Sydney Anarchiving event (May 6-8 2016)

The second Sydney event continued to think and experiment with anarchiving, asking how traces of past and future materials and events could energize the event and situate our activities in the active middle of ‘things already going on’ either without either resorting to a pre-agreed structure or ‘call to order’. Thus we began with the proposal to resist this call (through a shared reading of sections of The Undercommons [Harney and Moten, 2013]), a proposal to activate (rather than archive) the forgotten rope of the Knotspace event, and a mystery box of anarchival propositions brought from Montreal by an emissary. The rope was our first challenge, we ceremoniously dragged it to the workspace from its archive and attempted to reactivate it through a series of small-group movements, weaving new forms and unraveling to discover and listen to its tendencies. This lead into discussions on the concept of the anarchive – how could this resist the calling to order of the anarchive?

The package from Montreal was left unopened, but the tension of its presence affectively shaped the event, and on the second morning it was collectively unwrapped. The box contained propositions, a recording, and images – including a blue print of a hand. We had already attuned to some of the propositions in following the time of the rope on the previous day. One of the gifted propositions read: “practice care and generosity impersonally as event-based political virtues”. The gift from the outside enabled the collaborative work with the rope to become more generative. It lent us a hand so to speak and assisted in creating the conditions for the making of a propositional gift to the Aarhus/Mols event. Apart from a spontaneous collective call to deliver the anarchical proposition and (trans)traces of the event(s) in the material of the rope, rather than in a box, there was no discussion or consensual agreement about what to do next. There was knitting and felting with small strands of the rope, invention of propositions, image making, recording and listening. Traces of the gift became collaborators in the emergent event of occasionings. A felted/knitted rope bag was assembled. The bag became the carrier of propositions and traces of both the recomposed experiences of/with the rope and the gift from Montreal.