lumbung calling: Transparency by Jumana Emil Abboud

Location: Online via YouTube und Facebook

Languages: English, Sign language


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The seven-part conversation series lumbung calling launches documenta fifteen’s Public Program, activated under the title Meydan. Each edition of the series is dedicated to one of the lumbung values: Local Anchor, Humor, Independence, Generosity, Transparency, Sufficiency, and Regeneration. The format dives deeper into the background of the artistic concept for documenta fifteen and illuminates the idea of lumbung from many different angles. Through conversations with a variety of guests, lumbung calling will explore the rich meaning of lumbung across multiple disciplines, points of view, and contexts within an artistic framing.

lumbung calling takes place on the first Saturday of every month over seven sessions, from April to October 2021. It is hosted by the artist Jumana Emil Abboud and ruangrupa member Mirwan Andan.

The fifth lumbung calling on August 7, 2021, focuses on Transparency. For a community to live together with common values, transparency must be embedded in ways of thinking and behaving. The concept of lumbung is related to collective life, and thus transparency becomes a pivotal element. In lumbung, the notion of transparency is closely linked to trust, which is necessary for holding individuals together in groups. These two values, transparency and trust, remain significant across time and cultures. How do they manifest on a daily basis in different territories and times with their distinct forms? How have they evolved or diminished? How is transparency related to power sharing within a community? This lumbung calling demonstrates how various levels of transparency have a role in determining lumbung values and establishing healthy ecosystems.

Guests Erica Malunguinho and Shahidul Alam discuss transparency as a method for disseminating knowledge while offering information and addressing concerns that might otherwise go unnoticed by the general public or government policy. In her role as a Black activist and politician in Brazil, Erica Malunguinho speaks about the cultural space Aparelha Luzia and its influences and aims for Black art, culture, and politics. The photographer, writer, and curator Shahidul Alam introduces some of the projects he has worked on, including the Drik Picture Library, Pathshala South Asian Media Institute, Chobi Mela International Festival of Photography, and Majority World photo agency, which foster critical thinking and more democratic processes through creativity.

Guests and Hosts

Erica Malunguinho is a trans-, art-, and Black activist, cultural agitator, and educator. She holds a master’s degree in Aesthetics and Art History. In 2018, she became the first transgender woman to be nominally elected as a state parliamentarian in Brazil, with over 55,000 votes in São Paulo. Born in the state of Pernambuco, Erica has lived in São Paulo for eighteen years. Before entering institutional politics, she used her broad teacher training experience to work on children and adolescents’ education. Malunguinho gave birth to an urban quilombo named Aparelha Luzia, a space located in downtown São Paulo. Originally, quilombos were settlements founded by freedom-seeking enslaved people, today they are often centers of Black Culture. Aparelha Luzia is a place for Black arts, cultures, and politics, which is also visible as an aesthetic-political installation, affectivity zone, and biome of Black intelligences.

Time magazine’s Person of the Year 2018, photographer, writer, and curator Shahidul Alam obtained a PhD in Chemistry before switching to photography. A recognized public speaker, Alam’s work has been exhibited in leading museums and galleries, including MoMA, New York, and Tate Modern, London. Photo publicist John Morris described Alam’s book My Journey as a Witness as “the most important book ever written by a photographer.” His book The Tide Will Turn is listed in The New York Times Best Art Books of 2020. Alam founded Drik Picture Library, Pathshala South Asian Media Institute, Chobi Mela International Festival of Photography, and Majority World photo agency. Arrested and tortured for criticizing the Bangladesh government, Alam has been described as a “prisoner of conscience” by Amnesty International and faces fourteen years in jail if convicted. In 2020, Alam was awarded the International Press Freedom Award by the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Jumana Emil Abboud is an artist whose creative interests lie in oral histories, personal and collective stories, and mythologies, particularly folk tales and their sites of being and unbeing. Abboud uses storytelling, performative elements, and workshop methodologies in her artistic practice to investigate our relationship to time and place, to the human and non-human, exploring tools of memory, attachment, and dispossession amid the challenge for continuity within political, ecological, and cultural struggles. Her work has been shown at The Jerusalem Show (2018); Sharjah Biennale (2017); BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead (2016); Biennale di Venezia (2015); and Istanbul Biennale (2009), among many others. She has participated in art residencies, including Sakiya – Art/Science/Agriculture, Ramallah; Delfina Foundation, London; Arts Initiative Tokyo; and Gästeatelier Krone, Aarau. Abboud is currently pursuing a practice-led PhD at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.

Mirwan Andan is a member of ruangrupa, Artistic Direction of documenta fifteen.

Undine Schäfer is a sign interpreter based in Göttingen.


Saturday, August 7, 2021 at 9.30 am (BRT), 2.30 pm (CET), 6.30 pm (BST), 7.30 pm (WIB)

Via Facebook and YouTube


In English with translation into International Sign.


No registration required

All lumbung calling dates

Local Anchor, Saturday, April 3, 2021
Humor, Saturday, May 1, 2021
Independence, Saturday, June 5, 2021
Generosity, Saturday, July 3, 2021
Transparency, Saturday, August 7, 2021
Sufficiency, Saturday, September 4, 2021
Regeneration, Saturday, October 2, 2021


Online via YouTube und Facebook


Location: Online via YouTube und Facebook

Languages: English, Sign language


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