msdm a nomadic house-studio-gallery for photographic art and curatorial research, an expanded practice of the artist's book, photobook publishing and peer-to-peer collaboration created by contemporary artist paula roush
TITLE EXHIBITION: SOS:OK
(SAVE OUR SOULS: ZERO KILLINGS)
AUTHOR: paula roush
MEDIUM: Performative installation
stage 1- memory factory
stage 2- food relief operation
GALLERY: Coleman Project Space London
DATE: March- October 2004
Read about the kit
Publication + Emergency biscuit in a box
ABOUT THE WORK
Temporary public artwork with Coleman Project Space in the site of the former Biscuit town, Bermondsey, collab with former workers of the Biscuit Factory to imagine and design a new biscuit to represent their neighborhood.
First part of the project consisted in setting up a Memory factory in place of the former Peek Frean’s Biscuit Factory, announced as ‘a reopening of the factory for one week only as a memory factory.’ The workshops investigated the factory’s history, gathering archive material. Peek Frean former workers were invited to come to contribute their memories of Biscuit Town. They arrived with memorabilia which filled the project space turning it into a display of selected photos, clothing, gifts, books, films, sound samples and journal entries that mapped the space of memory.
Read Zeigam Azizov reflections on the Memory factory here
Memory Factory at Coleman Project Space
Published in SOS:OK guide
2- EMERGENCY FOOD RELIEF OPERATION
A new emergency biscuit, cooked to a specially designated recipe, was created to be distributed to visitors to the gallery and on the streets of Bermondsey. Crates of biscuits were distributed by horse and cart on Tower Bridge Road and on the Blue. The exercise was partly a reference to a relief operation of 1870 during the Franco-Prussian war. When the prussians lifted their siege of Paris, Peek Freans supplied thousands of biscuits to the starving citizens.
The exhibition at the Coleman ProjectSpace was staged as a relief operation, also a response to the hunger crisis which is an international emergency.
SOS:OK DISTRIBUTION CENTRE
SOS:OK STREET DISTRIBUTION
SOS:OK was featured in the exhibition Public Services
along with the work of Marjetica Potrč, Apolonija Šušteršič, Temporary Services (USA) and Tadej Pogacar & Anja Planiscek,
representing the way artists today think about alternative
models of public services
Exhibition publication; PUBLIC SERVICES [pdf]
Public Services presents five different starting points for engagement and five explicitly subjective approaches. These projects and creative proposals have been conceived as forms of immediate and physical intervention in the structure of the city, as social interaction, as a virtual utopian scheme. They represent a critical consideration of alternative models of public services, which, ideally, are founded on the principles of openness, access, equality, participation, mobility, adaptability, and transformativity.
When artists today think about structures and forms in the contemporary city, they think above all about the importance of open communication within urban structures. By occupying the space that lies between the many different city users, corporate capital (and its interests), and the urban structure, the[se projects] draw attention to processes of degradation and appropriation, borders between public and private, deindustrialization and precarity, while developing new public-service models based on participation, exchange, and solidarity.
Tadej Pogacar, curator Public Services [+more]
Bermondsey, in south-east London, was once affectionately known as Biscuit Town. Home to some of the largest biscuit factories in the country, it provided employment to generations of local families.
Now it’s a very different story. The biscuit factories have closed, and many of their former employees are unemployed. The only businesses that come into Bermondsey now are the large property developers buying up old factories and turning them into gated residences for well-paid workers at nearby Canary Wharf.
Will Pavia, Taking the biscuit
15 oct 2004
Bermondsey takes the biscuit Former Peek Frean
employees back community project
The Guardian, Wednesday October 20, 2004
Operation SOS:OK, Bermondsey, South London.
Regeneration & Renewal, 5 November 2004, p8
Joanna Callaghan, Go on! Have another one!
True Review, December 2004
Current perspectives on the role of art in urban
Do artistic interventions benefit a community?
Art in Community Settings,
Birkbeck College, University of London 2004,
Published in SOS:OK guide, msdm publications 2004
Tanja Verlak, Excavation Thrill
Nowiswere Contemporary Art Magazine issue 12
PUBLISH AND BE DAMNED SELF-PUBLISHING FAIR `
SOS:OK was the Special Project for the inaugural edition
of Publish and Be Damned PABD
with the event " Copylaws of the Kitchen"
A free participatory event for 100 women and children
sharing biscuits to celebrate the mutation of the printing
press into biscuit cutting anarchy.
For more information on PABD see here
school of arts & creative industries
london south bank university