Ten years ago a group of artists, educators and teachers organised an open call to start a research team working with art, education and cultural practices. That first meeting was held in October 2009 and kick-started the public activity of Las Lindes. It was the beginning of an archive of experiences and encounters, many in the form of videos with debates, pedagogical resources, reading texts, as well as other materials and the translations of texts made available to the artistic and educational community. One of the goals behind that initial open call was the idea of creating a community of theory and practice on education in order to, on one hand, change the topic from the usual debates in the mass media (which keep on talking about school dropout levels and criminalize teenagers in schools by depicting them as little more than bullying poor teachers on the verge of depression and nervous breakdowns), and, on the other hand, to defend education as an independent cultural practice against the ongoing material and intellectual precarity of museum educators, when not the co-opting of pedagogy by curatorial discourses driven by the educational shift currently in vogue. Seen in hindsight, besides been read as malaise, this drive to create a community should also be read as a symptom that foreshadowed, among other things, what would end up exploding in 2011 and giving form to the various movements which have arisen since then. And hindsight also tells us that not much has changed since then.
However, over the last few years we have witnessed the expansion of discourses on artistic education and critical pedagogies until arriving at what could be almost called banalization, to the extent that concepts like transformation, innovation, experimentation, risk or estrangement are used for practices that have little or nothing to do with resisting or freeing us from the libidinal economy of the neoliberal project. At once, the issues affecting schools, but also the development of educational programmes in museums, are of course directly related with the context of environmental collapse, the crisis in employment, deregulation of the real estate market, the growing expansion and consolidation of ghettos, criminalization of immigrants, racialized discrimination, permanent sexual violence and the continuous risk that any form of dissidence in education, whether it be sexual, political or disciplinary, is fatally penalized.
In the midst of this context, over the last two years Las Lindes has continued meeting regularly to investigate and experiment, while at once it has organized public meetings for collective reading and workshops, it has worked on the production of an audiovisual in which, over and above a diagnosis of reality or debating concepts whose excessive use has eroded their meaning, is an invitation to do and to make. A series of exercises that implement ideas, bordering on the absurd, to throw themselves into play and, as we have come to expect from Las Lindes, creating debate. After recording we have gone through a long crossing of the desert of viewings and now we are in conditions to finish the editing and show the end results during the last quarter of 2019. This audiovisual will be the beginning of a new phase for the collective and will trigger new and different ways of doing and making, or perhaps the same ones: we are beginning to think that in a neoliberal context of permanent mobilization we have to start to suspect changes. In short, Las Lindes have made a film that we want to show you one of these days in winter. Even at the risk of not being understood, it steers clear of commonplaces in order to create a place in common and to look for ways of talking that avoid the traps of language.
Las Lindes is a research and action group working with education, art and cultural practices. Its members are Virginia Villaplana, María José Ollero, Diego del Pozo, Yera Moreno, Pablo Martínez, Marta de Gonzalo, Eva Garrido and Pili Álvarez.
The open sessions of this course will be announced in advance to the addresses on Las Lindes’ mailing list.