HOW WILL YOU ASCERTAIN TIME?  reflects on the ongoing discourse on waiting by taking Shahram Khosravi's work as a point of departure and by setting the foundations of this project on the reading of time through the lens of waiting. “Waiting” here is understood as a non-linear experience of time where the realm itself has no beginning or an end. It is a condition that lies on the periphery of capital and colonial time, imposed and protracted as a mechanism to exercise authority, where time is a construct and value established by the empire meant to be followed by its subjects. Hence, waiting becomes a political condition that deeply impacts psychologically and is felt emotionally and physically by those who become inevitable victims of this realm, and like other political conditions is experienced differently by each body, relative privilege of class and race, and geography.

Khosravi’s discourse is mainly embedded in the context of power, where the waited for holds power over the ones forced to wait, where time is capital and wasted time is valuable loss that is quantified financially and is entangled with limited access, privilege, and opportunity. To deliberate on this entrapment of capital and colonial time, the project considers different stages of waiting and the power dynamics that govern and shift at each stage: the anticipation and expectation of the condition of waiting that is often related to a becoming-realization of a dream; entering the realm and experiencing the process laced with hope and aspiration; awareness of the endless and interconnected loops of waiting, together with the realization of stolen time; and lastly the negotiation, absorption, and negation-unwaiting, surrender or a complete subversion of the power dynamics.

Building on these understandings, this research aims to venture into the multiple and affective modes of waiting, expanding on the different stages of the condition and the altering perspectives of witnessing and experiencing time. It is a reminder of the non-punctual and uncontainable nature of time drawing attention to recorded and archived history which is but just a fragment, a uni dimensional reading of it mainly exploring narratives of power. This research project aims to acknowledge, reflect, address, engage, and share the experience and negotiation of time and space in the realm of waiting, and a recognition of the political and social infrastructures that are complicit in its existence and in prolonging it.  It is an  attempt to expand the narrative to its multidimensional experience and understanding where waiting or suspended time denotes a process of transition, reconfiguration, regeneration, and reimagination, where histories, languages, entities and spiritualities, dimensions and temporalities coalesce.


Waiting as farewell 

Waiting as carrying within

Waiting as patience

Waiting as confinement

Waiting as emancipation

Waiting as anticipation

Waiting as boredom

Waiting as violence

Waiting as departure

Waiting as anxiety

Waiting as arrival

Waiting as gaining time

Waiting as outside

Waiting as stationary movement

Waiting as moving forward without moving forward

Waiting as letting go

Waiting as power

Waiting as a parallel existence

Waiting as historicity

Waiting as future

Waiting as present

Waiting as presence

Waiting as a reason to live

Waiting as near fulfillment

Waiting as stillness

Waiting as awareness

Waiting as illness

Waiting as collective becoming

Waiting as listening

Waiting as translation

Waiting as aspiration

Waiting as temporal plane

Waiting as relationship

Waiting as near fulfillment

Waiting as distance to and from 

Waiting as a way of being

The project draws connections to SAVVY's project  What The Tortoise Murmurs To Achilles On Laziness, Economy of Time, and Productivity from 2016 on decolonizing the capitalist nature of time by referring and learning from indigenous cultures where the notion of time is intangible, referential, and reflexive. This reflection on the politics of time continues with the proposed project that attempts to unravel the non-normative set of existing temporalities over the span of a year. Starting from January 2022 to December 2022, it is structured to build momentum throughout this period by starting with an exhibition as a point of departure that paves the path for each one of the chapters through research, interaction, and outreach activities with the publics in waiting – including the stateless denizens, cultural practitioners, third-generation immigrants, infrastructural decision-makers, lawyers, artists, activists, and scholars into creating a space that understands and aligns to the pace of peripheral time, culminating into an inclusive space articulated as pausitions – four moments of pausing and pondering together in the form of bimonthly workshops and performative articulations – that can accommodate the voices and stories that constitute collective and parallel experiences and existence.