press release

MINI/Goethe-Institut Curatorial Residencies Ludlow 38 is pleased to announce the opening of Molecular Revolution in Brazil in New York: Micropolitics and Cartographies of Desire. For this last project of the 2014 program, curatorial resident Eva Birkenstock invited the São Paulo-based initiative P.A.C.A. (Programa de Ações Culturais Autônomas, or Program for Autonomous Cultural Action) to jointly organize a seminar and series of events. During the course of the project, the gallery will transform into a space for readings, research, discussion, screenings, and lectures.

P.A.C.A. was founded in 2014 by the anthropologist and poet Pedro de Niemeyer Cesarino; artist and philosopher Amilcar Packer; psychoanalyst, philosopher, and cultural critic Suely Rolnik; and writer and cultural critic Max Jorge Hinderer Cruz. It was conceived as an independent laboratory for ethical and aesthetic knowledge production and experimental public education. Through a series of public seminars, P.A.C.A. intends to formulate a theoretical and practical toolbox in order to “uninstall, deprogram, dodge, evade, and undo the dominant, segregational politics of production of subjectivity structured by the colonial unconscious” (Rolnik). Following anthropologist Eduardo Viveiros de Castro, P.A.C.A. explores the question of how to devise and enact a “permanent decolonization of thought.”

The first seminars were held earlier this year at São Paulo’s cultural center Casa Do Povo; Ludlow 38 and P.A.C.A. now bring the discussion to the local context of New York City. Looking back at the heterogeneous forms of political experience unchained by the wave of protests that swept the globe during the past several years, a public reading group will discuss the notion of micropolitics as a common framework for research on the production of subjectivity and the politics of desire.

The point of departure for the project is the book Molecular Revolution in Brazil by Suely Rolnik and Félix Guattari (published in English in 2007, originally released in Brazil in 1986 as Micropolíticas: Cartografias do Desejo). Between 1982 and 1984, only a few years before the end of the military dictatorship, Rolnik and Guattari undertook a series of meetings with members of minority groups, political and social movements, union leaders, and other activists in Brazil. A trans-historical and trans-continental cartography of political movements, these conversations ultimately constitute Guattari and Rolnik’s book, which sought to connect the experience of May ’68 in Paris with the new forms of alliances and political formations emerging in Brazil in the early 1980s, during years of arduous struggle for the redemocratization of the political system.

Molecular Revolution in Brazil in New York: Micropolitics and Cartographies of Desire proposes to analyze excerpts of this publication, as well as additional texts by Rolnik, Guattari, Gilles Deleuze, and Beatriz Preciado against the backdrop of current political struggles in Latin America, Europe, and the United States. In the evenings, the seminar component of the project will be complemented by programs on related artistic strategies and other past and present cultural contexts, including: Console and Classify, Therapy and Art: Psychiatry and Modern Art in Brazil, a lecture by art historian Kaira Cabañas; a presentation of Suely Rolnik’s project Archive for a Work-Event: Activating the Body’s Memory of Lygia Clark’s Practice; a conversation with artist, musician, and producer Lee Jaffee; Doris Criolla, a dinner with Creole food by Amilcar Packer; and a screening of the video essays Assemblages (2010) and The Life of Particles (2012) by Berlin-based artist Angela Melitopoulos and Paris-based philosopher Maurizio Lazzarato.

Molecular Revolution in Brazil in New York: Micropolitics and Cartographies of Desire is initiated and organized by Eva Birkenstock, Max Jorge Hinderer Cruz, and Amilcar Packer.