18 February - 1 March 2019
ISLANDS OF CONSCIOUSNESS
A BecomeBecome Nomadic Art Residency, Exhibition, and Symposium in Bali, Indonesia
BecomeBecome was thrilled to announce its 5th nomadic residency and exhibition program taking place in magnificent Bali, Indonesia, in collaboration with our local partner the Bali Purnati Center for the Arts. This full-immersive journey investigates transdisciplinary approaches to the theme Islands of Consciousness.
During this 12-day residency in the town of Ubud, we engaged with a multi-layered program of exchange, territory exploration, and wellbeing practices. For the 2nd BecomeBecome Symposium on Transdisciplinary Narratives, we partnered with Bali Purnati, a Foundation and cultural institution that has existed for two decades and is a pioneer on the island in the space of transdisciplinary research and international collaboration. Among other projects, Bali Purnati is the birthplace of the I La Galigo production by theatre director Robert Wilson. It also fostered an original music arrangement between Grammy Award, Polar Music Prize, and the Avery Fisher Prize winners KRONOS Quartet and Suppangah Rahayu, the renowned Indonesian composer. As part of our dialogue with the local community, BecomeBecome participants were invited to share their work and ideas in progress during our process-exhibit at the end of the residency.
ISLANDS OF CONSCIOUSNESS
Taking the leap from transdisciplinary to transpersonal,
the thematic focus of Islands of Consciousness honed in on the ways in which artwork is nourished by exchange across and beyond different disciplines. How does one's practice expand once we include "the other", distributed in the many points or islands of consciousness we encounter in our dialogue? How do practices that expand our mindfulness and awareness also expand our practice as artists and researchers? How can we include information about the body, intuition, and spontaneous inspiration in our work so that we are not limited to academic explorations of a given topic?
During this 12-day residency, BecomeBecomers experienced a series of holistic labs that invited us to discover how we can embed rationally generated knowledge into a space only accessible with the body. As practitioners, we may find ourselves stuck predominantly in a head-space or in mental loops. By accessing the learning process through the body and senses, we dove into a more visceral experience of information that includes but is not limited to strictly academic or rational approaches.
From group-dynamics and intervention labs, we explored ancestral traditions and cutting-edge systems, to connect each project with the idea and practice of movement, motion, and a quality of experience that is process-based, meaning that it only exists by taking into account the temporal dimension. Taking nourishment and inspiration from the unique natural landscape and locations in the island of Bali, participants worked with the transpersonal elements of the subconscious, allowing us to expand awareness of personal information about each project in a way that is only possible because of exchange with others.
Through a range of hands-on activities, perception strategies, and subconscious expeditions guided by dreams, intuition, and synchronicity, our peer-to-peer methodology helped bring forth effective inspiration and create unexpected new developments for the various projects in the program. Participating artists, researchers and curators had an opportunity to engage in fruitful dialogue with colleagues from all over the world while also connecting with the local art community. During the residency, all BecomeBecomers had the opportunity to immerse themselves in the luscious environments of Bali, which is known for its strong mystical appeal. This helped further to move beyond ordinary mental routines and access a unique sensory landscape where new ideas and connections hold the potential to trigger novel insight.
Exhibition & Transdisciplinary Symposium
As a partner of BecomeBecome, the Bali Purnati Foundation invited our artists and researchers to participate in the 2nd International BecomeBecome Symposium on Transdisciplinary Narratives. This open invitation allowed participants to exchange ideas within a set range of time parameters, while using any format and language chosen by the presenters. This format is designed to embolden daring project presentations, flash labs and talks about each presenter's research and projects. Local Balinese contributors were also invited to take part in the Symposium, providing BecomeBecomers with another rich opportunity for transcultural idea exchange, feedback, and collaborations. This full-day event took place on the spacious premises of the Bali Purnati Foundation where participants were invited to showcase or install their work in any of the indoor and outdoor spaces available. Building on the experience of 1st International BecomeBecome Symposium on Transdisciplinary Narratives, we experienced another fascinating and fruitful day of practical labs, academic research, and new collaborative encounters that lasted well beyond the days of our residency.
Our residency led us straight to the cultural and spiritual heart of Bali- the beautiful town of Ubud. Located in the center of the island and surrounded by rice fields, temples, and tropical forests. This town is known for its magnetic charm, regularly drawing in creatives, freelancers, and seekers from all corners of the world. The wealth of art, sacred locations, markets, and natural sites served as key points of our territory exploration, during which we not only received invaluable new material for our work, but also left an impact on the local community through social interaction and exchange. Free afternoons and structured excursions provided BecomeBecomers with an opportunity to find their own unique way to engage with the diverse territory that surrounded us.
From an arts perspective, Ubud has a rich history of exchange between east and west. Pioneering artists like Walter Spies, who moved to the island in the 1930s and co-founded the Pita Maha Artists Cooperative together with fellow artist Rudolf Bonnet, have left their mark on the cultural scenes and continue to be key references in the history of artistic exchange between Asia and Europe. Stepping into and beyond the path these artists have carved for transcultural dialogue, we experienced how the continuing lure of Bali stands to transform our own practices and artwork.
To view the media trace of this incredible residency, please visit these two pages by the Bali Purnati Foundation for the Arts. Images of the residency are provided below.
2nd International BecomeBecome Symposium on Transdisciplinary Narratives
We are profoundly grateful for the opportunity to experience this residency togehter.
Bali is becoming an important node in the BecomeBecome network, and we cannot wait for the next stage in this magnificent journey - bigger and more beautiful than ever.