The Silent University is an autonomous knowledge exchange platform initiated by artist Ahmet Ögüt in collaboration with Tate working with asylum seekers, refugees and migrants who, although from a professional background, cannot gainfully practice their profession due to the limitations of the asylum process. These limitations also apply to access to education, access to currency, and volunteering. The project stemmed from Ögüt’s year-long residency with Tate in partnership with Delfina Foundation.
The Silent University’s goal is to challenge the idea of silence as a passive state, and explore its powerful potential through performance, writing, and group reflection. These explorations attempt to make apparent the systemic failure and the loss of skills and knowledge experienced through the silencing process of people seeking asylum. The University aims to address and reactivate the knowledge of the participants, making the exchange process mutually beneficial by inventing alternative currencies, in place of money or free voluntary service.
Tate Modern will provide ongoing support to The Silent University beyond its inception, including the creation of a publication, temporary resource area, website and public events, while also encouraging collaborations with other institutions.
The Silent University will be inaugurated at Tate Modern with a series of events in November and December 2012. It is curated by Nora Razian (Curator Adult Programmes, Tate Modern) and Synthia Griffin (Curator Regeneration and Community Partnerships, Tate Modern).
26 November / 28 November / 3 December 2012
Performance and Discussion
18:30 – 20:00 at Tate Modern
1 December 2012
Roundtable: Alternative to What?
11:00 – 16:00 at Tate Modern
7 November – 30 November 2012
Silent University Resource Room, Welcome Room, Level 0
1 – 14 December 2012
Silent University Resource Room