Listening to ~ the power of doing nothing

Petra Heck & Margarita Osipian
16:00 30-05-2020

“I have been thinking about that: how sometimes we have to stop what we are doing to feel the true impact of something, to let our bodies experience that impact, the fury of an escalating injustice, a structure as well as an event; a history, an unfinished history. Sometimes to sustain your commitments you stop what you are doing.” - Sara Ahmed

The idea of ‘rest’ itself has been commodified and sold to the overworked, the anxious, the sleep-deprived. The commodification and corporatisation of mindfulness, meditation,and self-care problematise the intentions behind these acts—putting into question whether the highly profitable mindfulness industry is much more interested in making us increasingly more productive workers. But what does ‘productivity’ look like through a non- (or anti-) capitalist lens? Can we create spaces and moments of engagement where we can empower ourselves by doing ‘nothing’; by retreating from, undermining, or inverting ideas around (automated) labour, productivity, and laziness.

A radio broadcast to quietly usher in these spaces. Spaces to explore how acts of rest can function as a disruptive or reclaiming power. Shifting away from the production of another layer of content and discourse, the broadcast will guide and invite listeners into seemingly ‘unproductive’ states, putting into question whether ‘unproductive’ actions can be productive and powerful. Through these acts, together, we can quietly reflect on and internalise how we understand notions of ‘unproductivity’, of doing nothing. What does it mean to ‘understand’ in different ways? Through embodied knowledge, through the knowledge of our ancestors, our communities. We will weave through audio contributions from invited artists, each responding in their own ways, through their own practices.

This four hour broadcast consists of:

00:01 Introduction by Petra Heck and Margarita Osipian
00:05 Natalia Domínguez Rangel, ‘Vienna transition’
00:11 Natasha Papadopoulou, ‘Breathing meditation by The Anastasia Method’
00:35 Rory Pilgrim, ‘The Towel’
00:44 Navild Acosta & Fannie Sosa, live recording of Black Power Naps' ‘Choir of the Slain’
01:44 Natalia Domínguez Rangel, ‘Étude 2 - between the artificial and the natural’
01:49 Emmeline de Mooij, ‘About wool spinning witches, disciplining the body, soothing needlework and reproductive labor’
02:25 Rory Pilgrim, ‘Beyond the Echo’, ‘3 Waters’
02:33 bi- as Diana Duta, with Julien van Anholt, Radna Rumping, Angeliki Tzortzakaki, Enrico Floriddia and Jérôme de Vienne, ‘Domini abbandonati’
03:11 Naomi Credé with Malissa Cañez Sabus and Aidan Wall, ‘slug like and slow’
03:40 Yoojin Lee, ‘Dormant buds on twigs’
03:52 end

This event is the first in a set of two events initiated by Petra Heck and Margarita Osipian that explore the act of resting and the politicization of sleep, specifically as a weapon of resistance against "systems of oppression that have controlled and subjugated people of colour, women, and queer and gender-dissident communities"*. We are building on, and are inspired and educated by, the years of work that has been done on these topics by Navild Acosta and Fannie Sosa in their Black Power Naps project. Questioning the politics behind who gets to rest, the exhaustion of activism and its necessity, and whether the act of doing nothing can be a productive power by itself.

* the words of Agnish Ray in their interview with Navild Acosta and Fannie Sosa.

Part II: A conversation on ~ the power of doing nothing, took place at Framer Framed on June 5th 2020, 17-19h.

Donate & support: In solidarity and support you may donate via PayPal to Color Block: Pandemic Edition 2020. Funds will be used to support costs for BIPOC to engage in Color Block’s physical and online programming for a much needed retreat for healing, rest, and care. Donate here. Or support the work of the artists involved in this broadcast directly:

Support Navild Acosta on Patreon.
Support Fannie Sosa on Patreon.

This event is made possible through the generous support of the Stimuleringsfonds.

Credits (in order of appearance):

Natalia Domínguez Rangel
‘Viennese acoustic transition’, 5'02"
From the 15th March till 10th May 2020
Locations and times in order of appearance and listening:
18:15 Sebastian Kelch Gasse
09:30 Schafberwiese
21:27 Stephanplatz
18:35 Stadtpark
21:40 Parkring
20:01 Wiener Staatoper
21:51 Kohlmarkt
21:56 Kohlmarkt
21:01 Hofburg dome - Sissi Museum
17:02 Heldenplatz
17:01 Kreuzeichenwiese
20:27 Sebastian Kelch Gasse
18:47 Kahlenbergerdorf auf den Nussberg
18:12 Margaretenstrasse
17:42 Ameisgasse
21:18 Graben
19:53 Raimundhof
17:56 Mariahilfestrasse
19:58 Neubaugasse
20:02 Neubaugasse U3
23:35 Schottenring U2
20:21 Unfallkrankenhaus- Kundratstrasse

Natasha Papadopoulou
‘Breathing meditation by The Anastasia Method’, 15'16"
Text and voice by Natasha Papadopoulou
Sound editing and sound mixing by Yiannis Loukos
Extra track: Serotonin release - Alpha Waves by Magnetic Minds

Rory Pilgrim
‘The Towel’, 5'4"
from The Undercurrent, 2019
Sung by Declan Rowe John, written by Rory Pilgrim and Robyn Haddon

Navild Acosta & Fannie Sosa
Live recording of "Choir of the Slain", 49'47"
Performance Space New York, Black Power Naps exhibition
Featuring: Navild, Sosa, Najee, Ashley, Jordan
Song Titles: Duerme Negrito; I'm A Monster; Hope There's Someone; Mask Off - Classical Cover; End Men
Text: Black Sleep, Black Dreams, Black Joy, Black Pleasure

Natalia Domínguez Rangel
‘Étude 2 - between the artificial and the natural’, 7'00"

Emmeline de Mooij
‘About wool spinning witches, disciplining the body, soothing needlework and reproductive labor’, 34'42"
with quotes from:
‘A Tradition With a Reason’ by Elizabeth Wayland Barber (from the book The Textile Reader, edited by Jessica Hemmings)
‘The Golden Thread’, Kassia St Clair
'Caliban and the Witch’ (Women, The Body, and Primitive Accumulation), Silvia Federici
"All of a sudden" by Laaraji
"Soul Alphabet” by Colleen
“My heart's in the highlands” by Arvo Part

Rory Pilgrim
‘Beyond the Echo’, 3'12"
Rehearsal recording from The Resounding Bell.
Sung by Robyn Haddon, written by Rory Pilgrim

Rory Pilgrim
‘3 Waters’, 4'19"
from The Undercurrent,
Sung by Declan Rowe John, written by Rory Pilgrim and Robyn Haddon

‘Domini abbandonati’, 31'12"
bi- as Diana Duta, with Julien van Anholt, Radna Rumping, Angeliki Tzortzakaki, Enrico Floriddia and Jérôme de Vienne, and the voices of Irene Alecci, Lew Pey Sien, Mio Fujimaki, Benoît Vidal, Maël des Mesnards, Lea Devon Sorrentino, Jördis Hirsch.

Naomi Credé with Malissa Cañez Sabus and Aidan Wall
‘slug like and slow’, 25'15"

Yoojin Lee
‘Dormant buds on twigs’, 7'27''
In collaboration with Giuseppe Termine, lullaby based on the chapter 8 of the publication As long as there is time to sleep (2016).

Image: Xinan -

Artist / Organisation: Petra Heck & Margarita Osipian
Location of the show: Ja Ja Ja Nee Nee Nee studio
Host: Radna Rumping, Petra Heck, Margarita Osipian
Producer: Monty Mouw
Length: 232 min
Language: English

30-05-2020 at 16:00


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