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Mon, 11 Mar


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Building the playground for collective imagination

Ethnography of a Détournement around Moneywork and Carework. Research Seminar - Prof. Chiara Bassetti, Università di Trento, presents the case study of a digital complementary currency.

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Building the playground for collective imagination
Building the playground for collective imagination

Time & Location

11 Mar 2024, 16:30 – 17:40

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About the event

The seminar presents the case study of a digital complementary currency – Santacoin (SC) – co-designed, implemented and deployed at a 10-day performing arts festival in Italy. SC allowed participants to create a parallel economy within the blurring boundaries of the festival, in a sort of ‘serious game live’: enacted in the wild, with money and bodies at stake. The case study was conducted through a team ethnography that analysed the engagement of festival attendees, artists and staff with the system and the artistic intervention at its root. In fact, SC was conceived as the core of a performance co-designed by an art collective and a group of local caregivers and wellbeing practitioners who then provided their services in the public space. This was thought of as a radical and experimental performative action for leading people to imagine new forms of social production and reproduction within an alternative world, a ‘citadel’ where finance could be thematized and sociopolitical imaginaries practised. It was a localized experiment in community building and collective imagination around issues of inequality and social re/production. The talk provides an ethnographic account of the collaborative intervention and reflects on two main dimensions: the intersection of ‘moneywork’ and caring practices as explicitly thematized in the public space, and the role social interaction, relationships and communities play in collective imagination experimentations.


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