Institute for Human Activities
The Institute for Human Activities (IHA) is a research project initiated by Dutch artist Renzo Martens.
In 2017, Human Activities and the plantation workers’ art league Cercle d’Art des Travailleurs de Plantation Congolaise (CATPC) celebrated the Repatriation of the White Cube. A quintessential White Cube, designed by OMA, was built and inaugurated on a former Unilever palm oil plantation in Lusanga, DR Congo. With the establishment of the White Cube, the mechanisms through which plantations underwrite the art world are reversed. The white cube attracts the capital and visibility needed to invent a new ecological and economic model on site: the post-plantation. With the repatriation of the White Cube, Human Activities and CATPC aim to bring back the privileges associated with the art world to one of the plantations that has historically funded the establishment of western museums.
April 13, 2021, the project was published on the front page of the New York Times.