lumbung News of the Day, May 2021

lumbung news of the day: 


23 May 2021

The gruesome incidents either in Palestine, Colombia, Denmark, etc have shown an urgency for us to activate the lumbung[dot]space soon, as a platform to share about what is actually happening as we know the information circulated in another digital platform is not free of control.

We therefore ask your urgent attention for some pressing questions related to our lumbung[dot]space.

                  Drawing by Iswanto Hartono

Over the last year we have collectively identified how our process in the lumbung inter-lokal is about working together, organizing together and building the lumbung as a space to support each other. In the last few months we in the [formerly named as the lumbung website] working group which consists of Ameng, Andan, Reinaart, Katalin, Matze, Yazan, JJ, Ghori, Sari, Rahmat, Fernando Dory, Theresa, Sari, Roel—are thinking of how can we create a collective digital infrastructure to support that process.

As our conversation progressed, came the idea of creating an online environment that we call  lumbung[dot]space—to be the living room where the lumbung inter-lokal can connect, support and learn from each other while figuring out how we can make these kinds of collective infrastructures also digital. Along with our process in documenta fifteen: we want to start experimenting with this question and to find ways to sustain beyond the 100 days event of Kassel.

        Drawing by Marishka Soekarna

A living room that is mixed with a way of publishing.

As the time went on—just as we recognize that building the lumbung is about the process of learning together, we also then thought of a way to use this digital environment as a publishing tool where the harvests (the learning outcomes) can be stored and passed on to others who come from our broader ecosystems and beyond. 

We hope to be able to work with friends in the lumbung inter-lokal who have the capacity and are interested in the practice of harvesting and note-taking (using various methods), which can be used as a means for us to be able to experiment with this idea of harvestingand publication. 

Please sign up here if you or someone from your ecosystem are interested to participate as lumbung harvesters

Starting the process along with documenta fifteen.

 Drawing by Reinaart Vanhoe

Firstly born in conjunction with our process in documenta fifteen: we understand that we have to make the best use of this time (until 2022) as a journey to understand the right tools that we in lumbung are needing; either to communicate, share resources and collaborate digitally.

Seeing this digital infrastructure as an architecture, we have to build facilities that really can work to support the lumbung member’s necessities and contexts (considering the fact that there are so many different technical conditions and the needs for safety). 

In other words: we can’t build the infrastructure without reason and therefore will need to use this moment of documenta to identify and experiment with the lumbung inter-lokal. Departing from this, we then divide the process into four stages: 

First Stage: to test and prototype (Period: June-September 2021) Our first step is to work with a party that can help us come up with a prototype to be used in the short term. After we did an initial survey and spoke with different technology providers which fit the ethics and doing of lumbung (for example: working with open source, working as co-operative, working cross culturally)—we then chose to work with Autonomic which is a technology cooperative; and inviting them to develop one for lumbung. This prototype can then be tested by all of us, to further inform the needs and possibilities of lumbung[dot]space in practice. This way we can grow step-wise and use that as a learning process.

More about Autonomic can be read here.

 Testing it with us:

lumbung[dot]space will for sure need a really intense testing period, because it isn’t built and then it’s finished. When it gets built, we in lumbung have to test it out. And then the next thing will be added to it, and then it keeps growing—before it’s becoming a more useful tool. 

Therefore, we need to work closely with a representative from each collective/organization in lumbung; to learn to activate this infrastructure and to then evaluate it together before we enter the second stage. Please sign up here to join us testing this lumbung[dot]space.

         Drawing by Iswanto Hartono

Second Stage: to build based on the evaluation (Period: October 2021-October 2022) The second stage would be the most challenging as we will need to reflect on the evaluation and think to integrate the conclusions from it properly. This is       to also understand what we like about it or not, and this process will also be guided too. We will further call for proposals, for developers to build based on the evaluation/feedback of the first stage. Changes will be implemented from September 2021 toward creating a more comfortable and fully functioning digital environment.

Third Stage: to involve more lumbung community (Period: November 2021-October 2022) Starting with the fourteen of us who will start this process in the living room that will be lumbung[dot]space, part of the plan is to also slowly transform it as an open space— way beyond our lumbung, and for any lumbung practice. Therefore it is very important that the representatives of each lumbung inter-lokal (who have joined the testing and learning process in the first stage) can also share the harvest of the learnings to their respective collectives and organizations so that it can be passed on. This phase is also the moment for each of us in the lumbung inter-lokal to open up this space and involve more people from each of our ecosystems.

Next to this, the closest to joining are those who are also involved in documenta fifteen. Here, we are working with groups of lumbung artists who form different assemblies and they might need a digital space too—for example to hang out, to store harvests or content, and to hold assemblies. Seeing lumbung[dot]space as an architecture: soon we can share the many different chambers for these diversities of how people are practicing lumbung. Testing it with them after we start the second stage could be a way to have other lumbung inside from the beginning; because of its character as an architecture building that will make it crucial if more users join early during its initial development (for then it can continue to learn to accommodate the many different needs and context).

Fourth Stage: future sustainability (period: october 2022-beyond) Within the context of documenta fifteen: we see this lumbung[dot]space as an embryo, in which its future sustainability will become something that we need to discuss together after documenta fifteen ends. 

Imprint question: Since lumbung[dot]space is considered as a digital space (and as an art project) being staged side by side with the documenta fifteen’s page and the ruruHaus page, the discussion about imprint then arises. When the lumbung [dot]space starts to be a platform that is open for its user to freely contribute and publish: we have to pay extra attention to standards of expected ethical behavior for all parties involved in the act of publishing. Stating who plays the role as the imprint holder for the lumbung[dot]space will allow people to have the possibility of being able to turn directly to the right contact person in case of an issue.

Who will be the imprint holder?  Having documenta as the imprint holder can be a fast solution but we will not be as flexible in all of the steps taken as we’re gonna need to be in dialogue and work closely with its legal department for every material we want to publish, and to check whether it has copyright issues, etc. 

In line with that: the fact that lumbung[dot]space aims to exist for a long time beyond documenta fifteen has lead us to the thinking whether even starting from now there could already be one collective/organization (with a legal entity) in the lumbung inter-lokal who could be playing the role to be the imprint holder? This question arises as the lumbung itself does not have a legal entity and might never have one. 

Seeing this legal paper as a resource that can be used/shared (to support our work in lumbung) doesn’t make the imprint holder be the one who’ll be blamed and burned by troubles if bad things happen. 

lumbung[dot]space is a self-organized space that we own and are using together. Consequently we will be sharing the same responsibilities. 

We, therefore, see the importance of holding a session for a joint workshop of drafting this code of conduct (to be included in the first stage of the process above) and using it as an ethical foundation for us in managing/using this platform.

Having this guideline will also make things easier and clearer for the more lumbung communities when we want to welcome them too, to start using the lumbung[dot]space.

Drawing by Ade Darmawan

 A swift action in lumbung  :   

Drawing by Yazan Khalili

These gruesome incidents either in Palestine, Colombia, Denmark, etc  have shown an urgency for us to activate the lumbung[dot]space soon, as a platform to share about what is actually happening as we know the information circulated in another digital platform is not free of control. In order to allow us to take immediate action, we have to resolve the issue of who is the imprint holder and Gudskul is willing to play that role. As a next step, we need to soon communicate this decision to the management team and the documeta legal department. 

In the short term we can however start using the internal barn of lumbung[dot]space to share either books, films, news that we think will help all of us in lumbung to internally educate ourselves about the historical/contemporary context and development, and in the not so longer term to communicate our decision of the imprint so that we can start publishing/staging the stories beyond the lumbung inter-lokal internal pages. 

Please let us know here if you want to soon use the lumbung[dot]space to initiate/livestream a program or share certain resources.

lumbung get ready! Once we are starting to publicly publish: then comes the moment when we need to prepare ourselves for possible responses that may come into our lumbung mailbox in the future. We will need to be working with each representative of the lumbung inter-lokal (who will join the learning session in the first stage) to work with us in paying attention to incoming mailboxes and to then always distribute them to a larger group and discuss how to respond.  Please let us know here if you have questions/doubts/comments about our process so far.