Jubilee - a future trajectory artist meeting 18 May 2023 / 3-6pm Meyboom_Pacheco Bxl
Present: Ronny, Stijn, Vincent, Katleen, Filip, Hélène, Justin (online), Jesse, Katya Excused: Clémentine, Ciel, Max, Julie, Steyn, Tobias, Louise Report: Jesse, Ronny
Ronny shared a document that functions as the agenda of today. "Some Questions towards the future.doc" (see: https://www.dropbox.com/s/idnfm1365xqjbta/2023_05_17%20Some%20Questions%20towards%20the%20future.doc?dl=0)
1/Do you want to become a member of its general assembly (GA) of the non-profit (asbl/vzw)?
Jubilee - in its current composition - invites artists around the table to join its GA. This will formally generate an equal position for all artists in the organisation. All have one voice in the collective decision making process.
The General Assembly (GA) is the formal body of the asbl which defines the long-term ambitions for the organization and monitors their translation into practice. The GA meets at least once a year, when it relieves the board of its responsibilities. All artists are members of the GA. The GA appoints the Board of directors, who are also members of te GA.
Filip: what are the consequences of being part of the General Assembly if you have the Kunstwerkstatuut? Ronny: none. If you become part of a Board of Directors while having the Kunstwerkstatuut, you have to inform the unemployment office RVA/ONEM), but there are no consequences when joining the General Assembly of an organisation. This action does not need to be published in the Belgian Official Gazette (Staatsblad/Moniteur) either.
Decision: All artists present, as well as Clémentine, Ciel, Max and Tobias (on the phone with Ronny) agreed to join the GA of Jubilee. Ronny has checked with Julie - still considering. Jesse has checked with Steyn - still considering
The artist meetings that we will organize between now and 5 July, aim to prepare a day-long retraite on Wednesday 5 July on the future of Jubilee. In the evening all board members will join the retraite. That way we will have an Extra-General Assembly on 5 July, which can formalize the outcome of our discussions. At that point the GA can also appoint a new board of directors.
-ronny and jesse introduce the current board members and explain how Jubilee operated until now
The members of the Board of Directors are elected by the General Assembly. The board, which always has one artist in its ranks (a rotating role currently taken by Justin), is further composed on the basis of the competences required in the organization, taking into account the diversity of the members (background, gender, race, age). The role of the board is to put into practice the ambitions and directions formulated by the General Assembly, a task that the board entrusts to the day-to-day management.
The artist on the board chairs the meetings. Current members are: Justin Bennett, independent artist and co-founding member of Jubilee Sari Depreeuw, partner Crowell - IP team Saartje Geerts, assistant of Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven Nav Haq, associate director of M HKA Zeynep Kubat, freelance writer/curator Katrien Reist, co-founding member of Jubilee, founder of :arp Pascale Viscardy, critique d’art (AICA) – Direction des Arts plastiques contemporains (Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles)
If anybody in this meeting would like to introduce somebody as a potential future board member, that is possible. Changes in the composition of the Board of Directors need to be published in the Belgian Official Gazette (Staatsblad/Moniteur): cost 150 (NL) + 150 (F) since Jubilee has bilingual statutes.
To summarize, all of these rather formal steps are significant for 3 reasons: 1. Current Jubilee members take the voices, insights and interest of all invited people at heart; although we don't start from a blank page, membership of the GA is an effort to create equal positions for all in the future organisation 2. To take in new members means a new orientation of the organisation; the GA defines mission and vision 3. Formalizing this new orientation with new GA and new Board of Directors makes tangible/visible to the outside, and future subsidizing authorities in particular, that the organisation has transformed itself. This opens up new possibilities for the organisation to exist.
VZW/ASBL or COOP (cooperative oganisation)?
Whether or not we keep the same name is to be discussed. This is also the case for the legal form of the organisation.
Jubilee until today has functioned as a vzw/asbl with bilingual statutes, that functions on the basis of cooperative principles.
Katya questions why not become a cooperative then? She sees growing potential there, not only for herself.
It might be possible to change the organisation to become a co-operative organisation, but at this moment there is not enough expertise in the organisation to consider a transformation into a coop.
Cooperative = an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprise. See: https://www.ica.coop/en/cooperatives/what-is-a-cooperative
Added value to function as a coop? As an economic entreprise it has access (formally speaking) to types of funding to which a non-profit does not have access to, for instance tax shelter (in film, theater...). In the current Kunstendecreet also coops, next to asbl's, have access to its subsidies. Disadvantage: Coop profits are taxed. In asbl this is not the case, but for sure the legal framework for this type of organisation is moving in the direction of jurisdiction for companies.
Examining the possibilities of Coop (and of other governance models) could be a future collective research project, e.g. for Flemish Gov., Innoviris... The meeting decides that for the moment we will continue as a vzw/asbl with bilingual statutes
PRODUCTION? Production is a bit confusing as term. cfr Katya's notion of fundraiser or the production team of an art institution...
Jubilee has always offered project production support to its core artists. These efforts were limited to finding the necessary funding to 'produce' a work, and not so much on the 'executive production' of the work. The reason for this was that the diversity of activities did not allow for one production coordinator to know and do all. Each of the artists had their of expert production team when Jubilee started... This production team was paid with the financial resources that could be brought together in context of a specific project.
In short Jubilee's focus was on needs that we all shared: raising funds in the form of grants, coproductions, and taking care of all the work that came with that: assist with writing applications and justification reports, accounting, managing funds (invoicing and paying invoices), contracts.
Apart from this specific project support Jubilee developed into an organisation that offered communication (newsletter & website) to accompany the communication that was done by inviting institution that presented work of Jubilee artists. Jubilee also archived all files and took care of technical distribution of video work if necessary. Being an organisation that offers continuity in how artist members are supported, leads to a 'general overhead' cost that cannot be attributed to one specific project: general administration, general accountancy and reporting on the agency of the organisation.
FUTURE?? The question what Jubilee can become in the future is a question we wanted to address to all of you around the table. We formulated that as two questions: see below 2/ and 3/, the idea being that based on your responses we could come to a shared notion of a basic level of operating. In a next phase we could then discuss which budget we want to allocate to that ambition and how we can fund that budget.
2/Why do you want to 'join' the platform?
Two main interests come to the surface: Jubilee is identified 1/ as a platform for learning and for different forms of exchange 2/ as a supporting structure that can help to produce works of artists. For the definition of 'production' see before.
More details from remarks in the meeting and the response of Ciel, Clementine, Max on the phone or in mail:
-possibilites for exchange with and learning from each other -being together generates empowerment of artists -strengthen the presence of research-based practices in the field of arts -share knowledge on artistic research practices and methodologies -different generations of artists in one organisation is a survalue -participating in collective projects, like Emptor, the mapping project, summer school, reading rooms... -proper context and organisational basis to develop collective research trajectories (Innoviris...) -practical help with applications, dossiers, budgets -generate continuity and a trusted environment in which your individual practice feels supported -belief in the importance of a collective entity, a counter weight to the focus on the artist as individual
to which extent it would be possible - see examples below: -production support -shared support on practical stuff (accounting, contracts, insurance, communication...)
3/How will you engage yourself in the platform?
Engagement extends itself to investing energy in helping to carry the organisation, long- and short term. Two main domains remain problematic in terms of tasks that artists want to spend time on: adminstrative jobs and communication.
More details on different forms of contributing to the agency of Jubilee, based on remarks in the meeting and the response of Ciel, Clementine, Max on the phone or in mail:
-collaborate on writing collective project applications -helping to write individual project applications -introduce different networks / contacts / partners -initiate and carry projects: a reading room; a summer school... -contribute to collective research projects -hosting and co-organising events -help with budgeting -represent the organisation in different networks (RAB, oKo...) -assume a role in the board
What is currently on the agenda - possibly to be developed in different future programmes:
-Tracks - see: https://jubilee-art.org/?rd_project=tracks-an-app-for-soundwalks&lang=en Partners are Soundtrackcity A'dam, QO2, Overtoon, BNA/BBOT, Beursschouwburg and Jubilee First public presentation on 23rd June during the Out Loud music festival of Beursschouwburg.
-Mapping tool - see: https://jubilee-art.org/?rd_project=3587&lang=en Partners are V&H, Atlas of Ovens (Ciel, Max, Clem), nadine, f.eks. in coll. Atelier Cartographique
-Reading Rooms (28 so far, overview on https://caveat.be) programme to be developed in view of a collective research or chapters of individual trajectories
-Summer School Ambition: Long term relationships and federated kind of working with international partners on self-organisation.
Edition 2022: see https://jubilee-art.org/?rd_project=3622&lang=en
Edition 2023: return invitation to our Danish friends to join us for a summer school in Brussels with f.eks and Skal. Radical house is a partner.
Summer School Brussels: 20-27 September 2023 first ideas discussed aim at a program focused on alternative learning. to be developed:
-V&H propose a presentation and workshop on the mapping tool in Radical House with all partners -Filip: presentation Ecole Mondiale - Library of Fred Dewey -Stijn: School of Equals
TBC: -Radical House -Scott/f.eks. -Skal Contemporary
Other possibilities: -Orangeries de Bierbais: a third space / alternative education / permaculture / artist residency??? -Nico Dockx/Judith Wielander: Expanded Academy??? -David Pereia / Dan Farberoff -Rodrigo Ghattas -Juan Pablo Macias -Maria Francesca de Tullio
Other ideas??? Please step forward...
There is no separate budget but some funds (+/- 1000,-) from Vermeir & Heiremans's project Learning through the Soles of our Feet for traveling/hotel costs and small fees for artists & other presentors (if not employed elsewhere)
Accomodation: Radical House can accomodate 2 persons V&H can accomodate 1 person or 1 couple Hélène & Filip can accomodate 1 person or 1 couple
Based on the above we can already see that we need a form of coordination but also a working group for instance to start organizing the summer school. We need to come to a detailed job description: what do we expect that is done by Jubilee? This description can help us define the amount of working time in a job profile, and the budget needed for that.
Jesse wrote an extensive profile based on what he has been doing since januari 2023 in a 50% job. See separate document.
At the same time it would be very useful to take into account a Minumum Profile of 1,5 day/week (1,3 = minimum labor contract) Ronny will develop a proposal for limiting the scope of the organisation... Minimum ambition for the future could be defining a basic level of operating and finding a way to cover basic cost for that. This Minimal Profile would offer continuity by covering general overhead, but the job can be extended to project overhead (collective or individual) if a project can bring in the necessary funding for the that.
4/Financing a future organisation
This part of the meeting was not yet addressed fully. Time was too short. It's a complicated issue that requires everybody to think things through carefully. In what follows we have already formulated some ideas that can initiate future discussions on how to finance our collective endeavour.
Until 2022 Jubilee received +/- 100K as structural funding. 1/3 of the operational budget used to go to the general overhead costs: partially consisting of formal obligations that came with the funding (time spent budgetting, reporting, archiving consistent with specific formats the Flemish admin imposed). The rest of the funding could be used to fund project overhead costs, and to invest in new projects artists wanted to develop individually or collectively.
This translated concretely into two+ jobs: -80% job: general overhead + project overhead (Jesse) -50% job: collective research + legal advice (Julie) -40days/year: general financial management (Ronny)
For 2023 we have 35K. This allows for one transition year. The transition 2023 (currently till 30 June) allows for Jesse 1/2 job + Ronny 1 day per month. Until June most of the work is focused on finishing what was initiated last year, and on reporting. But we also want to use some time/budget to come to a new organisation and program. A financial evaluation on 30 June will define the possibilities in terms of employment for the rest of the year.
For 2024, it is not yet clear what the budget can be, but Ronny will develop a draft for that based on the discussions we had today, as a concrete base for more discussions.
5/Concrete possibilities for individual and collective funding applications
A number of concrete deadines:
15 Sept: project application VG: two options on the table. Hosting partners is an urgent question!!
-Jesse introduced the idea of working on a project application / function Reflection on the added value for the arts landscape of artist-run initiatives. Apart from defining the term we need to think of how to translate this idea into a project that can have some visibility in a public program. Also the need for partners needs to be thought through. The question of decentralization also from the point of the individual artist as a way of operating was raised by Stijn. This brought us to the theme of heteronomy vs autonomy. To be discussed.
-V&H suggest to also consider the Mapping project that could be used to visualize a Reflection trajectory. Partners for this project could be Nadine, and f.eks. (both already part of the mapping tool). Kanal (Guy Gypens) was quite interested in this tool, so we could open a discussion with him on how he could support a project/program that would be visualized and communicated through this mapping tool, and in that way also nourish it as a concrete context that invites questions on its governance as a commons. The location for this project could be 'nomadic' but could also consider K1 as a base of programming. Also ERG could be approached as a possible partner. Danielle of Kunsthal was initially also a partner in the mapping project (not for Kunsthal but for Piloot project) but she decided to step out before we started. She might be interested to step in as Kunsthal in the current situation where the mapping tool has been developed, and questions of governance are coming to the surface. This being said, should we not consider to engage all partners of the Emptor and Caveat projects: Buda, Jester, Ete78, a.pass, Beursschouwburg, Batard festival... To be discussed
Can we compile working groups that focus on a collective Jubilee projects? Both above could offer starting points. Who knows maybe they end up being one project.
1 Nov: structural application VGC A new VGC application for a similar amount as in 2023 (20K), might be possible, but then we will need to come up with a very concrete transformation of Jubilee, both as a structure and in terms of visibility of the program
international projects VG
Innoviris Co-create: COOP research project We could form a specific working group to prepare this in more detail? Candidates: Max, Ronny, Katya ??? Legal support Julie, Tobias???
New dates: 9-15 june: meeting to discuss project application for 15/09 and the Summerschool in September- see doodle 5 july: retraite on Jubilee reform + dossier 15/09 20-27 september: summer school (4 days in this period)
To do: working group Summer School working group collective project application