Curated by Amy McDonnell and Marsha Bradfield, this exhibition examined democracy as a system of community formation.
What Happens to Us | Wimbledon Space | 15 November – 9 December 2016
Communities don’t just happen, they’re made
The exhibition unfolded in the long shadow of the UK’s referendum about whether to stay in Europe or not, as well as the threatening prospect of Donald Trump leading the so-called free world, which compelled many at that time to ask, should we ‘just say no’ to democracy? What if the philosopher Joseph de Maistre was right: people really do get the governments they deserve?
What Happens to Us takes as its departure the exhibition Democracy by the collective Group Material (1988–9), which was determined by round table discussions on the (still) pressing issues of AIDS, cultural participation, election and education. Today, we might add climate change, mass migration and economic disparity to this list. At What Happens to Us we ate together, made decisions and researched collaboratively, and built the exhibition and its ethos over time, hosting daily workshops, talks and screenings in four, weekly phases – ‘Build’, ‘Elect’, ‘Use’ and ‘Account’ to explore the politics in our communities.
With participation from
Acts of Searching Closely, Francesca Baglietto, Manuel Batsch, Brad Butler, Jaya Clara Brekke, Helen Brewer, Georgia Brown, Elliot Burns, Ève Chabanon, Cinzia Cremona, Carla Cruz, Neil Cummings, Neil Farnan, Michael Freedman, Sharon Gal, Naomi Garriock, Alison Green, Isabelle Gressel, Gabriele Grigorgeva, Mark Herbst, Karem Ibrahim, Helen Kaplinsky, Pippa Koszerek, May Project Gardens, Rosia McGinn, Zoë Mendelson, Radical ReThink, Susan Rocklin, Susanna Round, Scott Schwager, Barbara Steveni, Neil Tait, Jessica Tanghetti, Jennet Thomas, Binita Walia, Wright and Vandame
The full programme and archive of the project can be found at www.whathappenstous.org