Lazy Slum began thusly:
12 Artists, An empty space. The dawn of a civilization. As part of an ARI exchange program Melbourne-based Tape Projects and Hobart-based Six_a will invade and colonize Blindside. Lazy Slum will be a cross-disciplinary experiment in what happens when you build a society from scratch. Think Lord of the Flies meets Better Homes and Gardens. Dystopian community meets tribal display home. Over three days a game will unfold where audience and artists alike are governed by the rules and roles of this fleeting micro community.
Let the games begin.
The results were a shambolic, hilarious, intensely absorbing, exhausting 3 days of engaging with each other as artists as well as the captive audience of the art crowds who flock to the Nicholas building during the open studio. The fine line between utopian experiment and slouching towards rave cave was crossed and re-crossed many times over…
The space was divided into zones, within which certain agreed upon activities would take place- activities we deemed neccessary to the functioning of a society, such as: waste disposal, arts and crafts, a town centre where daily rituals could be enacted and meetings held, food and sustenance etc. Each collaborating artist began at one station and was responsible for setting it up, but then were expected to rotate through all the stations over the course of the 3 days- contributing to all aspects of the society as it emerged. Visitors to the space were given the slightly uncomfortable and loaded option of either a work or tourist visa, and asked to contribute something during their stay. Some were reasonably bewildered by this, probably not helped by the extra expectation that they would have to at some point join us in our group snuggy- the national costume of choice at Lazy Slum.
However, over all, we had maximum engagement from a huge diversity of visitors- young and old- who were more than happy to pull on the group snuggy, create an offering for our Leader (did I mention our oracle, Lee, was on skype from Thailand, taking questions in her oracle cave at one end of the gallery?), imbibe our cheap cask wine, contribute thoughts to our important town decision making process, and nibble on a toastie before going on their merry way.
Here is the visual evidence of the new society we created:
TAPR artist Tanja Milbourne also set up a time lapse camera in the space throughout the whole collaboration- the results can be viewed here:
Lazy Slum at Blindside ARI August 2010 from Tape Projects on Vimeo.
It has been reviewed on the interweb, here: Not Quite Critics
Filed under: 2010, TAPR Artist Event, TAPR Documentation