“Online Survival Lessons”

At the end of 2019 we came up with the theme for this year’s edition of “The Old School” art residency – “Untamed ideas”. Working on it back then (we feel as if it was a long time ago), we fantasized and projected untamed ideas and decisions and whether/how they could happen in gradation along the line – Gorna Lipnitsa, Bulgaria, The Balkans, Europe, The world, The Cosmos. We used to think that for each subsequent step more and more time would be needed… years, decades, a century… Back then it never could have occurred to us that in just a few months a single event would suddenly propel the untamed decisions upwards, along the line of gradation, and that they would be taken from countries, governments and people all over the world. Now it wouldn’t be too bold as to fantasize that the next step along the line /The Cosmos/ might actually be just around the corner. It is possible the role of The Contagion, in changing world’s history, to be played by a group of flying objects in Earth’s orbit, seeking formal contact with the countries and the people of our planet… but this is a topic for another one of our themes.
The driving force of the possible change right now is The Contagion. The coronavirus pandemic affected and paralyzed with greatest force the fast-moving consumer societies in the big cities and left life in the smaller communities, where everything moves in the rhythm of nature, relatively unchanged.
Observing the world in a state of emergency, our initial intuition for what is happening is this: a month ago, the world was in a rush, hasty, burning as violently as a candle before it goes out. The world was so because in all of its manifestations /politics, economy, culture, art, etc. / it struggled to move and it was just a matter of time before it stopped and blocked the way for further development. As it seems, the only way to opening that path is by destroying that which has already stopped moving. We assume that the present situation with The Contagion is a catalyst for one such restart crash. The Contagion is an accelerator but the people are the necessary element for the transformative crash to happen. The Contagion may prove to be an unwanted but necessary teacher and to ultimately drag humanity out of the situation it used to reside in – by destroying the model of living where people put all their energy into wanting someone, somewhere, at some time, to give them something. The lesson is to figure out what we want and once we are sure of it, to just get it.
But until then one of the better decisions would be to make the most out of this situation in a smart and creative way.
Human sacrifice taking the form of: concentrated death, mass hysteria, global restriction of human freedom and overconsumption will make us realize that our superhuman ego is for now just a doomed to burst bubble.


Gorna Lipnitsa

April 2020

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