After Participation – Collective Action Group

After Participation / Empty Action – standing around : illegality of unemployment in Soviet Union

Action in to life

+ Documenting participation

“Collective Actions’ most defining claim in this context is that they ‘do not have the goal of “showing” something’ to the viewer-participants.xviii The main device that Collective Actions are using in these early Actions is the reduction of the experience of the Action. The Action is made such that it appears invisible, or ’empty’, as they call it. But even though the viewer-participants don’t see much of the Action, their reports are considerably long. Instead of focusing exclusively on pulling the rope from one end of the field to another for one and a half hours, Pivovarova and seemingly the other viewer-particiants get distracted by the fact that there were potatoes left behind on the field, and were seriously considering gathering them up, since there was a shortage of potatoes at the time.xix Similarly, Pivovarova’s report on Lieblich (1976) dedicates only four sentences to the description of the actual Action. The rest of her report talks about the weather, the social atmosphere, and about ‘some hearty young men in swim trunks.’xx Pivovarova’s more obvious reflection on work and free time reads as follows:”

  • narrative of participation

“…These incidental details are not merely distracted comments – they are fundamental to the autonomy of the reports, bringing out elements which were not part of the Actions, but were somehow significant for the viewer-participants. The expanded context of the Action that the reports generate goes far beyond the boundaries of where the Action takes place.”

  • Every day nature of action >> Bulgoa/ IF I can’t dance book on 18 Pictures and 18 Stories based on practive of Isidoro Valcarcel Medina and connected to lived research practice of Bulgoa z/b – making personal as political – public (researching in public – old corner store office: open / visible) as daily reminder and questioning of how they are organised and are organising their research. See: notes on Bulgoa z/b