Platform Newsletter March 2012

8 March 2012

Dear All,

We’re launching new art works later this month, we’ve published a new report, and there’s a couple of events coming up in London and Manchester.

The launch of the Tate á Tate Audio Tour

When: Friday 23rd of March, 6.00-9.00pm

Where: Calder Theatre Bookshop, 51 The Cut, SE1 8LF

We’re enormously excited to be launching the Tate á Tate Audio Tour in a fortnight’s time. Working with Liberate Tate and Art Not Oil, we’ve commissioned three sets of sound artists to develop three site-specific soundworks designed to be listened to in Tate Britain, Tate Modern and the boat journey in between the two – all of them addressing the contentious issue of BP’s sponsorship of the galleries.

We’re having wine and nibbles in the evening, with a live performance from one of the artists at the Calder Theatre Bookshop. It’s walking distance from Tate Modern, and we’re going to have all the sound files live to download from the evening before the launch do. We’d love it if some people try out part or all of the audio tour before coming on the the launch party afterwards and giving us your feedback. More info here.

Tate a Tate audio tour
Artwork by Richard Houguez
The Ugandan draft oil law

Platform has released a new briefing analysing Uganda’s draft “Petroleum Bill”. The report – entitled The Ugandan Upstream oil law: A search in vain for accountability and democratic oversight, highlights the lack of parliamentary oversight, transparency, or consultation or involvement of affected communities in the proposed oil law. At the same time, the Bill does include clauses that restrict information flow and could potentially threaten or close down public debate. Read more here.

Holding Shell to account

On 28 February, the US Supreme Court heard Kiobel v Shell, a case that alleges Shell aided and abetted human rights violations and crimes against humanity committed by the Nigerian military against the Ogoni people from 1992 onwards. In an unusual move on Monday the Justices have ordered a rehearing later in 2012. The court’s decision will have significance for the global movement for corporate accountability.

To coincide with the Kiobel case, Platform issued a letter to the Boards of Royal Dutch Shell and Shell Nigeria, holding the company to account for its role in recent human rights abuses in Nigeria. In a show of support, a broad range of global NGOs, human rights monitors, academics and analysts joined Platform in sending a strong message to Shell.

An Evening with JOAAP

One of the co-editors of the groundbreaking Journal of  Aesthetics & Protest is passing through town, and we’re hosting him in the Platform office on the 15th of March for an evening that will include a lecture/presentation and production/performance (group-research) elements. More info here.
Join our Reading Group on ethics, business sponsorship, and making art

There are lots of guides for artists on how to earn a living from art or how to raise funds to support making it, but few which help us ask about the ethical implications of the routes we choose. Platform selected key texts for Take the money and run? to share some of the writers and thinkers who have influenced our thinking. Running in May and June at the Live Art Development Agency, the Reading Group offers a chance to discuss the issues. For each session, a text will be suggested in advance, and will form the backbone of the discussion. More information here – places are limited and booking is essential.


Enter photo credit here
March is Move Your Money Month!

All over the country, people are cutting up their cash cards from the main big banks and shifting their cash to ethical banks, credit unions and building societies, as part of Move Your Money’s sustained campaign to get people to stop providing banks with the means to screw the economy, communities and the climate. If it’s something you’ve thought about doing before but never gotten round to it, MYM has a clearly laid out ‘how to’ guide that might provide you with that little extra impetus, and we’re written a little something that relates our work on RBS and fossil fuel fiance to this initative.

Platform at Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester

Wed 21st March, 6 – 7.15pm, free admission

This talk will look at Platform’s work and some of the strategies and lessons learnt over the years. What enables artists and activists to keep on making work that challenges the status quo? How can we sustain ourselves, our imaginations, and our communities while keeping on speaking truth to power? Talk by Jane Trowell, followed by discussion.

Changes in Platform

From May, Jane Trowell is changing role from Education Coordinator to Research Associate. She will be doing independent research into Platform’s work in education, art and activism through courses like The Body Politic, Shake! Young Voices in Arts, Media, Race & Power, and projects like C Words: Carbon, Climate, Capital, Culture, as well as thinking about activism in formal education. She will continue to run Shake! until the new coordinator can be appointed, and also start the task of making Platform’s pre-digital-era archive available.

Platform in the Press

Galleries renew £10m BP deal despite environmental protests. Guardian, 19/12/11

BP pledges £10m art sponsorship. BBC News, 19/12/11

Culture beyond oil. Resonance FM 25/12/11

El oscuro historial de Shell en Nigeria. Diagonal 24/1/12

‘Sustainable’ funds investing millions in oil companies and banks. Metro 30/1/12

Permis social : Complicité à l’ère de l’extraction. Le Journal des Alternatives. 1/2/12

The future of Nigeria. KALW Radio, San Francisco. 6/2/12

Olympic Games organisers face protests over BP sponsorship deal. Guaridan, 17/2/12

 


How to get from Tate Modern to the audio tour launch party

Latest on Twitter

Twitter#BP, Shell & other companies active in Libya & #Egypt face “increased Foreign Corrupt Practice” scrutiny for past deals on.ft.com/y525pg

We’re holding a reading group on ethics, business sponsorship, and making art with @ThisIsLiveArt http://bit.ly/AbF3Cg

BP Settlement Sells Out Victims – Deal buries evidence of oil company willful negligence http://bit.ly/w7PoCt from @greg_palast

“The Bank’s talk of development will merely be pouring old wine into new bottles” -why @EBRD should stay out of #Egypt.

46 days on Chevron puts out fire in Nigeria. But Koluama residents r suffering. http://on.wsj.com/yBAzCD xcellent piece in @WSJ by @DrewHinshaw.

Latest Blog Entries

blog‘Tate á Tate’ Launch Party – Friday 23 March

Join Platform’s Reading Group on ethics, business sponsorship, and making art

15th March – an evening with the Journal of Aesthetics & Protest

“The Oil Road” – in search of a subtitle

Care about the climate? Move Your Money out of RBS/Natwest

Hold Shell accountable for human rights abuses in Nigeria

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tate a tate audio tour
Come to our reading group on ethics, business sponsorship, and making art (see below)