Edgelanders – Amsterdam on Trial De Appel Part III The Witnesses May 13–June 4 2024

De Appel has recently moved from Lely Broedplaats in Nieuwe West to Tempel Broedplaats in Diamantbuurt, since the former is due for renovation as part of the redevelopment and gentrification of the Nieuwe West neighbourhood. DeAppel has found another temporary home in a city where the struggle for (affordable) housing is a collective struggle. What is a home for a cultural institution? And how can we warm it up together for the coming years? We want to start the year together by thinking about struggles for the rightful co-ownership of land and housing in poetic and practical ways.

De Appel is committed to sharing resources with artists, cultural practitioners, school children, teenagers, university students, neighbours, curators and national and international cultural and educational organisations to produce shared knowledge and aesthetics that challenge our understanding of art. In doing so, de Appel aims to contribute to artistic and socially relevant dialogues with various cultural and social organisations in Amsterdam and beyond. DeAppel experiments with pedagogy outside of mainstream educational institutions and acts as a catalyst between academic research on art and culture and its constituencies. We strive to be a place of collaboration between artists, institutions and communities, where we practice regenerative collective models of curating and placemaking.

Land, co-ownership and housing, governance, (art) economy are issues that de Appel will be addressing in the coming period. These interrelated issues, which de Appel, like many art institutions, deals with internally every day, are collectivised because we believe they are social and political issues facing many. We see the need to provide a space for an accumulation of singular conversations, proposals and models that can lead to workable and liveable collective projects. We achieve this through our exhibition, curatorial, school and neighbourhood programmes, live activations, and de Appel’s archive and library.

Housewarming: Activations for a new location
March 7–23

The Housewarming programme includes performances, screenings and conversations on placemaking. For the duration of the programme, artworks and traces of the performances will remain in the exhibition space and guests are welcome to visit during opening hours.

Including artists and speakers:
Alina Lupu, Andrea Verdecchia, Aylin Kuryel & Fırat Yücel, Dimitris Chimonas, Francisca Khamis Giacoman, Ivo schmetz, Jumana Emil Abboud, Marije Baalman, Marina Christodoulidou, Mercedes Azpilicueta, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Natasha Hulst, Ludovica Carbotta, Pam Virada, Raoni Muzho Saleh, Siwar Kraytem with Alev Ersan and Betül Aksu, Wouter Stroet, Yannesh Meijman.

Edgelanders: Amsterdam on Trial / Part III: The Witnesses
April 13–June 4
By Ehsan Fardjadniya and Raul Balai

In Edgelanders, the artists build a case for a tribunal against the city of Amsterdam to hold it to its ethical image and legal obligations. Leading up to this tribunal, the artists have presented Part I: The Background in the Amsterdam Museum and Part II: The Hearing at Podium Mozaïek. At de Appelthey will present Part III: The Witnesses, where visitors are invited to listen to the experiences of undocumented refugees through a variety of audio-visual material in a designed spatial environment.

Against the backdrop of an increasingly dilapidated garage on the outskirts of Amsterdam Southeast, a group of undocumented people sought refuge. Their plight caught the attention of lawyer and activist Pim Fischer, who fearlessly championed their cause and took the city of Amsterdam to court to enforce their basic human right to shelter. The judge ordered Amsterdam to provide shelter with unconditional access to Bed, Bath and Bread. In a determined pursuit of justice, the fight extended to the national level when the state itself was sued for failing to make the necessary commitment. In a landmark decision, the EU court ruled in favour of the plaintiffs and ordered the provision of unconditional access to shelters throughout the country. As the facilities were built, there was a glimmer of hope for those in desperate need. However, the Council of State interjected a condition, the elusive fourth “B”—“Begeleiding” in Dutch, meaning “bearing” or “orientation”. It meant that the use of the shelters was conditional on the participation of undocumented people in a repatriation orientation programme, to be completed within a year. This condition highlighted the complexity of the situation, where the pursuit of basic human rights became entangled in bureaucratic mandates. A lack of moral and ethical considerations from the side of the national government  gave rise to the apparent dichotomy between the provision of  shelter and the demand for repatriation.

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