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Self-Care & Self-Defense as the world burns:

a podcast conversation

Podcast transcript (pdf)


Runtime: 62 minutes


Artists: Dotyk, Coven Berlin, Power Makes Us Sick, and Olga Łaniewska


Description: “So if I create art, it can only be political art. And if I make political art, then I can be detained again. And if I’m detained again, then I’ll be put back in prison. And if I’m put back in prison, then I’ll be traumatized again.” - Olga Łaniewska, speaking about her work with self-defense and survivors of state violence

Queer feminist artists and activists from Germany, Belarus, and the USA get together to ask how to show critical solidarity, heal trauma during crisis, and the role of artists during revolutions. This podcast conversation came out of a desire for DOTYK and COVEN to meet and work together in 2020 in Minsk and Berlin, a plan that was made and unmade 3 times in the face of different crises.


This discussion was funded by IFA.



Dotyk (Belarusian: Дотык – The Touch), is an international annual festival of queer culture. Its goal is to enlarge knowledge about existing discriminations, to touch upon topical issues such as identity and self-expression, to attract attention to the problem of the different kinds of xenophobia in Belarusian society, and also to encourage consolidation between discriminated people, increase their self-awareness, and enhance the capacity of the audience for self-reflection.

Power Makes us Sick (PMS) is a creative research project focusing on autonomous health care practices and networks from a feminist perspective. PMS seeks to understand the ways that our mental, physical, and social health is impacted by imbalances in and abuses of power. We understand that mobility, forced or otherwise, is an increasingly common aspect of life in the anthropocene. In this quest for placeless solidarity, we start with health. PMS is motivated to develop free tools of solidarity, resistance, and sabotage that are informed by a deep concern for planetary well-being.

Olga Łaniewska is an assertiveness trainer and feminist activist, with a focus on the victims of domestic abuse and currently of state violence.

Anurita is a translator and artist, and was Olga’s interpreter for this session.