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Academy of Margins – summer school 2023

Summer School of the Academy of Margins
a project by Robida
Topolò/Topolove (UD)


Monday 07.08.2023

Morning: walk toward the border at Javoršca
curated by Robida
reading of texts by Catriona Mortimer Sandilands, Anna Tsing, bell hooks

Afternoon: presentations and group activities

Tuesday 08.08.2023

Morning: walk around Topolò in presentation of the project Village as House
curated by Robida

Morning: Trail Maintenance Crew // maintenance and care towards a forgotten old path
curated by Antonio Sotgiu & Jean Ni

"We propose quotidian exercises in practicing care and reciprocity. We have been experimenting with—intellectually and through habitual practice—ethics of maintenance. It does not necessarily mean a return to any particular condition, or even transformation into a new state. Nothing performative, we just gather together. Maintenance entails ongoingness, indeterminacy, a certain sense of precarity that demands attention. Presence. Celebration. Being in the place. A noticing of what is there now, and what could become."
– Jean & Antonio

Afternoon: Working through Waste // reading and daily recycling practice
curated by Emma Kaufmann LaDuc

"The proposal outlines a sensible intervention which happens on-site, a collective negotiation between inhabitants—both short-term and long-term—and the waste they create. The project functions within the theory of the village-as-house: here, we can rethink the front-and-back linearity of its consumption as an ecological circularity. The residue of such consumption becomes, in turn, productive. Compost offers a different kind of cleanliness, one that makes the organic processes visible."
– Emma

Evening: Lovestone // natural laundry detergent workshop
curated by Elena Braida

"Laboratory of Natural Detergent for Laundry. Starting from the notions of community and reproductive work rooted in the architectural structure of public wash hourses in Northern Italian towns, Elena Braida will guide a collective moment of production of natural laundry detergent and sharing its recipe with others. The recipe is an extension of her book "The Perfect House Has Become a Ruin", an invitation to question the hierarchy between the act of creating and cleaning."
– Elena

Wednesday 09.08.2023

Early morning: Communal odes to specificities // ode writing workshop
curated by Sophie Mak-Schram

"My proposal is to expand on what commitments to localities, to living with and worlding together, can include. Belonging has a risk of being homogenising or naturalising if yoked too strongly to locality or physical presence alone. Yet, situatedness and specificities of place also matter. I propose a gentle activity of ode and letter writing, to occur at dusk or dawn over a series of days. We will write to kin whose methods helped us arrive here, to tools we’ve brought from elsewhere, to species or paths right now that shift our approaches to future localities."
– Sophie

Morning: (Re)discovering our places // intimate mapping workshop
curated by Mathilde M. Cahill

"How can maps connect us with the place we’re living with? How can they help us understand the entanglement of perceptions that constitute our experience? Our maps represent our spaces, our borders, our habitats, ways of living, social connections, power dynamics, as well as our unknowns. Our task will be an exploration and individual mapping of Topolò, guided by sensible mapping prompts. We will freely drift through the space, documenting in whichever means we prefer our experiences and feelings and then put everything on a collective map of Topolò."
– Mathilde

Afternoon: Why End of the World is a Good Thing? // seminar about living in ruins
curated by Olya Korsun

"In this research seminar and drawing/writing session we will try to imagine how one can not only dwell in ruins, but play with them, reimagine them, haunt them with the memories of magic and otherness, deconstruct and make them appropriate not only for living but, also for building new life by those who we, most probably, will never meet."
– Olya

Evening: Watershed Whispers // sonic walk
curated by Nina Blume

"What kind of narratives, practices, and knowledges could emerge to re-imagine our watery relations through listening to and recording the sounds of the running, sprinkling, and rippling watery infrastructures of Topolò?
By actively listening to the sonic nuances of the surroundings, the proposed sound walk is intended to detect subtle shifts, interactions, and tensions that can reveal underlying socio-political dynamics and environmental devastation. With a field recorder, we will dive into the sonic worlds from the flux of listening practices, bodies, and ideas activated by listening to water’s retelling through soundscapes and conversation along the way."
– Nina

Thursday 10.08.2023

Early morning: Qui non si balla // contact improvisation movement workshop
curated by Antônio Frederico Lasalvia

"Qui non si balla, which could be translated as no dancing here, is a proposition for physical encounters between bodies. In this two-part workshop, the basics of Contact Improvisation will be presented, both theoretically and in practice, as tools to explore usually uninhabited places of somatic perception. Beyond dancing, the concepts laid-out in the workshop can be extrapolated to aspects of life in general and interpersonal relations in particular."
– Antonio

Morning: Living in color // workshop of observation of colours
curated by Sara Maragotto

"Color - if it exists - exists only as a relationship. Color is cultural memory, childhood imprinting, projection, decoration and desire. Color is the emotional atmosphere, the ecosystem that our bodies inhabit. It is stubbornly and hardly tamed by theories and control mechanisms. The proposal is to create chromatic experiences to awaken and train personal sensitivity and collective vitality; to experiment with color as a space and community — as a three-dimensional, inhabitable and perceptible dimension."
– Sara

Afternoon: Lecture par arpentage & Village as Library // collective readings and discussions about a future library of Robida
curated by Irene Lunghi e Giulia Paradell

"La lecture par arpentage is a shared, collective form of reading, developed and practised in working-class circles at the end of the 19th century in France and, who knows, potentially elsewhere. A simple, non-dogmatic process that can be adapted to the context and desires of readers. A reflection on the sharing of knowledge and practices, demystifying the object of the book or academic text, which is physically torn apart when it is distributed between readers. For a collective understanding, localized in time, place, into a specific context with particular beings."
– Irene

"If Topolò is imagined as a place of everyday assemblies, putting together traces, ruins, plants and fibres will let a new expanded sense of reading emerge, where each page created will map out new paths in both contrast and dialogue with the already existing landscape. Thinking then of living the village as a library of knowledge, learning from directly working with plants and matter, exploring new reading and publishing forms, embodying publishing as an attitude, where our bodies, together with the landscape, become books unfolding in space."
– Giulia

Friday 11.08.2022

Early morning: Communal odes to specificities // ode writing workshop
curated by Sophie Mak-Schram

Early morning: Qui non si balla // contact improvisation movement workshop
curated by Antônio Frederico Lasalvia

Morning: Honorable Harvest // reading and gathering of herbs
curated by Marianna Dobkowska

"I would like to propose a simple, slow, collective and meditative morning activity. Reading of some excerpts from the chapter of the book by Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants - The Honorable Harvest - combined with walking and harvesting edible plants. We would reflect together on the reading and how we understand the principles of honorable harvest in relation to our lives, in the context of creating and sustaining intentional communities, how they can be translated into our daily practice."
– Marianna

Afternoon: Travelling Dinner Ta(b)les // cooking and collection of stories
curated by Lara Bongard

"In this activity, we are going to be interested in how personal stories interact with specific environments and local ingredients, and how they carry the potentiality for new connecting narratives. We will co-create a menu based on the local environment of Topolò and our personal (culinary) stories and create a table scenography with the communal textile. The table will become a place to explore the notion of ‘home’ in a sensory and embodied format through tasting, smelling, seeing and storytelling."
– Lara

Saturday 12.08.2022 – public day

Morning: Consuming a day's work: marve in štakanje // collective cooking curated by Francesca Farris

"Researching the area’s traditional dishes, wild edibles, local products, I would love to find a dish that requires hand processing (from gathering, cleaning, making, etc), a dish that can only be made if you have a village of hands to help. We can find an existing tradition of the area of Topolò/Topolove or we can collaborate to “invent tradition.” As a community that is forming, I think it is important to intentionally create traditions that pull from its inhabitants as well just as much as the history of the land." – Francesca

Afternoon: Installations and spontaneous events curated by the participants to the Summer School

Later: Presentation of Titta C. Raccagni's book "Sull'inforestarsi/O postajanju gozd" (2023, Robida)

Evening: Hexagonal Dialogues // concert for violin, synthetizer and bees by Tiziana Bertoncini & Thomas Lehn

Tiziana and Thomas have been coming to Topolò for 18 years now. This year they have finally bought the Pihuova house, a house on the brink of the village, with a beautiful view on the valley and a terrace in front which was transformed into a micro-apiary by the Robida Collective this year. Tiziana and Thomas proposed a concert about, with and especially for the bees of Topolò as a first encounter with their buzzing neighbours.

Collective dinner

After dinner: The Time of the Fireflies (2023, 33’) // a film by Alessandro Ruzzier

Night: A Place Called Our Place // concert, voice and bass by Niko Novak

La summer school dell’Academy of Margins è un progetto di Robida supportato da Regione Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Fondazione Pietro Pittini e Ufficio per gli sloveni nel mondo e oltreconfine del governo sloveno.

Poletna šola Akademije margin je del projekta Akademija margin za leto 2023, ki nastaja ob finančni podpori Dežele Furlanije - Julijske krajine, Fundacije Pietro Pittini in Urada Vlade republike Slovenije za Slovence v zamejstvu in po svetu.

The summer school is part of the Academy of Margins project for 2023, made possible thanks to the support of Regione FVG, Fondazione Pietro Pittini and the Government Office for Slovenians Abroad (Urad Vlade republike Slovenije za Slovence v zamejstvu in po svetu).