New ideas for an art institution

Some ideas for a new art institution: Rosalie Schweiker at the Spacex

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Artist Rosalie Schweiker will work with Spacex, Exeter, to imagine a future art institution. Users of Spacex, from artists and community groups to the wider public, will also be invited to share their aspirations and ideas for this new organisation.

During the project the artist will live at Spacex, bringing to life her manifesto Some ideas for a new art institution. This will include re-thinking the way the building is used. In line with her manifesto ‘form follows budget’ so spaces that previously operated as galleries will become living quarters, shared workspaces and places for debate.

Rosalie will use this opportunity to create a series of public events that explore the ideologies that underpin many arts institutions.

Her manifesto states ‘the new institution is a new pattern of behaviour’ and she will work with participants to consider how to develop art organisations with relevant and effective models that make them useful in civic society.

The artist employs social situations such as shared meals and sleepovers as forums for discussion and as well as these opportunities for people to be part of the project she will aim to address issues of access, for example creating intergenerational meetings that include childcare for those with very young children.

Described as ‘co-operative future gazing’ Some ideas for a new art institution will be an open-ended, playful process of trial and error that seeks to develop new friendships and create lasting partnerships with the community that uses Spacex.

Rosalie said: ‘I position my practice in everyday life, trying to find new functions for art in society. My work is living proof that an artist can do more than just hang exhibitions. Why shouldn’t they consult on libraries, build cable cars, enable friendships, read tarot cards and do the washing up?’

This intervention happens at a crucial time for Spacex as it considers its own future as an arts institution and its role within the cultural ecology of Exeter and beyond.

old/new art institution


Supported by Arts Council England, Exeter City Council, Foyle Foundation and a wide range of partners, Spacex is re-launching its programme with a series of artist residencies and projects that seeks to re-examine the way the organisation operates.

Some ideas for a new art institution runs from 6 August to 13 September 2015. Launch event 8 August from 6pm. Workshops and a Spacex sleepover will take place Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 August 2015. Other events take place from Tuesday 1 to Sunday 13 September. Regular updates on events and opening times will appear on the Spacex website.


(from a press release)



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