Photo by Kuba Mozolewski
"There is nothing more vulnerable than caring for someone; it means not only giving your energy to that which is not you but also caring for that which is beyond or outside your control. Caring is anxious—to be full of care, to be careful, is to take care of things by becoming anxious about their future, where the future is embodied in the fragility of an object whose persistence matters."
Kem Care is a queer and feminist 6-week programme at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, prepared by Kem at the invitation of the Department of Presence. Kem Care will bring together artists and practices that insist on empathy, interdependence and welcoming otherness across the somatic, social and environmental spheres. Kem Care focuses on the acts and gestures of care that emerge from empathy and love, as inherently political both on the level of sensual intimacy and the wider social body. As such, Kem Care draws from bodily, intuitive and non-verbal experience, as well as emancipatory movements.
The programme is made up of different formats such as discussions, workshops, classes and performances that focus on the the politics of embodiment, emotions and interdependence. Care, here, is an occasion for feminist and queer ways of being together, opening ourselves to otherness and forming resistance.
Kem Care will open on the 14th of February with a queer valentines evening, which will include Ania Nowak’s guided tour of her blog Technologies of Love, a sound performance by Negroma and a set by Facheroia. On Saturday the 17th Kem will start the first of a series of meetings called Languages of resistance, which will focus on strategies that challenge the racist, islamophobic, sexist, homophobic and transphobic structures that increasingly mark the public space. The first meeting will be on the question of how public art institutions can support minorities? The next meeting will be on the themes of homonationalism and islamophobia.
Over the course of the residency, Kem will have meetings with feminist and queer organizations, in order to develop relationships and ways of working together in the long term.
Starting on Monday 19th of February, taking education as artistic practice, we will have a series of three workshops that end with a public encounter on Saturday. Antonija Livingstone’s workshop will be on radical tenderness, called Male Breastfeeding. Geo Wyeth’s Juice Your Hole will focus on the voice as a queer witness. Marwa Arsanios will lead a workshop on notions of eco-feminism and present a lecture performance Who’s Afraid of Ideology? Part 1. This work is based on Marwa Arsanios’ research into the ecological paradigm developed within the communal life of the Kurdish autonomous women’s movement.
Kem Care will also produce a new choreography by artists Zuzanna Ratajczyk Bless This Place. The utterance Bless This Place echoes a utopian promise of a safe space. Kem will also present a work by Jessika Kharzik Mount Mound Refuse, a poetry and sound performance revisiting investigations into the consequences of industrial toxic waste stored and buried close to her family home.
Kem Care will also have regular beginners Arabic Classes on Tuesday evenings called Ahlan wa sahlan and a feminist and queer film programme every Thursday that draws from the film collection of the Museum.
is a feminist and queer project space based in Warsaw, focusing on choreographic and performance practices. Founded in early 2016, Kem hosts artistic experimentation that engages with the politics of affect, embodiment, and subjectivity.
Kem’s desire is to create and support a context for critical dialogue around new choreography and anachoreographic* methods, as well as experimentation with formats, and queer pleasure. Kem is a collaborative entity that seeks to support and participate in feminist, genderqueer, and anti-racist movements.
Kem takes performance as a technology of other-worlding. It is a site that responds to the current political horizon with a counter-horizon of solidarity and collaboration. Kem challenges and is challenged by the practices of the artists it collaborates with. It shares these practices through various public formats, including workshops, classes, screenings, parties, performances, and work-in-progress showings.
Kem questions the established institutional order and pools together will into an infrastructure of friendship. It provides an environment for dialogue between Polish and international practitioners dealing with otherness. Kem is a social choreography that tries to move between an ethics of care and a kinaesthetics.
Kem (eng. Kame)
is the geomorphological term for a landscape formation left behind after a retreating glacier. It takes on the geopoetics of a long process of change and the formation of a new landscape. Kem is chemistry, from the Arabic al kimiya (الكيمياء) phonetically close to a sound between come and came. Kem experiments with the very infrastructure of making work as part of artistic practice. Kem is a group of collaborators. Kem is not an acronym, but it could be.
*Anachoreography is a term that appears in Stefano Harney and Fred Moten’s book The Undercommons - Fugitive Planning in Black Study, Minor Compositions, 2013, p.50. This term is not explicitly defined by its authors, but we would like to propose anachoreography as a term that can be helpful in thinking about expanded choreographic methods engaged in practicing resistance.