The Assemblers

Project Pilots, Animators and Assemblers 

Perpetuum Mobilε

Perpetuum Mobilε, co-founded by Ivor Stodolsky and Marita Muukonen, is a conduit and engine

to bring together art, practice and enquiry.

It acts as a vehicle to re-imagine certain basic historical, institutional as well as theoretical paradigms

in  fields which often exist in disparate institutional frames and territories.


Parfyme (pronounced “perfume”) is a four person collective. Pelle Brage and Laurids Sonne are a vital part of the AA-M8 project. Parfyme is spread across Copenhagen, Bergen and New York. They have developed and carried out many ambitious projects in the public space in the last decade. Parfyme focuses their interest on both practical research and immediate actions, without too much planning (well, compared to how architects, politicians, and city planners work!).

We see art as a tool that can be used for many things: as a catalyst for personal contributions and ameliorations on our surroundings, a way to explore serious issues, and of course, the simple fun of doing good deeds!

Damian Le Bas

Damian Le Bas writes across boundaries and is one of Britain's few Romany dramatists and journalists. A member of Romany Theatre Company, Damian has written drama and cultural comment for BBC radio, worked with leading London theatres (Royal Court; Soho Theatre) and performed at ROMALE festival ,Graz, and CHAPTER, Cardiff, Wales with his Romany fiancee Candis Nergaard. He has written on art for Conde Nast, RAW VISION and and in 2007 exhibited his journals at Prague Biennale 3: Refusing Exclusion. In 2010 he has exhibited film at INIVA London and, with photographer Eva Sajovic, co-curated 'Roma: Contemporary Racism in Europe' at Mile End Arts Pavilion. In 2011 he will be part of MINISTRY OF EDUCATION WARNING: SEGREGATION HARMS YOU AND OTHERS AROUND YOU, Khamoro Festival, Prague Castle.

Damian studied Theology at Oxford University, graduating first in his year in 2006. He is the Education Editor of Travellers' Times, trains young Gypsies and Travellers in citizen journalism, and advises UK government policy on Romany/Traveller education. His first collaborative book, 'ALL CHANGE: ROMANI STUDIES THROUGH ROMANI EYES', was published by UHP in 2010. Damian has worked on Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month since its birth in 2008. He likes to vex artistic strictures by exhibiting writing in surroundings usually reserved for the produce of trained 'fine artists'. Damian's foremost hobby is irritating members of the thrillseeking Gypsilorist intelligentsia, which he does by being an English Gypsy who is able to write a sentence.


Interdisciplinary animation outside categories and conventions

aladin is an artist and interdisciplinary professional practising outside categories and definitions, curating and creating culture across genres, active in facilitating, moderating and consulting in regard to strategic thinking, planning, organisational development and civic engagement.

As an artist-animateur, aladin has been operating across artforms through the curatorial vehicle subvirt since the early 1990s. As a consultant, aladin's signature approach is to engage with individuals, communities and organisations in ways which influence them to explore and transcend the existing constraints, cultures and practices that stand in the way of developing and implementing effective, viable, sustainable processes which engage with society more widely.

aladin is also a renowned magician and a Gold Turban member of the Magic Academy, Bangalore, India.

At Manifesta 8, amongst other critical interventions aladin will be chairing and animating Arts Assembly.

Recent projects: 2010 - Unsignal, Luxury Goods - Art in 50 Words , “India Song” (Karen Knorr/Tasveer Arts  Bangalore/Chobi Mela Dhaka) and Manifesta 8/CPS/AA (for critical interventions and as animateur)

2009 - Southbank Centre, D&AD, Design Inspirations, Mugh-al/Hamburg Museum fur Volkerkunde/Brunei Gallery

U.K. Commissions include: British Festival of Visual Theatre, the London International Festival of Theatre, the National Review of Live Arts, Portobello Film Festival, D&AD New Blood, London Design Festival, Design Inspirations, 2Gether Festival (with London United), Pestival, Mayor of London/Greater London Authority/City Hall etc.

U.K. Sites include:  Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), Hayward Gallery, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Whitechapel Gallery, Victoria and Albert Museum (V+A), British Museum, Natural History Museum, Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, South London Gallery, Jerwood Space, Brunei Gallery, Chisenhale Dance Space, Battersea Arts Centre (collaboration with Tassos Stevens/Coney), Deptford Albany, Arts Depot Barnet, Oxford House Bethnal Green, Rochelle School Shoreditch, Bullion  Room/Hackney Empire, Boiler House / Truman Brewery, Sketch London, The Spitz, City Hall London, Trafalgar Square; pop video for DJs Freddy Fresh and Fatboy Slim. International collaborations include: Organisational Art Summit Liseleje/Learning Lab Denmark, Keeping it Real/Living Art Museum Reykjavik, India Song/Tasveer Arts  Bangalore/Chobi Mela Dhaka, Organising Authenticity /Centre for Performing Arts Bramstrup, Mugh-al/Hamburg Museum fur Volkerkunde, Garden City Festival of Magic /Ravindra Kalakshethra Bangalore, Norse Ferry Tales/NKD Dale, Sculpture for the Ahmed Family/REC Berlin, Minority Report/Ridehuset Aarhus, Radical Loyalty/Art Museum of Estonia,  Under De-Construction/NIFCA Helsinki.

Hamy Ramezan - Director of 'On the Amphitheatre's Ruins', the Film for M8.


Hamy Ramezan (b. 1979) is a Finnish-Iranian film director and scriptwriter. He has studied film in England and

graduated in 2007. His short films have received acclaim at international film festivals. His latest film

( has just won the Toronto CFC WorldWide

Short Film Festival, which means it is in the running in the category of Short Film for the Academy Awards



2009 Over the fence, 29 min (fiction film)

2008 Auringon lapset, 28 min (documentary)

Maapallo, 5 min (documentary)

2007 Streetdog, 20 min (fiction film)

Just Waiting, 15 min (fiction film)

2006 The Dictation, 20 min (documentary)

2005 This is a Gypsy Life, 10 min (documentary) (not up to date)

Jon Irigoyen

Cultural agitator, independent curator, cultural programer and artist, is fascinated with the crosscutting relationships between artist and spectator and the interaction with the public/urban space.

Jon Irigoyen was born in the dirty, punk, post-industrial city of Bilbao. In the last 14 years has lived in different European cities: Madrid, Bristol and Barcelona, being currently based in Helsinki.

Diego Bruno, Helsinki

Diego Bruno studied History of Art at the University of Buenos Aires and graduated from the Fine Arts School Massana in Barcelona in 2004. at the moment is completing his Master degree at the Finnish academy of Fine Arts. 

His exhibitions include solo shows at Mirta Demare Gallery in Rotterdam, in Lokaal01 Projectruimte in Antwerp in Ruth Benzacar gallery in Buenos Aires and Finnish Academy of Fine Arts Gallery among others. He has been included in group shows such as "Duma" at Wiels Center for Contemporary Art in Brussels, "Vanaf nu!…" at LL387 in Antwerp, “On reverence” and “Peekskill Project” at the Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art in New York, "Variaciones sobre el museo” at the Museum of Latin American Art in Buenos Aires, "Splav Meduze" at Celje Center For Contemporary in Slovenia and "B-sides and rarities" at Extra City in Antwerp among others.

Maria Lind, Sweden

Maria Lind is an independent curator and critic based in Stockholm, where she was born in 1966. 2008-2010 director of the graduate program, Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College. 2005-2007 director of Iaspis in Stockholm. 2002-2004 she was the director of Kunstverein München where she together with a curatorial team ran a programme which involved artists such as Deimantas Narkevicius, Oda Projesi, Annika Eriksson, Bojan Sarcevic, Philippe Parreno and Marion von Osten. From 1997-2001 she was curator at Moderna Museet in Stockholm and, in 1998, co-curator of Manifesta 2, Europe's biennale of contemporary art. Responsible for Moderna Museet Projekt, Lind worked with artists on a series of 29 commissions that took place in a temporary project-space, or within or beyond the Museum in Stockholm. Among the artists were Koo Jeong-a, Simon Starling, Jason Dodge, Esra Ersen. There she also curated What if: Art on the Verge of Architecture and Design, filtered by Liam Gillick. She has contributed widely to magazines and to numerous catalogues and other publications. She is the co-editor of the recent books Curating with Light Luggage and Collected Newsletter (Revolver Archiv für aktuelle Kunst), Taking the Matter into Common Hands: Collaborative Practices in Contemporary Art (Blackdog Publishing), as well as the report European Cultural Policies 2015 (Iaspis and eipcp) and The Greenroom: Reconsidering the Documentary and Contemporary Art (Sternberg Press). She is the 2009 recipient of the Walter Hopps Award for Curatorial Achievement. In the fall of 2010 Selected Maria Lind Writing will be published by Sternberg Press.

Viyé Diba, Dak'Art, Dakar Art Academy, Senegal

Thierry Geoffroy a.k.a. Colonel, French-Danish TBC

Johan Waerndt

Johan Waerndt’s research based video works and installations deal with different types of systems, social structures and architecture. He’s fascinated by the complex systems that – often imperceptibly – surround us in our everyday life. By investigating these sceneries Waerndt elaborates new fora for the experience and projections of the individual. During recent years Waerndt mainly focus on constructing his own microstructures that are often possible to link to other already existing systems. By creating his own (often virtual) systems and interfaces Waerndt tries to figure out new strategies concerning how we as individuals can relate to the increasingly vague structures of society.

Johan Waerndt has been involved in a number of different co operations and participatory processes. Some of the latest projects include the video based works The Politics of Colour (2007) and Planners and Players (2009) with Monika Marklinger (MW Democratic Movement). Other important co operations include A Radical Shift of Scenery (2008) and To Share A Society (2009) with Janna Holmstedt, Anna Högberg and Johan Tirén.

Since 2007 Johan Waerndt has been employed, as a visual artist, at the Office of Regional Planning and Urban Transportation, Stockholm following and commenting upon the work with the new Regional Development plan for Stockholm (RUFS 2010).

Monika Marklinger

Characteristic of Monika Marklinger’s work is an emphasis on visual questions from a social and political perspective. With a point of departure in painting she intertwines her individual language with the reproducable expressions of society. Using overlapping and shifting images, she often creates complicated pictorial constructions full of details. These become a sort of open chain of thoughts where text and image, public and private announcements, political and commercial messages unite.

The conditions for democracy in a more and more deregulated global economy is a recurrent theme in her practice that includes installations as Everything is Political (2002), Struggle For a Global Soul (2005) and Reactionary Times (2007). During recent years she has made research based video installations in collaboration with Johan Waerndt (MW Democratic Movement).

Marklinger has exhibited in several venues in Sweden and abroad, including Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden, Documenta Magazine Table, Kassel, Germany, Galerie im Taxispalais, Innsbruck, Austria, and the Prince of Wales Museum, Bombay, India.

During September 2009--September 2010 she has been artist in residency at ISCP, New York.

Ray Langenbach, artists and theorist, Finland and Malaysia

Gavin Jantjes

Gavin Jantjes is an artist whose work has been collected by major museums such as Tate Gallery, the V&A, UK and the Smithsonian USA. He has held senior positions in visual art institutions for over twenty years. Born in Cape Town South Africa, he became a refugee from the apartheid regime and spent a great part of his professional life in exile, living and working in Germany, England, and Norway. He currently holds the position of curator for contemporary international exhibitions at the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in Oslo, Norway.  

During the 16 years spent in the UK he was called to the Arts Council of Great Britain (ACGB) and appointed as the chair of the Council’s Monitoring Committee for cultural diversity. He structured Arts Council’s policy on cultural diversity and wrote the Council’s framework document "Toward Cultural Diversity".  He has been a trustee of the Tate, Whitechapel and Serpentine Galleries in the UK. He was a member of the finding commission for Documenta 12 and advisor to the European Commission Policy group CIRCLE. He is currently a trustee of the Office for Contemporary Art OCA in Oslo. 

He held a senior lectureship at Chelsea College of Art & Design, The London Institute and has lectured on contemporary international art and African contemporary art in the USA, New Zealand, Australia, China, India, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Senegal, Egypt, South Africa and many countries in Europe. 

Gavin Jantjes has played a strategic and leadership role in the re-evaluation of contemporary art in Europe through his art production, his curatorial work, his lectures and writing.  After a short period as a freelance curator making exhibitions for the Whitechapel, Hayward and Ikon Galleries in the UK, he was appointed the artistic director of Norway’s largest contemporary art gallery, the Henie Onstad Art Centre in Oslo. During his six years as director he curated over fifty exhibitions of contemporary art and twenty collection exhibitions. He joined the Norwegian National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in 2004. 

In 2008 -09 he served as the artistic director for “Afrika i Oslo”, the first major presentation of African contemporary art in Norway and he is the curator of “Strengths & Convictions” a special exhibition for Oslo’s Nobel Peace Center on the four South African peace laureates. He is the initiator of “Visual Century”. 

Other Manifesta 8 AA Assemblers TBC

The Helsinki Pilot AA

The First (Pilot for a) ARTS ASSEMBLY took place 20-22 November, 2009 on the Island of Suomenlinna.It included an open door session (Bar Llammas).

Attendance at the Helsinki AA included:

Adel Adibin (artist, Helsinki)

Marco Baravalle (curator, S.a.L.E. Venice)

Pelle Brage (Parfyme, Copenhagen)

Diego Bruno (artist, Helsinki-Spain)

Magnus Eriksson (Pirate Byrån, Gotenburg)

Sasha Huber (artist, Helsinki)

Pekka Kantonen (artist and researcher, Helsinki)

Damian La Bas (see above)

Ray Langenbach (see above)

Marita Muukkonen  (see above)

Andrew Paterson (artist and researcher, Helsinki)

Khaled Ramadan (Chamber of Public Secrets)

Seppo Renvall (artist, Helsinki)

Petri Saarikko (artist and designer, Helsinki)

Ivor Stodolsky (see above)

Airi Triisberg (curator and researcher, Tallinn)

Sara Wolfert, (Pirate Byrån, Gotenburg)

Since then, the AA has been meeting in groups in Copenhagen and on Suomenlinna, and in internet gaggles.