- ALLORA Jennifer et CALZADILLA Guillermo, Stop, Repair, Prepare : Variations of Ode to Joy for a Prepared Piano No. 1, 2008, (coll. MoMa. Gift of the Jullia Stoschek Foundation, Düsseldorf)
Prepared Bechstein Piano : In Stop, Repair, Prepare : Variations of Ode to Joy for a Prepared Piano No. 1. 2008, Jennifer Allora (American, born 1974) and Guillermo Cazadilla, Cuban, born 1971) combine the mediums of performance art and sculpture. A pianist emerges through a hole carved in a grand piano to play the fourth movement of Ludwig van Beethovens famous Ninth Symphony of 1824 (widely known as « Ode to Joy ») while walking around the atrium. By modifying the instrument, the artist have fundamentally changed the dynamic between pianist and instrument ; leaning very far forward, the performer must read the keyboard upside down and backward. Furthermore, the hole renders two octaves of keys inoperative. The result is structurally incomplete version of the signature melody, played with great effort contradictory and ambiguous performance of a song that has long been invoked as a symbol of humanist values and national pride.
- AMARO Nel, Parias della terra, CMAE. 2008 (Infr’action Sète).
Né en 1946, vit et travaille à Cantuserron-Mieres, Asturies. En 1992, Nel Amaro a fait ses débuts comme ‘actionniste’ (selon sa propre dénomination) lors de la 2ème édition du FIARP Madrid organisé par Nieves Correa (artiste et commissaire). Il a ensuite mené plusieurs centaines d’« actions » dans différentes villes et élaborés des scénarions très particuliers et variés. C’est pour lui « un véritable acte d’amour que de se livrer à cette difficile discipline artistique, toujours préoccupé par le fond et parfois moins par la forme ». De formation autodidacte, comme il le dit lui-même : pour le meilleur ou le pire, Nel Amaro vient du monde du théâtre, de la poésie et de la littérature (il a publié plusieurs travaux) s’ajoutent à cela, ces expériences de vie et une série de « Maîtres » : Brossa, Ferrando, Valcarcel Medina ou Duchamp. Cet ensemble forme un « corpus théorique » lui permettant d’affronter le monde de l’ « action » avec des garanties suffisantes. Le travail de Nel Amaro s’accorde avec son engagement dans la société, il traite des questions du passé ou du présent, il est toujours empreint d’humour et d’ironie. Depuis 2001, avec Pugu son chien-situationniste, il met en œuvre le projet Fondation Chien-situationniste Laszlo Kovacs et s’investit pour le développement d’une grande plateforme internet consacrée à la vidéo et à la photo-actions. « En 1992 j’ai commencé à faire des performances dont le thème était le « territoire ». j’y ai mis en évidence les carences dont nous faisons l’objet et dont nous pâtissons car, comme le disait également le poète Gabriel Celaya sur la poésie, la performance « est une arme chargée de futur » même s’il y a des artistes dont le nez a tendance à s’allonger comme celui de Pinocchio ou encore des petites moustaches nostalgiques pousser sur leur visage. Pour son immédiateté, son accessibilité et sa mise en œuvre peu coûteuse, la performance me permet de m’exprimer avec insolence, directement, sans intermédiaire, du producteur au consommateur avec tout ce que cela implique pour une communication fluide et authentique. Dans Espanaescani, je présente une histoire de l’Espagne du 20ème siècle telle un « tour ibérique », bourrée de petits épouvantails et de sujets typiques tels que les taureaux, Goya et ses fusillés, les processions, les danses populaires jusqu’à atteindre le déchirant « La guerre est fini ». Ce qui est arrivé a été si dur et si sanglant qu’il est indispensable d’avoir une certaine distance et une dose d’humour pour être relaté. « Go Home » parle du tourisme, sujet de plus en plus grave et préoccupant, capable d’envahir des villages, des régions, des nations entières tout en changeant leur gastronomie, leur architecture, leur us et coutumes en échange d’un billet. Aujourd’hui, le tourisme massif est une véritable peste dévastatrice avec des conséquences imprévisibles. Pour affronter cela, il faut sortir dans la rue et s’écrier « Go Home tourists ».
- ARAHMAIANI, Breaking Words, 2008, Siliman University, Dumaguette, Phillipines.
- ARAHMAIANI, Produk Gertoli, 2008, Sanata Dharma,Yogyakarta, Indonésie.
- ARAHMAIANI, Handle Without Care, 2008.
- ARNELL Malin, No Title. Too Many Questions #2 & #3, 2008.
Malin Arnell’s performances No Title. Too Many Questions explore how specific forms of social behaviour are dependent on the different locations of the performance. The performance pieces, which last between two and four hours and take place all over the city, aim to overcome normative rules of social interaction. The actions, which took place in Stockholm in 2006, were not announced on-site, but the participants had been pre-selected. In contrast, in 2008 in Uppsala and thus became involuntary participants who were unaware of the action’s artistic character.
- BAEHR Antonia, Lachen, 2008. (photo: Julie Pagnier)
‘‘Antonia Baehr is a choregrapher. What characteristises her is a non-disciplinary work and a method of collaboration with different people, using a game-structure with switching roles: each person is alternately director/author/host and performer/guest for the other one’’ (make up productions). Baehr is preoccupied with the live element of theatre, and she often works with scores. She not only destabilises gender categories, but also distinctions between high and low and art, choreography and music. In her work as a choreographer, actress and dramatic advisor, she often works with Valerie Castan, Lindy Annis, Antonija Livingstone, William Wheeler, Ezther Salamon and Vincent Dupont, among others. She is also the ‘producer’ of the horse whisperer and dancer Werner Hirsch as well as the musician and choreographer Henri Fleur and the composer Henry Wilt.
‘‘What is my main feature,’’ Antonia Baehr asked her friends. ‘‘Your laugh,’’ they replied. For a self-portrait project, Baehr asked her friends to compose scores for her laugh on her birthday. After this, she began to present these live. Baehr explores laughter as a form of expression in its own right, independent of causes, by focusing on the act itself: the sound, the form, the rhythm and the gestures of laughter. Although comedy may not be her intention, the mechanism of shared laughter is a performance element. Lachen was also part of the Performance Programm of re.act. feminism 2009.
- BIRRENBACH Cris, Comida, 2008, photo. Ding Musa.
- BING Han, The Green Walking Movement in UK, 2008.
- BLOK Maurice, Mopo08, Vaasa, Finlande. 2008.
- BOLIVER Rocio (aka La Congelada de Uva), De Etiqueta Rigusa, 2008, Museo Experimental El-Eco Mexico.
- BOLIVER Rocio (aka La Congelada de Uva), Embajadora de buena voluntad, 2008, Casa de America. Madrid
- BOUVIER Christine & groupe Ornic’Art, Ballade de Karcher, 2008, Marseille.
Faire appel à l’amour plus qu’à la haine, suite aux mots de Sarkozy : « Nettoyer les banlieues au Karsher ».
- BROMS Gustaf, Sitting, 2008 (Suède).
- COBLE Mary, Blood Script, 2008.
Blood Script was a live performance piece that took place at the PULSE art Fair at Pier 40 in NYC, NY in 2008. The artist meticulously documented inscriptions from three previous marker (DC, NYC and Madrid). Performances and compiled a list of over 200 hateful words and phrases written on me, by viewers, in various languages. For Blood Script, the artist had 75 of the most common words tattooed onto her skin, without ink, in a very ornate script. using decorative letters, she created a dichotomy between the beautiful visual form of the words and the ugly meanings they convey semantically. Contact prints were made of each word by immediately pressing watercolor paper against the fresh incisions. The mirror image of the word was imprinted on the paper in blood. The elaborate script initially engages viewers in the optical challenge of identifying each tattooed insult. The recognition of each word stimulates viewers to reflect upon the significance of what the insult means to them. This dynamic process mediates a silent dialogue between the artist and the audience as the performance progresses.
- DAHL Thomas, Agent démocratique, Stockholm. 2008.
- DE GRACIA Silvio, Strategies of Disintegration, 2008, Bergame, Italie.
- DEIMLING BBB Johannes, Living Images, 2008.
- DEIMLING BBB Johannes, Memorial (#1-For Rose Hill), 2008.
Rose Hill Memorial, public venues/Marseille, France/2008/4-5 minutes each
10-12 peoples stand still for about 4-5 minutes, holding up cardboard signs. Photos: Peter Barren, Natascha Musclera, Victoria Stanton.
- DEIMLING BBB Johannes, This is my land, 2008.
pro-existance festival/schloss bröllin, germany/2008/34 minutes
- DIAZ Maria Adela, Antipodes, 2008. (installation-videoperformance)
Installation-Video Performance. Photos. Andrea Aragon.
Antipodes comes from the Greek (anti-‘‘opposed’’ and pous ‘‘foot’’ and describes the region on the Earth’s surface which is diametrically opposite to itself. Two points which are antipodal to one another are connected by a straight line through the center of the earth.
Antipodes was an installation, made with 100 shoes connected with the same sole. These soles represent the unity of humanity. The performance consisted of 100 people in a lineal formation and connected by one of their shoes trying to move or walk. This piece and its universal meaning represent human territories and how we connect with others. By walking together in harmony toward a common goal, we create a wave of symbiosis. When we work together we can create a better world.
- DIAZ Maria Adela, Blossom, 2008.
Video Performance. Video: single-channel digital video. Photo: Digital C-prints, 16’’x20’’, Californa. Photo: Miguel Morales. Blossom is defined by the period of greatest prosperity or productivity which evolves through a process of evolution, natural growth, maturity. This piece represents my stage of blossom as an individual and the celebration of a new life.
- DIAZ Maria Adela, Resistance, 2008, Guatemala. photo. Rosina Cazali (performance, action)
‘‘Horror vacui’’ Primera muestra de performance y accionismo, Centro de Formacion de la Cooperacion Espanola, Antigua Guatemala, Guatemala. Exploring the pain of detachment, caused by the absence and emptiness of people who were kidnapped, tortured and killed during the military regimes that plagued the region of Guatemala and Latin American countries.
A two-day event, ‘‘Horror vacui’’ took place in La Antigua Guatemala in the context of ‘‘The Disappeared,’’ a travelling exhibition organized by the North Dakota Museum of Art and curated by Laurel Reuter.
- EDENS Saskia, Make up, 2008 (Suisse).
- FAGUNDES Daniel, Existe alguma possibilidade ética que não acene ao totalismo? (Is there any ethical possibility which will not wave to totalitarism?), Verbo 2008, Brésil, photo: Ding Musa.
- GALINDO Regina José, Breaking the Ice, 2008.
Permanezco desnuda, dentro de una habitación vacía y extremadamente fría, a la espera de que el público me vista y me abrigue. (Actll. Oslo, Noruega, 2008)
- GALINDO Regina José, Reconocimiento de un cuerpo, 2008. photo : Paulo Jurgelenas.
Mi cuerpo completamente anestesiado sobre una camilla, cubierto por una sábana blanca. El público debe levantar la sábana para reconocer mi cuerpo.
(Centro Cultural de España, Córdoba, Argentina, 2008)
- GALINDO Regina José, Let’s Rodeo, 2008, photo: David Perez.
Me subo a un toro mecánico, una y otra vez, por una hora y media, intentando domarlo.
(Art Pace. San Antonio, Texas, Estados Unidos, 2008)
- GALINDO Regina José, Polígrafo, 2008, MUA, Tegucigalpa, Honduras.
« Cuánas mentiras me veo obligada a decir. Pero a mi misma no quisiera mentirme. Si no, ?qué me queda? » (Clarice Lispector) Me someto a una prueba de poligrafo, un detector de mentiras, obteniendo un resultado extramadamente negativo de la misma.
- GALINDO Regina José, Trayectoria, 2008.
Mi cuerpo es arrastrado por el cabello en una linea inclinida, dejando una linea imaginario detrás.
(ActII. Bergen, Noruega, 2008)
- GALINDO Regina José, Trayectoria, 2008, photo: Omar Carrera K.
Mi cuerpo es arrastrado por el cabello en una linea inclinida, dejando una linea imaginario detrás.
(Museum voor Moderne Kunst Arnhem, Arnhem, Países Bajos, 2008)
- GOLUBOVIC Snezaná, China-hair-connection, 2008, Pékin-Cologne.
Interdisciplonary performance project by Angie Hiesl and Roland Kaiser, with Chinese and European performers, Eigelstein district, Cologne, Germany. Premiere: August 21st, 2008.
- GOLUBOVIC Snezaná, China-hair-connection, 2008, Pékin-Cologne.
Interdisciplonary performance project by Angie Hiesl and Roland Kaiser, with Chinese and European performers, Caochangdi district, Beijing, China. Premiere: october 10th, 2008.
- GOLUBOVIC Snezaná, Conversation 2, 2008.
- GOLUBOVIC Snezaná, Conversation 3, 2008.
- GOLUBOVIC Snezaná, Conversation 4, 2008.
- HANG Ren, 2008.
- HENNINGSEN Stein, La Crise, Infr’action. Sète. 2008.
- HIESL Angie, Performance, 2008, Cologne.
- HUBAUT Joël,
Passer sur le billard, 2008, Québec.
- HUBAUT Joël, Site Clom vert, 2008.
- KO Siu Lan, Performance Infr’action Sète. 2008.
- LA POCHA NOSTRA INTERNATIONAL SUMMER SCHOOL, Convento do Carmo, Évora, Portugal, August 2008.
Part of Escrita na Paisagem. Performance and Land Arts Festival (5th Edition). 12 day intensive workshops in Évora, a gorgeous ‘museum-city’ whose roots go back to Roman times. Part of the town is enclosed by ancient walls and has been awarded status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A mind blowing location for a group of incredibly wild artists. Photos: Andrea Inocencio + various.
- LOCKE Jennifer & BLOMQUIST Daniel, Felo de Se, 2008.
- MAKOTO Aida, Body Painting, 2008.
- MUZ Julie Atlas, You Don’t Own Me, 2008, Seattle.
- NICOLA L, The Blue Cape Of Human Rights European Parliament, 2008, Brussels, 8 oct.
- PISANI Mariuccia, Power, 2008.
Mariuccia Pisani (1973, USA) lives and works in Pescara, Italy, and New York. Her works encompasses performances, installations, photography and video and frequently originate in an autobiographical background. The artist often uses her own body as a tool for reflecting sexualised society and culture (in works such as Helmut Newton is Dead, 2006).
In an empty space, created especially for this occasion, with a few scattered mirrors and the scent of a perfume, the audience is asked to wear red stiletto shoes, regardless of their gender. Power was a participatory happening: the audience members become the performers and the objects of attention at the same time. There are (some) women who are comfortable with wearing high heels, and there (some) are men utterly unaccustomed to it. The gendered sexual attractiveness associated with high heels becomes confused and applied to everyone, humorously highlighting the role of fashion in gender relationships. Performance: Spazio 8, Milano, Italy, R March 2008, ex-churche of Sant’ Angostino, Citta Sant’ Angelo, Italy, 12 April 2008.
- RASMUSSEN Lilibeth Cuenca, The Void.
Cuenca’s A Void is a collection of short re-enactments of influential works of art that contain a live element by artists such as Yves Klein, Shigeko Kubota, Ana Mendieta, Orlan and Nam June Paik. Several decades of (feminist) performance history are explored in this sampling of short performance clips. The performances are not reinstated as seminal, auratic art works, but are treated as mutually affecting gestures that are part of our collective cultural memory and are questioned, translated, modified or repurposed in new constellations.
- RODEN Steve, Allan Kaprow’s 18 Happenings in 6 Parts, 2008.
- SIERRA Santiago, Les Pénétrés, El Torax, Espagne, 12 oct. 2008.
acte 1 : 10 hommes de race blanche pénètre 10 femmes de race blanche ;
acte 2 : 9 hommes de race blanche pénètrent 9 hommes de race blanche ;
acte 3 : 3 hommes de race blanche pénètrent 3 femmes de race noire ;
acte 4 : 7 hommes de race blanche pénètrent 7 hommes de race noire ;
acte 5 : 3 hommes de race noire pénètrent 3 femmes de race noire ;
acte 6 : 5 hommes de race noires pénètrent 5 hommes de race blanche ;
acte 7 : 8 hommes de race noire pénètrent 8 femmes de race blanche ;
acte 8 : final. 10 hommes de race noire pénètrent 10 hommes de race blanche.
- SIGDEL Sunil (originaire du Népal), Globalization and Border, 2008.
« The world we live today has given many definitions to a human being. At the same time it has also taken so much from us. The common belief of globalization has seemingly ready a parson with boundless possibilities as we can get in touch with every development or weakening around the world. However the world seems a tiny nut shell which is quite difficult to crack. Thought we can know everything that is happening, we often can not directly impact these situations. This has happened because we are bounded by the political and geographical border.
The installation based performance that I have presented here is the combination of my various social and materialistic beliefs. Here I have adjusted myself on the ground partitioning my body with a wall created by bricks. Then I have placed nails and chili on the ground of the lower side of my body and on the upper side I scattered sweets on the ground. We basically experience pain but we perceive solace; because that is what we are made to see. Furthermore, I have also arranged two cameras capturing both the sides of my body, which is continuously being telecasted live on the two televisions on the performance site. I have incorporated television because it is one of the hi-tech devices that link us with the globe, promoting the concept of globalization. Therefore, my work is about the primordial pain that is hidden underneath the scientific complexion of human beings. » (Sunil Sigdel)
- SIGDEL Sunil, Today’s News to The History, 2008, South Asian Exhibition, Bangladesh.
We read history to get knowledge about our past. War is a large part of world history. We have learnt from our civilization that many of the big war were begin by the egoistic thoughts and attitude of few people. During each war, there were a huge loses of innocent lives and always many people suffered by it years after years, from what we yet experience pain while we read or hear about those stories. Present days as well when we are having a civilized life, because of few leaders of the Globe we still have been passing through the similar situation and suffering directly or indirectly in some way by the effect of the war.
For this performance, I have collected images of different war victims, fighters and related people from internet and newpapers. I also recorded relevant news regarding war, terrorists etc. from BBC. I pasted many band aid leaves on my body and tried to lightening the images with small cigarette lighters. The speaker was fixed with my mouth that was talking about war. The people from the history were seemed to be listening to the present war situation of this Globe from BBC via my mouth. (Sunil Sigdel)
- SPRINKLE Annie M. & STEVENS M. Elizabeth, Dirty Sexecology, 2008.
In the mid-1970s, Annie Sprinkle (*1954, USA) began her career as an actor in porn films. In the early 1980s, she moved to director’s chair. She earned a BA in photography and began working as a performance artist in 1986. Her works received much attention, especially ‘‘Public Cervix Announcement’’, for which she invited viewers to inspect her cervix in an attempt to demystify the female sex. In 1991, she founded the Sluts and Goddesses workshop, and she collaborated with Maria Beatty and Pauline Oliveros in the publishing of a video guide on how to become a sex goddess. In 2004, Linda Montano inspired her to begin a project together with her partner Elizabeth Stevens, perfoming seven wedding ce remonies in seven years. The couple was officially married to each other in 2007, then to the earth in 2008, and they have been documenting their love making with the blue planet ever since. Prior to performing with Sprinkle, Elizabeth Stevens worked with installations and photography (‘‘Who’s Zoomin’ Who?’’, 1992, also with Sprinkle as a model).
In this performance, we see two monds of earth on a stage, each with a flower on top. Dr Sprinkle and Ms Stevens begin to explain the science of Sexecolofy, first by talking about it, then with a demonstration. This revue-based performance shows the duo and two assistants in white coats, demonstrating love with a flower, playing country music, performing a kind of nudist ballerina dance and making love with an earth mound. During these demonstrations, one of the assisatants in a white coat recites names of mountains. The video is an excerpt of a 45 minute performance at the Performance Saga Festival in Bern. It humorously blends pornography references with natural and idyllic kitsch and mock science.
Performance: 2008, Performance Saga Festival, Bern.
- STERLE Sandra, Nausea (Mučnina) 2008, performance DOPUST Days of Open Performance, Split. Photo: Toni Meštrović.
Sandra Sterle (1965, Croatia) is a multidisciplinary artist who works with video, media installation, web projects, photography and performance. Currently she is the associate professor of performance and video at the Arts Academy in Split, Croatia. Gender identity in social and political contexts and the question of how modes of documentation affect the ephemeral nature of process-oriented works are part of the artictic research of Sandra Sterle: ‘‘I draw rituals out of life and I deal with different forms of uprooting while questioning my own affective attachment to images as well as the strategic possibilities of manipulation. By using my identity in the form of fictional self-portraits with different social backgrounds in some of my works I point out differences between personal experience and media-constructed images.’’ (Sandra Sterle)
In her live performance Nausea, Sandra Sterle deliberately vomits to the tune of a song by Mišo Kovač ‘‘Dalmatinac nosi lančić oko vrata’’ (‘‘A Dalmatian Man Wears a Chain Around His Neck’’). The canonical song by Mišo Kovač, a cult personality of Cratia folk music, symbolizes the unbowed heritage of the patriarchal culture of the Dalmatia containes in a formula of sanctity and the unbroken tie of ‘‘blood and soil’’. By publicly inducing vomiting and displaying her own position of being powerless in the face of the norms of social majority, the artist constitutes herself as a subject in rebellion. Instead of verbal expression, she uses simple and primitive symbols as means of communication towards those she addresses. The work has polarized the public and stirred up a massive media response.
- SURYODARMO Melati, Eulogy, 2008.
Eulogy is a piece that involves some ideas of interrogating the influence of existing ideas which become the basic structures of thoughts. It connects with the compilation of philosophical manner, the danger of second-guessing in math and the idea of physical movement.
In the performance, I entered the space, holding and truning majorette stick. On the floor there are some sacks of wheat powder. I opened the sack and spread the powder on the floor into a circle form. A mini helicopter controlled by a pilot, entered the space through the window. I walted until the helicopter stopped and arrived at my hand.
Duration: 30 minutes
Music: Somewhere over the Rainbow by Judy Garland
Performed at the Future of Imagination, Sculpture Square, Singapore, 2008. (photo: Lenny Ratnasari Weichert)
Once I realized that searching for a form is a way too far that returns becoming my jail. The freedom of formulating my thoughts slowly becomes my own restriction.
The whole compilation of existing brillant ideas or theories has influenced our structures of thinking. If we use the certain theory we are giving the devotion and become faithful to what it may applied in our practical life, we tend to follow the line and sometimes, ignore the others. The nature of our ego is to stand for our choice and claim it as the best. It does not matter if there is traditional norms, political system, philosophical way of thinking or psychological analysis, or religion, our choice is to connect us with the existing idea founded by others. Sometimes, our life is derived by the rule or structures that organically may not fit to our origin. The deviation of roots in our cultural body becomes a spectacle that is hidden if we are not aware, but radically obvious if we are aware.
I am interesting to line up the historical process of believing to existing ideas, ruled by the academic education and intellectual environment. How the science influences our life and predominating the way of socio-cultural standard of living. The lost of connectivity between the origin of the body and the mind of others, is the lost of our own existence among the systems.
The danger of beliefs will increase if there is no chance to the individuals to be independently growing. The absolution of beliefs is the most dangerous cultural destructions elements.
- SURYODARMO Melati, Memorabilia, 2008, photo: Jauhari.
This work is based on the intension to find the trails (sequence of marks left by somebody or something moving along the surface) of existing life or static objects or persons who are connected to my life journey.
It is an intension to activating personal process which seem to be frozen inside the memory container in my body. It is also an intension to research or find forthcoming possibilities to face the future. A challenge to be in the presence is to lose the past and being untied by the future. But pictures which remain in our memories are mostly still alive and influencing our presence. I am interested to include socio-psychological methods used for analyzing someone’s life resistance, through confronting my physical and conceptual presence with other persons, other life objects, and static objects.
In Memorabilia, I invited two artists, Fitri Setyaningsih (choreographer) and Djarot Budi Darsono (actor, choreographer, theater director) to share their unvelled memories. The process of creating the work was depending on the memories they shared. We spent three months to exchange, discuss, and share our experiences regarding the most inevitable memories.
All objects and actions presented in this performance were realted to our personal memorabilias. We use music, coffee, rooster, mirrors, shoes, stage, and video projection.
- SURYODARMO Melati, Silent Trip, 2008
Performed at Fyris River at Ulva Kvarn Estate during the Friktioner, Uppsala, Sweden, 2008. Photo: A. Berntson.
Nothingness that in between breath and the silence. Nothingness that reveals the absence of story.
Silent Trip is a long durational performance, where the artist puts her body in a certain location in the landscape that presents the absence.
Duration: 2 hours
Look at the archaic landscape at the old mill by the Fyris river and its running water. There are old buildings, ruins of abandoned structures, and the shady forest surrounding it all. In the midst of this scenery we can discern, like a fairy, a female being. She stands still in the middle of the water course, her veins cut open and suspended between the trunks of old trees on each side of the river like the wings of an enormous dragon-fly. This is a poetic vision caused by the long red pieces of fabric that are tied around the tree trunks, as they projects from the enwrapped artist where she stands on a stone in the stream. In front of her a pair of shoes is placed on a stone, the golden shoes she once received as a gift from her teacher.
I deliberately try to frame this act in an Eighteen Century Diderotesque way. I find the work picturesque, romantic and lyrical of essence. Diderot in his criticism used emphatic story telling to set the background for analysis, as well as to enhance sensitivity towards different themmes of the work. This is a way of creating an intimacy by conversational means, starting out from a well known ground, and chatting away towards more equivocal interpretations. As in conversation you don’t have to agree, oly accept the cues as entries in an ongoing discourse. In dialogue with the text you may create your own opinion and even write a comment on the web. It is in fact possible that Eighteen Century conversation around art may have a renaissance in the new media. written by Kurt Wolnar Nyberg.
- TANAKA Koki, Simple gesture and temporary sculpture, 2008-2012, Video 3’26’’.
- TANIUCHI Tsuneko, Micro-événement n° 35/Chairs électriques, 2008-2009
Assises. Cent une chaises-oeuvres, organisée au ministère de la Culture et de la Communication à Paris, Immeuble des Bons-Enfants, Paris, 2008, Assises Sedute in Opera, Collzione Philippe Delaunay, Museo Arte Contemporanea Acri, Acri, Italie, 2009.
‘‘J’ai décidé pour l’occasion de réactiver mon Micro-événement n° 35, pour un projet de la Fondation Kurt Eisner à Munich (oui celui-là même qui déclara ‘‘Der Künstler muss als Künstler Anarchist sein’’). L’artiste est assise nue sur la chaise, enchaînée d’une guirlande lumineuse aux couleurs festives et acidulées. Manifeste contre la peine de mort, l’oeuvre se nomme ‘‘Chairs électriques’’, jeu de mots franglais assis entre chair et chaise, référence directe à ‘‘Electric Chair’’ (1967) d’Andy Warhol. En guise de pétition, l’artiste invite le public à poser le même geste qu’elle-même, acte artistique et politique à la fois.’’
Performance et photographie en couleurs, Tirage lambda 91 x 60 cm, 2008.
- VOINA Group, Fuck For the heir Puppy Bear!, 2008.
— Sex Orgy in a Museum! What do Pussy Riot & Voina have in common? Fuck for the heir Puppy Bear!
‘‘Rebirth of Russian laughing culture, traditions of absurdity and sarcasm in context of high art, that is Rebirth of lively merriment in the art-spaces. Creation of political street-art in Russia in the best traditions of skomorokh and carnival middle-age art.’’ VOINA
The connection between Pussy Riot and the group Voina has been highlighted by some of the group’s critics and has been called an ‘‘aggravating moral circumstance’’ in the eyes of the conservative public (which constitutes about 60 per cent of Russians).
Pussy Riot members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich participated in some Voina performances. Tolokonnikova was part of a performance in which a number of couples were filmed having sex in the Biology Museum in Moscow in 2008 which has been called an ‘‘orgy’’ in the media. Samutsevich took part in actions which involved releasing like cockroaches in a court room and kissing policewomen in the Moscow metro and on the streets (which in some cases was seen as attempts assault).
What is VOINA?
VOINA. A street collective of actionist artists who engage in political protest art. political orientation: anarchist. Enemies: philistines, cops, the regime. Organization type: militant gang, dominated by horizontal ties in everyday life and employing vertical relationships during actions. The group preaches renunciation of money and disregard towards the law (‘‘the no-whoring way’’). Founded by Vor and Kozlenok in October 2005, the group was named after Vor (‘‘War’’). Initially, Voina actions were clandestine and anonymous, and were called ‘‘training’’ or ‘‘practice’’. Voina has enjoyed public recognition since 2008. To date, over 200 activists haved participated in Voina actions. At least 20 criminal investigations into the group’s activities have been initiated, some of them still ongoing. According to Russia’s Investigations Committee.
‘‘Art group VOINA’’ is a left-wing radical anarchist collective whose central goal is to carry out PR actions directed against the authorities, and specifically against law enforcement officials with the aim of discrediting them in the eyes of the public. Branches of VOINA members maintain contacts with anarchist group and individuals from all around the world holding left-wing radical views on art and on the world order (Italy, Slovakia, France, USA, South Africa, Greece’’.
Goals and objectives of the Art-Group VOINA in the period 2008-2010
1. Rebirth of heroical behavioral ideals of an artist-intellectual, in a manner of Russian libertarian decemberism. Creation of image of artist as romantic hero, who prevail over the evil. Creation of lively romantic models in today’s soulless commercial conceptual art.
2. Rebirth of lively expressive art, which is sincere and honest and provoking observers deep emotional experience. Actualization of monumental expressive genres, where large scale harmonizes with totally rich in content orientation, in contrast to outdated hypertrophy of forms, which deovid of sense.
3. Creation of innovative topical art-language, which is producing for pure art, not for a money. It is mean language, which is adequate for today’s cultural and socio-political context, which is can show actual art, without outmodedness and provinciality, and which provokes admiration of intellectual all over the world.
4. Rebirth of Russian laughing culture, traditions of absurdity and sarcasm in context of high art, that is Rebirth of lively merriment in the art-spaces. Creation of political street-art in Russia in the best traditions of skomorokh and carnival middle-age art.
5. Conceptual destruction of glamour timeserving and conformist Russian art-market, which is reproducing outdated forms of art, artificially falsifying processes of pricing of art-market and creating financial pyramid from devalued art-junk.
6. Creating of real lef front of art in Russia in traditions of futurim of 1920 years, which is radically shift all ideological poles by the facts of its being. Rebirth of political protest art all over the world.
7. War with ‘‘werewolfes in straps’’ for the freedom of contemporary art. War with socio-political obscurantism and ultra-right reaction for the triumph of nano-modernization in Russia. Subversion and destruction of outdated repressive-patriarchal socio-political symbols and ideologies. Art-war against all global world for total triumph of justice in Art-area.
Fuck for the Heir Puppy Bear! was an action staged by at the Timiryazev State Biological Museum in Moscow in February 2008. The performance was dedicated to Russian presidential election. The participants undressed in the museum and started to imitate sexual intercourses in front of a black flag with a slogan: ‘‘Fuck for the heir Puppy Bear!’’ here refers to Dmitry Medvedev, whose last name derives from medved, ‘‘bear’’.
Their performance was photographed and videotaped by several spectators invited by the performance group.
The performance was announced as a ritual for the bear totem. Plucer-Sarno explained the reason for the action the following way: ‘‘We do not have a goal to necessarily be radical provocateurs. We have a goal to be honest artists and tell what we think. We think that the government fucks the people, and the people like this. This is why the action ‘‘Fuck for the heir Puppy Bear’’ was born. He also said in the same interview: ‘‘This is a portrait of pre-election Russia: everybody fucks each other, and the puppy bear looks at that with an unconcealed scorn’’. Plucer-Sarno published in his blog a commentary by artist Maria Perchikhina that described the performance as an ‘‘acte of subversive affirmation’’. According to this opinion, the taxodermic bear, which was the totem stimulus for the ritual, symbolized Russian political system termed by ‘‘imitation democracy’’ by Dmitry Furman, and turned into the figure of the ‘‘chosen chief bear’’. The goal of the action then, following the analogy with archaic rituals that assured fertility of land and home animals, is birth assistance for the new political system. The ideas of fertility of land ans reproduction along with the national idea form the core of the new political system. The single transgressive feature in the performance was the publicity of sexual activity. Perchikhina interpreted that transgressive feature as subversive affirmation, in other words, a resistance to the system by outperforming it (similar to ‘‘trying to be better catholic than the Pope’’). She also quoted and article by Inke Arns and Sylvia Sasse where the principle of subversive affirmation was explain.
Political science expert Ilya Prokudin commented that the action was clearly political: ‘‘The action in Zoological museum had a political character. It was dedicated to the newly baked (we should not call him newly elected, who elected him?) puppy president, Medvedev, and mocked one of the ‘national projects’ curated by him, namely ‘on the increase in birth rate’. For the least apprehensive, even a pregnant woman was brought. Attention dit not escape a comical Jew in a frock and cylinder on the background who spread the information about the event and naturally separated himself in disgust from the event in the same report. Here, I believe, there is no need to explain anything to anybody. ‘A jew curates reproduction of animals’, a painting’’.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste & MUSLERA Natacha, The End, 2008, Friche La Belle de Mai, terminus du tram, Mairie 1er/7ème, Marseille.
Collaboration with Natacha Muslera.
Wearing white underwear and a simple back shirt, Natacha and me sit at the end of the tram rails. We are sitting 10 metres from each other. Between us a bigger stone is lying on the rails.
In different intervals and with different power we are trying to remove the bigger stone by chucking smaller stones at it. A collaborative sound piece evolves.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, Family, 2008, Umformerstation Ilseder, Ilsede, Allemagne.
30 minutes/live performance
Ilsede is the village wherre I grew up. Days before the piece starts I had asked my family to write a letter for me with a performance I have to do in front of the public, and to put the material I would need into a case.
Not knowing what they had written, I opened the case in front of the public and made three happenings in response to the letters.
All three were about my chilhood and youth. Photo et video: Helma Wittstock.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, For The Cow I Didn’t Get or Grüezi Giswil, 2008, Giswil, Suisse.
30 minutes/live performance/Turbine Giswil, Giswil, CH.
Wearing only jeans, I stand in the middle of a huge hall. My hands are stretched upwards and hold a knife. Over my head huge black plastic bag hangs from a crane.
I swivel my hips, the jeans slide down to the floor and I am naked.
I poke the knife into the bag and tug and drag the wet grass out of the bag. A mound of grass is building up in front of me.
I sit on the grass and wipe off my menstruation blood with the grass. After this I wash myself with the same grass.
I eat grass, drink milk from a bag, clean myself with the grass, suck on my nipples and snuggle with the grass.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, French Conversation, 2008.
45 minutes/live performance/Friche la Belle de Mai, terminus du tram, Mairie1er/7ème, Marseille.
Wearing a plain light violet dress, a spot light on me, I stand next to a wall, holding a glass of red wine in my hand.
I talk to the public. But for everybody in the room the language is unknown. Nobody understands a word. The language is created spontaneously in my head. Sometimes it is soft, sometimes urgent, sometimes fast and slow, a kind of an abstract concert ensues.
In between I drink the red wine, but really slow and with my mouth closed. The wine is painting pictures on my dress.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, Image of BS 1, 2008, Rebenpark, Braunschweig, Allemagne.
3 minutes/live performance
I’m standing on a 1.2 metres tall pedestal. I wear blue dungarees and a yellowish shirt.
A yellow lighter is slips out of my trouser leg. I try lighting it with my feed. I manage to light it and smile at the public. Photo/video: Oliver Blomeier.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, Kleid, 2008, Happenstudio, Berlin.
3 hours/live performance
Before the performance started, we laminated smell drawings by Anna and Stitched them together to form a dress.
The performance was that I wore the dress all night at the closing. My being there was the performance. Photo/video: Sabine Panossian. Collaboration with Anna Niedhart.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, o.T., 2008, University of Applied Sciences, Nijmegen, Pays-Bas.
45 minutes/live performance
Wearing a thin beige dress, I stand in the corner of a room in a frozen position. After a while I take the lowest corner of the dress and put it in my mouth. I put more and more of the dress into my mouth. Finally the dress disappears into my mouth.
Then I pull the dress out of my mouth again, as well as a long black string (cassette tape). While I am dragging the tape out of my mouth, I wrap it around my body.
Because of dancing and shaking, the tape and the dress fall off my body and I’m naked.
Photo/video: Yingmei Duan.
- WITTSTOCK Herma Auguste, Rhythm-Piece, 2008, Happenstudio, Berlin.
3 hours 30 minutes/live performance
I stand in a room wering a plain, black evening dress. From the stuccoed ceiling over me a big roll of toilet paper hangs from a small chain.
I unroll some toilet paper and snort into it. A loud noise is coming out. I repeat this action. Each time a different noise is coming out. A little concert is created. Photo/video: Jens Kutilek.
- WÖLGER Katrina, over.rolled, 2008, Mishqui, Quito.
- ZHU Ming, 14 O’Clock 27 July, 2008.