“What is this learning that gives us agency to cope, resist and change current conditions and ‘make other worlds possible’ from wherever and whatever is our position: as practitioners, activists, artists, researchers, students and ordinary citizens?”
— Doina Petrescu, Learn to Act for an Engaged Everyday Life (2017)
In the rural north-east of Scotland at Scottish Sculpture Workshop, we are working with artist collective Myvillages on the first BE PART Fieldwork. Over the next 2 years we are looking to bring people together who use informal economies in their everyday lives. Together we will create an international co-learning programme called The Rural School of Economics.
Myvillages understands economies as the way we assign value to things and organise relationships – they are social, cultural and should benefit those who make them. The School will create a space for bringing together a broad range of rural knowledge and skills – things we do in our daily lives in rural villages and the countryside, and connect this with other rural communities across the world. Learning will take place in the sites where this knowledge and these different economies happen. The classrooms will be the fields, sheds, tracks, village halls and living rooms of the students and teachers (who are one and the same).
The Rural School of Economics sets out to value and share the decentralised, self-organised and creative ways we get together and live. We will explore how everyday lived experience of the rural is key to a collective, anti-capitalist and ecologically conscious future. We have ambitions for this project to grow into a long-term networked alliance of people, groups and cultural/ civic organisations who connect traditional and progressive economic cultures.
If you live close to SSW and are interested in taking part, or just want to hear more about the Rural School of Economics, please get in touch! We would love to hear from you. Contact Jenny – firstname.lastname@example.org or phone us on 01464 861372.
Myvillages is an artist group founded in 2003 by Kathrin Böhm (UK / DE), Wapke Feenstra (NL) and Antje Schiffers (DE). Their work addresses the evolving relationship between the rural and the urban, looking at different forms of production, pre-conceptions and power relationships. Myvillages initiates and organises international artistic projects which range from small-scale informal presentations to long-term collaborative research projects, from work in private spaces to public conferences, from exhibitions to publications and from personal questions to public debate. Read more about MyVillages here, and see The Rural School of Economics on their website.