The programme for 21 Personae includes the same number of encounters with people, places and collectives in Barcelona. Together, they will attempt to transform the meaning and intensity of our experience of the city. It is also an investigation into ‘ways of meeting’, ways of being and interacting in the city. 21 Personae will run between November 2018 and March 2019, with one encounter every week.

The staging of 21 Personae in Barcelona extends the curatorial pulse of the exhibition In the Open or in Stealth by activating modes of sensing – shifting grounds, dispositional sediments and the potent scenarios of life out into the city. A group of curatorial practitioners associated with MACBA’s educational programme have crafted a specific Barcelona, to be expressed on the streets, in the squares, in public spaces and among public secrets.

A range of personae — roles, places, positions, practices, persons, ports and monuments — are invoked. We encounter permanent inhabitants, transients, travellers, beings who come alive at dawn, at midnight, at siesta time or at twilight. They traverse fluid constellations across actual spaces, desired inhabitations and imagined cities.

Together, they concert an activation analogous to an ‘entourage effect’ (a debated concept in therapeutic pharmacology relating to cannabis), which argues that components act much better in a relational field of interaction and combination with others than in isolation. In nature, nothing acts in a pure state.

Directed by: Raqs Media Collective, in collaboration with Aimar Arriola.
Organizing committee (PEI - MACBA’s Independent Studies Programme 2017-2018): Héctor Acuña, Laura Arensburg, Emil Becerril, Marianne Blanco, Ricardo Cárdenas, Itxaso Corral, Vatiu Nicolás Koralsky, Julieta Obiols, Christina Schultz and Laura Valencia.

21 Personae in Barcelona is a recension of 51 Personae staged at the Shanghai Biennale in 2016. ‘Recension’ is a term we take from philology, and it has accompanied our thinking for over two decades, in different instances, ranging from the development of open source software, to pedagogy, to networked situations of cultural production. We understand recensions to be non-rivalrous iterations. The iterative process does away with a template and opens itself to the vicissitudes of a place, inventing protocols of investigation. Encounters are generated within the specific debates, doubts and queries of the protagonists, as well as the constellation that is developing the process.

The Barcelona recension with 21 personae will unfold over several months. It has, and will continue to have, explorations, inventions, and an improvisation of the protocols of hosting and invitation. We see it as a site of potentiality, filled with surges and eddies, accepting improbabilities and anticipating epiphanies.

Raqs Media Collective

Co-organized by:

L'Internationale. Our Many Europes. Co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union

Our Many Europes is a programme by the European museum confederation "L'Internationale" and co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. The members of L'Internationale (Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst Antwerpen, Moderna Galerija (MG+msum), Ljubljana, Van Abbemuseum, The Netherlands, MACBA, Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Muzeum Sztuki Nowoczesnej w Warszawie, SALT Research and programs Istanbul and Ankara, and Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid) and its partners National College of Art and Design (NCAD), Dublin and Valand Academy (Gothenburg University) are presenting more than 40 public activities (conferences, exhibitions,workshops) from now and until May 2022.

Rosa Barba 'Let Me See It', 2009


Encounters with people, places and collectives of Barcelona
Free, except for the encounter with Graffiti Receptes on January 18.

- Tuesday 6, at 8 pm:Encounter in a Squat
- Saturday 10, at 10 am:Exploring Collserola
- Saturday, 24 November, 12 pm:Ping-pong Game
- Monday 25, at 8 pm:The Invisible Routes of Montjuïc

- Wednesday 5, at 6.30 pm:The Rebel Neighbourhood
- Sunday 16, at 11.30 am:Route Through Trans Barcelona
- Monday 17, at 8 pm:Food Recycling Route

- Saturday 5, at 8 pm:Anti-racist Visit to the Columbus Monument
- Saturday 12, at 5 pm:Feminist, Libertarian and Cooperative Bookshops (I)
- Friday 8, at 7.30 pm:Encounter with Graffiti Receptes. The fee of this activity is 15 € paid at the meeting point.
- Saturday 26, at 11 am:A Physiology of the City
- Wednesday 30, at 9.15 pm:Cooperativism in Barcelona

- Saturday 2, at 11 am:Feminist, Libertarian and Cooperative Bookshops (II)
- Saturday 9, at 11 am:Street Botanography
- Friday 15, at 7 pm:Making the Invisible Visible (I)
- Saturday 23, at 4.30 pm:The Third Landscape Safari

- Saturday 2, at 11 am:The Forgotten Barcelona
- Tuesday 5, at 6.30 pm:The Living Library
- Monday 11, at 6.30 pm:The Future and the Possible
- Monday 18, at 7 pm:Turning a Book Into an Oracle
- Wednesday 27, at 6.30 pm:Making the Invisible Visible (II)

Public Programs
macba [at] macba [dot] cat
Tel: 93 481 33 68





"City of a Thousand Rebellions" Sarwar Road, July 26th 2011, Huma Mulji 2018