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Preview: Latitudes interviews Ethel Baraona Pohl about ‘Adhocracy’ at the Istanbul Design Biennial


Earlier this fall, we published an article about the Barcelona-based curatorial duo Latitudes on Our Daily Red blog. The post came in the wake of Latitudes' interview with Robin Dowden, Nate Solas and Paul Schmelzer from the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis: Beyond Interface was the first in a series of 10 interviews with artists, designers, architects, curators, publishers etc. on the subject of #OpenCurating. Open Curating is Latitudes' term for contemporary art projects and publishing practices that use current and emerging technologies to function beyond the traditional format of exhibition-and-catalogue.

In Issue #2 of Big Red & Shiny (live Monday 12 November) we are pleased to publish their second interview in the series, a conversation with Ethel Baraona Pohl, co-founder of the independent publishing company dpr-barcelona, and associate curator of Adhocracy, one of the two expansive exhibitions constituting the first Istanbul Design Biennial that opened on October 13th, curated by Emre Arolat and Joseph Grima.

The term adhocracy opposes itself to bureaucracy to describe an organic, fluid, informal and horizontal approach to organization. It privileges creative problem-solving, seizing opportunities and tends to be results-driven. Titling an exhibition this way reflects the curators' recognition that adhocracy is close to inherent in design today, given the amount of tools at our fingertips that allow for independent production, open communication and the exchange of information. This in-depth interview touches on questions of participation (and the over-exposure of the term), social networks, flexible ad hoc projects, web-based and interactive publications. Read Joseph Grima's introduction to the exhibition and its concept in the Biennial's online catalogue.

The BR&S editors have been keeping an close eye on Latitudes' #OpenCurating discussions as we develop our own web-based publishing platform and strategize for the future. Latitudes themselves are no strangers to adhocracy: their 2-person office is a flexible organization, geographically as much as in the collaborative partnerships they create through their work. @lttds await your #OpenCurating responses on Twitter.

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