In contemporary creative practice, technological tools allow real-time knowledge exchange to span various time frames. This development enables cross-disciplinary and collective working methods to develop, but also results in transitory and fluid modes of creative work that leads to non-existent time and mental separation between work and leisure.

This Is Work by the Fictional Collective, an international body of 24 designers, is an investigation of the relation between creative work for economic value and for cultural and personal worth. In the exhibition, members of the Fictional Collective emblaze the contradictory state of romanticising autonomous but insecure life and work circumstances as a free choice, while simultaneously being trapped in a permanent activism of projects, applications, acquisition and self-marketing, and thus accepting unequal working conditions. This circle, driven by the fear of losing financial security and social status, has become a standard model for the entire creative business.

Initiated and coordinated by Rebekka Kiesewetter of Depot Basel, This Is Work will be exhibited at Depot Basel, a space for contemporary design in Basel, Switzerland until March 28, 2015. Side by side with the exhibition, an online publication collects perspectives of over 30 designers, artists, curators, theorists and researchers on the topic in form of text, videos, photos and illustrations. In addition to the members of the Fictional Collective, includes works by contributors such as sociologist Pascal Gielen (Belgium), designer and cultural scientist Claudia Mareis (Switzerland), architect and researcher Daniel Fernandez Pasqual (UK) and architect and writer Anna Puigjaner (Spain) with graphic design by Gabriela Baka.

Photos Heini Lehtinen