To be sure, Hakim’s intentional curation positions wellbeing and accessibility as non-negotiable facets of community-building. With napping rituals, dancing or playtime in the meadow, somatic healing sessions, and locally-sourced, organic meals—prepared by Babetown or members of the collective—Activation residents radiate the benefits of intentional community planning. “We eat so well. We rest guilt-free,” says Hakim. “We practice patience, loving-kindness, and collective solution-building.”
Activation has transformed participants’ perceptions of what community can be by centering artists who are most in need of radical, collective care. “I was given the chance to play, learn, rest, and more importantly, connect with those that have since gone on to be creative partners, friends, and dare I say it, family,” says Okcandice, a Berlin-based writer, artist, poet, and curator who attended Activation in 2019.
In order to remain aligned with whatever contemporary vision best serves the entire collective, Activation evolves each year as needed. “The residency centers healing justice and collective care work as its core tenets,” says Hakim. “If it is not accessible to all bodies, then it is not healing justice."
Activation seeks to adopt Carolyn Lazard's Accessibility in the Arts practice by providing workshops with measures like ASL interpretation, free childcare, wheelchair ramp rentals, menstruation products, justice pricing infrastructure, and Communication Access Real-Time Translation (CART). “The goal,” Hakim explains, “is to create the most accessible and sustainable Activation model so that it may nurture the community it has fostered as well as interrogate the ways in which the space still bars many from accessing it.”