Yourtopia sofa film festival

Yourtopia sofa film festival (2011/2012) by Peter Grech & Manu Luksch

Part of the AiR process has been to participate in a dialogue with Manu Luksch around the broad theme of ‘living experiments’ as a feed-in to Luksch’s ‘Function Creep’ project. In a time when the acceleration of the global market-based industrial culture seems to be almost permanently characterised as a crisis, the purpose of the dialogue has been to explore the territory of ideas relating to possible positive alternatives. We have attempted to steer away from large-scale strategic thinking and focus more on what people can do without reliance on, guidance or permission from authorities, experts or big business.

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The dialogue evolved to form three main strands:

·       The Yourtopia sofa film festival, comprising films that related to ‘positive futures’, and ranged across across alternative communities based on spirituality or religion, sexuality, ideology, environmentalism and technology; building design, indigenous communities and cultures, revolutionary and alternative communities of the recent and more distant past, transport, and so on.

·       The Yourtopia blog – This allowed us to make notes on the films viewed for future use, covering the key points or omissions that had occurred to us, our personal opinions of the films and subject matter, and as the blog develops, to identify underlying patterns, principles, similarities and differences, questions and inspirations.

·       The Yourtopia Park Walk, which evolved, appropriately, as an add-on to the necessity and desire of daily life, namely getting some air and exercise and taking Elektra out in her buggy. Walking together provided a different and dynamic space for the development of ideas, possible avenues for further consideration, discovery of ideas and questions and the kind of ideas-building that comes out of constructive discussion. As often happens in broad discussions, we have considered the relationship between ownership and culture, the influence of architecture, monetary and non-monetary trade systems, the up- and down-sides of rural, separatist, ‘tribal’ and ideological communities, welfare within intentional communities, the possibility of living completely detached from the market-driven industrial economy, information exchange between alternative communities, land prices, the importance or otherwise of face-to-face meeting and communal spaces, co-operative management, personal space, the benefits and impositions of communal activities and responsibilities, resource sharing, skills swap, resource control, types of ownership and authority, food security, and what to have for lunch.


The aim is to summarise the dialogue with a text covering the process followed, the main points arising and outlines for projects coming out of the process.


Park Walk 2011, photo: Indigo Luksch