[Note: The conversations have been edited for clarity, length, and grammatical mistakes. They have also been edited thematically, however the dates of these utterances are noted above each section.]
9 April 2020
Sanaz: The other thing that I am concerned about is the future of job prospects. I was already pessimistic about getting into a post-PhD market. What is going to happen with institutions that were already in the midst of a crisis of neo-liberalized academia? And now what will happen to students involved with them? I know for instance some universities have actually halted their admission for this year. It’s important for us to also share this information about career/life consequences for other artists or cultural workers to have a prospect of what may happen and what is at stake in the next couple of months.
Mikhel: And in fact the next couple of years! In the Canadian context, since I work with artist-run centers a lot, we are going to see a crunch happen sooner than later. And for those of us that rely on that for some amount of income, it's a scary prospect . And like you Sanaz, I have had a couple of projects that have been wiped off the slate for this season. And ... yeah, I have no expectation to be able to do that - to make up that work!
Varda: But when you say that MOMA is putting everything online, then shouldn't we really be thinking of the function of things in the first place? How do we understand the function of institutions and these objects from the onset? And how do we re-contextualize it? Despite a critique that is present in all of our work on institutions, we obviously rely on them, for obvious reasons. But maybe, this is a good time for thinking about possible alternative spaces? Are there alternatives out there that we can look for, so we can start discussing them and bringing them into our talks?