Mini TVE presentation with Third Horizon Media at the Miami Book Fair

On Monday, November 12th, 2018 Third Horizon Media, Miami, collaborated with the Fresh Milk led initiative Transoceanic Visual Exchange (TVE) to curate a small screening of a selection of video/film work by Caribbean artists as part of their contribution to the 2018 Miami Book Fair.

This mini edition of TVE featured work by Adam Patterson (Barbados), Rhea Storr (The Bahamas/UK), Sandra Vivas (Venezuela), Alberta Whittle (Barbados/UK), Nick Whittle (Barbados/UK) and Anisah Wood (Barbados).

Transoceanic Visual Exchange is a selection of video art by artists practicing in the Caribbean, the Pacific Islands and their diasporas. This edition of TVE was coordinated by The Fresh Milk Art Platform (Barbados) in partnership with Footscray Community Arts Centre (Melbourne, Australia) in 2017, with additional screenings taking place in collaboration with Deakin University (Melbourne, Australia) and Third Horizon Media (Miami, USA) in 2018.

Click here to see the PDF of the event program:

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About Third Horizon Media:

Third Horizon is a Miami-based Caribbean filmmaking collective and media company dedicated to capturing the sights and sounds of the Caribbean and the so-called “third world.” The collective’s projects have screened at festivals around the world, including Sundance, Toronto International (TIFF), International Film Festival Rotterdam and Sheffield Documentary Festival, among others.

The collective also stages the annual Third Horizon Film Festival, which aims to empower and celebrate fellow filmmakers and projects focused on the Caribbean, the Diasporas that formed it, and the Diasporas formed by it.

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About The Miami Book Fair:

The Miami Book Fair is an annual literary festival event realized in Miami by Miami Dade College.

The fair, which has become a model for other fairs across the country, brings over 300 renowned national and international authors exhibitors to a weeklong celebration of all things literary and includes pavilions for translation, comics, children, and young adults.The mission of Miami Book Fair International is to promote reading, encourage writing, and heighten an awareness of literacy and the literary arts in the city’s multi-ethnic community.The eight-day book festival has draws hundreds of thousands of book lovers to downtown Miami each November for a festival of all things read and written.

Transoceanic Visual Exchange Caribbean

TVE flyer McGilchrist

A survey of film and video works in the Caribbean, Africa and Aotearoa, Transoceanic Visual Exchange (TVE) aims to negotiate the in-between space of our cultural communities outside of traditional geo-political zones of encounter and trade. The three spaces involved – Fresh Milk (Barbados), Video Art Network Lagos (Nigeria) and RM (New Zealand) – first met as participants of International Artist Initiated (IAI), a programme organized and facilitated by David Dale Gallery, Glasgow, in July 2014. TVE intends to build upon these relations and open up greater pathways of visibility, discourse and knowledge production between the artist run initiatives and their regional communities through this laterally curated exhibition project, taking place in Barbados, New Zealand, Nigeria and online.

TVE Caribbean will launch at 7pm on October 14, 2015 at Bagnall Point, BIDC Conference Room, Pelican Village in Bridgetown, Barbados as part of the Barbados Visual Media Festival (BVMF). The exhibition will also be open to the public at that location on October 17, 28 & 30 and features works by:

Versia Harris (Barbados), Katherine Kennedy (Barbados), Michèle Pearson Clarke (Trinidad & Tobago / Canada), Romel Jean Pierre (Haiti), Nick Whittle / Alberta Whittle (Barbados), Rebecca Ann Hobbs (Aotearoa), Ngahuia Raima (Aotearoa), Louisa Afoa (Aotearoa), Nkechi Ebubedike (Nigeria) and Lambert Mousseka (Democratic Republic of the Congo).

There will be additional special screenings taking place at Fresh Milk, The Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination (EBCCI) as part of their Film Club Screenings and Barbados Community College (BCC):

October 16, 6pm – Fresh Milk, St. George
Rebecca Ann Hobbs – Mangere bridge 246 / Otara at Night (Aotearoa)

October 22, 7pm – Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination
Darcell Apelu – Slap (Aotearoa)
Akwaeke Emezi – Ududeagu (Nigeria)
Carlo Reyes – Viernes Santo (Dominican Republic)

October 29-30, 10am-4pm – Morningside Gallery, Barbados Community College
Olivia McGilchrist – Riva Mumma (Jamaica)
David Gumbs – Offscreen (St. Martin)

RSVP to the event on Facebook here.

For more information please visit www.transoceanicvisualexchange.com, or email Natalie McGuire at tveproject.caribbean@gmail.com.

Special thanks to the Barbados Film and Video Association (BFVA), EBCCI, BCC and Stansfeld Scott Inc. for making these screenings possible, and to Versia Harris and Katherine Kennedy for designing the logo, digital space and flyers.

Mapping the Commonwealth with “Glasgow’s Finest”

Alberta Whittle shares her thoughts on the recent International Artist Initiated (IAI) project in Glasgow, presented by the David Dale Gallery & Studios as part of The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme which took place alongside this year’s Commonwealth Games. Read more below:

Photograph by Rayanne Bushell

Representatives of Clark House Initiative, RM, Video Network Lagos, Fresh Milk; Alberta Whittle and Rayanne Bushell

 “In 1884 the Earl of Rosebery visits Australia and asks, ”Does the fact of your being a nation… imply separation from the Empire? God forbid! There is no need for any new nation, however great, leaving the Empire, because the Empire is a Commonwealth of Nations“.”[1]

In the summer of 2014, the Commonwealth Games arrived in Glasgow. Much like any travelling circus, the Games brought believers, performers, participants and an audience. Like any participant, I came to Glasgow with my own expectations. Having lived in the city for many years, but failing to assimilate completely, I still feigned the confidence that comes so easily for those who know the area. Sharing a taxi ride, with the self-proclaimed “Glasgow’s Finest”, the driver quizzed me on my knowledge of the city’s geography, asking me where roads connected, easily highlighting my failure to truly belong to Glasgow. The driver insisted on informing me that Glasgow’s taxi drivers were always known as “Glasgow’s Finest”, and I was not allowed to forget it.

During this trip, over many conversations with “Glasgow’s Finest”, a discourse of belonging and not belonging readily emerged. The drivers often assumed Barbadian artist, Annalee Davis and I were Americans, our accents blurring into a vague sense of foreign-ness. They asked why we were here, and when we explained about our project as part of the Commonwealth Games, they in turn spoke of how the Games were not for Glaswegians. The Games’ faux presentation of multiculturalism and the promotion of the idea that we are all in this together confronts the reality that, for many Glaswegians, there is a disconnect between their participation on home soil and the participation of the athletes and visitors flown in to contribute to the spectacle of imagined unity. The notion of unity between us, members of a former British colony, and Glaswegians, a nation grappling with securing their own independence, came from an unlikely direction. Driving through the Merchant City we passed roads such as St. Vincent Street and Jamaica Street; easy reminders of Glasgow’s active role within the slave trade as members of the plantocracy and as indentured servants. However, “Glasgow’s Finest” posited the belief that Caribbean and Scottish nations must be united against the English, advocating the belief that Scots also faced “oppression” from England. This supposition did not entirely surprise me, given the political climate surrounding the upcoming Scottish Referendum.

From the banners, traffic diversions and the odd, green mascot called Clyde dotted across the city, the aura of the Commonwealth seeped into Glasgow’s public spaces. As part of the celebrations, the David Dale Gallery in Glasgow’s East End invited artist-run spaces from across the Commonwealth:  Fillip (Canada),  RM (New Zealand), Cyprus Dossier (Cyprus), Fresh Milk (Barbados), Video Art Network Lagos (Nigeria) and Clark House Initiative (India) to participate in their International Artist Initiated programme.

As part of the Fresh Milk platform, Mark King, Ronald Williams and myself presented a series of interventions. Responding to the commercial nature of the area, we crafted three individual presentations. The location of the David Dale Gallery within the heart of the East End of Glasgow – once a thriving industrial boomtown – seems peculiarly apt, mirroring the substantial role of production Britain’s former colonies assumed, laying the foundation for the industrial revolution. These same former colonies are now re-positioned as independent nations, members of the Commonwealth, exhibiting artwork in their own image. The recent deterioration of Glasgow’s prominence in manufacturing, where production is now outsourced to these former colonies, lends symmetry to the proceedings.

 “Internet ultimately offers both the seductions and subductions of a postmodern “world.”’ [2]

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FRESH MILK Participates in International Artist Initiated presented by David Dale Gallery & Studios

Fresh Milk IAI Poster

Fresh Milk is very excited to be traveling to Glasgow to participate in the International Artist Initiated (IAI) project, presented by the David Dale Gallery & Studios as part of The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme taking place alongside this year’s Commonwealth Games.

About IAI:

International Artist Initiated is a programme of exhibitions and events devised by David Dale Gallery to coincide with the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Developed over the past year, the project is intended to act as a catalyst for discussion and collaboration between artist initiated projects internationally. The structure of the project is designed to be malleable and open source, in that it can be taken and applied elsewhere with different organisations – not that there is anything particularly ground breaking about the idea, but sometimes simple ideas are the most effective – let’s gather a diverse collection of people with similar interests and see what we can create.

Working with artist initiated, or focussed, organisations from across the six Commonwealth territories, the programme consists of a series of exhibitions and events by the invited organisations that respond to either the context of the Commonwealth Games within Glasgow, or is representative or indicative of contemporary culture within their nation through the lens of an artist-led organisation. The scope and direction of the project is intentionally open and wide – as the strength of this practise is in its breadth of interpretation and invention. Taking place over multiple venues in Glasgow’s east end, International Artist Initiated incorporates visual art exhibitions, public art, events, performance and publications as a celebration of the diversity of self-organised cultural practice internationally.

international artist initiated

The word ‘international’ is a daunting one, and a little bombastic. There is no intention within this project for the selection or execution to be conclusive in any way. The selection of the organisations, has by definition, meant the exclusion of thousands of initiatives – we consider this selection to supplement existing dialogues through opening up another network, another platform.

A self-critical capacity seems to be one of very few universals inherent within artist initiated organisations, and this project has grown its own criteria quite organically. The privilege within this project is the access to the plurality of voices. Fresh eyes that can say ‘yeh, but…’. The six disparate organisations represented within IAI all contribute separate and distinct critical and discursive components to the overall project: considering their own place and histories; the architectonic context within which they’re placed; the cultural historic context in which we work; specific cultural relationships towards the present invitation context; and whether the project can work and grow. Instead of an incessant list of questions, however, what develops is a wonderful narrative of sorts – a cyclical story in which everyone pitches in to embellish.

These contributors are:

Fresh Milk, Barbados
Fillip, Canada
Cyprus Dossier, Cyprus
Clark House Initiative, India
RM, New Zealand
Video Art Network Lagos, Nigeria

Download the IAI Programme as a PDF here.

iai poster

About Fresh Milk’s Contribution:

Exhibitions in the public space
Work by Mark King, Alberta Whittle and Ronald Williams
July 19 – August 3, 2014
Broad Street/Fordneuk Street, Glasgow

Notions of common/wealth versus single/wealth
Discussion and live broadcast
Saturday July 19, 2014
3pm – 5pm (10am – 12pm Barbados time)
David Dale Gallery, Broad Street, Glasgow

Watch it live online here: thisistomorrow.info 

Fresh Milk’s contribution to IAI is in two parts. The first will see the installation of works by three emerging artists on a billboard, on railings and on the surface of the sidewalk. The artists include a recent graduate from the Barbados Community College, Ronald Williams, who’s crisp digital montages critique the stereotype of the black athlete and will be installed on an extended billboard while Mark King’s temporal, geometric, site specific work will be installed on a pavement. Alberta Whittle’s fête (party) posters show the artist masquerading as both man and woman in her critique of gender stereotypes through her engagement with the local fête posters often seen posted throughout Bridgetown, Barbados’ capital city. The posters will be reproduced in multiplies and plastered throughout the streets of Glasgow.

Fresh Milk’s second contribution will be a discursive project called “Notions of common/wealth versus single/wealth”. This dialogical component will provide a platform for representatives of the seven specially invited networks to participate in conversations with each other and the Glaswegian audience. The aim of the conversations will, in part, be to unpack ideas related to the Commonwealth of Nations – the association under which countries gather every four years to celebrate sport in Glasgow in the summer of 2014. The intention is to explore the context of the IAI, as a gathering of Commonwealth Nations, and delve into how that relates to the work we all do as artist led initiatives. The concern is to unpack the Commonwealth as a macro, historical entity and understand our relationship to it, if any, and all that entails. Interrelated are ideas about the definition of wealth and value, both single and common, in our local contexts.

About Fresh Milk’s Participants:

Mark King

Mark King is a multidisciplinary Barbadian visual artist who explores archetypes and social norms. Interested in notions of topography and megalography, Mark makes coded, often satirical work that highlights social phenomena. The son of a former diplomat, Mark has called several places home. Growing up in The Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, and the United States has left Mark with a unique perspective that directly influences his artistic practice.

Mark holds a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Photography from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, California. In 2011 the Lucie Foundation handpicked Mark for their apprenticeship program. During the same year he participated in a screen-printing residency at the Frans Masereel Centrum in Kasterlee, Belgium. In 2012 he took part in an artist residency at Alice Yard in Port of Spain, Trinidad. In 2013, he participated in two residencies – Fresh Milk in Saint George, Barbados, and Ateliers ’89 in Aruba for the Mondriaan Foundation’s Caribbean Linked ll. Last year he released his first monograph, ‘Plastic’ through MOSSLESS publishing at The Newsstand in New York. Plastic has gone on to The 2013 New York Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1, The 8Ball Zine Fair, the 2013 I Never Read Art Book Fair in Basel, Switzerland, and The 2014 LA Art Book Fair in the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA.

Mark King’s Artist Statement

My contribution to the Glasgow 2014 Culture Programme is a site-specific work made possible by the access provided by technology. Through virtual and interactive maps I embarked upon an exercise in way-finding from a computer thousands of miles away in Barbados. Through mechanisms such as Google Maps I selected forms present in the architecture and manipulated them to create artworks that draw upon the location where my work will be presented.
I have chosen chalk as my medium due to its ephemeral qualities. The resulting artwork is temporary much like the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. My hope is that spectators from across the globe will come into direct contact with the piece with chalk from the artwork sticking to their shoes and hitching a ride to the neighboring sports venues. The combination of the elements and foot traffic will slowly eat away at the pigment and ultimately return the site to a state prior to my temporary intervention.

It is unknown whether the work will last for an hour, a day or the duration of the Commonwealth Games.

Alberta Whittle

Alberta Whittle is a Barbadian artist, currently based between South Africa, Glasgow and Barbados. She has undertaken residencies at CESTA (Czech Republic), Market Gallery (Scotland), Collective Gallery (Scotland), Fresh Milk (Barbados), Greatmore Studio and The Bag Factory in South Africa.

She choreographs interactive installations, interventions and performances as site-specific artworks in public and private spaces, including at the Royal Scottish Academy (Scotland) and has exhibited in various solo and group shows in Europe, the Caribbean and South Africa, including at the CAS Gallery, University of Cape Town in March 2013 and in ‘WHERE WE’RE AT! Curated by Christine Eyene in Brussels in June 2014. Her practice is concerned with the construction of stereotypes of race, nationality and gender, considering the motivation behind the perpetuation and the different forms in which they are manifested.

Alberta Whittle’s Artist Statement

“Violence is man re-creating himself”.[1] 

“…Pon bed pon floor against wall
We sex dem all till dem call mi
Im de girls dem sugar dats all
Welcome de king of de dancehall…” [2]

I am interested in the conflict between historical images of the Other and the African Diaspora’s notions of the Self. The spectacle of racial differences relies on a language of bleak oppositions to confirm stereotypes. In Black Skin / White Masks, Frantz Fanon, observed that in colonial discourse “native” peoples are not positioned within the psychoanalytic structure of the Self and Other, but are relegated to the universe of objects, where they remain beyond the limits of cultural intelligibility.Focusing on the concept of subjective portraiture, both as art historical genre and public identity, my research has prompted me to interrogate the potential of Barbadian fete posters[3] as a means of regaining subjectivity.

3. jeans vs leggings-text-new

Whilst undertaking a residency at Fresh Milk in 2012, I began a series of digital collages, exploring the production and distribution of fete posters in Barbados. Fete posters are a platform for social commentary, highlighting the acute disparity between gender roles in Barbados, where these representations appear frozen. The posters advertising these “fetes” set the tone and introduce the hosts / hostesses.  Each poster must present a selection of portraits of the hosts / hostesses, who enact a series of set poses, often sexually provocative or stereotypically hypermasculine. There are exceptions to this trope, where we are presented with more family-oriented fetes or fetes, which present a more Afro-centric or Rastafarian ideology. However, despite attempts to present themselves as rigidly heterosexual, there are elements of homoeroticism, identified through pose, adornment and dress. Designed to reflect certain ideals, these posters have evolved to reflect a specific format, which typically utilises certain poses, typography, set design and phrases, presenting a fantastical landscape punctuated with exotic animals, signifiers of wealth, including mansions, enormous bundles of cash money, expensive liquor, cars and motorbikes. They are papered on walls throughout the urban and pastoral landscape and also use Facebook as a stage. Drawing from Dancehall and Hip Hop culture, they have become sites to define identity and project capitalist ideals.

Assuming a number of different roles, adorning myself in gendered forms of surface design I masquerade as both male and female. Through adopting specific gestures and poses, I attempt to ape the hypersexualised presentations of gender, which are rife in Dancehall culture. These posters provide an opportunity for individuals to present a portrait of themselves for the public to interpret, dismember and enjoy. The creation of this form of portrait photography can be considered a form of documentary realism, which offers a conflicting viewpoint from the stereotypical portrayals of the Other.

[1] Fanon, Frantz, (2001), “The Wretched of the Earth”, London: Penguin

[2] Beenie man lyrics from “King of the Dancehall,” http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/beenieman/kingofthedancehall.html

[3] “Fetes” are parties held at a variety of locations in Barbados, from private homes, bars, nightclubs, to parks and beaches. They are rarely ticketed, usually inexpensive and often free. They can be hosted by anyone, who can secure the venue, organise the DJs, and provide a bar to ensure the party is “HYPE”. “HYPE”, is a colloquial phrase, meaning cool, fun or popular.

Ronald Williams

Born in Bridgetown, Barbados in 1990, multimedia artist Ronald Williams developed an interest in art from a very young age.  His art education at the Barbados Community College’s Fine Arts program forced him to view art as a powerful cog in society. Currently, Ronald’s work focuses on race and sociology. He volunteers at the Fresh Milk Art Platform Inc. as part of the editorial team of the Fresh Milk Books initiative.

Ronald Williams’ Artist Statement

My collages investigate the role that sports and the black athlete play in society. I manipulate popular based imagery to compose computer-generated images that explore sports, perceptions, stereotypes and fantasies about the black athlete or figure, conceptually becoming deliberately self-contradictory as the stereotype is simultaneously celebrated and criticized. The work is designed as a large-scale poster to be installed on a billboard as an adhesive decal similar to how the image of the modern sportsman is represented.

Annalee Davis

Annalee Davis 

Annalee Davis is a Visual Artist and creative activist living and working in Barbados. Since 2011, Annalee has been the founding director of the artist-led initiative – The Fresh Milk Art Platform Inc. An experiment, a cultural lab and an act of resistance, Fresh Milk supports excellence among emerging contemporary creatives locally, throughout the Caribbean, its diaspora and internationally. Located on a working dairy farm and a former sugar cane plantation, Fresh Milk is a nurturing entity; transforming a once exclusive space to become a freely accessible platform with programming supportive of new modes of thinking and engaging. Annalee is a part-time tutor in the BFA programme at the Barbados Community College.  For more on her practice, visit her website and view the Fresh Milk site here.

mario caro

Mario Caro

Mario A. Caro is a researcher, curator, and critic of contemporary art, having published widely on the history, theory, and criticism of contemporary Indigenous arts. He is currently an assistant professor in the John W. Draper Interdisciplinary Graduate Program at New York University.

His work within the academy complements his endeavors to further global cultural exchange. He is on the board of various organizations focused on art residencies and is the current president of Res Artis, an international network of residencies focused on promoting the worldwide mobility of artists. Mario is the moderator for Fresh Milk’s discursive component as part of the IAI.

Fresh Performance Chapter 2: Performing Gender

FRESH MILK in collaboration with Damali Abrams presents Chapter 2 in the Fresh Performance Project: Performing Gender

We begin learning the rules of gender performance at birth from the compulsory colors we are dressed in to being told “girls don’t do this” or “boys don’t do that”. Performance art can be an effective tool for exaggerating the performative aspects of gender identity in order to comment on the societal limitations that come with whatever gender box we check off. Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow and Alberta Whittle are two interdisciplinary artists who utilize performance to comment on many issues, including gender and sexuality.

Jodie invited me to her live/work space in Ridgewood, Queens on a Tuesday evening after work. Appropriately when I went to visit Jodie she was baking banana bread. Both Jodie and Alberta have performed pieces that involve distributing bananas to audience members, though in different contexts.

Jodie’s performance, Crop Killa, “references Jamaica’s once self sufficient agriculture to its economic decline partially due to loans by IMF and the World Bank in the mid 1970’s”. Alberta’s performance, Hustle de Money,  is a “critique of the visual language and gender stereotypes dominant in fete [party] posters” in Barbados.

Even though Jodie and I are good friends I learned a lot about her work from this interview. Alberta and I had a long deep conversation about gender performance and the global dangers that women face daily from street harassment to rape and kidnapping.

It was enlightening speaking with both Jodie and Alberta and I have much more footage than I could possibly fit into this video. Hopefully when I edit the full-length documentary it will give viewers an opportunity to get a better sense of these two amazing artists.

Special thanks to kiza, who is based in Serbia and provided the music for this video.

Damali Abrams

About Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow:

Born in Manchester, Jamaica, Jodie Lyn-Kee-Chow is a multidisciplinary artist who received a BFA at University of Florida (New World School of the Arts) in 1996. In 2005 she attained an MFA from Hunter College, New York City. Her work has been exhibited and performed nationally and internationally at venues including Exit Art (NYC), Rush Arts Gallery (NYC), Amelie A. Wallace Gallery at SUNY Old Westbury College (NY), Scope Art Fair (FL), The Queens Museum of Art (NY), Third Streaming LLC (NY), Rush Arts Gallery (NYC),  Open Contemporary Art Center (Beijing, China), Art Museum of the Americas (Washington, DC), A.I.R. Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), SOHO 20 (NYC), MoCADA (Brooklyn, NY), Grace Exhibition Space (Brooklyn, NY), ‘’Gwangju International Media & Performance Art Festival’’ at the Gwangju Bienalle (Gwangju, SOUTH KOREA) and Edna Manley College for Visual and Performing Arts (Kingston , JAMAICA). She is also a Rema Hort Mann award nominee and a 2012 NYFA Fellow in Interdisciplinary Art.

Through a feminine perspective Lyn-Kee-Chow uses allegories to navigate issues of the body, desire, and nature while weaving in humor, absurdity, and familiar objects. She lives and works in New York City.

About Alberta Whittle:

Alberta Whittle is a Barbadian artist, who graduated from the Masters programme at Glasgow School of Art in 2011. Whilst a student she participating in the exchange programme at Concordia University in Montreal. Since graduating, Whittle completed a commission for the Museum of London, where she presented an interactive installation, referring to migration and displacement. Whittle has undertaken numerous international residencies, including CESTA (Czech Republic), Market Gallery (Scotland), Fresh Milk (Barbados) Collective Gallery (Scotland) and Greatmore Studios (South Africa). She choreographs interactive installations, interventions and performances as site-specific artworks in public and private spaces, including at the Royal Scottish Academy and has exhibited in various solo and group shows in Europe, South Africa and the Caribbean.

In 2013, Whittle has received an award from the Royal Scottish Academy Residencies for Scotland to undertake two residencies at Hospitalfield House and at the Scottish Sculpture Workshop. In 2014, Whittle will be travelling to Norway and Johannesburg for a residency and exhibitions.

She is currently in Cape Town preparing for an exhibition at the Centre for African Studies and participating as a researcher at Joule City’s Artist Incubator Project, focusing on visual and aural culture.