Addressing the elephant in the room.

A theory of how things went down and correct me if I am wrong.
The housing corporation X initially rented apartments to artists that owned a BTW number and worked as free lancers. Then X broaden its offer to art students and students in general. 
All of them signed a contract that 'committed' them to 'giving something back to the neighborhood'. 
Twenty-five euros from their monthly rent goes for that purpose and an organization Y, commissioned by the housing corporation X, became in charge of distributing that money. Y initiated projects in the area and invited resident artist to realize them. 
The process became quite complex and artists entered a weird circle of expectations and olbigations that were unable to de-myth and creatively respond. 
Collective meetings become a drag and individual creativity got lost within a need for a strong collective. 
Y failed to embrace this distress and independent artistic practices failed to attract audience and participants from the area.
The money seem to be 'locked' somewhere and artist's motivation seems to have followed a similar path.
And don't get me wrong. I don't think it's about the money. As I mentioned above is mostly about rising to pre-fixed expectations that drown artistic inspiration and reduce actions to purely esthetic inputs.

Almost a week ago I invited art students to the apartment to get a view of the situation and think together what could re-activate their 'doing'. 
We all agreed that a new form of collective doing has to be applied in order to attract interest from other Kanaleneiland residents and function as a leisure activity, open to performative elements. 
We therefore initiated NIGHT WALKERS. A group that invites resident of the area to walk Kanaleneiland at night as a mean of getting together, explore the urban landscape and the subconscious relations between the participants and the land they walk on. 
It is an open form of operation that we think could  evolve into something more and it's definitely a medium for me to obtain knowledge of the area while working towards an intervention.


New residents at Kanaleneiland are somehow invisible or better said difficult to approach.
Then again it might be the language barrier ( I don't speak Dutch) or my lack of having the balls to just randomly talk to people on the street. I am sure some of them feel the same.
Sure they go out, bike around, have driving lessons, walk to the bus stop, shop at the Albert Heijn, take their garbage out at night, visit their studios, move in and move out.
But what happens during the night when everyone is behind closed doors? The urban landscape embeds all those elements that indicate occupation or abandonment, activity or total secrecy.

NIGHT WALKERS have formed a discussion group on facebook. It is an open invitation for anyone to give their input on that initiative.
Visit here to join and post your thoughts and suggestions.