(with the Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination)
“We are nature defending itself” – Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination
“It’s time for my publishing to get radical. I’m ready!” – James Brady
Future’s Venture Foundation is supporting the research and development of a project which is exploring the vital synergy between the art of radical publishing and the art of disobedient direct action. It is a collaboration shared by artist-publisher-activist, James Brady with the post-Capitalist climate justice, anarchist street theatre collective, Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination (Labofii). Together their vision is to make an inspirational pocket-book which will be a celebration in the merging of art and life, creativity and resistance.
The activist–artists at the heart of the Labofii have made their home on the ZAD (Zone à Défendre / Zone to Defend) – a utopian experiment of collective common living on the 4,000 acres of rural landscape at Notre-Dame-des-Landes in Western France. It is an occupied, liberated territory: liberated from the ravages of Capitalism which, in 1968, made plans to build a new airport on the land for the nearby city of Nantes (which already has an airport). However, on 17th January 2018, after 50 years of intermittent campaign, the French Government announced that it had finally abandoned the airport project for good. In the wake of such a victory the peoples of ZAD knew only too well that this was certainly not the end of the State’s neoliberal agenda. The next unpleasant chapter of the story was about to unfold.
The French State is currently intent on destroying the wonder and hope that is the ZAD: bulldozing down lovingly hand–made houses, crushing organic agricultural projects, and attempting to divide cross–commune co-operation. This began with uncompromising brutality, before sunrise on 9th April 2018 with an army of 2,500 police wielding armoured vehicles, tear gas and stun grenades. The fierce siege lasted eight days (at an obscene daily cost of over €400,000 of tax payers money), and it was the biggest mobilisation of French police since the riots of May 1968. After a truce of almost a month, involving a period of dialogue between the Zadists and the State, the attacks and targeted evictions on ZAD happened again on 17th May 2018. The struggle continues…
There is a global ZAD solidarity movement happening. It is huge. ZAD has become more than a place – it has blossomed into a powerful, artful symbol of hope, resistance, and an egalitarian quest of possible futures for how we can live in the world together as sensitive, noble beings. ZAD has resonated with peoples far and wide, and for so many around the world it is a common cause for which to unite. It is carried in their hearts. As the saying goes – ZAD Partout! ZAD Everywhere!