The Grand Domestic Revolution (GDR) is an ongoing ‘living research’ project initiated by Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory, Utrecht as a multi- faceted exploration of the domestic sphere to imagine new forms of living and working in common.
Inspired by US late nineteenth-century ‘material feminist’ movements that experimented with communal solutions to isolated domestic life and work, GDR involved artists, designers, domestic workers, architects, gardeners, activists and others to collaboratively experiment with and re-articulate the domestic sphere challenging traditional and contemporary divisions of private and public.
Now GDR goes on, evolving in different scales and extensions, taken up and transformed in different cities, sites and neighbourhoods by those who desire to carry on the GDR from their own home base or by those already engaged with it in their local languages and practices.
At The Showroom an exhibition of contemporary and historical artworks and a diverse and growing reference library will form a base for workshops and events that will develop the GDR further, while they will forge connections and affinities with The Showroom’s ongoing programme of neighbourhood-based commissions – Communal Knowledge.
Exhibited works employ a wide range of methodologies to playfully problematise domestic issues such as work at home, housing rights, property relations, family economies, neighbourhood struggles, and range from the satirical to social critique and activist actions. These include GDR’s cooperatively produced sitcom, Our Autonomous Life? (2010–11); Pauline Boudry and Renata Lorenz’s housewives’ manifesto Charming for the Revolution (2009); Rehana Zaman’s Like an Iron Maiden Trapped Between a Rock and Hard Place (2010); and I will not ask anything about you, you will not ask anything about me produced
by domestic workers in the Netherlands in collaboration with Matthijs de Bruijne, and public cleaning actions by a group of cultural workers intersecting art work and domestic work, ASK! (Actie Schone Kunsten). A new video work by artist Joseph Williams, a member of the homeless artist collective Seymour Arts, will be produced and presented. A full list of works and events will be available on The Showroom’s website www.theshowroom.org.
The Grand Domestic Revolution GOES ON is a design project realised in the framework of COHAB, a two-year study initiated by The Showroom, Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory, Utrecht and Tensta Konsthall, Stockholm, supported by a Cooperation Measures grant from the European Commission Culture 2007- 2013 Programme.
Featuring AND Publishing, ASK! (Actie Schone Kunsten), Domestic Workers Netherlands with Matthijs de Bruijne, Enemies of Good Art, Andrea Francke, GDR Library, Annette Krauss, Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad, kleines postfordisches Drama, Travis Meinolf, Martina Mullaney, Christian Nyampeta, Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz, Our Autonomous Life?, Read-in, Helke Sander, Joseph Williams, Rehana Zaman
12 Sep – 27 Oct 2012, Wednesday to Saturday, 12-6pm The Showroom is located at 63 Penfold Street, London NW8