INTERVALS: FUTUREFARMERS MAY 4-14 @ GUGGENHEIM.

INTERVALS: FUTUREFARMERS, May 4–14, 2011 @Guggenheim

Futurefarmers, a San Francisco–based art collective, creates projects that are diverse both in terms of production and in their strategies of audience engagement. Recent projects include lunchboxes that incorporate hydrogen-producing algae, antiwar computer games, and the Urban Garden Registry (2008), an online map of unused land sites in San Francisco that are feasible for gardening and food production. If anything typifies a Futurefarmers project, it is the balance of both critical and optimistic thought and the use of both inventive and pragmatic design elements. In 2005 the group examined the vanishing art of shoemaking in the installation Shoelace Exchange; for the Guggenheim’s Intervals series the group further investigates this craft with a site-specific installation for the museum.

Intervals is designed to reflect the spirit of today’s most innovative practices. Conceived to take place in the interstices of the museum’s exhibition spaces, in individual galleries, or beyond the physical confines of the building, the program invites emerging practitioners to create new work. As an extension of the existing seating on the ground floor of the Frank Lloyd Wright–designed rotunda, the cobbler’s bench, materials, and shoe racks of a shoemaker’s atelier form the nucleus of a series of events that address the relationship between the sole and the soul. The atelier is an open interpretation of Simon the shoemaker’s studio, of fifth century Athens, in which Socrates had extensive philosophical discussions with Simon and local youth, creating an informal classroom or “thinkery.”

Futurefarmers opens their ten-day thinkery with Soul/Sole Sermons, delivered by contemporary writers in the shoemaker’s atelier. Futurefarmers will also venture outside the museum for more intimate public dialogues with contemporary thinkers throughout the city. The group will collect sidewalk dirt, the main ingredient for a Futurefarmers-made ink. Using this ink, passersby will print transcripts of the Soul/Sole Sermons and the public dialogues by foot in a series of participatory urban actions called the Pedestrian Press.

This new work provides a poetic entry point and tools for audiences to gain insight into deeper fields of inquiry—not only to imagine, but also to participate and initiate change in the places where we live.

—David van der Leer, Assistant Curator, Architecture and Urban Studies

The Leadership Committees for the Intervals series and Intervals: Futurefarmers are gratefully acknowledged.

All programs are free with museum admission or, if held outside the museum, free. Further details will be announced via Twitter feeds @Guggenheim and#Futurefarmers.

EVENTS:

Wednesday, May 4
Sole/Soul Sermons
The Road Made by Walking: Steps of an Inquiry 
Rebecca Solnit, activist and author of Wanderlust (2000), delivered by Astra Taylor, author and documentary filmmaker

Integrative Paleontology: The Paleontologist Is Barefoot Today
Bernadette Mayer, poet and author of Midwinter Day (written 1978; published 1982)

Futurefarmers Rosary: A Series of Spiritual Exercises for Perceiving the Soul
Cooley Windsor, author and Senior Adjunct Professor, California College for the Arts, San Francisco and Oakland
2–4 pm. Guggenheim Museum. No advance registration.

Friday, May 6
Shoemaker’s Dialogue 
How God’s Children Got Shoes: New York Shoemakers Confront the Industrial Revolution
Bruce Laurie, Emeritus Professor, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
12–2 pm. The General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen of the City of New York, 20 West 44th Street. 20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mailfuturefarmers@guggenheim.org.

Saturday, May 7
Pedestrian Press
3–5 pm. Festival of Ideas for the New City, StreetFest. Along the Bowery, near the New Museum. Meet at Bowery and Stanton Street. In the event of rain, Pedestrian Press will be canceled.
To find Futurefarmers and the Pedestrian Press, please follow @Guggenheim and #Futurefarmers on Twitter.

Sunday, May 8
Shoemaker’s Dialogue 
The Production of Nature 
Neil Smith, Distinguished Professor, Anthropology, City University of New York Graduate Center 12–3 pm. Meet at Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn. Participants will be informed of the exact location.
20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mailfuturefarmers@guggenheim.org.

Making Our Own Rules 
Activity for families in which participants create their own measurement system. Organized in conjunction with the Guggenheim Museum’s Just Drop In! family program. Open to anyone with children.
1–4 pm. Cobbler’s Bench in Rotunda, Guggenheim Museum. No advance registration.

Monday, May 9
Shoemaker’s Dialogue 
The History of the Shoe: From Aristotle to Warhol 
Michael Taussig, Professor of Anthropology, Columbia University, New York
7–9 pm, Spectacle Theater, 124 South 3rd Street, Brooklyn. 20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mail futurefarmers@guggenheim.org.

Film Screening
Examined Life (2008)
A screening of the documentary Examined Life followed by a question-and-answer session with director Astra Taylor. The film features eight influential philosophers, including Kwame Anthony Appiah, Avital Ronell, and Cornel West, discussing the practical application of their ideas to today’s world.
88 minutes. Courtesy Zeitgeist Films. No advance registration.
3–4:30 pm. New Media Theater, Sackler Center for Arts Education, Guggenheim Museum

Tuesday, May 10
Ink Gathering 
The Urban Ecology of New York City Starts with a Knowledge of the Land under Our Feet
Gillian Stewart, Associate Professor, Environmental Science, Queens College, City University of New York
10 am–3 pm. Meet at the Guggenheim Museum (membership desk) and continue by subway and bus to Jamaica Bay, N.Y. 20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mail futurefarmers@guggenheim.org.

Wednesday, May 11
Pedestrian Press
12–2 pm. Meet at the Guggenheim Museum (membership desk) and continue by subway to Soul Kitchen, a former shoemaking store in Harlem. 20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mail futurefarmers@guggenheim.org. In the event of rain, Pedestrian Press will be canceled.
To find Futurefarmers and the Pedestrian Press please follow @Guggenheim and #Futurefarmers on Twitter.

Film Screening
Examined Life (2008) 
3–4:30 pm. New Media Theater, Sackler Center for Arts Education, Guggenheim Museum. No advance registration.

Making Our Own Rules 
Workshop for adult visitors following the screening of Examined Life.
4:30–5 pm. Cobbler’s Bench in the Rotunda, Guggenheim Museum. No advance registration.

Friday, May 13
Ink Gathering 
Particle Pollution and Other Pedestrian Encounters
David Wheeler, Environmental Engineer at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Thomas Matte, Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, City University of New York School of Public Health
12–2 pm. Meet at the Guggenheim Museum (membership desk) and walk through the city, reflecting upon the effects of the human footprint on the landscape. 20 spots available, registration required. Please e-mailfuturefarmers@guggenheim.org.

Saturday, May 14
Pedestrian Press
The culminating event of the ten-day project in which parts of the Sole/Soul Sermons and Shoemaker’s Dialogues will be printed with the help of passersby.
12–4 pm. Meet at the Guggenheim Museum (membership desk) and continue by foot through the city. 20 spots available. Please e-mailfuturefarmers@guggenheim.org. In the event of rain, Pedestrian Press will be canceled.
To find Futurefarmers and the Pedestrian Press, please follow @Guggenheim and #Futurefarmers on Twitter.

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