Tanda

Tanda is a cohort program that aids individuals with their research and practice through self-directed and collective learning. It is a program providing time and space to gather, share, think and exchange conversations, resources, and knowledge on participants’ chosen topics and practices.


Tanda Spring 2022

Join us in any of the Tanda sessions. Sessions are virtual, free and open to the public.

Dates: Wednesdays, March 30 – May 4, 2022
Time: 6:30-8:30pm CDT
Zoom Registration Link: Here (Closed captioning available)


03/30 – Facing Climate Change and Mass Migration Through Visual Art
Elizabeth Calvillo Dueñas

It’s an undeniable fact that our world’s climate will change. Yet, there’s little understanding or preparation as to how climate change will shape the demographics of our world. In the Pacific Northwest, summer of 2020 saw not only the pandemic, but also endless days of smoke-filled air, ash on cars and unnatural orange sunsets. These past few years, I’ve realized that this process is already beginning, but is going unnoticed. 

I’m interested in researching this topic further to gain a better understanding of how climate change will shape our daily lives in the US. How will politics and our economy change? What will happen when cities cease to exist in the coming years? And in all of this, what role is art playing in this global process? Can it do anything? Should it?

04/06 – Disruptive Pleasure: Love as an Artistic Practice
Anna Cai

In immigrant families, our parents and grandparents have taught us that the virtue of hard work will provide us with health and happiness. While this has been a viable survival tactic for our loved ones before us, how can we reorient ourselves away from the capitalist urges to submit to cycles of labor and instead focus our lives around pleasure and relationship building? In my experience of being raised by Asian immigrant communities, the facade of hard work becomes both a source and a cover for mental illness, abuse, and trauma.

I want to know how others in marginalized communities are experiencing or accessing this relationship with pleasure, how it surfaces, how we define pleasure, what methods our ancestors and elders have used in the past to approach pleasure in their lives, and how we can adapt them for our present and future uses. I want to know how artists (and especially queer and BIPOC artists) can be at the forefront of the movement to decolonize pleasure and champion disruptive love.

04/13 – Creating Care-filled Igbo Architecture(s)
ebere agwuncha

There are key links from the Igbos of Nigeria that have informed some of the present architecture(s) that we see today. This project, Creating Care-filled Igbo Architecture(s), celebrates the intersections of architecture, design, craft, and art in the Igbo sphere (and beyond) through a dexterous practice exploring various inquiries including: food preservation, visual literature, rainwater collection, and extrusion/intrusion architecture. The word architecture(s) has been adapted to also include object design, functional structures, and visual literature.

With the support of Tanda, I am motivated to continue development for this project through research, writing, making and conceptual modeling. The methods for this period remain flexible yet intentional with an aim to also pull from secondary sources such as digital curated archives (ie.Ụ́kpụ́rụ́ Tumblr Page) that involve community discussions and historical images. My current goals are to form iterative speculative responses along with care-filled architectures and an ongoing visual catalog. I ask for peer support and discussions to expand the modes of data collection, guide written synopsis, and refine the baseline definition of architecture(s). Through this ongoing process, I wonder how an approach of “hybridity” can be a method to acknowledge varying cultures, narratives and practices for building our present futures.

04/20 – Radicalizing Human Resource: Shifting white-supremacy based practices, systems, expectations and culture to a care-based model
Alden Burke

In all of my roles–Annas, Chicago Arts Census, Design for America–my work centers around a foundational question: How might behavioral and structural practices of care, collaboration, and the commons inform group dynamics in our working dynamics?

An initial understanding of these questions led me to believe that a proposed methodology of using care, commons, and collaboration to create healthier labor conditions and practices would vary based on the size, scale, values, and goals for each organization. My research hopes to uncover foundational pillars of this work that might serve as anchors for these organizations. They include (in no particular order as of right now):

(1) Trust-Based Networks: The individual and group relationships with a foundation of trust that affect the way we live and labor.This includes but is not limited to:

(2) Sustainable Labor Practice: Laws, regulations, structures, and habits that contribute to healthy and sustainable livelihoods, both at work and in our personal lives.

(3)Shared Ambition and Values: Organization values and goals align with personal values, goals, and convictions:

(4) Equitable Power Structures: Shifting the focus on short-term programmatic band-aides (i.e. implicit bias training, employee affinity groups) to practices that address larger system inequalities.

04/27 – Southeast Asian Disco: The Aesthetics of Optimism Under Oppression
Francine Almeda

Southeast Asian music throughout the early to late 1970’s emerged from a tumultuous era – martial law gripped the Philippines, the Vietnam War was underway, the genocide of the Khmer Rouge occurred, the anti-communist purge under Suharto in Indonesia was still fresh, and Myanmar’s ongoing political and cultural isolation was at its height. And yet, throughout this time, Southeast Asia was producing a new genre of music which voiced a funky, melodic style that seemed to yearn for another place and time. The dissonance of this music and its contemporary political era is of deep interest and significance. 

How can record covers act as visual artifacts that speak to the optimism of this time? What role did music play in escapism under oppression? How are aesthetics adopted and then adapted? Through studying Manila Sounds, specifically,  (the music that emerged from the Philippines) I aim to contextualize this as it is linked to the rippling effects of colonialism and American influences.

05/04 -Mesofuturism: Reclaiming Historical Identity through Archiving and Critical Fabulation
Josué Esaú Romero Velasquez

How would Mesoamerican civilization have developed without colonial genocide? How would Meso-values and culture influence and guide the development of technology, urbanity, and generally our relationship to the earth, resources, and each other? What can their cultural / experiential knowledge offer to our present civilization and the futures we need? And how can I channel their values and knowledge in my studio work and daily life, grounding a decolonial presence / prescience ? 

These questions are framed in a futurist context akin to Afrofuturism and broader Latinx-futurisms, but concerned specifically with speculative mesoamerican work. I am searching for existing artistry and scholarship to focus a cohesive vision of what exists as a resource for myself and other Mesos looking to expand these futures.

Hugo Ivan Juarez is facilitating the Spring 2022 Tanda season. Hugo participated in the Fall ‘21 season with the topic Rasquachismo and the Underdog Mentality.


What is the Tanda program? What is a tanda?

Interweaving the formats of seminars, book clubs, research groups, and tandas, Tanda is a cohort program that aids individuals with their research and practice through self-directed and collective learning. It is a program providing time and space to gather, share, think and exchange conversations, resources, and knowledge on participants’ chosen topics and practices.

Tanda is a spanish term for an informal money lending circle that is formed amongst friends, families, and acquaintances. This short-term loan club is a cross-cultural concept that is also known as a susu, cundina, vaca, hui, paluwagan, and jamia.

An example of a tanda is as follows: A tanda is formed between six people. Each person in the tanda puts $100 into a pot every week to total a $600 pot. The first member gets the $600 pot the first week. The second member gets the next $600 pot the second week, and the third member gets the next $600 pot the third week. This continues until each member in the tanda has received the $600 pot. Usually tandas are formed out of one member’s financial emergency or if a community project needs to be funded. Tandas become ways relationships strengthen, news and stories get exchanged, and community support and trust grows.

Following that structure, instead of waging money, participants in the Tanda program wage a topic. Each participant chooses a topic that they are researching to put in the program’s syllabus (pot). That syllabus will consist of weekly sessions and every session will be assigned a subject taken from the pot. Each participant, except the one who waged the week’s topic, will research that week’s subject and regroup in every session to present and discuss their research. The member who waged the week’s topic co-facilitates the session.


Past Tandas:
Tanda Fall 2021 X AMFM

Hugo Ivan Juarez – Rasquachismo and the Underdog Mentality

Agustine Zegers – Agenciamentos Olfativos / The Agency of Scent

River Kerstetter – Pre-colonial Indigenous Urban Planning and How to Imagine Indigenous Cities of the Future

Alkebuluan Merriweather – Reconceptualizing the Madonna and Child through Archival Praxis

Marcelo Eli Sarmiento – Convictions of the Classics: On the Presence & Erasure of Black and Brown Bodies in Classic and Mesoamerican Art

Juan Arango Palacios – Neo Perreo: Challenging Misogyny and Homophobia in Reggaeton Culture

Tanda Spring 2021

Lorena Cruz Santiago: Visual Sovereignty: Understanding the Ethics of Depicting Indigenous Culture in Visual Art

Tiffany M Johnson: Marronage: Acts Between Freedom and Captivity

Karen Dana Cohen: Making Visible the Invisible: Labor of Mothering as Immigrants in the Contemporary Culture and What Acquiring a New Language Provides

Clau Rocha: Bloodletting as Embodied Ritual: Latinx Tattoos

Alex Santana: Challenging Biometrics, AI, and Facial Recognition Technologies

Charles Ryan LongThe Love, Rage & Roses it will take to Welcome the Death of White Manhood 

Tanda Fall 2020 X Hyde Park Art Center

Sarita Garcia: Fantasyscapes: Mercados, Markets and Merchandise; Looking in the self-made maze of Latinx flea markets

Natasha Mijares: Urban Wind Borne Debris & Environmental Racism

Marina M. Álvarez: Graffiti in the Urban Spheres of Mexico & Chile: Tools of Anti-colonial Resistance

Katia Pérez Fuentes: Cosmic Patterns for Creative Practitioners: Astrology and Art

Joseph Josué Mora: Egress: Politicized Existence In U.S. and Art Spaces

Eva Mayhabal Davis: Collaboration and Cooperative Protocols

Tanda Summer 2020

Javier Jasso: Dreams, Alzheimer, and Autoconstrucción

Victor Zhagui: The Bossa Nova/Tropicália Movement in Brazil and Surrealism

Jennifer Ligaya SenecalNavigating Space: Hoodoo and ATR rooted Performance Practices in the Deep South

José Rosa: Afro-Latinx Presence in Caribbean Visual Communication

Tanda Spring 2020

Frank Vega: South American celebrations and traditions in relation to Indigenism

Elsa MuñozRelational theory (action) as a response to the Anthropocene

Juan Molina HernándezHome, haven and heaven

Giselle Mira-Diaz: Generational trauma through an immigrant lens

Astro Escudero: The Plantationocene

Daye Angely: Bending perception with science and imagination