A PROJECT FOR OPEN ENGAGEMENT 2012
This project took up our fascination with interviews, conversations, and metalogues as a means to think through problems and questions related to education. This exercise – a mix of performance, lesson, workshop, and study – aimed to consider these various forms of dialogue and the blurry edges that define them both as metaphors and as models for formal and informal art and education.
The choice of education as the topic for the conversations, interviews, and metalogues was riddled with an absurdity and intrigue that echoed the enigmatic nature of a metalogue. Like the metalogue, education is an empty topic. It is a frame through which to encounter other subjects and fields of knowledge. On its own, education is something of a dead end, a ubiquitous form that offers a proliferation of possible meanings and responses and yet simultaneously seems to become hollow when addressed directly. In taking up education and dialogue as both format and content of this project, we attempted to poke around the muddled problem of form – the complex relationship between parts and structures, between individuals and systems, between people and institutions.
This project was structured to engage playfully with these themes, creating an intimate atmosphere of dialogue. Conference participants were invited to pick their preferred mode of engagement: an interview, a conversation, or an attempt at a metalogue. We then conducted a dialogue of fifteen minutes on the subject of education, both formal and informal. These dialogues took place privately in a booth that we called the Dialogue Booth. The hope was that the terms of dialogue and its role in our everyday processes of learning through generous, troublesome, difficult, and mutual exchange would be made more apparent, and be used to think through some of these methods of engagement for the purposes of alternative education.