Involuntary Park was co-founded at BLANK Studios & Gallery in Brighton in 2010, and is led by Johanna Berger and CiCi Blumstein. After many years of working in the public realm as independent practitioners, their approach to cultural place-making, consultation and urban regeneration is shaped and informed by their distinct, established artistic practices and professional experience in a wide range of settings. In addition to the key partners listed below, Involuntary Park works with a long-established network of collaborating artists and specialists – please see each project for details and full credits.
CiCi BLUMSTEIN, CO-DIRECTOR
CiCi Blumstein is an artist filmmaker, choreographer, installation and performance artist. Fusing urban planning, architectural and choreographic principles, CiCi seeks to instigate a playful re-coding of public space through direct interaction and construction. “I work with the moving body as the smallest architectural unit in the built and in the natural environment. Once danced, a space cannot be un-danced, it remains in my imagination and in the body as a space of infinite possibilities.”
CiCi is a steering group member & co-curator at Movement 12, a group of independent international dance artists & curators. Her work has been commissioned for many different settings, from large-scale sculptural installations in the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern, to performances, workshops and screenings in village halls and town squares, in derelict factories and on urban waste ground, as well as for schools, libraries and universities. She is an experienced & passionate teacher and workshop leader. Full details of her work [including a project archive from 1989 – 2009] are at www.ciciblumstein.com .
JOHANNA BERGER, CO-DIRECTOR
Johanna Berger trained as a visual artist and art therapist. She has worked for many years as an artist educator and a creative consultant.
“My current practice has become largely about thinking creatively in order to enable positive change in various settings. I am generally interested in art that takes place on the edges of the art world market. I think artist-led, self-initiated projects denote what contemporary art is today”.
As a way of contextualising this view in a practical way, Johanna set up BLANK in 2007 and co-founded Involuntary Park in 2010, pioneering a new wave of cultural regeneration in Portslade. For further information about BLANK, please see: www.blankstudiosgallery.org
PARTNERS & NETWORKS
In addition to our key partners listed below, Involuntary Park works with a wide and long-established network of collaborating artists, partners and specialists – please see each project for details and full credits.
Involuntary Park’s long-standing relationship with Aerotrope forms a key part of our strategy to deliver innovative and sustainable artworks in the public realm. Aerotrope are specialist engineering consultants and designers in the fields of wind energy technology, zero carbon vehicles and multi-scale artworks. In each of these sectors, they collaborate with world-class clients on their most challenging development projects. Working in close consultation with Aerotrope from the outset, Involuntary Park are able to tackle the most complex of projects, and to design and deliver public art objects of the highest standard.
Launched in April 2007, BLANK is an artist run, not-for-profit organisation comprising 12 studios, 25 artists and a large gallery & project space. Situated at the edge of Brighton & Hove in Portslade, BLANK is at the forefront of a wave of pioneering contemporary art venues and organisations, who, attracted by the remoteness of the industrial wilderness, have moved here and are instigating a change. BLANK is Involuntary Park’s base and most immediate artists’ network. BLANK and its extensive network of artists is a resource for the public engagement programmes we create as an integral part of our projects.
We benefit from an ongoing relationship with Kevin Wilson, director of Artpoint, who mentors our professional development and oversees the delivery of programmes of work. Artpoint are the Public Art Agency for the South East, working with artists to support new thinking and practice for the built environment and public space across the region.