BLOK Project Space – Zagreb

Documentation of an exhibition in Zagreb in which I presented a series of illustrations, publications and text pieces exploring housing struggles in Glasgow. The exhibition is titled, ‘A Noose around your neck until you die,’ in English and was curated by the amazing team at BLOK. You can read the full blurb and credits for the show below. There is also an interview and further documentation of the show on this Croatian news website:

An edition of 300 copies of my Letting Agent Comic are being distributed for free at the BLOK gallery space as well. Copies of Variant Magazine and other publications are also on display in the space.

Press Release for the exhibition

David Kerr: A noose around your neck until you die
Ina Wudtke: The Fine Art of Living

5 October – 3 November 2017
BAZA, B. Adžije 11, Zagreb

opening and guided tour by the artists: Thursday October 5 2017, at 7 p.m.

working hours: Tuesday – Friday 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. / Saturday and Sunday 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.

We conclude this year’s season of Artists for Neighbourhood with an exhibition by two artists who put the housing issue at the center of their artistic interest and political engagement. David Kerr and Ina Wudtke looked for the causes and consequences of the housing problem at local examples of Glasgow and Berlin, linking the housing crisis to processes of urban transformation that reveal its deep political and economic roots. They are most visible in the privatization of public services and commodification of housing. Contrary to the still dominant attitude that the housing issues can be solved by small shifts in governance policies, the works of these two artists show that its political and economic background requires a radical response. This is why a special emphasis is placed on the class dimension of housing, calling for organizing of tenants in the struggle for quality and widely accessible public housing.

A noose around your neck until you die (which is one of the definitions of the French origin word ‘mortgage’), brings a selection of comic books and illustrations by David Kerr. Three stories from Kerr’s work encompass a long period, from first subtenants’ strikes in Scotland during the First World War to this day. The author examines the historical legacy of labor struggles and their connection to contemporary organizing, while placing the current mechanisms of housing commodification, driven by great cultural and sporting events, into an extended historical context: capitalist development and its deeply destructive character.

The Fine Art of Living, by the artist Ina Wudtke, cuts into a specific East German context: the privatization of the public housing fund after the fall of the Wall and the gentrification that followed. The mechanisms to expel the poorer population so that buildings could be adapted into luxury goods on the real estate market. The artist felt at first hand and used her own experience as an entry into Berlin’s housing problem at the system level.

On Friday, November 3 2017 at 7 p.m. Ina Wudtke will give a lecture under the title Poetic Agitation: On revolutionary communist workers writers in the Weimar Republic.