Location: The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) on the occasion of the Visual Activism symposium.
More info on the symposium: HERE
Date: 14th-16th of March 2014
Chef: Maggie Lawson
Photos by: SFMOMA
3D animation by: Jarno Burger
In San Francisco, the third edition of Radical Colophon presented in the context of the Visual Activism symposium, held by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). Radical Colophon took place in Will Brown, an art space on the 24th street, as a breakout session of the symposium. The design of the space responded to the presence of several high-tech corporations (such as Google, Twitter or Facebook) that are currently shaping not only the urban planning but also the heart beat of the city. The hyper-gentrification that the Bay Area is going through and the consequent displacements suffered by residents, mostly of chicano origin has recently provoked a series of anti-eviction protests and debates around the identity and the rights of the neighbours. Participants discussed how the idea of trust is applied in business, and how this could draw a parallel on how trust functions in the midst of social outbursts.
Maggie Lawson, a local artist and chef, was invited to collaborate designing a treat for the participants. Lawson re-purposed burritos and aguas frescas acquired in a local fast-food restaurant and gave them a hype look. Food functioned as an indicator of the recent urban developments in the area, being also a way of mediating between their inhabitants. Participants were invited to sign up for an open-mic, and asked to respond to a live Twitter feed where symposium attendants contributed by tweeting their thoughts on the issue. The open-mic format represented a tribute to the merging of ethics and aesthetics, bringing back the ancient concept of Cynicism as a Greek philosophical posture. In ancient Greece, Cynicism represented a philosophical current based on a performative ethical and social critique grounded in an alternative mode of life. Cynaicism is considered the philosophical origin of counterculture (which makes San Francisco the ideal context), dedicated to aestheticism and the immediate fulfillment of natural needs (of which housing is a great example).