A Gestural History of the Young Worker — 5th Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art

‘Werker 2 — A Gestural History of the Young Worker’ will premiere at the 5th Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art in Ekaterinburg, Russia. Werker Collective compiled this publication during an art residency in the Urals—the Soviet industrial heartland—where the strong, athletic bodies of workers, with severe and determined faces, firm and coordinated gestures, were once celebrated in painting, sculpture, and photography. The Soviet visual glorification of the worker and labour rested upon the Marxist dialectical imperative to overcome alienation between different elements of social structure, namely the gap between physical and intellectual labour. In early Soviet political vocabulary, the word smychka indicated this drive towards collaboration and union in society. Werker Collective, simultaneously inspired by emancipatory politics of the international labour movement and by the body liberationist politics of the radical queers and feminists, offers yet another kind of smychka, that is a utopian synthesis of work and desire.

12/09-1/12/2019 Ural Optical and Mechanical Plant
Ekaterinburg, 33b Vostochnaya Street.
5th Ural Industrial Biennial


26 images from Werker Collective’s archive served as ignition for 13 research projects questioning the changing nature of images, documents and the archive in the digital era and how this affects our bodies and the world that surrounds us. The result of this research is presented in the form of a newspaper installation that invites the visitor to engage with the content both intellectually and physically. Project made by the 2nd Year Graphic Design & Photography department of the Estonian Academy of Arts EAA.

11 – 15/03 2019 EAA, Estonia pst 7, Tallin. Opening 15/03 18 pm


The Giant Floating Eyeball: Finance & Algorithm

Werker Collective are invited to the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague to join the students of the Graphic Design department on their research on the phenomenon of automated data processing and how this relates to notions such as market, speculation, debt, crash, crisis, etc.

08/03/2019 KABK, Den Haag.

Sixteen neighbourhoods, a thousand cities: photographs for other narratives of Barcelona.

This exhibition responds to the need to reverse the too often unidirectional working dynamics between the centre and the periphery; between the professional and the amateur. Aware that the image of a city is at the centre of a network of knowledge, experiences and circumstances, the artists and photographers participating propose to open spaces for interaction and dialogue with the neighbours in order to document the identities in constant transformation of each of the neighbourhoods.

16/02/2019 – 31/03/2019 (from Thursday to Sunday)

Borsí building. Pl. de la Verònica. Barcelona.


Werker 2 — A Spoken History of the Young Worker

1 / 8
2 / 8
3 / 8
4 / 8
5 / 8
6 / 8
7 / 8
8 / 8

Technical specifications: Offset publication, 108 pp, 75 black-white images, stapled, Amsterdam / Krakow / Winterthur 2016, Edition Number: 1, Width: 29,7 cm, Length: 42 cm, Language(s): Several languages. 1000 copies.

This issue of Werker Magazine presents images and documents that have been compiled from secondhand bookstores, online booksellers, personal archives, and street markets over the last few years. How can documents, that originate from different geographies and historical contexts, be performed by its readers? Pre-organized collectives or any engaged visitors are invited to perform an Image Act using the microphones and scenography provided in the exhibition space. The performances can take any shape but only its sound is recorded. Transcending the borders of the institution into the local context, the recordings are broadcast in public space. A website will keep on expanding, revealing fragments of the recordings and the locations of broadcast.

Credits: Editors (Werker Collective), Text (Werker Archive), Images (Werker Archive), Design (Werker Collective), Publisher (Werker Collective), Funding (Mondriaan Fonds, Manifesta 11, Krakow Photomonth).

Diffusion: ‘The Applicant’ Embassy of the Netherlands. Berlin, Germany. ‘Werker 2 — A Spoken History of the Young Worker’ Manifesta 11 Parallel Events. Winterthur Fotomuseum, Switzerland. ‘Imagineering — (Re)activating the Photographic’ Krakow Photomonth. Poland.


Werker 6 — Cinema Diary

1 / 12
2 / 12
3 / 12
4 / 12
5 / 12
6 / 12
7 / 12
8 / 12
9 / 12
10 / 12
11 / 12
12 / 12

Technical specifications: Offset publication, 87 pp, 76 colour images, stapled, Amsterdam 2013, Edition Number: 1, Width: 16 cm, Length: 23 cm, Language(s): English. 500 copies.

This publication presents images and work documents of Matthijs Diederiks (28, artist & filmmaker, Amsterdam). It is photographed and collected during his side job at Cinema Pathé Arena in Amsterdam from 2008 until 2010. Cinema Diary is the first issue of Werker 6, a collection of photo-diaries that reflect on the current working conditions of the youth through modes of self-representation and amateur photography.

Credits: Editors (Werker Collective), Text (Cinema Pathé Arena), Images (Matthijs Diederiks), Design (Werker Collective), Publisher (Werker Collective), Funding (Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst).

Diffusion: ‘Werker 6 — Cinema Diary’ San Serriffe. Amsterdam, The Netherlands. ‘Our Work is Never Over’ Matadero. PHotoEspaña. Madrid, Spain.