Certain Things Need to Be Said if One is to Avoid Falsifying the Problem. – Decolonisation, Degrowth and Art

A discussion by Aadel Essaadani, Bojana Kunst, Raafat Majzoub and Ajda Pistotnik, moderated by Alma R. Selimović.

During the round table session, we talked about the following with our intersectional glasses on: How are decolonisation and degrowth mutually intertwined, and how are they intertwined with the art world, both together and separately? How does the concept and practice of degrowth differ from aspirations for sustainable practices? Where do decolonisation and degrowth intersect in relation to art? Both of these terms, decolonisation and degrowth, imply some sort of undoing – what would be the affirmative side of the coin for both processes? We need not necessarily be aware of nor hesitant of the practices of undoing or reparation, but perhaps we can shed light on already existing approaches to establish new processes or actions that can be used to build new systems not based on growth nor exploitation.

Aadel Essaadani is an expert in cultural policy and an activist for human rights. He advocates for the inclusion of culture in public development policies. He is the co-founder of Racines (2010) and its General Coordinator as of April 2015. He is also the co-founder of the African Cultural Policy Network (ACPN) and a member of its Steering Committee.

Bojana Kunst is a philosopher and contemporary art theorist from Slovenia, based in Frankfurt. She is a full professor at the Institute for Applied Theatre Studies / ATW – Institut für Angewandte Theaterwissenschaft, Justus-Liebig University Giessen, where she heads the international master’s program in Choreography and Performance.

Raafat Majzoub is an architect, artist and writer from Lebanon. He positions his work at the intersection of politics, intimacy and future-casting – exploring fiction as a tool for individual and collective agency and an arena for the construction of new worlds. He is the founding director of The Khan: The Arab Association for Prototyping Cultural Practices (, the editor-in-chief of the Dongola Architecture Series and a part-time lecturer at the Architecture and Design Department of the American University of Beirut.

Ajda Pistotnik is a researcher and project leader at the EnaBanda association, and holds a master’s degree in political science. As a member of the international degrowth community and the international movement for financial justice and debt relief, she pursues the possibilities for opening and creating space for alternative proposals and more radical policies in Slovenia as well.

Moderator: Alma R. Selimović is a cultural worker from Ljubljana, Slovenia. She is working on a PhD focusing on arts education – this is also one of the main areas of her work in Bunker – trying to establish synergies between formal education systems and people in these systems with the contemporary art world. She also works on fundraising and is a CEO of FORSALE Performance Auction House. She is currently the acting director of Bunker.

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