In Conversation with Matias Daporta Gonzalez

Matias is an artist and curator.
Born in Cambados, Spain. Lives in Barcelona. Locked down in Madrid.

‘Everyone is thinking to study practical stuff. It’s the collapse of culture, they say, so better be prepared.’

I met Matias as the boyfriend of a very close friend of mine and had a primarily human contact with him before an artistic one. Building on his background on dance, theater, film and fashion design, his world of play investigates the spheres of our social encounters as a combination of the virtual and the physical. I choose the word play on purpose here. I feel that his broad practice is like a playground where things are put together and reorganized in different ways, prompting us to reconsider definitions concerning arts, contemporary practices, performance and curation, as we discussed in our conversation. This correspondence has taken his inspirational ways of thinking and doing beyond our physical conversations for me.

This e-mail correspondence took place between Fatih Gençkal and Matías Daporta Gonzalez from May 1 to July 30, 2020 .

From: Fatih Genckal
Matias Daporta Gonzalez
Sent: Friday
, 1 May 2020 22:32
Dear Matias,
I want to start an interview experiment. I will ask you one question everyday and you will have 24 hours to respond to it. Then I will ask the next question based on your answers or my curiosities. You can also ask me questions in your answers and interview me in a way. It will be like a conversation.
If you answer quickly, I can ask the next question right away, so we don’t have to wait 24 hours. It can turn into texting each other too. Or not.
Please feel free to write as you are speaking.  Follow the spark the question starts in you.
So here is the first question:
What do you see happening with you and around you since the beginning of home confinement?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 2 May 2020 13:00
At first, my body shook. I got skin allergy, headaches… Though mood-wise, I was fine, something off was coming out from the inside. Like if my inner body knew more about the confinement than my brain, which was able to ignore it to keep working.
Later I realize that it was my body adapting to a natural rhythm.  Once I have erased social pressures, the hopeless feeling of not being able to do some things, the feeling that you are working slower and less efficient than normal… Everything became peaceful. It took 50 days for a new normal take over my household and its nice.
Wondering if it is the same with you in Turkey…

Fatih Genckal 2 May 2020 17:17
It is many different things for many people I guess. For me, it started like a much desired opportunity to retreat and focus on things I want to do. There is so much to do of course:) And in time I have come to realize that I might be over-loading with stuff to do, see, read, write, watch etc. I keep myself relentlessly busy as if to escape from just being. Or rather missing out on this opportunity. I wonder if my precarious life rhythm has engrained in me a habit of being on edge for new ideas and things to do all the time. So I can say I am in the process of looking for the peace that you seem to have found. And once settled in, do you think this new normal is a temporary normal?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 2 May 2020 18:18
I doubt! I believe we will soon come back to the loop. Maybe a bit more conscious, a bit more eco… But not a major change. Same as in 2008, during the previous crisis we were all very hopeful but, looking back, the core of the problem was not defeated.

Fatih Gençkal 2 May 2020 18:26
Isn’t the nature of this is different than 2008? What needs to be defeated do you think? And here is the big one: how? 😇

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 4 May 2020 16:20
The nature is different… But the hope that it awakens is the same, and claims for the same change. I mean, we can find similar statements in both periods: the end of capitalism, working together, creating community… But at the end of the day, the big enterprises rule and function faster than society, which gets immediately overwhelmed by their propaganda.
I believe that radical change needs to come from the government. Until they don’t set limits to the big companies and fortunes, nothing will happen. This idea of the limits is interesting in terms of ecofeminism. Yayo Herrero, a sociologist I really fancy, speaks that one thing we need to start incorporating in our way of thinking is about the natural limit: earth. All our decision should start to be taken with that premise always in mind. I personally try to train it, but it’s difficult. In the macro level, this thinking would allow us to legislate in a way: you cannot be as rich because of the earth limit. A human can not possess more than… or eat more than… or buy more than… And of course, this is more necessary and urgent in occidental countries, Japan and China.
What do you think about this idea of limits?
(Sorry it took me one day extra, but I try to avoid emails on Sunday)

Fatih Gençkal 4 May 2020 22:18
Back in the day, in the Economics 101 class, I remember the professor defined Economics as something like the study of allocation of limited resources to fulfill unlimited wants. I was intrigued by this definition which assumed that wants are unlimited and resources are limited. It looks like neoliberal capitalism is an experiment to push those limits. When resources run out, we can find more or create more. What is most important is that growth doesn’t stop. You know, the basic old capitalist argument is that when every individual interest is maximized, the social interest is maximized. But one can realize that each of these statements are political statements, or words that shape/inform a worldview. So I really believe that the real power lies in redefining things and building communities around that new language, rather than finding slogans. And this takes time and consistent effort, as you say. I think the limit is a good idea but it only means something within the context in which it lives -which is what we can aim to build. I think the government that can actually make changes will need to grow out of a public which can build and sustain it:) So it looks like an ongoing struggle.On a more personal level, how do you practice or train for the change you want to see?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 5 May 2020 00:50
Love these ideas you are sharing. Would love to know more, actually.
Regarding the question, I always explain that my activism lays on my artistic work. Which might not be as efficient or direct than more social activism, but this is where I manage to lead my energy towards. Since 3 or 4 years I started a project on culture homogenization, trying to make visible the importance of cultural diversity in every level of society, understanding culture as a common element in all aspects of our civilization: economy, sociology, justice… It is very diverse and strange project, we place it within the realm of invisible pedagogies. Through this project I got the job I have now, working in an institution as, lets say, active consultant. So, I design projects and improvements in this dance production house, and together with the team, we study how to bring them to life. They were not looking for an artist, but a cultural manager, but I came on their way and bet for me. I believe my “artistic” profile is shaking certain institutional practices. And from this position, I managed to organize a live arts association, so artists that were not represented by an institution have a new space to voice their claims. Then I opened a youtube channel, to talk about theatre in this context. Since I noticed there is a problematic lack of youtube about performing arts. And very few conversations that gives context to the works we make (I am talking about Spain).
This is sort of a brief summary of what I do. I see all these actions as part of my artistic project. A performance of transforming from within the institution…
Where do you place your activism?

Fatih Gençkal 5 May 2020 16:06
It is a very good point: very few conversations that gives context to the works we make. This is something I am thinking a lot about Turkey, too. Maybe generally true for ‘non-Western’ contexts. I don’t know if I would dare put an activism label on what I do, but of course there is an activist element here. Our ‘local’ initiatives can propose unique models in this sense but it is hard to influence the global conversation, which seems to be dominated by a Western European context of ideas and practices. Part of what we do in A Corner in the World is to nurture and make visible these conversations in the less visible parts of the world around us. I wrote an article published in Turkish in a web portal here a few years ago about how and why I took on roles of cultural manager, curator, director etc. after training and setting out as a performer and my main point was that these are all my artistic responses to the environment I live in. This is in a way why I started this interview series.
Give me some links to these projects you do so I can take a closer look -as much as my now broken Spanish allows me:) I was watching Brian Eno in conversation with Yanis Varoufakis a while ago where he was talking about the need to be clear and articulate about why art is important. He says part of the reason is that the people who traditionally talk and write about art are such bad thinkers, unclear in the way they think and articulate. I was intrigued by it. He talks about how play is a vital part of learning for children and when we become adults, we are discouraged from it. The pretending, the reorganising of things in different ways, seeing how things can be put together without much preconception. He then talks about imagination as a survival mechanism etc. In a way, this is what we are trying to do and it just happens to take different forms naturally, it is something not confined to one or few forms of expression but a constant mix.
Do you think, as arts practitioners, we have a voice in the critical discussions on a broader level? How can we nurture this within our context and to create a network among us?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 5 May 2020 17:32
I will sound very egocentric/egomaniac from my side, but I totally disagree with what they were saying in the conversation. I actually think that there are great thinkers in the art/cultural world. The problem is that there is no interest in making them visible. On one hand the audience does not want to think about culture in a complex way, they prefer to censor the conversation in order to not be critical and enjoy the Netflix (maybe superficial, racist, macho, conventional) show. Complex thinking can take away the pleasure of blocking your critical thinking after work. On the other hand, culture is loud, and politicians cannot afford to let it be free, they rather have cultural workers around that they can use to fit their discourse (so, culture serving a political agenda). The good thinkers are on the margins, not at the center. Please, send me Varoufakis’ number and I can give him a tour of cultural thinkers.
So, answering to your question, no, I don’t think our voice reaches far. Our influence is like the one of a virus, it’s there and it takes over little by little; but as a virus, it can be controlled and mitigated at a certain point. Culture and art has something to do with the COVID19 in that way. It has an effect now, it opens conversations, but it lasts until we allow it.
I don’t know if I fully grasp your last question. But what I feel to answer is that we already work as a network. It’s the only way to survive in such a precarious field. What we should start doing, and what we are trying to do at my office, is to formulate it on a digital platform. So, as to have a visual representation online of our network.

Fatih Gençkal 6 May 2020 00:14
I don’t think you are being egomaniac. Although I like Eno’s analogy of play, I essentially agree with you. I was actually trying to hint at the same thing. I find it a little weird to see these kinds of people -big names, usually male and over 50:)- being the most visible or getting the most interaction in the conversation. I don’t mean to devalue their contributions but I think we need to see other thinkers. I personally need to hear something new desperately. How can these voices be heard more? Or maybe it is ok that they are at the margins. It is meant to be because of all the reasons you mention. I also meant to ask this in a way to create more conversations among different contexts across alternatives, like yours and mine, without depending on traditional discourses to shape our world of thought. I feel we are lacking some fresh intellectual practice, especially in Turkey and this might have something to do with less contact with the inspiring alternatives at the margins around us. That’s where my curiosity lies anyway and that’s why I was asking some links to your work:)

Matias Daporta Gonzalez  6 May 2020 14:13
I forgot the links.I am bad at organising my documentation online. It is pending to create a web about the project #spanishwashing, the one we present a lawsuit against the state.
This is the youtube channel:
This is my job at the institution:
Give another 24 hours to think about that…

Fatih Gençkal 6 May 2020 17:53
Deal. I will check the links in the meantime.

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 7 May 2020 20:48
Everything should be on the move. The underground will always exist, but the communities in every period need to come out at some point. Because they have the key to the change. But that change will bever be ultimate, there will be someone younger, or from a different sphere saying that their voices are not represented.
So, the question is more how can we be sure that this process is moving. The ones visible are renewing the discourse constantly.
For example, in Galicia, where I come from, that never happened. We always had extreme right there, so the underground is basically everyone but them.
In Madrid, on the contrary, since we had the left until last year, there was a transformation. Some people from the margins got voices out, they got a bit of power, they made some changes… later we would need the new voices to replace them, and so on, and so on. Pity the right won the power, so we came back to the times before the left…
Does it make sense what I’m saying?

Fatih Gençkal 8 May 2020 14:56
Absolutely. That’s the nature of things, I guess, and the important thing is to make sure the process flows. It’s just that I sometimes get the feeling that the pipes are knotted.
In Turkey, I am seeing a lot of people and groups in the arts field trying to come together and designate interests, priorities and agendas. I, myself, am part of some of them and I am realizing how much focus and sustained effort it takes to articulate things and work together. The confinement gives us more time for this but I believe we need to create the conditions where this effort can actually be sustained. Once it can, it doesn’t matter so much if people get some sort of power or lose it because they will still be there. Like the right winning the power might be disappointing and feel like you go back in time, but it doesn’t mean the left is gone. They are still there, learning, progressing and working on responding to emerging challenges, building new alliances etc. I feel we are in the process of laying some seeds, the foundations for the kind of work and values to spring out -in Turkey at least- as the previous attempts have not really been sustained. And that’s a lot of work.
Of course, I know your youtube channel and I love it! It is a wonderful example of putting out the kind of discussions to contextualize the field. I get anxious to think of ways to disseminate this kind of work (and steal something from it:) when I see it. Do you want to talk about how it started and how it’s continuing? I know the main idea is to open up a digital platform for closed theater and exhibition spaces in order to talk about the shows and performances that were canceled. Is it a temporary space or is it going to transform once the physical spaces are open again? If so, how?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 10 May 2020 14:15
Hey!I would not like to talk about the youtube channel, I would not like that this takes over the conversation.Here I am in several think tanks: the future of distribution, cultural management after covid… We are having interesting discussions because we are a small group of people. The problem is that when we open the groups, the complex discourse gets lost. I am struggling with this a lot at the moment. One of the things is that we are trying to define “live arts and current practice”, to find a definition that overcomes the disciplines, and the professions…But soon, in big group discussions, people start to protect what they know. Like this it is difficult to make a big transformation in the sector. For example, the other day, in a group discussion, we were talking that we need to think smaller, to work more on projects and to leave behind the idea of a “dance company”, but one person insisted that he wants to keep his 8 dancers company. How is it for you in those groups in Turkey?

Fatih Gençkal 11 May 2020 00:08
I think it is rather hard. People will indeed want to protect what they know as they have probably struggled a lot to have it and keep it. In Turkey, I see a lot of separation between disciplines and little interaction. People are usually confined in their circles: theater people, dance people, music people, arts people, performance people etc. They do work together sometimes but usually in settings defined by one discipline. This is visible in artistic as well as organizational/solidarity practices and it has always struck me. I also find that it is usually hard for different disciplines to have a common language to talk about practice, they seem confined to their own languages, viewpoints and thinking. So I also think starting small is key here. We are in a place to build a language above all and this needs a lot of negotiation, effort and trust. We need to practice this, probably fail and try again. So small is beautiful here. We need time. Precarity, as far as I can see, makes this hard, too. It’s actually kind of a dilemma: we need to broaden the conversation but we can only do it with a small number of people. In Spain, who is in this conversation, in the think tanks you mention?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 11 May 2020 15:52
I had an interview with an artist/cultural manager from Uruguay. She describes that since there is no money for culture, she has to find money in other departments: she got money to make a project in the jails, she applies for money in education, in industry… Trying to frame the art projects under that umbrella. And she manages to do it without compromising the work. She is called Tamara Cubas. You can find the interview here, and the section ESCENA PRO – Context:
With cultural managers, we are reading together texts about sustainability. And trying to apply it to how we work. So we talk about ecofeminism, care based economies… It is not defined yet the goal of the group, but it is definitely stimulating.
The one with distributors is more about placing “distribution” in crisis, so, we notice that all the distributors hate what they do, politically. The idea of selling a product goes against how they see culture in society. They all complained that there is a big lack of space for complex conversations about the works and the contexts they are presented. Together we try to come up with a creative (and ambitious) solution to it.
The independent artist, until Friday, it was about mapping how the sector is affected by the COVID19. We came up with 10 concrete demands that were delivered last week to the institutions (unfortunately, they are not really precise). Tomorrow we start a new agenda.

Fatih Gençkal 12 May 2020 16:36
This all sounds very stimulating, indeed. Which brings 2 questions for me:
1- are these conversations stimulated by the pandemic as many other conversations with more time in our hands and the issues laid more plainly before us?
2- I feel that, as artists and other arts/culture workers, we spend much of our time and effort to understand and explain and sometimes justify why art matters. Maybe this has to do with the commodification of art in the capitalist market. Or maybe we really need to do this in every age as it is always a question to be asked for the changing circumstances. It is very telling that Tamara Cubas finds money elsewhere to do her arts projects. As if art can only be justified if it relates to an issue that ‘really’ matters. Don’t get me wrong, I really like that kind of work and understand its power. I also think this is a fascinating idea. But there seems to be something wrong here. What do you think?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 23 May 2020 14:15
1. No, the pandemy did not stimulate the conversation, but it accelerated the process of coming together. It made it an urgency. The COVID19 brought a new set of topics to the table to be discussed, such as digitalization, if distribution makes sense, and so on. But there were questions in the air already before. Since we came together, we could sit down and discuss it.
Now, the theme I am more interested, is language. We are trying to rethink how we talk about what we do. And going deep on analysing everything.For example, we are thinking about leaving behind the notion of good or bad practises. And start talking about regenerative, banal or luciferin practises.

  • Regenerative: understanding that we have a field that is already sick, and we need practises that cure it.
  • Banal: ways of working that just keep the things as they are.
  • Luciferin: as people really work just for themselves, for-profit, not caring about art/culture in the broad sense.

Then, there is the issue of performance/performing arts which we want to get rid of. We are trying to define the concept of live arts and current practises. Performance/performing arts feels too narrow for how we are working nowadays. Artists are no longer tied to a discipline, they manage other artistic projects, they make a performance but also a publication, they organise a cabaret night, they help a social movement with their creative inputs… We want to find a definition that also changes the way we look at art history, one that highlights the live aspects of it.Yesterday, with a friend, we talked about the paintings by Rotchko. Initially, when he came with “just one/two color canvas”, he was not really painting. It was live art and a current practice, in a sense that it was a gesture that produced movement. Once repeated in time it becomes just painting, but initially was not. Same with Duchamp, now the ready mades are in the realm of conceptual art and sculpture. We want to appropriate these gestures into the live arts… I don’t know if it makes sense so far.

2. Also, at least in the working groups I am in, that question does not appear: why art matters. It is granted. Art matters and that’s it. This is not totally true, I question this to myself constantly, but it is always in relation to precarity. Meaning, it is so effortful to make a project, that does not feel worth it at the end. Out of tiredness, this question comes to my head. And then I get ideas like: leaving art and learning woodwork, going full-on with video editing and so on.
The work of Tamara Cubas is not about finding money elsewhere. It is about understanding that art is everywhere, and it affects everything. So, the money from the arts should not come just from cultural organizations, but by any, since everything is affected by whatever artists make.

Fatih Gençkal 24 May 2020 14:53
Immediately after I read your email, I came across an article about Rotchko! Maybe cosmic coincidence, maybe google listening to my conversations. I really like the point you make about live art. From this perspective art history and practice is a constant flux and shifting contexts. I’ve been thinking about Beuys and Duchamp in a similar way for a while. This is also an invitation for constant re-interpretation and checking in with what is contemporary. Today, this is even more complicated as communication channels are manifold. In this sense, would you say it is becoming more complicated to distinguish art from other practices or to decipher what constitutes art?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 24 May 2020 22:20
I would say that art is becoming its origins. When philosophy was understood as an art,  the same as painting, dance and architecture. But not all philosophy, or dance… We need to find the specifics of each discipline and the one that’s common. One that talks about art as a way to perceive and then think and deal with reality.

Fatih Gençkal 25 May 2020 13:48
I want to go back to the pandemic context for a bit to bring another dimension to the discussion on art. I think we might be at a turning point in Turkey concerning the pandemic precautions and establishing a ‘new normal’ as the government and media like to put it. And I am pretty preoccupied with this thought of what is being built. As the lockdown is going to be over this week and spaces will start to reopen, a new app is launched which gives you a code to track your movement and health. According to the data collected you may be restricted access to public and other spaces as well as locked down. You can be forbidden to travel as well. Do you have something like this there? Do you think there is a new social order being built which can have consequences on civil liberties in the future? A society of survival as Byung-Chul Han puts it.

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 1 Jun 2020 15:36
There is an app created after the COVID, but it’s optional. I honestly did not follow it so much, so I can’t develop an argument around it.There was a text I read at the beginning questioning if the Chinese control system is going to become the norm, or if Europe will come up with something else. We are not really proposing anything interesting to be honest, and our long time reference, USA, is a fucking mess. So China and South Korea are the major examples.
Personally I am more interested to think about our relation to death. I feel that in that regard we are kind of medieval. We fear in the same way, we try to hold to life as much as we can and that blinds us to think in other directions. Media is pumping up fear, right-wing politicians as well, people have fallen into the trap. And that does not help to stop the limitation of our rights.
Could we overcome the fear of death in order to defeat state control? If we do so, we would stand different in relation to police, army forces, pharmaceutical companies, data collection… Even food production.

Fatih Gençkal 3 Jun 2020 20:11
Death, yes. I suspect the medievals might have been much more accepting of death than us. Death is everywhere, yet we have our ways of separating it from our lives as if it wasn’t real. I’ve come to learn about the work of Stephen Jenkinson during this time and he talks about this. Here’s a video I recently came across, his words correspond to this.

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 4 Jun 2020 15:26
What an appropriate video these days. Thanks for sharing.
This one is more practical… You might like it, though it is in Spanish.
Aylin {Kuryel], Deniz [Buga]’s friend, sent me a video from her balcony. It was a very beautiful poem about dreams from a window and about a street. It was very beautiful to watch, and tremendously interesting when comparing it to my balcony experience.
Also, you are thinking about A Corner in the World… and I will need to rethink Me gustas pixelad, my festival in Madrid. It would be interesting to talk about how our festivals/context will be affected by it. Right?

Fatih Gençkal 8 Jun 2020 10:37
Funny, after starting the discussion on the future, in the last few days, I started feeling a bit overwhelmed, again, about all the talk about future. I was away in the weekend and I almost did not look at my social media. It was great. I really like the video, though, nice overview. I also like Aylin’s video. I would like to hear what you see there, I feel it might be different for you not knowing the place or having experienced some of the events people refer to. And you say it’s different from your balcony experience. How so? On another note, almost everyday in the last week, I’ve also been having lucid dreams that I remember more clearly than other times. I wish she asked me too:)
Let’s indeed discuss the festivals actually, it’s more fun:) Me gustas pixelad is already a festival where performing arts meet the world of computer screens, the internet and video games, in the words of the festival description. What has changed for you in the pandemic situation and the relevance of what you do?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 9 Jun 2020 15:04
Well, first of all, I am sort of proud that this festival existed before the Covid 19. I feel that the people can refer to something when wondering what will be the future of the performing arts. I get sort of angry by the lack of acknowledgement of artists that have been working about the interference between tech and body. Some programmers, managers and so on are talking as if they are discovering (themselves) that realm. I can always point to Me gustas pixelad_ (and many other festivals of the kind) to bring them down. Kind of.
What changed?I created the festival because there was no space to give visibility to a way of working, a kind of work that refers to videogames, tech, and virtual environments but through the body. Now that everyone is talking about it, do I want to continue with it? This is what I am wondering these days. Somehow I feel I should, and fix its position. But in another way, I feel I should find a new blind spot.
I would like to research about “no internet communities’ ‘ and artists working on “un-digitalice themselves”… But it’s a vague idea so far.

Fatih Gençkal 11 Jun 2020 13:01
I think many people are ‘exploring’ the expressive potential of the digital realm. And then there are others who’ve had to explore it because they feel they can’t do anything elsewhere. The latter might lose interest when they feel they can go back to their own thing. Still, clearly, it is not a way of working that needs visibility any more. I think, however, it is important as you say to ‘fix its position’. That’s if you still believe in the creative potential and necessity of it. I usually feel the same way about finding a blind spot and working on it. It’s not an opportunist instinct but rather an urge to challenge the status quo. You believe that something is valuable and needs attention. I believe more and more that no matter how much the world asks you to categorize your work, what actually brings it together is the fact that you did it. Not certain formal focuses and themes but a general underlying urge, let’s say, to look into things. You will bring in your viewpoint into anything that you do. Like an artist. This is how I tend to see the work of a curator these days. I’ve had many doubts about A Corner in the World and if it’s still necessary and how. More importantly if I’m still interested in it. I lost faith many times, recently, too. Now I try to escape the feeling that it has to have a certain focus, certain institutional identity if you will and try working on things that interest me as a curator or a maker. Me Gustas Pixelad reveals a lot about it’s area of focus by its name. But there’s a lot of playground around the expectations of tech right now that you can still work with and enjoy -including the idea of the un-digital.

In another conversation that I am having right now, my friend Martha mentioned a Greek island inhabited by only 11 people and she didn’t want to give its name as not to make it another newly discovered destination. I am so curious (as I am in love with Greece in general:) but I will not ask its name. This brings about the question of being seen and digitalization. So your idea of no internet communities and un-digitalization is very interesting to me. Access has value and a power dimension. And I feel there is a lot of territory to be explored around it. Do you already have some research material on this? What are your thoughts there?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 23 Jun 2020 15:12
I have not started researching yet. I am overworking these days. Many open calls to fill in. I am also applying to get more money for the festival because the budget is too little for what I would like to do. Though I always question if I could be more humble and work with what I have, and that’s it. Why do I get so ambitious?
How do you do to get money for A Corner in the World? I thought you wont have more live festivals. I thought that was over.

Fatih Gençkal 28 Jun 2020 19:07
Yes, funding fever is here as well. I am also filling a lot of applications. Today I am particularly gloomy and tired of constantly looking for funds for basic subsistence. I feel useless and my ‘skills’ are no good for anyone and anything. I don’t know if we will have a festival. I don’t know what we will call the events we do and what we will be able to do. Nobody will fund you to do a festival (not that there are many festivals, there are actually very very few), you are totally dependent on funding from foreign institutes and external funding where you always have to justify why your event matters, its social impact, contribution to democracy etc. And I’m really tired of explaining my social impact. Today particularly.
On the other hand, it’s pride day today. A whole week of online events are going to culminate in a virtual march. I just joined it. You can join too, just choose your location and what placard you have in your hand: This is one of the few things that can inspire me on such a gloomy day. Happy pride!

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 29 Jun 2020 12:02
I had a crazy pride night. I met my highschool best friend, we did not talk for 17 years because one day he supoorted my bullies. And we reconcile by chance on saturday. We randomly met on the street and suddenly we were having a drink. Kind of intense. If i had a therapist, she would be happy. Hehe.
Yes, this nightmare question. The impact of your work. I think it should be forbidden to ask that question. It’s useless, everybody lies.
But honestly, I also feel I wouldn’t fund a live festival these days. I went to a performance on saturday as well, first live event in 3 months. And did not feel right. I was not comfortable and it did not relate to me. It was like watching something old fashion. I knew three months ago I would have liked the show, but now I have some resistance. And i don’t know if that resistance is here to stay.
Did you watch something live already?

Fatih Gençkal 9 Jul 2020 15:12
I see what you are saying. What I said about funding and justifying what you do has nothing to do with Covid-19 actually. It’s the reality all the time here. It’s just worse now as EVERYBODY is competing for funds now. I haven’t watched anything live yet. I don’t know if anything is going on, really. But I also suspect I would feel the same way you did. I watched a few things online lately, which I did enjoy. It’s weird, though. I enjoyed it as an experimental video or something. Even though it was live. It was a lot of work to create a combination of digital tools and live action and I appreciated it. But it was purely an experience of watching something on a screen. So it being live didn’t really matter so much. Well, I feel I don’t really relate to anything much lately. Maybe it’s the summer and the heat, maybe it’s the feeling that things are trying to catch up with the ‘new normal’ and nothing is quite working as it was. Going to a restaurant, just as well, feels as old fashioned as going to the theater. Or watching a football game. It really looks awkward. I used to enjoy it. We’ll see what all this comes to. I think we will see this clearer after the summer. From September on, there will be more action and we will explore this feeling more. What does the new season look like for you?

Matias Daporta Gonzalez 30 Jul 2020 12:20
Wow, i lost track with this. I am sorry. I am writing to you now from Galicia. I came to have fake holidays . (Fake because i still have work to do).
For me everything finishes in September. The 15th is my last day of work and for now i don’t have anything on the agenda. Everything got cancelled. So, my last card is the funding i applied for, which will decide my future. If all come negative i will dedicate a couple of months to study something else, what i don’t know. And as far as I hear from people everyone is thinking about studying practical stuff. It’s the collapse of culture, they say, so better be prepared. But is it really possible to be prepared for something that is not there yet?
I need to disconnect a bit so i would leave the conversation here if you don’t mind.
It was great to talk to you all these days. And i am sorry if i was not consistent always.
Kiss, Matías

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