(Un)usual Business reader out now!
In Spring 2013, Casco and the critical post-graduate students group Kritische Studenten Utrecht started the long-term collective research project '(Un)usual Business'. '(Un)usual Business' explores so-called “community economies”, a term coined by feminist economic geographers Katherine Gibson and Julie Graham. The core idea is that the economy is much broader and more diverse than what we normally think as economy takes place in every day exchanges and relations. These types of unrecognized economies propel values and agencies that are very different from the capitalist spirit of profit making and financial accumulation, like wellbeing, friendship, and belonging or non-belonging. While making visible and facilitating these non-capitalist economic forms, it is here we see that contemporary art can play a vital role.
The online reader presented to you now is the outcome of one year of research, built on the first Conversation Market at the Utrecht shopping mall Hoog Catharijne last summer and through bi-weekly co-researcher meetings at the Casco Storefront.
The reader consists of essays written and collected by the '(Un)usual Business' co-researchers, in which we look at economy from the perspectives of commons, care, sustainability, education, Big Society, and the Dutch “participatiemaatschappij”. An underlying ontology of politics of possibility and “being in common” weaves the essays into a coherent '(Un)usual Business' Reader. The reader furthermore includes a new essay by Gibson and a newly designed “community economies” iceberg diagram by graphic designer James Langdon. The latter links the '(Un)usual Business' Reader to the reader for the group exhibition Trade Show at Eastside Projects in Birmingham. Both readers, together with a set of “new clothes” for the (Un)usual Business website, are designed by the Birmingham-based graphic design collective Anendlesssupply.
Here you can find the reader. Hope you enjoy the reading; please feel free to share your feedback with us!