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LIVING ARCHIVES

Paris 28th and 29th March 2024


Amidst the flurry of the changing seasons, chilly winds and rain, we bring a snapshot from our work in Paris, where the moments of calm seem fleeting.


Into our postcard box we often introduce new postcards bought by the team with The Community Table in mind (found on our own travels and museum or gallery visits). We have also been gradually adding postcards and photographs made around the table by participants. So as our collection grows, it also acts as a live and expanding archive or document of The Community Table in these spaces.


On our last two trips to the garden La Semeuse in February and March, we proposed the use of an empty postcard stand found in the art centre. Over the hours of the afternoon, a careful curation took place, by someone who, we discovered, knows our postcard box almost by heart. He is a frequent participant at The Community Table, and often sits silently for long periods, contemplating the collection. The archive was embraced in this personal exhibition, and his own work and image were placed amidst postcards from historical and contemporary art, landscapes from across the globe, archeology, portraits of figures, and Art Refuge postcards, some dating back to our work in Nepal.


This week we had the pleasure of a visit from our team member Tony Gammidge (@animatedtales), who came from the UK to make sound recordings for a film about the participants’ perspectives on The Community Table. We were able to make a recording of the narration of this personal journey into our postcard archive, which proved to be a rare and precious moment. Other rich perspectives on the resource the table represents and its relation to lived experience were offered to us by participants and volunteers around the table.


Words by Kate France, Naomi Press & Tony Gammidge.




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