a. "the common project"

An ongoing project by 16Beaver Group

For four years, 16 Beaver Group has been experimenting with a variety of open social formats. These have included regular discussions, readings, presentations, actions, correspondence, e-mail lists, meals, collaborative projects, interviews, etc.

In our recent Open Interview and Lunch (in collaboration with FUSE Magazine) a simple game structure replaced the conventional I You-interviewer-interviewee relationship by the less rigid multiplicity of voices characteristic of collective efforts.

Now, instead of inviting each other to ask and answer questions and circulate them through separate or overlapping social networks, we are sending out the idea and structure of the open list, based on the rather arbitrary number 16.

The participants in this ongoing project -be they individuals or groups- elaborate an incomplete list of 16 things, which can be gradually completed, derived, delivered, linked, subdivided, expanded, put into action or activities or related to other lists of 16 things.

Many of the lists will remain open or incomplete, others will have to wait to be linked with others. They might be lists or collections of texts, sounds, images, videos, photographs, objects, concepts, or anything else. They might be of formal, political, aesthetic, economic, or any other interest.  They might be strategies, tactics, plans or they may describe processes, historical, revolutionary, utopian, unknown.

Everyone is invited to participate, so if you have a list(s) or wish to help us complete one, please send a message to:


To view the development of this web of lists, visit

Where and when:

This project comes as a response to our being invited to "represent" or "do" what we do within a variety of contexts or events outside of the 16Beaver space.

Like the open interview with FUSE or the Operation How, Now, Wow the International Festival of Dissent we coordinated in the Spring, we wanted to create a project that could grow and create further links and connections, remain porous, inclusive, open.  The Common Project attempts to create a structure whereby we can work together while working separately, maintaining an certain autonomy within our areas of research and exploration, while also finding a way to formally tie things together, into a fixed and playfully arbitrary system.

In addition to the current shows in Leipzig and Weimar, this project will also be shown in the “24/7” exhibition at the Contemporary Art Center in Vilnius, Lithuania this Fall. 

 b. About ‘get rid of yourself’


Artist Collectives and Collaborating Artists in the USA -- 7/26 - 10/12/03

We are pleased to announce the 13th joint summer exhibition between ACC Weimar and Stiftung Federkiel (previously a cotton mill), Leipzig, Germany from July 26th until October 12th, 2003. The two concurrent exhibitions, jointly named "Get Rid Of Yourself" will introduce ten contemporary activist artist collectives consisting of independent art publications, artist cooperatives, fictitious artist enterprises, self organized discussion and presentation platforms as well as contemporary artist networks, from New York, Chicago and San Francisco.

Opening receptions: ACC Weimar: July 26th August 9th August 23rd, 2003 Halle 14, Leipzig: August 2nd, August 16th August 30th, 2003 The participating artists will make presentations in the afternoons of these days, interaction is encouraged and entry is free. The participating artists include Matthew Buckingham, Bernadette Corporation, Cabinet Magazine, eteam, NYC Surveillance Camera Players, Michael Rakowitz, Anne-Marie Schleier, 16Beaver Group, Temporary Services and The 360degrees Team.

In contrast to the ever decreasing social services in the US, artist collectives are thus on the rise. Artist collectives and initiatives are becoming more and more part of the art production in the United States, where tendencies towards a so called “police state” and hegemony are so very apparent and topical after 9/11 and the Iraq war. Several questions are posed within these concurrent exhibitions: -

How much are artist collectives able to affect their immediate community locally and globally and on what scale?

Do artist collectives/collaboratives practice and hold any manner of social responsibility and if so to what extent?

Get Rid Of Yourself is also the title of a new film by the Bernadette corporation. It embodies a state of worthlessness, cynicism, depression and faintheartedness, yet also a feeling of a strongly increasing protest and critical stance. The art is placed outside of the traditional art venue, for example the Museum and exists as intervention in a non-traditional framework, such as in the street (Michael Rakowitz's 'gestures' for example), collaborations with non-art initiatives or under cover interventions in public spaces that cut short the conventional patterns of art in the art market. They utilize the internet (or sometimes even pirate radio stations) as a communications tool operating both on a local and global level. The exhibited artists and artist collectives are united in that their actions are utterly autonomous in their approach to different facets of society, which they often critique.

Themes such as public surveillance, homelessness, anti-globalization, anti -warfare and real estate speculation are addressed.


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