Deltaworkers is a nomadic artistic production and residence program that investigates the southern states of the U.S. as one of the last mythical places in the West. We host and present European artists from different disciplines in New Orleans, a city that forms the perfect gateway to the south; a region where many of the historical, socio-political and cultural roots of U.S culture can be found.
Elfie Tromp has published two novels: Goeroe (Guru) and Underdog. The latter was nominated for the BNG prize for literature and the Dioraphte literatour prize. In 2013 she received the VPRO (a Dutch television network) Bagagedrager, a price for young travel journalists. She writes columns for Metro, is a regular contributor to Vrij Nederland (a Dutch weekly), does interviews for VPRO and makes theater.
After an emotionally turbulent year Elfie’s practice suddenly started to include poetry, graphic novels and dark confessional literature. Thematically all centred around the cruelty of love. What better place to dive into this than the city that forms the stage for A Streetcar Named Desire?
Siri Borge is an artist and curator form Stavanger, Norway. She often works site specifically and from a Feminist and environmental point of view. The small, wealthy town of Stavanger is known as ’The Oil Capital of Norway,' but things aren’t looking great. Due to plummeting oil prices the economy is declining. The local government isn’t able to turn the tide and is failing to focus on stimulating sustainable industries. Stavanger’s social structure is rapidly changing, something that Borge is witnessing up-close. She is interested in the economic and socio-political similarities and differences between her hometown and New Orleans. This inquiry will serve as a starting point for an artistic investigation on how the the oil industry impacts the fabric of local communities.
The artistic output of Giovanni Giaretta narrates the ordinary in an unexpected way, telling of a world made of minor gestures and situations that offer the revelation of an unexpected reality, another dimension. The artist demonstrates his interest in an anthropology of everyday life, at times pursuing hypothetical scientific principles to make a more filmic perception of the real become clearly visible. In New Orleans Giaretta starts his investigation with a text that Roger Caillois wrote together with Georges Bataille in 1934 at the College of Sociology: 'La mante religieuse. De la biologie à la psychanalyse'. This essay is an anthropological research on how mankind relates to the Praying Mantis as an evil creature, or a ghost, able to kill just with its gaze. The manner in which Caillois and Bataille use the paranormal as a tool for analysis informs Giaretta's research into how horror and fear are related to specific types of architecture, looking for the uncanny as described by Anthony Vidler in his essay 'The Architectural Uncanny. Essays in the Modern Unhomely' from 1992.
In her work, Martha Colburn uses the stop-motion animation technique to create films and as an extension to them, performances, costumes and exhibitions that transcend the traditional confines of cinema. Her primary focus is on contemporary culture through the eye of art history and historical fact and fiction, addressing sexuality, politics and art. In New Orleans Colburn wants to collaborate with and learn from specialists in costume design, introduce her practice to the local scene through live events and give animation workshops. She will also continue and intensify existing collaborations with musicians and artist from the city.
Jan van Tienen recently published his first novel 'Er is niet wat hier nog blijft' (Nothing Remains Here, not yet translated into English). It describes a very dark period in his recent family history. He studied History and was editor in chief at the Dutch branch of VICE. Before that he studied Journalism and grew up in Zeeland, the most southwestern province of the Netherlands. In New Orleans van Tienen will continue the research for his second novel. It focusses on the relationship between medieval flagellants and the end of days. Which apparently has a connection to the Cajun Courir de Mardi Gras.
Christina Gruber is an artist and freshwater ecologist living and working in Vienna, Austria. She works at the intersection of art and science; her work deals with societal phenomena that shape our world. These relate to the Anthropocene, a concept that describes human beings as the main force changing the earth’s surface. Gruber investigates the effects humans have and had on the landscape and how they’ve shaped the earth’s surface. In the last years water is of special interest to her. She sees it as the element that all things on earth, including humans, have in common. It is the connector between stories of different places and layers, running through everything that exists on this earth, from clouds to datacenters. In New Orleans she will focus on the relationship between the Mississippi river and the people that live in its proximity. Supported by:
Shot In New Orleans
Thursday March 30 at 8PM, screening of films by Deltaworkers residents Léa Triboulet (FR), Jacob Dwyer (GB) & Giovanni Giaretta (IT), at St. Mary Majaks, 918 St. Mary Street.
Full Aperture: Martha Colburn in person
Saturday March 18 at 8PM, screening of films by Martha Colburn, hosted by the New Orleans Photo Alliance (1111 St. Mary Street), organised by Shotgun Cinema.
Oliver Bulas creates 'constructed situations' in which the visitor immerses. He uses performance and prefers to work in the public space. He is wondering if the public space is a place where differences clash and are negotiated. A place where maybe a short flash of social space can incidentally shine up as a utopian moment. His work is a continuing investigation into what constitutes the social and the public spaces in our capitalist times in which everything is exchangeable.
At the moment Bulas is residing in Capacete in Rio de Janeiro. In New Orleans he wants to draw parallels between the two cities in a speculative scenario. Starting from fine art's appropriation of tribal cultures he will advance these processes into a future in which he imagines it to its most extreme conclusion.Supported by:
Olivier Willemsen grew up on an old farm on the outskirts of Haps, a Dutch village right on the border with Germany. After school he would spend his afternoons on the banks of the little stream that ran from his back garden to the horizon, watching over the water creatures like a lifeguard. At the age of eighteen he left for Amsterdam, where he studied history, but he became a full-time writer. His novel Morgen komt Liesbeth (Liesbeth’s Coming Tomorrow), published in late 2014, was nominated one of the two best first novels of the year by the Dutch daily newspaper Trouw. His second novel is due in mid-2016. Olivier Willemsen lives alternately in Amsterdam and on an island near Grou, in Friesland.
In the Southern States Olivier will work on his second novel for which he will specifically look into the role of border patrol during the cold war. Next to that he will start working on his third novel. Moira Crone, author of The Not Yet, will help him in the initial stages of this novel.Supported by:
Eric Giraudet de Boudemange has a practice that starts from field work; an ethnographic experience outside the studio. In the past few years he has focused on traditional games and local practices in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, using them as tools to give shape to personal poetic narratives. He became a specialist in pigeon breeding, labyrinths, and had Theseus execute a rugby dance on bawdy songs. The 'stories' often talk about history, politics, folk culture, pop culture, landscape, biology and sex with a taste for absurdist British humor. The field work turns into colourful and playful installations containing sculptures, performances and video.
During his stay in Louisiana, Eric will look into diverse roots, hybrid languages, myths, music and folklore connected to the Cajuns and French Creoles, alongside a research into a specific group therapy that works with family constellations to reveal hidden histories. By digging into Cajun culture and history, a lot could be revealed about our own European medieval legacy. Eric will create his 'stories' by intertwining very different elements of research. He will use aspects of role playing games alongside the manifold constellations of families of French decent to reveal new narratives inspired by Cajun folk culture and myths.
Toon Fibbe employs tropes of performance art to function as tools for research. He intervenes in situations through a performative exploration of characters – real, fictional, current or historical – and collects material on his way. His activities spawn objects, texts and dialogues. More recently, he has predominantly been working with the character of the spy as dealer in secrets, someone who codes and decodes information, someone whose identity is unclear and who plays a role in the flow and distribution of information. In New Orleans Toon will investigate capitalist hauntings from the future: capital isn't interested in the present or the past but only in profit, and profit is gained in the future. In the light of the redevelopment of large parts of primarily the poorer areas of the city over the past decade he is interested in the idea of the haunted house; not in the last place because a haunted house is a cheap house. Amongst other things, he will use the 3d models of these redevelopment projects as an effigy of sorts while looking for connections between the past, present and future and between the virtual and the actual trying to influence all of them at once.
Maarten Vanden Eynde's work is situated exactly on the borderline between the past and the future; sometimes looking forward to the future of yesterday, sometimes looking back to the history of tomorrow. He has been exhibited internationally in independent art spaces, centers for contemporary art and museums of modern art. In 2005 he founded the organisation Enough Room for Space, a mobile platform for site-specific projects, together with Marjolijn Dijkman. Vanden Eynde is represented by Meessen De Clercq Gallery in Belgium and Kunstruimte Wagemans in The Netherlands.
As part of the project Congo Recall, he wants to revisit New Orleans and look for the remnants of Congolese culture. New Orleans, and to a large extend the Deep South (or the Cotton States) as a whole, is the landing place of African culture in the United States. The first ship that arrived in New Orleans from the other side of the ocean, included two African noblemen (most likely from the Kingdom of Kongo), who were free men and equal explorers. Only after the trade agreement with Portugal ended in war, people from the Kingdom of Kongo became enslaved people and were transported to America. By 1860, the highest number of enslaved people ever to arrive in Louisiana were coming from the Kingdom of Kongo. For a long time the largest slave market in America was based in New Orleans. The connections are still present but either popularised (~ Congo Square) or unclear (~ Mardi Gras Indians).
The research project Congo Recall refers both to the 'recalling' of mal-produced objects, which are send back to the manufacturing company for review after malfunctioning, and the ‘recall’ button on a telephone to call back the same number in case of a bad or no connection or when the line was occupied. But most importantly it is a focus on how Congo is 'recalled' or remembered today, by Congolese people themselves and by the rest of the world. At the same time it offers an opportunity to imagine how Congo will be 'recalled' in the future.
The Outer Limits
Thursday December 1 at 8PM, screening of films by Carlos Motta, Laure Prouvost & Roy Villevoye, at St. Mary Majaks, 918 St. Mary Street.
Private Salon with Olivier Willemsen
Wednesday June 1 at 6:30PM, private salon with Olivier Willemsen, at the house of Moira Crone.
Days of Future Past / EPILOGUE
Tuesday May 31 at 6PM, Opening of the Inner Beauty Salon + Performance and talk, at the Inner Beauty Salon, 1109 Old Spanish Trail, Scott, Louisiana.
The Dark Prince of Finance
Thursday May 26 at 8PM, lecture-performance by Toon Fibbe, at Sojourner Truth Neighborhood Center, 2200 Lafitte Street.
National Readathon Day
Saturday May 21 at 11:30AM, reading by Olivier Willemsen, at Faulkner House Books.
Days of Future Past
Saturday May 21 at 1:30PM and 3PM & Sunday May 22 at 3PM, historical experiment by Eric Giraudet de Boudemange, in Vermilionville, 300 Fisher Rd, Lafayette.
3 Short Films Selected by Maaike Gouwenberg
Thursday April 21 from 4PM to 5:30PM, screening program by Maaike Gouwenberg, in the theater in Ferguson Student Center on UA campus, Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
To Live in the South, One Has To Be a Scar Lover
Thursday April 14 from 6PM to 8:30PM, book presentation by Deltaworkers, at the Stacks.
We Could Dance in Circles Around the Campfire by Night, Disappearing as Fume Into a Distant Day
Tuesday March 29th from 12PM to 6PM, finissage by Oliver Bulas, at PARSE
Research session Maarten Vanden Eynde
Tuesday March 22nd from 7PM, private research session by Maarten Vanden Eynde, at Studio Dawn DeDeaux.
Léa Triboulet studied scenography at the Ecole Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs de Strasbourg, where she started to make shorts films and received her masters degree with honours in 2010. After graduating she worked for several production companies. In 2013 she joined the Film Factory, an international program leaded by the Hungarian director Béla Tarr in Sarajevo. Her films revolve around the concept of mourning and in New Orleans she will specifically focus on mixing fiction with documentary whilst investigating how to deal with affection in a cinematic form.
Jacob Dwyer has a background in Fine Arts and experimental film. One of the positions he takes as an artist is that of the “outsider” and the subsequent possibilities of mobilization within the audience when engaging with this position. At Deltaworkers Dwyer will investigate the character Ignatius J Reilly of John Kennedy Toole’s famous New Orleans novel ‘A Confederacy of Dunces’ alongside the methodologies used by illegal tour guides that show tourists around the many famed graveyards of New Orleans.
Janna Graham is a sound artist and radio producer based in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories (Canada). She is a community radio advocate who believes in the power of participatory media. Her work has been broadcast on public and community radio across the country and on low-power pirate transmissions in her neighborhood. During her residency at Deltaworkers, Janna is researching the power of song and story to preserve language in South Louisiana. As a Canadian of Acadian descent, she's gathering material for a series of site-specific sound installations in Acadian Canada.
Chattel and Bone // Sonic Circumnavigations
Wednesday November 4th from 2PM to 4PM, radio talk by Janna Graham, at WTUL (91.5 FM) during The Tripple ya Tripple ya oh Zee show with DJ Domatron
The Colour Out Of Space
Friday October 16th - November 21st, exhibition curated by Maaike Gouwenberg & Joris Lindhout, at PARSE
What the night brings & Sofia B. didn’t sleep well
Sunday October 11th at 7:30PM, Screening by Léa Triboulet, at Antenna Gallery
PAULALIEN KNOWS BEST
Tuesday September 8th at 8PM, Performance by Jacob Dwyer, at Good Children Gallery
Dafna Maimon (FIN/IS, 1982, lives in Berlin) works with film, video, and performance. Her work explores human drama and the construction of the self through invented autobiographical characters that battle with the configuration of individuality, alienation, the body, and the perception of reality. Her films showcase the economy of close personal ties as well as to materialise through them, placing value on the idea of community on a grassroots level. Equally central within Maimon’s practice is the research and employment of the constructs of cultural artefacts such as cinema, TV, theater and science.
During her stay at Deltaworkers, Maimon created the live video Other Odyssey. Set in a cinema it rethinks the beginning of Stanley Kubrick’s iconic film 2001: A Space Odyssey from the perspective of the matriarchal Bonobo primate, humans closest relative and the only being on the planet that practically eliminated violence from her society. Other Odyssey fantasises about returning to that moment depicted in the film when the early human apes realise that a bone could be used as a weapon and tool for oppression or dominance, and proposes an other use for it, a use more in line with the affective and sensual lifestyle of the Bonobo’s.
Other Odyssey is supported by the Finnish arts promotion center TAIKE.
Jeremiah Day’s work employs photography, speech, and improvisational movement. Questions of site and historical memory are explored through fractured narratives. Day works with what writer Fred Dewey has called ‘the non-fictional imagination,’ reflecting on sites of memory and politics to produce metaphors to help with our contemporary struggles. In 2008, Day had a working residency in Alabama to understand and commemorate the Lowndes County Freedom Organisation – an independent political party dedicated to civil rights that came out of the Selma-Montgomery March and is famous for being the originator of the Black Panther icon. During his stay at Deltaworkers, Day organised a mini-symposium at Xavier University that looked at the role of the guide, witness, story-teller: an afternoon of performance, presentation and discussion taking up the problem of memory and politics in a spirit of peer dialogue and public reflection. Guest speakers were Joanne Bland and Jackie Sumell.
Tijdelijke Samenscholing (“Temporary Gathering”) is a Dutch theatre group consisting of musician Stan Vreeken and actors Michiel Bakker and Carole van Ditzhuyzen. In their work, they combine social political and literary sources with personal stories, themes or thoughts. Like the actors, the music in their performances has its own autonomous voice, and is not used to support the play or to create a specific mood. The music looks at the themes in the play in a totally different way, which creates an extra layer in the text-based theatre plays of Tijdelijke Samenscholing. Again and again, the performances present a balancing act between truth and lies, public and private, the reality outside and the actual situation on stage. Tijdelijke Samenscholing was in New Orleans to research their next piece, which investigates the origins of jazz and the role that music plays in public space. For this play, the group collaborates with The Big Hunger, the band of which Stan Vreeken is a member. They looked for answers to questions like: has music thrived in spite of the city, or has it restored it? How have different traditions informed one another? Has New Orleans’ music performed a role in social justice? Is music’s existence at odds with the people who live here, has it catered to some while alienating others, or has it carved out the city as we know it? And how has that changed throughout the city’s history, between tragedy and tourism, inequality and the internet? Over the last years, the five musicians of The Big Hunger have built up an extensive live-reputation in Amsterdam, where they are hosting their own pop-session. The alternative pop-songs of The Big Hunger are soulful, dynamic, and clearly stand out from other acts in the Netherlands.
Timmy van Zoelen (NL, 1982) exercises his idiosyncratic views by sharing his salacious and facetious speculations on nature, currency and ideology. Cruising over the terrain of voluptuous emotions he moves from propulsion to representation, from foreplay to display, while continuously analysing desire. Therefore his practise is one of struggling, between abstinence and indulgence, and between the tangible and the virtual. While the allure of appropriation and the ease of digital image production encourages artists to produce work solely in and of the digital, Timmy continually traverses the blurry lines between virtual and corporeal life and investigates its effects. During his residency van Zoelen worked on a new film in which objects, narratives, theory, and performances intertwine into a damp and hot swamp-sci-fi. A film where ideas about ecology, myth, and consumerism overlap and melt together. Well known places and ideas evaporate and new forms become manifest in a series of performances and sculptures, that are used in the film.
They Humiliate The Human
Sunday December 14th at 5pm, performance and film by Timmy van Zoelen at Deltaworkers HQ
Friday December 5th at 7PM, performance directed by Dafna Maimon at Second Line Stages Cinema
Holding On (By The Skin Of Teeth)
Saturday November 22nd at 3PM, conversation between Jeremiah Day, Joanne Bland and Jackie Sumell at Xavier University
Wednesday November 19th at 7.30PM, screening of video works by Erkka Nissinen & Nathaniel Mellors at Press Street.
Video Art Manual
Sunday November 16th at 7PM, screening & book sale around Keren Cytter at Indywood Movie Theater.
Deltaworkers at the Core Residency Program
Friday November 14th at 3PM, presentation by Joris Lindhout and Maaike Gouwenberg at the Core Residency Program, Houston, Texas.
Deltaworkers at Tulane University
Wednesday October 29th at 4.45PM, presentation by Joris Lindhout and Maaike Gouwenberg at Tulane University.
The Nature of The Search
Tuesday October 28th at 8PM, conversatation with Remy Jungerman, Brooke Davis Anderson, Teresa Parker Farris & presentation by Tijdelijke Samenscholing at 641 Caffin Ave.
PechaKucha Night | New Orleans | Volume 14 – We Can Do It!
Wednesday October 8th at 7PM, introduction to the Deltaworkers program for fall 2014 at The Rusty Nail.
Statues Also Die
Thursday October 2nd at 7PM, artist talk by Timmy van Zoelen & performance by The Big Hunger at Good Children Gallery.
How to apply
Deltaworkers welcomes artists working in all fields (visual art, performing arts, film, literature, music, architecture, design). Applicants should take note that we are a field research based residency and thus do not offer studio spaces. We are specifically interested in artists working with performative practices, historical and/or social political research, mythology and/or anthropology, environmental issues, or contemporary culture / film industry / entertainment. Deltaworkers has its base in New Orleans but encourages to work throughout the deep south.
Artists eligible for Mondriaan Fund support (artists with the Dutch nationality or artists that have been residing in the Netherlands for more than 3 years) should apply for a 'buitenlandateliers' grant which covers the costs of a 3-month residency at Deltaworkers. Note that the entire application process is administered by the Mondriaan Fund for these artists!Artists can apply for a period between 1 and 3 months in March and May 2017. We work with a residency fee but can offer assistance in applying for grants. The bare residency fee is €1100 a month. This includes rent, assistance, pr and an event. All residents are given a bike as their main form of transportation. A car is accessible through our assistants. We estimate that you need about €2000-2500 a month to live comfortably during your stay. That includes the residency fee, flight from Europe, research and/or production budget and a per diem.
To apply send us a proposal of maximum 1000 words, an updated c.v and a portfolio that gives an overview of the development in your work over the last 3 years. Next to a description of your field research and its presumed outcome, your proposal should contain the following:
- Geographical area of interest in the southern states.
- Possible collaborators and/or institutions of interest.
- An overview of funds that you are eligible for in your country of residence.
- Duration of stay (minimum 4 weeks, maximum 90 days ) & preferred dates.
- A first idea for a public presentation (this can be anything from a talk to a workshop or short exhibition).
- Contact details: home address, phone number, email & skype.
Make sure to read our about section before sending us a proposal.
Note that we cannot take incomplete applications into consideration. We will try to inform all applicants about the final outcome by August 9nth, 2016.
In the fall of 2010 we—Maaike Gouwenberg and Joris Lindhout—made a three-month road trip through the southern states of the US. The specific aim of this trip was to investigate notions surrounding the Southern Gothic literary genre, on which we were writing a book and creating an exhibition. Our continued fascination with the southern states sparked our ideas for Deltaworkers, a platform through which we can share our intrigue for this part of the world.
The name Deltaworkers is taken from the the two cities we are based in: Rotterdam (NL) and New Orleans, which are both located in a river delta.
- Deltaworkers receives residents roughly from March until May.
- The maximum residency period is 3 months, the minimum 4 weeks.
- We offer communal living spaces, an assistant and introduction to our extended network based on the original proposal.
- We do not require a final outcome at the end of the residency period but we do want to show the eventual outcome in New Orleans when applicable.
- We do require at least 1 public presentation at one of our partner institutions.
- We are multi-disciplinary and accept visual artists, designers, theatre makers & performers, filmmakers, writers and musicians.
- We can host up to 3 residents (or duo's) at a time.
FoundersMaaike Gouwenberg is a curator based in Rotterdam. She is interested in performative practice, and the projects that she has been involved in bring together theatrical and curatorial aspects. In 2010, Gouwenberg initiated A.P.E. (art projects era) with artist Keren Cytter. She has been a committee member at amongst others The Mondriaan Fund, and is a board member of Enough Room for Space, Ponies Theater, and Touki Delphine. She writes for different art magazines and blogs, amongst them Metropolis M.
Joris Lindhout studied Interaction Design and holds an MA in Fine Arts. He is an alumnus of the Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht (NL) where he investigated the social implications of fantastic literature in the Low Countries. In 2017 and 2018 he’ll go back to University and will explore the idea of ‘Digital Anxiety’ at Tulane University’s graduate Digital Media program.
Maggie McWilliams was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. She received her BFA from Tulane University in Photography and English with a concentration in Literary Theory and Southern Gothic Literature. These two artistic perspectives converge in her work in an attempt to revive the mystic, obscure, and sublime in the photographic aesthetic. She currently live and works in New Orleans where she is passionate about supporting contemporary art and promoting experiential innovation within the arts community.
Saiya Miller received a BA in Culture and Media Studies from Eugene Lang College, the New School for Liberal Arts. She has taught creative writing and art classes for youth for over a decade. She has worked as a public librarian, comics editor, and musician. She is the co-author and editor of Not Your Mother’s Meatloaf: A Sex Education Comic Book. She is also a founder of Girls Rock New Orleans, a music, art and social justice summer camp for girls, trans, and gender non-conforming youth. Her artistic work utilizes performance and mixed media to explore themes of history, nature, intimacy, and justice. She is based in New Orleans.
Based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Chamber of Commerce: 605 484 60
NL +31 6 14 18 4486 & US +1 504 222 3127 (Maaike)
NL +31 6 28 33 9456 & US +1 504 460 7857 (Joris)