In my previous text an open group can try to make its own value system I talked about making your own value system as we, a small group of people, organised a flea market and invited Federico Bonelli to talk about commoning, Commonfare, and even to talk about how to make your own money. The context of the market already made me mention before some of the situations in which we found ourselves; both in the rural area we work but also in how to co-operate when trying to run a rural common initiative that maybe is not all that common. It certainly proved that we will do another flea market soon, as many cheered the initiative, and it will certainly again hold extra’s, organised by a group that has a core of nice people but can differ depending on the extra’s involved. I certainly think we will need a constant renegotiation about what the group holds in common with awareness of current concerns.
On Saturday Esther de Jong played some songs and will do so again soon, in a public event in January, in my house. On Sunday Federico Bonelli joined in, as did some others. It wasn’t a stunningly busy weekend but we did have some very nice guests, many of them buying stuff, eating pancakes and some joined in on the table game. And amazingly the guests came from all over the Netherlands. What happened? Did we learn about the values of what we share? And did we talk about money, environment, means of production, sustainability, etc? I think our conversations included all of that and I was very happy to see that especially the younger emerging artists that came by did do so out of their own curiosity. In this text I try to capture some of the experiences and connect it to other subjects that concern us too and as has been said before there is a comparison to be made between artists and farmers, but I as an artist just needed to make some money to be able to do so. First I need to eat then I can talk of the landscape that makes me land, and the financescape that makes me work, and the foodscape that makes me eat. Hopefully I don’t get into to many details in this text to loose your attention, therefore let’s return to that ‘crazy’ cow carrying a solar panel on its back.
The cow might be the antagonist in a utopian play, a cow that came from far away to tell that we have to change our habits. As we all know a cow can be a sacred animal to some as well as the stupid character in a cartoon but is also one of many sisters that produce our milk and draw a rather romantic picture of the rural countryside as flourishing green pastures where nature and agriculture co-operate in an ever ongoing rich and happy utopia. The cow in the title was created by one of the people that joined in on the table game with Federico Bonelli to play and invent a world that the game of Monopoly certainly cannot offer; the possibility to make changes to the imagined society in the game and thereby think of how we design our, not at all utopian, society in which we live. The solar cow was ‘just’ an invention to combine needs and trade, and just a way to discuss a current situation by playing a game. Imagine!
Imagination is strongly desired to solve our current situation. In preparation of this text I made notes of the news that came out yesterday of another serious threat
being done by protesters against the windmills, as I talked about before in we all have something to worry about
(December 3 2018). I also wondered about how to cover the distance between the city and rural places that are nearby but not covered by a public transport network. And in bringing subjects together in one sentence I thought a collective should be created to demand internet-connectivity together with local energy solutions and a smart public transport system that responds to the real need. With the latter I try to point at a solution that talks of a ‘DIY together’. Imagine if people really want to be mobile, and connected and share and create a sustainable way of living we might go beyond the table game of Federico. Let’s create a different approach to the right to travel and suppose that going ‘on the road’ demands for promoting this to others, including with how much motor power and seats you are travelling. A system can connect the need for public transport to your motor and seat capacity and tell you which route to take and which stops to make. It will also give you a notice that you will be picked up and can leave your engine at home when the ‘app’ has found a shared solution for your desired travel. Yes, you will have to learn to give up some spontaneity in your travels but will gain the opportunity for all to travel anywhere between city and rural without spending any extra motor power and energy consumption. Walking will be always excluded from this system as a liberty that comes with our ancient biological being as a celebration of the times that we did not yet recognise our cyborg lives. Crazy idea? No, spreading asbestos on purpose as these protesters against windmills did is. To that the cow says: “BOOOOOOOOOOOO!!”.