Enactments of the Self highlights a growing tendency and desire in contemporary art to articulate existential issues. In a variety of ways, the artists in the project lend visibility to exploratory narratives of identity - to inventions and reinventions that can transform notions and understandings of the Self and society. To encourage new forms of pro active engagement between art and diverse publics, Enactments of the Self presents a variety of performances, performative actions and choreographed moments in indoor venues and outdoor locations throughout Graz, involving both pre existing infrastructures as well as situations specifically created for the project. Despite their different approaches, taken together, these artworks provide distinctly visible psycho dramatic stages for existential enactment and affirmation. However, rather than determining anything "fixed", the projects in Enactments of the Self give us the opportunity to rethink the "existential" through a new, open ended model of interactive communication. Whether, provocative, seductive, entertaining or funny, the situations, performative actions and events that the artists in Enactments of the Self present, emphasize a more directly experiential and less mediated relation with various life experiences. By the same token, these contemporary practices are also less interested in metaphorical or mytho-poetic existential investigations, which were already well established during the 1960’s. Instead, they refocus attention away from the artist as central performer and move away from the closure or singularity of the ego as the pivotal vehicle of creative communication, towards a more intersubjective connection with various cultural, social and political realities. Enactments of the Self lends a platform for an exploration of the boundaries of individual and collective identity beyond accustomed representations and modes of behaviour into a kaleidescope of colorful possibilities. The artworks in the project express a poignant desire for flexible existential actualization, suggesting an unbridled, almost libidinal energy that side steps the reach of signifying authority. In this sense, these artworks, regardless of the gender of the maker, provide a distinct "feminine" or joiuissant voice that favors dialog, individualization and subjectivity. The artworks in this exhibition are less suggestive of aesthetic concepts or methods, than of mental ecologies that offer us inventive likenesses of ourselves and our world. Enactments of the Self is timely. The last two decades have manifested a no less than dramatic change of national borders and, more significantly, of identities. Whatever political motivation or back drop may be involved, numerous events of our time document an immense collective desire for self-determination and the rights of individuation. Enactments of the Self provides insights into places where the Self and the world can no longer be securely accounted for, but only reinvented.
Maja Bajevic (BIH), Emanuel Licha (F/CDN), Carolina Caycedo (GB), Irene Dapunt (A), Brenda Fassie (ZA), Kendell Geers (ZA), Barbara Holub (D/A), N 55 (DK), Lucy Orta (GB/F), Lygia Pape (BR), Ward Shelley and Jesse A. Bercowetz (USA), Taro Shinoda (J), Gitte Villesen and Lars Erik Frank (DK), Erwin Wurm (A) u. a.
Exhibition-Admission: 5 €, reduced 3 €