Engaged dis-identifications, NOTES#7: Excerpts of Repairing the Irreparable

Repairing the irreparable is a concept developed by Fernanda Eugenio as part of her work with the collective AND_Lab. It is a play on words from the portuguese term ‘reparar’, which encompasses various meanings such as re-stopping, re-attending, ie noticing as an inventory/invention practice, as well as repairing. This post is a collection of quotations and re-interpretations of a text originally written by Fernanda for the call to the AND_Lab summer school #4 (5-20th July 2019, Lisbon) in which Dani d’Emilia collaborated as a course co-designer and facilitator.

1. Po-ethic inquiry: Repairing the irreparable. Embodying political-affective practices, exercising sensitive listening and experimenting with the dissenting powers of love.

“[…]The irreparable, that which is implied in the irreversibility and unceasibility of any happening in itself, that throws us (in) the challenge of not withdrawing nor resisting, of not succumbing to indifference/impotence nor intransigence/attachment, finding, each time, the right measure of non-resigned acceptance, of co-responsive presence, of accompanying ourselves and each other in handling the emergent consequences of this unfolding, without appealing to narrative and creation of coherence, without intending to control.”

2. Stretching spaces

How do we move from a world-as-IS, through the (im)possibilities of embodying a world-as-WITH, engaging with a world-as-AND towards a world as nothingness/everythingness within-as-without?

“We wish to begin this delicate exercise of intimate-political curation by the tiny immensity of each participant; creating temporary zones of intimacy that may be less and less dependent on taste, choice, agreement, identification or understanding” […]

  • how to die together?
  • how to live alone?
  • how to kill oneself (parts of oneself/the System in oneself) without dying?
  • how to close the irreparable cycle of ow(n)ing – the deed-fact of colonial-capitalist looting – and (re)enter into the cycle of giving (oneself)?
  • How to liberate love and make it the force of liberation for the attention-reparation* of any relationship, recognizing that all our relationships are, in their own way, love relations (or that love is the form or the movement of relationships themselves)?
  • How to activate a loving struggle – this vigil without respite, this (im)possible and (im)precise navigation between complicity and reciprocity?
  • How to take courage and become an anc(h)ourage*?

* ‘anchourage’ is a term proposed by Fernanda Eugenio/AND_Lab, fusing the words/actions of anchoring and activating courage (translated from the original in portuguese ‘ancoragem’)

3. Nuancing affectabilities

How do we mobilize that stain we call love (which is at once diffused and already marked/worn) beyond human agency as:

a force of dis-immunization;
the realization of the ungovernable;
a mode of layered affectabilities;
a non-reactive modulation of civil disobedience;
an instrument of regeneration and collective curation;
an exercise of destitution, dispossession and unlearning of (self)oppressive behaviors;
an act of attunement by intersection and obliquity, by the improper and the extraneous;
a bond of strangership;
a way of welcoming the inevitable discomfort implied in the stretching of the possible, the thinkable and, above all, of the feelable;
a gesture of accompaniment in the risk, and of support of the unknown-unknowable;
a practice of simultaneously giving (oneself) and continuing to have;
a committed training in the de-hierarchization of attention;
a situated practice of fairness and sufficiency;
a way of resumption of the expropriated territories of vital,  invisible and sensitive forces and vocabularies;
a combining and embracing of the contradictions of both questioning the habitual contours of the notion of intimacy/privacy (their aspects which reproduce the logic of private capitalist property) and the affirmation of the (accountable) autonomy of the individual and collective bodies and their immanent rules, of their inalienable right to fractal uniqueness, entangled wholeness, nothingness and constant (re)invention;
as a visceral responsibility and renounciation of unrestricted autonomy.

4. Incubating performative practices

[After a series of previous exercises] find yourself holding hands with a partner. Pour glue over yours joined hands. Go for a half hour silent walk together, a duet-derive, around the neighborhood. Give loving attention to all the details of the negotiations that become necessary between the two of you (direction, speed, focus, etc), and how you perceive the external gazes that cross your path (this may feel very different according to context, as well as couple configuration). Notice the affects that arise in you, practicing non-attachment as well as non-rejection of them. Return to the workshop space. Sitting across from each other, engage in a joint re-telling of the journey, sharing the narrative amongst each other, starting from when you left the room and finishing when your arrived back. Each time you speak, peal a section of the glue membrane holding your hands together. Stop speaking/pealing whenever you wish, and let your partner continue from where you left it. Try to always continue the narrative from the point where the previous person stopped, not falling into the temptation of correcting or adding details to parts that have already been spoken of. Try to time the pealing of the membrane with the end of the narration of the journey. Notice the affects that arise in you in this process,  practicing non-attachment as well as non-rejection of them.


* This exercise was initially inspired by a handheld derive experienced in a workshop series by Lisbon based dancer Catarina Vieira (Matéria, in which Dani collaborated in 2018) and by the glued hands used as synthesis-image for the Exhibition-Occupation AND in Porto, event where the proposition was first developed by Dani d’Emilia and Fernanda Eugenio (AND_Lab), as part of their collaboration Des-imunization Practices.  More images of these and other practices proposed in the AND_Lab Summer School #4 are accessible here.

Image credits:

Des-imunization Practices facilitated by  Dani d’Emilia and Fernanda Eugenio as part of the 4th edition of the AND_Lab summer school, in Polo Gaivotas (Lisbon).  Photos by Fernanda Eugenio and Ana Dinger.

Engaged dis-identifications is an artistic-pedagogic collaboration between Dani d’Emilia and Vanessa Andreotti that explores the workings of non-notional possibilities of co-existence through performative practices. It attempts to translate post-representational modes of engagement into embodied experiments that reconfigure the connections between reason, affect and relationality.


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