dissident business

self-organized school for studying,

learning and being in common 

based in Stockholm (SWE) and Utrecht (NL)


is an exhibition
that tricks
cheats, plays and jokes

parasitizing, resisting, occupying

to claim, squat and protest

it hides in the cracks
out of plain sight
but always doing the most
for those who want change

Dissident Business brings together the practice of artists Davide Christelle Sanvee and Antoine Guay who collaborate to create a spatial intervention informed by various written and visual statements provided by self-organized and critical school projects.

The statements, which were collected by School in Common through the ongoing publishing project a school (is a school, is a pamphlet) show a mode of work and study that co-opts traditional education from within to destabilize its borders and invite new ways of being into the existing institutional frameworks.

Instead of taking a literal approach to these statements, Sanvee and Guay interpreted these strategies to further inform their own practice of infiltrating the non-spaces inside institutions. These spaces, which are otherwise unused and without clear function, become the site for their work, utilizing their endless possibilities in an attempt to question and protest the space from within. In doing so, the artists play with the notion of camouflage, to hide and obscure their work in a constant process of inhabiting the institution differently.

Self-organizing forms a common ground between, and is the guiding principle for the school projects as well as Sanvee & Guay's artistic practice. They operate as in a dance within, on the margins of, and outside the institutions, asking themselves; how can we play with the conditions that are provided to us in order to carve out a space for those ways of learning and being that are silenced in traditional (art) educational environments? Through an active practice of critical, intersectional and feminist pedagogies they approach learning and study through the personal and informal, in open, collaborative and horizontal structures.

The site-specific, spatial intervention at Candyland embodies these practices. The installation is first activated during the opening moment. In the spirit of self-organization, it disrupts the traditional form of instituting and displaying art, through posing the question; what happens if the opening moment becomes the exhibition itself?


Davide-Christelle Sanvee (1993, CH-TG) is a performance artist who focuses on spaces and staging. Investigating public space, she hunts for architectural, behavioural and gestural elements to create scenographies that fully surround his spectators. In order to activate these new spaces, Sanvee uses fictitious elements and performative actions built around political and social realities.

Antoine Guay (1989, FR) is an interior architect who focuses on redefining existing spaces. His main interest is to concentrate on how subversion and alternative appropriation of space are organised and - as a result - forces the public sphere to redefine itself. This has led Antoine to focus on practices, rituals and self-defined limits taking place in forgotten territories.


The one year program a school (is a school, is a ____) was initiated by School in Common in September 2018. It is made possible with the support of Stockholm Stad and Kulturrådet. 

How to do business? 

Dissident Business -

a four step commons economy

1. Dissident Business stocks 10 big bottles of wine, 10 small bottles of wine, 15 big bottles of prosecco and 15 small bottles of prosecco

2. Customers shop for these bottles through an exchange of written services and resources

3. Next to the wine and prosecco, the stock of resource and service cards can also be exchanged

4. In order to enter the system of exchange, customers need to register their transactions by entering their full names and contact details (e-mail address or phone number)

Dissident Business takes state-controlled alcohol consumption, and the limited times in which alcohol can be purchased in Sweden as a starting point to interrogate and trick the omnipresent and entangled institutions of money and state.

Dissident Business is a visual moment in School in Common's ongoing publishing project a school (is a school, is a pamphlet) which asks the what, how and for whom? on alternative and critical school projects. Including contributions from: The Golden Dome, The Other MA - TOMA, Parallel School, ParasiteSchool, RAT school of ART, Trojan Horse

The project is supported by Swedish Art Council and the City of Stockholm. The exhibition at Candyland received additional support from Candyland and Residence Botkyrka.

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