A Score for Sharing Negativity

14 November 2015, 15:00 / Casco HQ

Building the exhibition architecture for We Are the Time Machines: Time and Tools for Commoning (15 November 2015–13 March 2016) has just begun. As the opening gets closer, the study and conversations around where, what, and how to common with art and its institutions gain in intensity. Today we are especially delighted to update you on artist Mattin’s opening performance combining noise and improvisation – and to ask you to actualize it with us.

A Score for Sharing Negativity by Mattin, the Casco team, and you

In an effort to “share negativity” a score will be produced for the opening with Mattin and the entire Casco team, as well as the audience and those involved in organizing the opening. The “performers” are asked to share their negative critiques, half-formed thoughts, frustrations, or experiences developed through the making of We Are the Time Machines as they take it in. Everybody is welcome to perform under their own name, a pseudonym, or anonymously. Rather than affirming the project’s intentions, contents, and form, the score prompts questions to dislocate what one knows and give room for expressions of insecurity. It attempts to create a situation wherein performers and audience alike participate at their own pace in a concentrated concert condition.

The performance was recorded and uploaded to archive.org so that anyone can have access to it and/or analyze it. In doing so we hope we achieve an exercise in what Mattin calls “Open Source Subjectivity.” 

@Score for Sharing Negativity (Carte blanche for brutal honesty)

Express – in the most honest possible way and without trying to be clever– negative thoughts about the situation that you are in, whether it be related to this exhibition or not.

Insecurities, doubts, frustrations, problems, fears, existential crises, negative qualities that often are not expressed, those hidden thoughts that you would usually dare not say, that which you feel uncomfortable about saying publicly, including difficult issues that have to do with money and work conditions.

Try to mold those strange feelings into words; even if this means being very critical of your peers and the situation that you are part of.

In fact, be as critical as possible.

It doesn’t matter if you are unsure or if you don’t know exactly what to say. Just follow your negative train of thought.

Don’t prepare beforehand.

Take your time.

You can express these thoughts under your own name, a pseudonym, or without a name.

Record these thoughts and make them public.[1]

Mattin is a Basque artist working with noise and improvisation. His work seeks to address the social and economic structures of experimental music production through live performance, recordings, and writing. Mattin considers improvisation not only as an interaction between musicians and instruments, but as a situation involving all the elements that constitute a concert, including the audience and the social and architectural space. He tries to expose the stereotypical relation between active performer and passive audience, producing a sense of strangeness and alienation that disturbs this relationship. He has over seventy releases on different labels around the world. He runs the experimental record labels w.m.o/r and Free Software Series, and the netlabel Desetxea. Mattin publishes his music under the no-license of Anti-copyright. With Anthony Iles, he has edited the book Noise & Capitalism.

[1] This score is written by Mattin and collectively edited by the Casco team and contributors to the exhibition and study program We Are the Time Machines: Time and Tools for Commoning. The first performance took place at the opening, 14 November, 15:00 hrs and lasts until the end of the exhibition on 13 March 2016. The recorded audio file will be updated weekly and uploaded here. Both the score and the recorded material are anti-copyright. Anybody can do anything they want with this material.


Casco’s program is made possible with financial support from City Council of Utrecht, Mondriaan Fund, DOEN Foundation, and European Union Culture Programme. We Are the Time Machines: Time and Tools for Commoning is also supported by K.F. Hein Fund.

This activity is part of:

An exhibition and study program to generate “tools” for practicing the commons.

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