GOLEM – to be generative in solidarity rather than be creative in solitude
The vernissage took place on June 5 | 18.00 GMT+3
Guests of Honor – Video screening program
Dimitris Alithinos (GR). “Preparation for Social Adaptation”, Paris 1976, Video AKAI ¾, 2’20”
There is nothing more vulnerable and defenseless than a new life, than a new idea. There is nothing more disruptive. At the moment of the transition from the mother’s womb to the womb of society, even before being aware of it, we assume a role, an identity and a function of which we do not even know the meaning. Each new life also brings with it the possibility of denying all this. Together with the loss of innocence, the vulnerability of certainties and the awareness of the vulnerability of the human being, which is also its strength, these days we will also bring this image with us, like a small talisman.
Theodoros, sculptor (GR). “Τηλεχειρισμός (Telemanipulation)” , 1976. 15’9’’
There have been several attempts by artists to approach so-called mass media since their inception. In general, what is mainly underlined is their persuasive force, their in-forming potential towards people, and their de-forming potential in relation to reality. Just think, for example, of Orson Welles (The War of the Worlds, 1938), or Chris Burden (The TV Commercials, 1973-1976).
The idea of Theodoros, sculptor of using the mass medium television in 1976 as a tool to sculpt minds, senses, looks, has something particular, because is not limited to criticizing the invasive force of the medium itself.
As you can see in this excerpt from the transmission «Οι δημιουργοί: Θόδωρος – Γλυπτική 1970-1974» (του Γιώργου Εμιρζά, ΕΡΤ, 15 Δεκεμβρίου 1976), Theodoros does not occupate the space with objects; he creates instead a space for the “spectator” to experience art, as well as life.
Thus sculpting becomes offering the exercise of the senses (“Test: touch and a bit of taste”, at min. 07:03 in the video) and desire (“Do not look. Project your visions”. At min. 07: 50 in the video). “Sculpture” becomes the experience of touch, taste, hearing. The work of art becomes the result of the meeting between the artist and the spectator; the latter becomes part of the sculpting process just when he stops being a spectator, accepting Theodoros’ invitation.
The fragments collected in this video presentation will accompany GOLEM with this sentence: “Viewer, the sculpture is not to be photographed, but to be touched … Like life itself.” (At min. 07:59 in the video).
Leda Papakonstantinou (GR). “Genet’s toaster – Hommage to Jean Genet”, 1997, 11’20’’
The sense of touch. The contact. The playfulness. We will show this video again in these days, in which we are asked to remain distant, and to contain our corporealities.
This is a video that evokes a free freedom. Not a spoken, declared or discussed freedom.It is also about a meeting without fear, without suspicion, without preconception. In the next days this work will accompany us in the GOLEM as a playful reaffirm of the possibility of contact, proximity, warmth; as a tender reaffirming a reciprocity in desire, free from authority or hierarchy.
Marilyn Arsem (US). 100 Ways to Consider Time (excerpts), 2015, 6’06’’
100 Ways to Consider Time has been presented by Marilyn Arsem at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston for six hours a day, every day, for 100 days – an invitation to pause and experience the present moment, providing a temporary respite to the frenetic pace of our modern lives. Marilyn Arsem has been creating live events since 1975, from solo gallery performances to large-scale, site-specific works. Thematically, her work has ranged from feminist deconstruction of images of traditional women’s work, to performances concerning the Cold War, to the impact of US imperialism in countries throughout the world, to works about environmental issues. The topic to which she has continually returned over the years has been our understanding of time, its passing, and mortality. Over the years, Arsem has experimented with different ways of designing performances so that audiences share responsibility in doing the work. In some cases, the audience is given control over the actions of the performer. In other works of hers, the audience has taken a specific role in creating the event. This reflects an interest in redefining power structures and illuminating how meaning is generated and shared between people. www.marilynarsem.net
Francesca Fini, Francesca Leoni, Francesca Lolli (IT). LOCKDOWN, 2020, 26’16’’
Recording of live streaming performance for the virtual exhibition “My Name is Francesca”
Confinement and border: the act of relegating to a given place and that same place given as a limit. Around this thematic node, the three actions of the artists develop simultaneously in a virtual dimension that allows each of them to participate in the experimentation of new practices and at the same time to diversify their forms, contents and operating methods.
The boundary between us and our own body entity which is devoured and corrupted by a mysterious external agent (in Fini). The boundary between life and death that is violated by a cemetery of symbolic gravestones (in Leoni). On the border between us and the other, the other who contaminates us and pollutes us on contact (in Lolli). www.francescafini.com ; https://vimeo.com/francescaleoni . https://www.instagram.com/franleoni/ ; https://vimeo.com/francescalolli
Franko B (UK/IT). AKTION 398, 2000, 4’01’’
Video of the performance by Franko B, with Ernst Fischer and Stuart Barclay. Infinito Ltd. Gallery, Turin – June 2000, Video by Claudio Cavallari.
A One-to-one performance (1998 – 2002) © 2015 Franko B and the contributors.
The work of Franko B is about being exposed and naked, with nowhere to go and nowhere to hide. His work consistently takes an unshirking look at the body as a canvas and as an unmediated and unrefined site of representation for the beautiful, the untouchable, the unspeakable, the ignorant and for the pain, the love, the hate, the loss, the power and the fears of the human condition. Aktion 398 involves a one-to-one confrontation with the artist in a specially constructed room in the center of the gallery. The audience book a time slot in advance, take a number and sit in a waiting area before being led individually into the room by one of Franko B’s assistants. www.franko-b.com
Guillermo Gomez-Peña (MEX/US). Dancing With Fear Part 1: “Mirror Dance”, 2020, 5’47’’
Part 1 of a Film Project in progress. “Dancing With Fear” by Guillermo Gómez-Peña and La Pocha Nostra. Co-directed and filmed by Zen Cohen. San Francisco, California. La Pocha Nostra invites you to preview the screening of this collaborative performance film in progress. The project began in 2014 and it is more pertinent than ever.
The complete series of 6 video performances deal with Body Politics, The Aging Body, Fear of Illness, Love Gone Wrong, US/Mexico relations and the tensions between performance art and the mainstream. www.guillermogomezpena.com
STELARC (AU). Reclining Stickman. 2020, 4’45”
Video & Live Interaction (10.30AM GMT+3 – 18PM GMT) daily.
Reclining Stickman is a 9m long robot, actuated by pneumatic rubber muscles. Visitors at the GOLEM vernissage and at the AGSA can intuitively animate the robot from a control panel.
At indicated periods, people online elsewhere can choreograph its movements and sounds. A background algorithm animates the robot intermittently if no-one intervenes, locally or remotely.
Reclining Stickman will be streaming and in Exhibition from June 5 2020.
Presented as part of the 2020 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Monster Theatres, in association with the Adelaide Festival, the Art Gallery of South Australia, Biennial Ambassadors Program and Principal Donor The Balnaves Foundation.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body and by the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments.
Acknowledgments: Wayne Michell, Ternay – Design Engineering; Mark Harrison, Festo – Pneumatic muscles and technology; AITI, Flinders University – Robot fabrication; Steve Berrick – Interactive software and electronics; Steven Alyian – Technical Coordination, Audio and Video Streaming; Leigh Robb, Curator 2020 Biennial of Australian Art
VESTANDPAGE. “AMOR AND PSYCHE (In Times of Plagues)”, 2020, 9’24”
Is a video performance poem by VestAndPage (Verena Stenke & Andrea Pagnes).
A video performance poem structured in four chapters (Conditio – Status – Echo – Mutatio), approaching chemical, physiological, psychological and spiritual aspects of Breath.
It has been initially conceived in September 2019, during Verena Stenke’s three-weeks clinical isolation for tuberculosis and the initial phase of the subsequent therapy. The video displays original MRT and CT thorax scans of this period – her “inner portraits”.
The work has been resumed and actualized during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in May 2020.