1-54 Forum : Crafting wor[l]ds: for a vernacular economy of art

ONLINE, Paris, France
19 Feb 2021 - 27 Feb 2021

1-54 Forum Marrakech 2020 at LE 18, Disguised as a Dancefloor by Joe Namy. ©Michael Huard /say-who

1-54 Forum Marrakech 2020 at LE 18, Disguised as a Dancefloor by Joe Namy. ©Michael Huard /say-who

Following the events over the Paris fair, 1-54 Forum, curated by LE 18, continues next week with five events, from screenings to webinars and live performances all accessible online in English and French.

« La culture, c’est ce qui nous survit, ce qui nous permet d’inscrire la fragilité de l’humain dans la durée, d’entrer dans une forme de permanence alors que tout n’est que précarité. C’est ce qui nous permet d’imaginer ce qui n’existe pas encore, et donc de comprendre que nous ne sommes pas condamnés à ce qui existe. » Achille Mbembe, 2020

Curatorial Statement:

Shaped by social distancing and the virtualisation of cultural interactions, 1-54 Forum will move from the locality in which LE 18 is embedded, to explore some of the many ways in which artistic, curatorial, and mediation movements are not only navigating through, but also engaging with the deep material and epistemic fractures produced and reproduced by capitalism, modernity, and (neo)colonialism over the past centuries.

As the curators of 1-54 Forum, we call for the artists, the bricoleurs, the impostors even. We turn to those who claim no field of expertise, the ‘undisciplined’ in every discipline, in order to explore the material sites they occupy and the poetics they invoke for the making and remaking of the real; redressing and fabricating discourses, memories, and imaginaries for worlds and words yet to come. While questioning the very role that the artistic can play in a world in crisis, we propose to look at the ways in which new ecologies of cultural practices are emerging, drawing from vernacular principles and circular dynamics.


A full curatorial statement can be read here. To read the programme listed in French, click here.



Instagram Live Performance | Sonic Archaeologies
Friday, 19 February, 4pm GMT
Tune into 1-54’s Instagram to watch a live radio performance by ABDELLAH HASSAK in conversation with artist-performer GHASSAN EL HAKIM, initiator of Cabaret Cheikhat, and artist OTHMANE EL KHELOUFI, composer, saxophonist and theater director.


Screening | Handroid City
Sunday, 21 February, 3pm GMT
Filmed in Nigeria, Benin, Tanzania, Brazil and China, Handroid City, by artist EMO DE MEDEIROS, investigates how mobile phone technology choreographs contemporary life via a series of close-ups of human hands using, fixing or selling mobile phones, déambulations in “digital districts”, as well as drone shots pointing at the homogenization of urban space triggered by technological capitalism. Originally a triptych, this unique presentation and screening is a mixing of the 500 video clips that make up the original work.

Webinar | Resounding Waves: on the making of sonic solidarities through radio
Wednesday, 24 February, 6pm GMT
Departing from their respective research projects Radio Earth Hold and we dreamt of utopia and we woke up screaming, in this conversation RACHEL DEDMAN and YASMINA REGGAD explore the formation of sonic solidarities across different regions and liberation struggles, carried out by and through radio, sounds, acoustics and acousmatics in Palestine, Algeria, and beyond.

Webinar | An Oral Gaze: Between Bouanani and Sembene
Friday, 26 February, 6pm GMT
Led by NADIR BOUHMOUCH and bringing together artist TOUDA BOUANANI and filmmaker/film scholar SAMBA GADJIGO, this conversation situates itself at the intersection between African cinema and the popular oral arts which have sometimes inspired it. With a focus on Ousmane Sembene and Ahmed Bouanani, the discussion will revolve around how the oral arts have inspired or informed the works of African film pioneers looking to “Decolonise the Gaze.”

Webinar | Making and Unmaking Art Schools from The Nineteenth Century to the Present
Saturday, 27 February, 2pm GMT
In this conversation led by FRANCESCA MASOERO and guided by the research of curators and art historians AUDE MGBA, NADINE ATALLAH, we will explore histories of the making, unmaking, and remaking of artistic learnings and schooling institutes across the African continent.


Links for screenings can be found here, as well as registration links for each webinar. Events can be listened to in either English or French, depending on your preference.


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