Tuesday 21st July 2020, 8:00pm
Session 232: “Labours of Love” by Danielle Child, Helena Reckitt and Jenny Richards
For this session, Anna Lytvynova selected the essay “Labours of Love: A Conversation on Art, Gender and Social Reproduction” by Danielle Child, Helena Reckitt and Jenny Richards (Third Text, 2017).
Taking the form of a discussion among an art historian, a curator, and an artist, the essay explores the assumption that it is love, rather than material gain, that motivates art and cultural workers. Addressing the internalisation of the ideology that one loves one’s labour, the interlocutors consider the gendered and class conditions of work in the cultural and academic sectors. Reading ‘theory’ against ‘practice’, the discussion considers how the precarious conditions of cultural labour today divide and isolate workers, immersing them in antagonism and competition. Rather than presenting research as an individual pursuit, the conversation holds the potential to encourage and reveal its collaborative nature, juxtaposing insights gained from ‘theory’ and ‘practice’ and testing them one against the other.