The Ethics of Work and The Work of Ethics with Marsha Bradfield

‘Warning: In the cultural sector your boss may not look like your boss – they could be your friend/drinking buddy… It might even be you!’

This caution, which features on the BUST-YOUR-BOSS card (produced by the Precarious Workers Brigade), points to the shifting sands of cultural production. It’s riven with risk and reward; favours and debts; just-in-time delivery, improvisation; ego and solidarities; exploitation and appreciation; surface and substance, inclusion and exclusion–idols, frenemies, bullies, bores, besties, chums, allies, twits and more. This workshop will tackle in the labours of art and education.

A blunt question pivots our day-long programme: How to survive the war of attrition that is life in cultural production? We’ll begin by broaching this with a talk by Marsha Bradfield that plumbs the practices of the Artist Placement Group, Critical Practice, Group Material, Precarious Workers Brigade and other formations that have explicitly tackled the ethics of labour and/as cultural production.

A free practical workshop in the afternoon will create space to reflect, rage and, hopefully, resist and regroup. Marsha will facilitate this with resources like those in the counter curriculum recently published by the Precarious Workers Brigade, Training for Exploitation? Politicizing Employability and Reclaiming Education. Core to this workshop will be the role played by R.E.B.E.L.* in the long game of cultural production.

*The meaning and virtues of R.E.B.E.L. will be discussed in the workshop.

Marsha Bradfield rides the hyphen as an artist-curator-educator-researcher-writer and company director. This multi-barrelled practice is fired by the lived experience of cultural production. Bradfield co-authors research-based experiments in collaboration with groups including Critical Practice, the Incidental Unit (formerly the Artist Placement Group) and Pangaea Sculptors’ Centre. These experiments often result in the understanding that Bradfield later re-presents as publications, performative lectures, and other dialogic artworks. To model this and other research-based approaches, she established Artfield Projects in 2015.

**In keeping with the work theme, the OSE Associate organisers of Margate LARP Sessions are organising a surreal office-themed Larp the same evening, from 7.30-9pm at OSE. Please join the Margate LARP Sessions group for more info and to RSVP**