February 12, 2013
The Citizens’ Laboratory is inviting experts on systems of organization from both the human and animal worlds to Southern Exposure. Two or more speakers will describe their particular field, rubbing together seemingly unrelated world with the intention of opening a debate about modes of collaborations and generate novel ways of thinking about collective endeavors.
How to Move a Mountain takes place over three sessions, each including brief presentations by experts, group conversation, and a responsive interpretation by an artist.
#1: What is at stake?
Thursday, January 24, 2013, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Presentation, discussion, and artwork by Dr. Deborah Gordon, Paul Chasan, and Kathleen Henderson.
We convened around a pot of simmering vegetarian stew with Dr. Deborah Gordon, Professor of Biology at Stanford University and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment, who presented her research into the behavior of ant colonies, and Paul Chasan, a San Francisco city planner, who discussed how the city’s landscape is shaped, followed by a group conversation inspired by a series of drawing initiated by artist Kathleen Henderson and completed by the audience.
Wednesday, February 27, 2013, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Presentation, discussion, and artwork by Catherine Powell, Don Watson and Michael Swaine.
The second installment addressed the themes of confrontation, swarming, encircling, and infiltration.
Catherine Powell, Director of the Labor Archive and Research Center, talked about the history and strategies of the union movement in San Francisco and Don Watson, owner of Wooly Weeders, an open range sheep herding company, explained the varied relationships between sheep, herding dogs and shepherds. Michael Swaine led the audience into three participatory performances, the first one around an imaginary table at Thanksgiving; in the second one we crowded into an elevator and went down 24 floors and finally we were tempted to throw the first stone.
At the end we ate toast with sheep’s milk ricotta while we discussed the possible connections between sheep herding and union struggles.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Discussing collaborations across species.