Critical Nodes 2022-2023

The Research Matter works by combining the devices mentioned: Nine Seminars and Ten Critical Nodes. The Critical Nodes are structured around activities in different formats (encounters, study days, work sessions, congresses) at specific points throughout 2023.

Live Arts and Critical Practices

In collaboration with the research and performative creation group ARTEA and the research project by Spain’s Ministry of Science and Innovation directed by Fernando Quesada (The New Loss of Centre. Critical Practices of Live Arts and Architecture in the Anthropocene), the Museo welcomes, annually, a research group centred on thinking about the relationships between bodies, territories and conflicts. In the current edition, entitled Collective Mourning and Planetary Mourning, coordinated by Isabel de Naverán (Azkuna Zentroa and Museo Reina Sofía), a series of six work sessions is carried out between 20 December 2022 and 26 January 2023. These sessions work on the perspective of situated ecology and from the link between body and species, from the thread tying together the collective experience of mourning as a sensitive demand opposite the current landscape of climate disaster. The Node will be complemented with activities from the Expanded Theatricalities Chair held in the spring of 2023.

Environmental Studies

From the last quarter of 2022 onwards, the Museo will welcome a series of environmentally oriented activities, twenty years on from the sinking of the Prestige. The historical importance of the environmental vector in understanding Spanish developmentalism is the subject matter of a series of activities to be held in the spring of 2023. Equally, the political responses to the global environmental crisis are considered in an international seminar coordinated by Fundación de los Comunes (Foundation of the Commons), under the title Capitalocene Utopias. This Node is completed with a series of live music events, a documentary exhibition in Space D of the Museo Reina Sofía Library and Documentation Centre (Cards on the Table. The Memory of Nunca Máis and Stacked Political Cards) and the fourth edition of the Aníbal Quijano Chair on decolonial thought, directed by Rita Segato and organised around the question: Can we be ecological under an extractive episteme?

Critical Sociology

In May 2023, the Sociología Ordinaria collective will organise the eleventh edition of the Encounter of Ordinary Sociology, a forum which brings together multiple approaches to the cultural and political critique of popular and subaltern social forms. The question of taste in relation to the violation of social norms and from the complex and disruptive vector of profanity encourages innovative formats of academic participation that turn this forum into a place of encounter with researchers of critical sociology. It establishes a space coordinated by Complutense University of Madrid (UCM) researchers Elena Casado, Amparo Lasen, Rubén Blanco and Antonio García.

Dissident Bodies

From the working line on LGTBIQ+ in contemporary culture, the Museo welcomes initiatives of research and activation which, under forms yet to be defined — reading group, performance, seminar and public conversation — call into question the place of bodies, their vulnerability, their strangeness, their commitment and their desire. This Node, coordinated by Jesús Carrillo (Autonomous University of Madrid, UAM), deals with the violence, complexities and contradictions of the present from listening to multiple bodies, acting as a platform and speaker of struggling bodies from the pandemic era.

Situated Thought

At the beginning of the summer of 2022, the Museo welcomed The Chair of Situated Thought. De-Constituent: Practices and Imaginaries to Come, directed by Ileana Diéguez (Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana de México, campus-Cuajimalpa) and Ana Longoni (University of Buenos Aires). The nomadic nature of this forum allows it to be accommodated in a different Latin American context every year to gauge citizen struggles in each place and from there to weave political alliances with attuned collectives. Thus, slowly and surely, the field of situated thought emerges, an experimental territory lying between artistic practice, militant action and emancipatory thought and which traces, in public and institutional spaces, a cartography of struggles and networks of resistance. The events linked to this Node are streamed online. In September 2023, a series of activities will be held in connection to the memory of Salvador Allende’s Government fifty years later.

Militant Research

For the spring of 2023, the Museo en Red team, in collaboration with Fundación de los Comunes (Foundation of the Commons), La Laboratoria and the Institute of Radical Imagination, will put forward a space of training and research around the specific nature of forms of militant research. This research takes place in activist projects associated with independent practices of organisation and through the development of liberated tools and methodologies, beyond academia, the state and the market. A latticework of collaborators and people-in-residence from the Museo’s different networks interchange experiences and knowledge in crossed conversations.

Older Legacies

Driven by Fundación Gabeiras, the Museo holds a series of study sessions on artists’ legacies in the context of ageing. The issue of age gives rise to multiple political, cultural and anthropological challenges from their links to archive, heritage, well-being, universal basic income, demographic imagination and the cultures of care. These sessions are part of a broader framework of research and public intervention with which the Museo collaborates.

Meso-American and Caribbean Circulations

Aware of the need to interrogate, from the Museo, seemingly invisible cultural spaces, this Node seeks to place value on the historical and artistic legacies of Central American and Caribbean countries, considered part of a formidable cultural continent, to which Spanish institutions and audiences have paid little attention. The patent cultural and (post)colonial links that cross through comings and goings between the peninsular and circum-Caribbean, the question around indigenous nations or Afro-Caribbean cultures, and the intensive flow of diasporic, resistance-based, transcultural, and climatic exchanges enliven a programme comprising a series of activities and events.

The Guattari Dictionary

In conjunction with the exhibition Machinations (31 May – 28 August 2023), different events are welcomed with links to machined political thought: forms of film work, art and political action in complex spheres such as mental health, anti-colonial guerrillas, care and associative spaces. This Node is organised through a series of screenings, an encounter with researchers of the Machinations project and sessions devoted to a study on the work of Félix Guattari.

Research Projects on Wikipedia

With the collaboration of Carolina Espinoza, across the 2022–2023 academic year, the Museo sets up a work team to develop projects in collaboration with Wikimedia España. Those interested can join this group with objectives that include self-training as wikipedians, the development of Wiki working methodologies in the Museo, and publishing and the development of encounters among wikipedians.

From Malaise

Organised by Entrar Afuera, Locus* (Nada Colectivo) and Museo en Red, this Critical Node puts forward a framework of research on community mental health, critical institutionalism and the possibility of radio as a collective practice of communication. The confluence of these three strands sets forth a hypothesis on cultural practice as a potential space for care and social transformation, inside the framework of the structural malaise rooted in the capitalist system. Across five sessions, the Node explores the ways of living and facing contradictions inside and outside institutions, from first-person experience, artistic practice, institutional work and activism.