What is The Arts Assembly?

The Arts Assembly is a reflexive model for cooperation in the creative field. It unites a diversity of actors in new formats based on participatory action through peer-to-peer platforms.

Each AA is a self-constituted gathering with performative aspects and audience participation. It is not a meeting, simply a debate or an exchange of opinions. A whole AA is a closely timed and choreographed series of performative events.

What is it for?

In our time it is a common complaint that good critics are a dying breed; value in the arts has been thrown open to market forces. In time when the (art) market is in a state of volatility or collapse, it is even clearer that an independent means of evaluation is required.

Is the artworld is only a show case of the symptoms of our society? Critical thinking is in a strange state of coma.

Democracy fails us now. What is failing? Party politics? Parliamentary politics? Private ethics and politics?

Where is democracy actually happening?

On blogs. In chat-rooms. In comments on websites.. That's why we HOPE you to use the "AA CHATTER".

How does the AA work?

For each whole Arts Assembly, different groups of activities are 'constituted' to serve very particular functions in the context of the whole series. These are called Chambers. Each Chamber is organised according procedures called Charters.

What is a Chamber?

A Chamber is sub-unit of an AA constituted by a group with a particular idea or approach to assembling. The AA at Manifesta 8 has two Chambers:

The Valuation Chamber

The Round Chamber

There have been different sorts of Chambers in the past. Chambers at the Helsinki AA included:

The Valuation Chamber (aka The Auction Chamber)

The Chamber of Public Secrets

The Chamber of Pre-Universalism and Diversity

The Copyist Chamber (aka Komora Kopista)

What is a Charter?

A Charter is simply a procedure whereby a particular Chamber is organised. In general, it describes a structure, schedule and plan of action of a given event. It is a 'format' or sort of scenography. It does not determine the content or outcomes of a Chamber. It represents only its step-by-step 'rules of the game'.

What is the Charter Process?

The Charter Process involves writing the Charters of the various Chambers of a whole Assembly. It is finalised by the Charter Chamber - an organising group usually including all core AA participants and an advisory board or guests which propose, discuss, evaluate and fix the Charters of given Chambers of a given AA.

How do you Constitute an AA? What is the Order of Action?

1 An AA is planned in a given time-frame and place with specific goals related to the location and purpose of the AA.

2 Different Chambers are Proposed to the AA

3 The Charter Process receives proposals and discusses and decides Charters for each Chamber

4 The AA is carried out, each event in accordance with its Charter(s)

5 The AA Plenary Assembly meets to discuss the outcomes of the whole AA