Renowned Geographer, Anthropologist and Urban thinker, David W. Harvey, states in his essay titled ‘Rebel Cities: From the Right to the City to the Urban Revolution’ that “Capitalist urbanisation tends to destroy the city as a social, political and livable commons...Urbanisation is about the production of an urban commons (or its shadow-form of public spaces and public goods) and its perpetual appropriation and destruction by private interests.”
Artists have historically been leaders of voices of dissent - questioning the established order while offering new creative visions of the future. On the background of worldwide urban growth and as a response to destructive privitization processes, one of the cultural needs that arises is a counter reaction - finding vital artistic strategies, practices and platforms which can nourish free inter-personal and inter cultural communal exchanges and an artistic re-appropriation of urban life.
Artist Residency programs are cultural platforms which allow the artist to explore her practice within another community, often emphasizing the importance of a multi-layered cultural exchange and the importance of experiment and process. The HomeBase Project (HB), an independent, nomadic, artist-run residency and research program, exploring the notion of “home”, is committed to creating temporary community-based cultural “homes” in different cities in the world in collaboration with diverse communities of artists, residents, activists, partners and municipalities - from NYC to Berlin to Jerusalem, Saitama and beyond.
Driven by the quest to challenge the role of the artist in setting new social and cultural paradigms while demonstrating the right to the city - an idea first proposed by sociologist and philosopher Henri Lefebvre in his 1968 book Le Droit à la ville, the HB project unfolds as a subtle subversive artistic movement against the mainstream capitalist grain. We aim to create liberating spaces and a continuity of memory, bringing one back “home” to core human roots of interconnectedness while bridging gaps between generations, genders, cultures and classes, changing how we live in cities through contemporary art.
Anat Litwin, December 2016
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