A Conversation with Elaine W. Ho and Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga

In order to exist, transaction needs a firm ground, fixed currency and transparent supply-demand relations, amongst other thing. Therefore, a market is often perceived as the ideal setting for transactions. It has a clear distinction between goods, or between service provider and consumer. Money is the currency which facilitate exchange of goods or services. Yet what can happen when transaction takes place not in a market and involves another mode of currency? How, if transaction takes place in a space where personal and communal interests are colliding? In this conversation session for Radio KUNCI, Syafiatudina (KUNCI Cultural Studies Center, Yogyakarta) will discuss with Elaine W. Ho and Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga (HomeShop, Beijing) on various forms of transaction which take place in an art space where artistic practices and the striving for creative autonomy intersect with the practices of community caring, especially within neighborhood-based interactions.

HomeShop (2008-2013, Beijing) was a self-initiated project space located in a storefront space in the old city centre hutong alleyways of Beijing. Using the space and its window front as a permeable frame to examine ways of relaying between public and private, HomeShop engaged in various interwoven series of small-scale activities, including interventions, workshops, discussion groups, hosted services for the public and an on-going research of the ‘city-in-village’ dynamics of contemporary Beijing. These forms of creative articulation and documentary gestures were invested as processes by which HomeShop served as an open platform to question existing models of economic and artistic production. Here, daily life, work and the community served as explorations of micropolitical possibility, and of working together.