– Spring/Summer 2018

Ground Provisions

Tonika Sealy Thompson, Stefano Harney

Chris Chong Chan Fui, Block B, 2008, single channel audio-visual installation, 20min. Courtesy the artist

Reading Camp

At its source, Ground Provisions is a reading camp. We do many things together. We write, we organise with others, we make movies, work with artists and curate music and film. We travel the Afro-Asian century. We work in the Caribbean and we work in Asia. But if we were to return to the source, this source would be our reading camp. We conceived of the reading camp as a kind of refuge where people can read together. We use the word refuge because the camp involves reading in a quiet place, a place of contemplation and reflection. We read together and to each other and by reading together we make this refuge a place of conversation, discussion and conviviality. It’s a retreat, but one we make together. And this is why we call it a refuge. We retreat together. We read together. We read to each other. When we offer a reading residency at our base in Barbados, we offer it to read together.

But why call it a reading camp, and not a school? We have had experiences with autonomous schools, wonderful experiences, from the Decolonial Black Feminism School in Cachoeira, Brazil to ESC in the San Lorenzo neighbourhood of Rome. But the specific idea to create a reading

  1. Stefano Harney and Fred Moten, The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study, New York and Winvenhoe: Autonomedia/Minor Compositions, 2013, p.110.

  2. Denise Ferreira da Silva, ‘On Difference Without Separability’, in Incerteza Viva, 32 Bienal de São Paulo, São Paulo: Fundacion Bienal de São Paulo, 2016.