonging to the former Yugoslavia and Eastern Europe, Ljubljana has witnessed many failed utopias. It’s time to press the refresh button and see what happens.

Inspired by soap bubbles and the incredible strength and flexibility of spider webs, Saraceno’s installations challenge the traditional concepts of space, time, gravity, and the ideas of what is or what might be architecture. His installations are models of the cities of the future and the artist calls them “realizable utopias” or viable utopias of the present.

Kino Siska, currently the centre for urban culture, is a former “socialist” cinema from the 1960s inspired by Berlin’s Kino International and later transformed into a concert and exhibition venue by artist and architect Apolonija Sustersic. It reopened in 2009 and soon became the hottest spot in town for spending a night out.

cloud city arises from the urgencies of a particular place. We are facing a huge socio-economic crisis that reminds us in many ways of pre-World War II. The public sphere is disappearing due to privatization and instrumentalized bureacracy. We live in a state of exception.
Democracy is a fundamentally unrealizable project or a work in progress. Art is one of the few spaces remaining where critique is still possible. cloud city could become a platform: a domain of knowledge and artistic production, circuit of research, a network of relations.
An inhabitable platform that can subdivide and re-emerge...

Meme cloud: unitednationsplaza (an exhibition-as-school), contemporary art research, education, publishing, and exhibition project FORMER WEST, and Home Workspace Program (an independent study programme from Beirut). These kinds of projects are, in my opinion, what could possibly mean ‘curating beyond exhibition-making.’ FORMER WEST, however, had an exhibition as its constitutive part. It was called How Much Fascism?

cloud city will be also part of the future Masters programme at the (unofficial) Academy of Visual Arts, for which I was asked to prepare a module. What can we do with art? How can utopia be performed? What are the viable utopias of the present? These are some of the questions to be discussed together with the students.

The project will be documented in a book published by Revolver Publishing (Berlin).
We will also have a digital platform done in collaboration with the artist Vuk Cosic.*

Participants of cloud city include: artist Tomás Saraceno (Frankfurt), philosopher Slavoj Zizek (Ljubljana/London), political scientist, philosopher, and public intellectual Achille Mbembe (Johannesburg), platform Reartikulacija (Ljubljana), cultural agent Sofía Olascoaga (Mexico City), artist Zarina Bhimji (London), curatorial collective WHW (Zagreb), SANAA architects (Tokyo), NSK State in Time representative (Ljubljana), Raqs Media Collective (Delhi), and artist Walid Raad (NYC/Beirute), etc.

Utopia is not a dream. It is what we need in the world. Here it is: that which is missing in the world.

: : : :

*The hacker of Documenta X’s webpage.

The quotes spread throughout this text are from Tomás Saraceno, Slavoj Zizek, Okwui Enwezor, and Edouard Glissant.

cloud city. Curated by The Coming Community (Rosana Sancin). 2012-13.


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To learn more about this proposal please email Rosana Sancin at To learn more about the Curatorial Intensive email