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titles will be chosen by the camp people


The Family Guidance Center (FGC) – El Buss Sheila Canevacci Ribeiro Maria Isabel S. Ribeiro

ART activities ============== SCHEDULE PRINTING, MID-JUNE – printing at the entrance of the center (this action marks /long-term action); GARDENING, JULY – flowers, plants, trees (one), vegetables and so on / (it brings caring, process, responsibility, link/medium-term action); TALENTS SURVEY/SKILLS, SEPTEMBER – Research and detect the camp talents! Who does things in the camp: food, drawing, music, dance, theatre, graffiti, story teller, languages, clothing/fashion, handicraft, objects, whatever – ALL KNOWLEDGE IS VALID! (this events gives voice, power and inspiration to the camp people and to the FGC staff through teaching/sharing with others; affecting self-esteem, pride, and instructing us mutually towards the unknown realities on the camp. Short-term action); CELL PHONE EXPO, OCTOBER – first exhibition / sharing photos from cellular telephones (sharing subjective experiences, recognition and renewal of the perception of the place where one lives by inspiring people to observe one equivalent thing by other angles). BLIND INTUITIVE SCHEDULE (continuation proposition) MUSIC/NAMING THE PROJECT, NOVEMBER – applying the September survey/beginning of roof installation; STORY TELLER, DECEMBER; MOTHERS EXCHANGING, JANUARY, CAMP EXPEDITION, RECOGNITION, DOCUMENTING, FEBRUARY…FASHION EXPERIENCES – imitating, changing, sharing, reacting; DESIGN EXPERIENCES – building dolls and objects with simple and daily material such as mud, sugar, paper, stones, plants etc. CHANGING THE CENTRE NAME… This is a Camp drawing!

Body prints at the entrance

What for? – While choosing a moving action that will change something, we propose that the reason - the “what for?” - is something that could be constantly changeable. It means that changes could be always something desirable in order to keep a desire, a fire, a vital action. For whom, by who? - The mentality of this Art program is in function of the Camp Mental Health. It includes EVERYONE related to it. Following the idea of ownership and autonomy, this can bring everyone’s great relationship with the place, and a responsibility towards it. We have to use some imagination and relate the reality, creating allegory and meaning. We need to develop, at each stage: 1) Practical questions (where, how, when, etc.) – for staff and users to create, recreate, wonder, play, think, play around, cause polemics and decide, while being stimulated to ask for further matters. Questions should be broad enough so, people’s parameters (culture and world views), would be highlighted by themselves. Example: WHERE- in specific wall? Around the stairs? On the bottom of every step? At the FGC entrance as if it is a “carte de visite”?/ HOW? In ball shapes? Drawing a diagonal in the main wall? With collage? Pictures? Signatures? Poems? Hand, feet, nose, ear prints? 2) Proposal of a few aesthetic parameters for each activity (possible materials, directions, focus, space etc.). 3) Discussing how to document the event. 4) We should ensure stimulating people to create new events. After a moment, everyone (including myself) would find its particular ways to live and to re-appropriate the center. Gradually we would feel the repercussions of the desire to transform and displace: passion technical guidance.


What is happening now: “They” sing every Friday from 10 to 12 am, otherwise this would “disturb” the sessions. This Art project proposes that therapies and art activities should have the same status. In this case, there are no “they and us” and there is not a group neither. There is the FGC and the goal of mental health. We invite the center to cohabitate with sounds, images, odors and so on. Maybe those things are material for our work and it would change the vision of the “silence” for therapy. We’d like to avoid the “right time and place to get inspired” and also to avoid the taboo as such as “expression disturbs”. Well, singing, having fun, creating codes, sense, relationships, friendship, should not “disturb” the sessions, but might be part of being healthy. The first vision reveals the Center as a place for treatment and it treats the Center in a clinical way. So, people are sick and we are dealing with mental sickness. What about the mental health? Considering the complexity of the mental health beyond the clinical approach, and inspiring it towards a place that would inspire potencies, we have to work on changing the mentality here. Promoting health. The Art activities have to take a place as important as the other activities. It cannot be a “parenthesis” in life or at the Center. So, whatever activity, event, treatment happens, it should be seen as something that belongs to the context as a phenomenon of its normality and to be embraced as work elements and as symptoms of its realities. The idea would be: how to have CONSTANT art/cultural events at the Center that would be part of the “mental health approach” of the community cosmos, i.e. not based on “mental disorders”. Every disorder - everything opposite of order - has to be considered as they can bring us sense, can change histories and create/recreate culture. So, if singing is a disorder and if gives us sense, let’s hold it and work with it. This way we would take the whole context as a body that needs attention as it is related with mental health. The space at a glance The space is bureaucratic, institutional, and medical, at the same time that there is a kinder garden touch and NGO. The space esthetic Is there any trace (of children´s drawings), of objects and iconic images of Palestine, of one Palestine or about “Palestine”? How to make a kind space, with its esthetic and layout may have a symbolic recognition? This means that the center belongs to everyone who works there, to children, parents and community. What we are going to put on the walls? Who put it? When put it? Why? These questions are important to constantly reconstruction. So, from whom, to whom, for whom… - The lobby is a passage; - the “playground” has toys for children of a certain age; (3) - the stairs; (2) - the hallway; (2) - Rooms are used with a very clear function: treatment/ administration/ meeting / kitchen/ toilet (except kitchen – treatment room) ;(4) - the roof; (1)


We would like to propose Art activities that would have focus on every Art activity itself as the purpose. So, with the rules that you all can create, whoever wants to participate on the activities can: users, doctors, families, social workers, psychologists. We are not focusing on the staff doing activities for “them”; neither “they are doing it by themselves”. The best thing would be that "instructors/artists/managers” of the activities are heterogeneous. The activities would be managed by those who decide to be "responsible for the x or z". This approach confers artistic responsibility to the people of the community, i.e., never, or almost never bringing “specialists”. People are their specialist of their own culture. We should inspire an inner development of things that are already there. It's a great way to recreate a past-present-future.

penetrate - go lateral – turbulence - inspiration




transiting among rehearsals, exchanging, creation processes, events, getting-together, hanging-outs, shows, workshops…



AXIS expansion

Detecting the key words that connect them (in their pain and/or sense of existence), for example: GOING BACK, TO BE, PALESTINIAN, TO BE PALESTINIAN; Detecting things that does not link them: more subjective contexts, for example, "Siham is different from her sisters". Get into these through the following devices: drawings, photos, videos, tales, music ... To make them plausible, we would need artists who could invent quickly how to materialize a concept. WHAT WOULD BE THE KEY WORDS for us to explore? Land? No land? Landscape? Landscapes? Going back? Staying? Place? Space? Where? Where is a place? Home as a place to go back? The body as a place to go back? Someone’s body as a place to go back? Homo sacer? Paper? Legal? Ilegal? Right? No right? Exclusion? Belonging? Self, hetero images? Approach KEY WORDS penetrating them and instigating the one's opening of possibilities. Always focusing the here/now. So : – Unbalance the crystallization of identity; play the recreation of ideas "I am this / that", while creating a set of opportunities and resources. – Instigate a relationship with time in order to recreate the pasts, the presents and futures that intersect among themselves or not. – Approach nation, borders, citizenship, no-land, (no papers, no full rights, cultural unaccomplished desires, etc.), reinforce new presente and possible identities improving or instigating motivation, subjectivity and increase life quality. - Approach desire, constitution, fantasy, situation.... FOR EXAMPLE:

CARTOGRAPHIES - We take pictures of the camp and recognize where we live in many different ways, we expose it at the center;


- let's build new maps. Maps of the camp; Maps of "my" world; The animals "map"; A gastronomic "map"; Maps of "my" Palestine whatever idea coming from people could be accepted as material to play, observe, displace, decode, reflect upon, create mirrors, poetry etc.


PAPERS - Let’s take pictures and create documents, passports, visas, identity cards, professional cards. Let's play with it. Let's exhibit them at the center. - Let’s be 100% Palestinian; 40% French; 80% Lebanese; 5% nothing; 17% Israeli; 230% nothing; 403% king; 1,5% dictator; 70% worker …American, German, Palestinian in the Ottoman Empire; Lebanese in such and such situation…


AXIS expansion


Making objects with very simple material

Not touching "those" subjects… - we meet to sing; - we share knowledge, at the center, through the camp "talents", i.e. we create fashion by drawing, using our own clothing, making a fashion day; using the parents or neighbors clothing; we share recipes and make a book or put it on the Internet; we create objects with materials from the camp; we make a picture exhibition at the camp with old family pictures; we make movies made by our own cellphones (personal or someone else’s routine or whatever we want to show).


PROPOSITION OF SPACE USE 1 - The ROOF This roof can be explored a lot, for lots of activities. It seems to be a “dead” zone. It’s a GREAT place. We believe that, if we use it as a place for Art, Recreation, Leisure, as well as take it as a place of encounter, it will bring a new complementary face to the center, so all the other changes to come will be more easily welcomed. It can be a transitory element which spontaneously can change the whole approach of the center space. The roof would be « officially » a place for creation and recreation of meaning. The fact of the activities in the center, it´s not the same thing to someone´s home or on the streets, it’s in a different context. It becomes somehow sort of a simulation of a cognitive reconstruction of a “ territory” through all kinds of activities: learning, entertaining, exchanging, fortification of gallows (subjective and groups). - The roof can be a place of constant use for artistic meetings from morning until night (24hrs? 12hrs? 6hrs? Everyday? Specific days?). Once we detect what we have in the camp, we can organize and develop Artistic and other cultural sharing at “the roof”. Either for encounters, rehearsal, learning, leisure.. If this is possible, it would be very important to great a symbol around its meaning and recognition. We should invite each and everyone to clean the roof that will become a place for art in the center. People can bring their personal things to furnish and decorate the roof – things that they´re not going to use at their house anymore, or yet people can create specific objects for the roof (chairs, tables, etc…). Little by little, the roof will have an artistic life that should be structured especially with rules regarding time, safety and other kinds of responsibility (always involving everyone, but of course in different functions).

2- The hallways/the stairs: they can become real exhibition places! We can have a few places, at the FGC – and also around the Camp, which would be very specific locations/zones used for people to leave their trace, mark and imprint. It means to create people’s “alive pieces” there. Not necessarily “pieces of Art”, but also pieces of themselves. It’s important that the events happen on important dates - meaningful ones - even if invented ones, in ritualistic rule. Example: everytime someone is born in the camp; when a user completes one month at the center; every May 1 , every time someone loses a teeth and so on… We have to take care in making it in a way that makes sense and has limits. For example: In the first wall of the stairs, there is “a place to leave a message”, with a title on it, YOU – HERE. There, we have ONE picture of every person who frequents the FGC. 3- Playground space I really don’t know what to do with the playground, but for sure it is way too symbolic and imposes only one possibility: kids can play in that precise way. So, in that space, kids do not play in other ways and it unfortunately excludes the others, and other possibilities. Now, if this playground is the only one in the Camp and kids would miss it, maybe it could be transferred somewhere else.


The playground hall is placed in a crucial spot that could be essential to link people. This place could be arranged for people to wait for the sessions. They can arrive early and leave when they wish. Not having to come “for the session”. For this to happen, we should create a little structure. Even the structure can be an “event”, an artistic event in which a group of users together with the staff would decide what to do with it. Is it possible? We could imagine something related to the culture, i.e. table for games? Mattresses to lie down/to sit? To plant a tree under which people can sit? I have no idea… But we are sure that this space here could be where people relate. It would be “their” place. You see, there is no place for the visitors so far. People can come and read, hang out, even sleep. I take the opportunity here to say that once the approach changes, people would have their own ideas of constant change. 4- Treatment rooms - These rooms have clear functions inside the center. We won´t change anything. We´re not allowed by ourselves to go further questions of secure settings. It’s possible to maintain private spaces. It´s important to say that there are education or mental health centers, here in Brazil, without walls. There´s some photos of one of the most important mental health center. 5- At the camp What activities can be done AT the Camp as a FGC extension? PROPOSITION OF TIME USE After we, everybody, detect who knows what, the frequency should be decided. For supporting the commitment and for psychic organisation, it is important to have continuity and a routine of the events. So create a kind of schedule (for example): – Every Monday and Wednesday mornings: children sing; – Every Tuesday afternoons: mothers / pregnant women come to exchange x; – Every Friday evening, the teens watch x; – Every 1st Sunday of the month: story telling; – Once a month teen’s squat;

PARAMETERS We count on you for: -Guiding this work in relation to the main context/culture dimensions to be approached; - When needed, explaining me issues around administration dynamics, violence (and other) questions in the camp, schedule and activities possibilities. - Making constantly clear what the FGC means to the community; About the method: - We are very influenced by Franco Basaglia’s psychiatric reform, following the belief that madness is part of human condition rationality. - Since I started researching to build this project, I have been involved with Paulo Amarante who is the main person in the psychiatric reform in Brazil and who coordinates The LAPS (Laboratory


of Psychosocial Attention/Aid). - We work towards REIVENTING HEALTH not approaching healthy as the opposition of sick. So, we don’t treat crisis as symptoms of diseases/pathologies. We approach suffering and mental health considering the complexity of each and every person in his/her context. - The body we approach is not only biological, it’s a media in constant exchange with himselves/herselves and in mutant dialogue with others and the context. - We don’t believe and don’t agree with ART THERAPY. We approach Art in a way that is not used as a method of treatment and “cure”. For example, instead of “teaching music”, we listen to music together. This approach changes immediately the paradigm of the doctor/patient. All powers and all mistakes that we would find every 10 years might minimize. The person who is coming to the FGC becomes a person with his/her own piece of diversity and multiple statuses. Here, there is no longer the notion of “helping” or “tutoring”, but working for mental health. The goal is to think ways of approaching Art and Space in order to have a take towards "mental health" in a less clinical way, promoting a sweet transition deeply related to the community’s atemporal/temporal identities and culture; We consider whoever as a person who has desires, projects and visions. - So, the Art we will be doing it’s not intervention, not “functional”. It does not mean, of course, that is a useless caprice, it’s a work with inner and interactive development aiming to expand cognitions, senses, confusions, abstractions, displacements, relationships, introspections, signs, codes, relaxation, leisure, fun, skills, autonomies, perspectives, mutations, crisis, identities and tensions. Furthermore, contributing on the cultural reinforcement and development; - We’ll take benefit from the camp field environment and potential in order that the ART activities together with the clinical treatments can expand outside the FGC. - The ART activities are for the FGC. It means that they are for EVERYBODY RELATED TO IT : the kids and teens users, their families, the camp community and the staff can participate on the activities. -Once we change the treatment paradigm of the center and put mental health into a global perspective, the place will be transformed. It purpose will be changed step by step with smooth switches; adaptations will be done every day, vis-à-vis culture, values and local wishes. We won´t say “we can do everything”, but it will instigate this connection without trying to avoid polemics. - The changes must be gentle to be assimilated with pleasure, fluency and ownership. VALUES - Avoid segregation, exclusion, and moral shame; - constantly deconstruct power relations; - work complex things in a simple way; - empowerment – working towards users inner strengthening; - focusing on open possibilities towards inter-institutional and inter-personnel relationships. - Appropriation (of themselves, the FGC and the camp) – be an actor of its own care, mutual aid and own rights defense; - to encourage new possibilities of life: having conditions to transform the world transforming oneself. - taking risk without being risky. - go through and beyond reproduced stigmatized cultural, folkloric, unbendable self-images; PRESENT- Memory, Experience




How to detect an activity? There is : a knowledge, un medium, a device, a date, researches, creations, productions, interlocutors/speakers and a processual transformation. Brief, it will invent things that make sense for all, while creating a sinergic camp. HOW TO CREATE AN ACTIVITY? Fashion (example) Let’s recreate costumes made by X (recycled clothing? Paper? Stone? Mud?). When and the constancy Create events over the event. Inspire penetration and obsession to create more events. Showing process and results Create a main event with festive recognition Advertise it Document Expose Share Create a Schedule SCHEDULE (example) February - invite the staff March - invite the camp - Do the mark of inauguration April - Audition of talents - Change the space of the playground May - Start activities at the roof (do precise more refined schedule)

And more… Web activities, cell phone movies, role playing, Camera, Collage, TV, Radio, Music: singing, playing, Dancing, Drawings, Installations, Theatre, Mothers and/or pregnant women in an exchanging activity; - Observation; - Squatting; - Story telling; writing (duo, group) … Also MIXING AREAS: take a picture + tell a history…


Artists – Rabih Mroué (instability), Khalil Rabah (Palestinian fantasies)… New epistemologies: Boaventura Souza e Santos Anthropology, communication - Massimo Canevacci (self and hetero representation, ethnography, astonishing method), Nancy Scheper-Hughes (medical anthropology) Contemporary paradigm power studies: Agamben (homo sacer, exclusion, identity) Postcolonial studies: Homi Bhabha (the local of culture), Stuart Hall, Milton Santos (geopolitics) Bio politics : Foucault (the clinic invention, microphysics), Esposito (immunization) Psychiatry: Rabih Elchammay (reconnaitre pour oublier/basic parameters); Paulo Amarante, Ernesto Venturini, Benilton Bezerra Junior, Silvio Yasui (Reform approaches, Brazilian model, culture and health) Healthy and education: Marco Aurelio da Roz Palestine basics: Edward said (one and the other issues, orientalism, dispossesion) Art education: Augusto Boal


Films “Leila Khaled: Hijacker” (Lina Makboul, 2006). 58 min - Documentary “Divine Intervention” (Elia Suleiman, 2002).

© Ribeiro sisters 2011