RESIDENCE09.07 - 29.06, Aljustrel
FESTIVAL1st July | 19h00 | Aljustrel
TITLEThe Maybe Museum
Sophie Mak-Schram has a background in art history and curatorial projects. She organises an annual experimental exhibition, An Overheard Map of Now, which works as an art-version of Chinese whispers: artists take up short residencies where their brief is simply to respond to the work the previous artist created. Other ongoing projects include The Answer Archive, an installation-performance collecting answers to unasked questions, and working with the Cera Project on international, ethno-cultural exhibitions. Her curatorial and performance work is concerned with experience and audience, and how the position of art and artists can be explored to alter these. Through time-based performances, site-specific installations and collaborative work, she seeks to create spaces (literal or not) that disrupt the regimented format art history can impose on interaction. In frequent collaboration, she creates live installations and performances that involve, reimagine and question the boundaries between the maker and the audience. Ruben Green is a poet, musician and performance artist whose work attempts to unpack inbetweennesses, often through writing and performing texts. They hold a non-essentialist view of the world. They settle for they/them in writing about themselves but would probably write in first person to avoid the issue usually. They are generally uncomfortable with classification and definability, more comfortable with transitional spaces, have picked writing as their primary medium almost self-flagellating. They believe inbetweeness is political, where language seeks to categorise. Extract meaning from context to infinity. Forget their name, their title, their identification, their self-description. Learn them by watching.
The Maybe Museum is a live museum. Responding to the archaic format of institutional presentation, the project takes stories, history, myth and objects outside, into the landscape of the Alentejo region. Instead of a curated, didactic space, The Maybe Museum is a performed, surreal history that will take audiences on a highly experiential journey through the local area. During a four-week period of research, we will amass the Museum’s “collection”. This “collection” will draw on local historical quirks, recounted memories of specialists in the region (such as those working with cork or marble), archival material and cultural heritage. These strands of potential histories will be woven into a narrative where fiction and fact entwine to present a new way of understanding the local area. Inspired in part by Cante Alentejano and polyphonic storytelling, and by the absurd idea of an UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List, the project will develop three polyphonic tours that make myth and heritage tangible. These three tours make up the three floors of the intangible Museum, and will be themed around language (and questions of translation), the land (farming, natural habitats and psychogeography) and loss (anything the museum can’t keep).