Thanks to everyone who came to the Tasty Bakery last night for our Mark Fisher Memorial fundraiser. It was an amazing night with an amazing turn out and kudos to everyone who weathered so many hours of continuous shelling from the booth. The energy was so high all night.
It never ceases to amaze us how generous people are and how important these sorts of nights are to people.
As we now look forward to throwing a free party in January to follow the 2020 Mark Fisher Memorial Lecture, I wanted to discuss a comment that was made on the event’s Facebook page about why the money we raised isn’t going to a mental health charity or something like that.
It’s a fair question but one which warrants a return to the context out of which these parties emerged.
The first ‘For K-Punk’ night was organised because we felt that, whilst an inaugurated memorial lecture was a fantastic idea, we wanted to create a space to continue our thinking with Mark’s thought that wasn’t limited to the classroom. So many of us came to Mark’s thought via the dancefloor — my personal gateway into the world of the Ccru was Hyperdub Records — and that was a space that we returned to in the immediate aftermath of Mark’s death. These experiences remain hugely important to us.
This isn’t just an excuse for a knees-up. These nights, whether organised by us or others, were the basis for a network of communal support that is still growing today and which we want to welcome new people into every year. They are also instances of collective joy and community that Mark believed in as alternatives to and extensions of those infrastructures that, frankly, often miss the mark in terms of building a communal response to what is, fundamentally, a collective issue.
Having the funds to facilitate this in the context of contemporary London is something that we hope will continue for years to come but we have learnt the hard way that to try and do this for free, cutting corners and relying solely on volunteers and the generosity of others, is unsustainable and counter-productive to the principles we’re otherwise trying to represent. We want this to be a night that is not just true to Mark’s memory in sentiment but also in terms of how it is run and organised, and that means raising funds to pay for security, accessible venues and making sure that we can pay those who sacrifice their time and energy to making this possible.
We believe that this sort of event is something Mark himself would have loved and it is the best way for us, as students and alumni, to honour his memory. So, once again, a huge thank you to everyone who came to support us last night and we hope that the money raised will go towards an even bigger and better event in January that will directly respond to the concerns of this year’s memorial lecturer.
We can’t wait for everyone to find out who it is.