A life of touching, build on tactility

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This yearbook brings together twenty creatives and community organisers from all walks of life: musicians, visual artists, dancers, art collectives, and everything in between. From personal to political, their contributions reflect diverse forms of community-building through care. How do they inspire each other? Who do they care for? How do they care? 💘

  • Name: Tashattot Collective
  • Cultural collective
  • Age: founded 1 year ago
  • Location: Brussels
  • Instagram: @tashattot.collective

What do you care most about, and how is it relevant to your art/practice? It could be a social issue, your community, yourself, or anything!

What we, three immigrants living in Belgium, care most about is our roots and regaining the feeling of being at home in our new environment. What Tashattot aims for is to create a familiar space for artists, who just like us had to leave their homes, to feel safe and at home in one way or another.

Three words that come to mind when you hear the term ‘care’? 

Empathy, protection and communication.

<img class="editorial-image" src="https://assets-global.website-files.com/61eebcc683107b99137f4423/64c3af08761d2d11e1c1d5a5_DifferentClasstashattot%20exhibition%20orange%20circle%20%C2%A9%20Isabelle%20Arthuis.webp"/>

What inspires you to care more for others, or to use your art/practice as a platform to do so? 

The inspiration for us to start the collective was knowing that others like us have to work hard to succeed in new environments and seeing their utter dedication to keeping their artistic practices alive and relevant.

How do you hope to inspire others? 

We would hope that our platform could give others the push to keep going if ever someone needs it. We want to grow as a community so that whoever feels like they need support can use our platform to gain connections and familiarity in their milieu.

What type of change do you want to inspire in your community/environment?

Our goals are always growing and morphing into more specific titles, but for now, the main change we wish to inspire would be to create more opportunities for artists coming from the MENA region, and hopefully one day even the SWANA region.

How much influence do you think (y)our backgrounds have on (y)our art and practices? 

Our practice as Tashattot is influenced by and created for our backgrounds. It may differ from one artist or one collective to another, but for us, it is an essential part of our project.

<img class="editorial-image-50-left" src="https://assets-global.website-files.com/61eebcc683107b99137f4423/64c3af05fc534f394b0f9fb5_knipDifferentClassbetter%20quality%20pic.webp"/>

<img class="editorial-image-50-right" src="https://assets-global.website-files.com/61eebcc683107b99137f4423/64c3af072482cbed9e358f17_knipDifferentClasstashattot%20exhibiti.webp"/>

What are some challenges that you face while doing what you are passionate about? 

Because this collection is our first big project outside of our home country, the challenges we have been facing are mainly administrative. The procedures here are very new to us and very different from what we are used to but we’re happy to be learning as we go.

How do you define ‘community’? 

In short, a community is a group of people who share the same struggles and aspire to similar goals.

What is a ‘safe space’ for you? 

A safe space would be a place where we know that we are not alone and that others have our backs. What Tashattot aims to create is a safe space for those who had to leave their homes and start over.

Is receiving care a privilege, a right? 

Every person or community should be able to receive care by default. We have always been let down and abandoned by our governments, and so we have forgotten what being cared for feels like and thought of it as a privilege for a long time, but now we are trying to change that and to remind others like us that we can care for and support each other.

Do you think this generation is redefining care and community building? And how? 

There are many answers that could prove or disprove the statement mentioned in the question. However, one of how this generation is indeed redefining care and community building is through the fight for acceptance.

<img class="editorial-image" src="https://assets-global.website-files.com/61eebcc683107b99137f4423/64c3af068561c58fd4b10065_DifferentClasstashattot%20exhibition%20space%201%20%C2%A9%20Isabelle%20Arthuis.webp"/>

What small acts of care do you hope to see more of? 

When the more privileged recognize their privileges.

How do you balance taking care of others and taking care of yourself? Do you make that distinction in the first place? 

As a collective, we have to take care of our practice first to be able to ‘take care of others’. For now, we are taking care of ourselves by focusing on growing and finding funds and creating a system and an image for our collective, so that we could have a strong support process to be able to take care of others.

Do you care about being cared about? 

Definitely.

What do you want to be remembered for? 

Bringing together those who require the community they left.

<div class="editorial-banner"> <div class=“editorial-credits”> Photos by Simon Delobel and Isabelle Arthuis <br/> tashattot.com </div></div>

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