In the second half of the twentieth century the world appeared to be heading towards something better. Today, the optimism is tinted with dystopian future prospects for a planet on a collision course when it comes to the impossibility of continued increase in consumption and economic growth. On which levels can the artist work in this context of constant change on the geopolitical map? Can we see the apocalypse in a different light?
The theme of the discursive program at this year's festival is utopia, and the changeability connected to it. Throughout the ages, societies can be interpreted based on which utopias they yearn for. What opportunities, what solutions are possible?
A utopia is defined as a "non-place" and is itself impossible. Yet it is a concept most of us can relate to; the ultimate goal, something to strive for. Is it part of human nature to always long for the next, something better? Can this urge explain why we, as a species, have come to a point in our technological development where we are beginning to question if we are making the human workforce unnecessary?
Is it viable to argue that the discussion about what we want with our world has stopped? Is it possible to discuss a utopia for community and a utopia for the individual in the same breath? We need solutions, not doomsday prophecies. We need new stories, and have long since had enough of moralising.
In this discursive program we will plunge fearlessly into the above-mentioned questions, hoping to generate new perspectives for artists, students, and a general audience attending Oktoberdans 2016. The audience is invited to contribute to the discussions, as well as to send us written texts for the DIGITAL SPEAKEASY section at the BIT Teatergarasjen website. The workshop takes place in a gallery space called Visningsrommet, also the location for the festival’s late night hang out Oktobar.
11:00: Guy Standing by way of Speaker’s Corner (no chairs)
13:00: Linn Stalsberg on utopia, youth and absence of revolt (working title)
11:00: Christophe Meierhans on utopia in relation to art
13:00: Wolfgang Heuer: Queering Europe – solving the European paradox
11:00: A very exciting speaker will be announced very soon!
13:00: Alt Går Bra: Grand Narrative