2019-2020 COOP study group: All about my mother. Tutor Team: Sepake Angiama, Nina bell F. Partner: Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons

Student participants: 

Mia van den Bos, Saskia Burggraaf, Dayna Casey, Emma de Filippo, Litchi Friedrich, Jiatu Gu, Csilla Klenyanszki, Flávia Palladino, Anakin Xersonsky.

Tutor team:

Sepake Angiama

All about my mother

What shall we cook together? With whom shall we share it and how?

The word “cook” from the Latin cocus which comes from coquo [to cook, to think, to be unquiet, to worry (about), to mix], which most probably derives from the Greek verb cycao/cacao [stir up, mix of dissimilar things, confusion, disorder].

The 2019-2020 COOP study group “All about my mother” mixes metaphors of the familial and the institutional to shift our relationships toward societal structures of the matriarchal and patriarchal. Can we find m/other voices that undermine a predetermined way of being? Could there be an institution to nurture and sustain a qualitative relation in which existing binary relations–such as men/women, public/private, nature/culture, production/reproduction, art/life and past/present–are undone and opened up for singularities, pluralities and complexities? Taking ingredients from the slow cooking archive of Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons and elsewhere, this study group will explore the characteristics of the ‘mother’–or others–as a guiding principle in search of answers to the questions above.

In our communal kitchen, we have the following preliminary ingredients, facilities, and cooking methods. More will be added for commonly desired tastes, forms, and textures:


Artworks, Stories, Texts, Books, Projects, Figures, Concepts, Theories, Practices, Relations, Habits, Movements, Affects, Experiences from 30 years of organized and unorganized archives and networks at Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons 

*NB. the list is incomplete and listing is ongoing.

Nina bell F. (Nina Simone, bell hooks, Silvia Federici)

Site for Unlearning (Art Organization)[1] with artist Annette Krauss

All About My Mother (199), Pedro Almodovor 

Born in Flames, Lizzie Borden

Born in Flames: Meditations on Armed Re_volutions, Ama Josephine Budge

Matriarchal societies, ie., Nagovisi, Bribri, Minangkabau, and Mosuo

Maintenance Manifesto, Mierle Laderman Ukeles

Casco Art Institute archive (e.g. Grand Domestic Revolution, To Become Two, Arts Collaboratory)


Re-enchanting the World: Feminism and the Politics of the Commons, Silvia Federici

The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Studies, Fred Moten & Stefano Harney

Community Economies

Postcapitalist Politics, J. K Gibson-Graham

Audre Lorde (from The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde: Black Mother Woman; Dear Toni; The Woman Thing; Woman; Pathway: From Mother to Mother; Power; But What Can You Teach My Daughter; Sister in Arms; About Dead Women)

Collectective Amnesia, Koleka Putuma

Ursula K. Le Guin (The Carrier Bag of Fiction; Woman / Wilderness; Is Gender Necessary?; Redux)

Home Tactics: Self-Mapping and the Home Question, Marianna Ortega

Greta Thunberg

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Lygia Clark

Epistemologies of the South, Boaventura de Sousa Santos


Angry Letters

Infinite Slippage: nonRepugnant Insolvencies T!-a!-r!-r!-y!-i!-n!-g! as Hand Claps of M’s Hard’Loved’Flesh [I’M irreducibly-undone because] —Quantum Leanage-Complex-Dub, Ima Abasi Okon

A Recipe for Disaster, Carolyn Lazzard

Poetics of Living

Mother Reader: Essential Writings on Motherhood, Moyra Davey

In Search of our Mothers Gardens, Alice Walker

Center for Ecological Unlearning with the Outsiders and many others

Han Kang

Reunion Network: Reimagine Family and Marriage through Blockchain, Yin Aiwen and Jelena Viskovic

Who’s Afraid of Ideology? Ecofeminist Practices Between Internationalism and Globalism, Marwa Arsario

Zapatistas’ First International Gathering of Women Who Struggle

Women’s work

Mother Tongue


Gaia, Mother Earth


Lose Your Mother, Saidaya Hartman

Shades of Intimacy: Women in the Time of Revolution, Hortense Spillers

Who Really Feeds the World?: The Failures of Agribusiness and the Promise of Agroecology,  Vandana Shiva

Chef Mari Pitkänen

Reproducing Autonomy: Work, Money, Crisis and Contemporary Art, Marina Vishmidt & Kerstin Stakemaier

Revolutionary Mothering: Love on the Front Lines, ed. Alexis Pauline Gumbs

Child’s pose

Attachment trauma

What is the mother wound?

Step in stepmother comes from steop, which indicates loss or bereavement

Cinderella's Stepsisters, Toni Morrison

Other forms of conviviality, Park McArthur and Constantina Zavitsanos

Home is where the works starts 1988, Georgia Lucas-Going

How To Live / Rest Together, Christian Nyampeta

Bedside scenes on love and grief (from novels like Edwidge Dandicat’s The Art of Dying, Maggie Nelson’s Argonauts, Terese Marie Mailhot’s Heart Berries, Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We Are Briefly Gorgeous)

Queering motherhood

House mothers in ballroom culture


DAI roaming locations

Casco Art Institute: Working for the Commons

Respective homes, studios and workplaces

Know-how on cooking methods




Breaking open



Reproduction, cleaning

Unlearning Exercises

Deep listening and witnessing

Observations and interpretations

Discerning, naming and pooling resources


Slow reading, reading out loud together

Slow discussion



Body and mind exercises

Small-group workshopping

Role play

Film viewing, making, and analysis

Exercises and training camp or school

Face to face meetings, check-ins

Song, rhyme

Looking out for each other, in the sense of access intimacy

Collective agreement on ways of working together

Rotational leadership

Ethical principles

Writing letters, scores, auto fiction, scripts, plays, fictional conversations


Weaving, unraveling, undoing


Publishing, distributing






[1] Also see annotated version in Unlearning Exercises: Art Organizations as Site for Unlearning: https://www.casco.art/en/archive/booklaunch