The Bumper Book of Stubborn Stains

POSTED: May 26, 2017

This morning Oliver and I had a Skype planning meeting, in which we agreed the outline of a Convivial Mechanics event for the 2017 Pixelache Festival. This will take the form of a three day workshop which will weave together three strands of what we want to do.

Firstly, we will broaden how we view convivial mechanics. We never intended it to form the technical wing of Pixelache, but rather we want it to explore the tools we can develop to help us rather than rule us. This also includes developing the mental tools that we need to live a conscious rather than a reactive life. Here we will explore open-source thinking.

Secondly, we will ask the people who join the workshop to remain aware of how the group structures itself, and how it makes decisions. Part of the point of joining the group will lie in observing the group while taking part in it. Here we will explore the hidden underpinnings of decision-making.

Thirdly, we will focus on a practical activity that will provide an agenda for the group, and a variety of wholesome products to take home. So far we have two options in mind. Either we will explore the reality of cosmetics. We will start by examining and documenting the ingredients. Then we will seek out everyday sources for these ingredients. Finally we will make our own face cream, lipstick and more. Alternatively, we will explore the world of household cleansers: Tolu, W5, dish-washing liquids and so on. Again, we will start by examining and documenting the ingredients of common supermarket-bought cleansers. Then we will seek out everyday sources (or replacements) for these ingredients. Thirdly we will research traditional cleansing agents, asking questions such as “what did our grandmothers use to remove candlewax from clothes?” Finally we will make our own cleaning agents.

Please not that soap manufacturing neatly fits into both of these options.

If we follow the first option we will document our findings in the form of an ebook and exhibition called The Bumper Book of Soft Skin and Beautiful Hands. If we follow the second option we will aim for an ebook and exhibition called The Bumper Book of Stubborn Stains.

We welcome all comments and suggestions. Firstly we need to discuss and finalise the idea. Secondly we need to identify people who might feel the need to join such a workshop. Thirdly we need to locate a venue (although the Pixelache Space Program might help us here).