2012

Dear Money, I know.


With the rapacious corporate rush for Gold in Romania and beyond, we need to remember  what it all comes down to: plus-value. 
Dear Money - pink ten lei bill dedicated to the greatest Romanian painter and his brush - be good and behave, let yourself be devoured. We already know the latest scheme on art: it is the greatest commodity of all. 

Destroy Financialization. Reappropriate Gold. Save Rosia Montana.






The Story of the Fall

lecture-performance

The Ist Bezna Congress

June 29, the National Center for Dance, Bucharest



The Story of the Fall is a post-apocaliptic story that retells how the end came about. The Fall designates the process of the end of the world. The story is told as an event that already happened, placing the Storyteller (myself) and the audience in a near future. Performing the Story is, thus, an act of remembrance for an audience probably too young to know or remember the events.
Told in a dim, dramatic candle light, the performance incorporates two other performances: 1. illustrating the Practice of the Now-Fall (see images below with Now-Fall Training - NFT illustrations) and 2. illlustrating the practice of the ReRaProp (Retro-Radical-Prophecy).
The Practice of the Now-Fall consists of various exercises on how to fall without getting hurt (see illustrations below) while the ReRaProp practice consists in anonimously performing a text considered to be a Retro-Radical-Prophecy, meaning texts that preceed the Fall and anticipate it considerably. In this perfromance the text used is the „Introduction” by Jean-Paul Sartre to the Wretched of the Earth by Franz Fanon. The perfomance of the text is interrupted by a reading from Fanon's Black Skin, White Masks.
The Story of the Fall is primarily an exercise in political imagination. The powerfull feeling of no-way-out is an important factor in maintaing the status quo of intersectional systems of opression. Constant political imagining is crucial to destabilizing the field of representation. The idea of apocalypse is a radical esthetical vision and can be used as a tool for radical political resubjectification. The Story of the Fall is an attempt to build such a context of transformation and help pave the way for an important twist in collective representation: linking local and regional (Romanian and Eastern European) conditions with the context of the global south via postcolonial and decolonial concepts. In a way, the Story of the Fall can be viewed as a complex fiction to trigger identification (of the audience) with the ideas of Franz Fanon. It also brings into question racism and anti-racism, a very important issue in the Romanian context by questioning what could be the roles of people like myself (Eastern European „white”) in the anti-racist struggle.




>>> Excerpt from the Story.

(…)
It soon became very obvious to many that the Apocalypse culture developed by the entartainment industry was nothing more than one of capitalism's typical strategies ment to anticipate and incorporate. At first, some were still excited about it, but soon people got massively disenchanted. What were supposed to be scarry, dramatic movies – thrillers as they called them – were massively making people laugh until they cried. It just looked like a poor imitation of the real. A poor expression of a great collective fantasy. It became clear that what was happening was something far from the reach of Hollywood.
(...) It merely passed several years, when the idea of the Fall appeared. Sprung from the people concentrated on developing a praxis, the Fall strategically contained all of the great components of the Slogan. The Fall is neither an ideology, nor a belief. It is merely a vision. It was this indefinite character of the Fall that made it able to resist cooptation. Of course, it took a lot of time and a lot of blows that had to be diverted but in the end, it worked. Even in its most difficult moments there where at least a hundred thousand people practicing it on a daily basis.
The idea was that for the Apocalypse as an-end-to-the-world-as-we-know-it to happen, all of the great man-made systems had to fall. To Fail – Brake – Collapse – Bankrupt – Crash – Ruin. All of these processes were contained in the idea of the Full-Fall. (...) Taken these into account, the idea of the Now-Fall prepared people for the loss of everything as they knew it. Fear had to become a familiar feeling, however still negative. Fear was supossed not to be enjoyed but rather become a necessary tool in the Great Process of the Full-Fall. Once the Full-Fall is achieved, the Fear had to continue to be a tool for keeping tranformation in a flow. (...)
The fear of losing the world as you know it is very similar with the fear felt when the body is in danger of injuries. This simple observation led to the creation of the Now-Fall Training system. Referred to as NFT, this system enabled people that practiced it, to prepare for the Full-Fall. The NFT consisted of multiple types of fall exercises adapted for a variety of people. According to age, health state, habitual gear etc., one could practice the fall of one's own body regularly. In the process of training, one would achieve several abilities necessary for the Full-Fall process: stop avoiding fear of losing everything, enact one or several action(s) that risk who you are in the world, survive losing everything, change one's own subjectivity after the Fall. (...)”

>>> Drawing from the NFT #4.
 





>>> See full handbook below.


Bezna #4 & Ist Bezna Congress

Bezna #4 is out!






the Ist Bezna Congress. 

a series of lecture-performances on/from the Netherworld
Saturday, 29 Jun, 22h00, CNDB Bucharest


The Second Body and The Multiple Outside - Alina Popa As long as we are caught in the present available body, there is indeed no outside. The problem is not that there is no outside, but it lies precisely in the fact that we are caught in the same outside without working with it. There are multiple outsides to be produced. Even an outside devoid of human and without thought.

Shadow Body (Second Body) - Florin Flueras Shadow Body is a concept but it can be also a concrete unvisual, ungrounded, unknown body, a second nature or even the body that flies in your dreams. Shadow Body is not so much about what exists or what is possible, or about what you can comprehend or validate, Shadow Body is not a body that you have, it is rather a body that has you, it is a concept through which the unknown can abduct you.

The Story of the Fall - Veda Popovici "Generally a relaxed body results in fewer injuries in falls." excerpt from the FFI (Full Fall Instructions). We welcome all to the lecture of the Story of the Fall. This story, told today, after it happened, counts as an act of remembrance and re-learning the New Fear. Springing out of the hybridization of banal darkness with exceptional darkness, it is this New Fear the emotion to trigger the Full Fall.

The pleasure of nibbling in case of afterlife emergency - Mihai Lukacs + Arnold Șlahter "At this point, there's no really authentic way for us to say who or what to look for and guard yourself against. Reaction of law enforcement officials is one of complete bewilderment at this hour. Do not venture outside for any reason until the nature of this crisis has been determined, and until we can advise what course of action to take. The safest course of action at this time is simply to stay where you are. So far, the best advice they are able to give the public is this: "Tell the people for God's sake to get off the streets! Tell them to go home and lock their windows and doors up tight!" (George A. Romero)

Black Lol - Iuliana Stoianescu A blonde was sitting on a couch in front of the TV, when suddenly she hears knocking at the door. She goes to the door and askes: “Who is it?” “Me!” “Me?!?” :))))

The Outernational Condition - Ion Dumitrescu For someone in front of the Iron Curtain (looking over the fresh ruins of the wall) the east seemed an unmolded territory with resilient subjects living in geo-political dim light, humanoid silhouettes agitating in obscurity, apparently not fully developed, too weird to live too rare to die, craving to break in the international habitus. They appeared incomprehensible and unevolved on too many levels. It was only later that these outer-subjects were tamed and transformed in voracious consumers.

Microbification and the Politics of Noise - Irina Gheorghe In the utopian construction of a new world, the borders with the already existing one is clearly marked and fortified. Under the terror of invasions, infiltrations, infections, autonomy and immunity seem to be the only alternative promises. But when interior and exterior are already contaminated by one another separation becomes impossible and resistance annihilates itself.

Centrul de Calcul Bucuresti - Ștefan Tiron + Claudiu Cobilanschi (side event, Wednesday, 26 Jun, 11h00, guided tour in the Museum of Politehnica University, Bucharest). Centrul de Calcul is interested in obsolete forms of knowledge, in retro-futurisms, in the bulky, outrageous and unwarranted nationalistic craze about inventors but also the accidental rediscovery of naive savoire faire that, to us at least, is in need of radical reappraisal.











In the Name of the Father. An anti-prayer

performance/drawing

kvir_feminist_actziya, June 6-9, Vienna



In the name of the father is an impossible physical performance in which the body of a woman confronts the oppressed position which she occupies through self-violence. By violently enacting the specificity of a womanly body, this body (my own) speaks to „the father”, an entity encapsulating multiple oppressive entities: the father – head of mononuclear, heterosexual family; god – head of christian religion; capital; empire – as the geo-system of colonialism and neo-colonialism.
The performance initially proposes a seemly submissive posture – on knees, head covered – performing an equally submissive ritual – a prayer only to try and appropriate them in an emancipatory dimension. The anti-prayer is a ritual of revolt and killing, of empowerment and rejection. Not a curse, the anti-prayer is a painful ritual in front of an icon representing the ideal physical expression of the performer. The performance ultimately addresses some key radical feminist debates: emancipation through violence, essentialism and culture-based identity, cisidentity and queer. Also it opens the question of the intersectionality of the oppressive structures sketched above from the character of „the Father”.






 >>> Fragment from the text:                                                                                                                                                                        >>> The icon, drawing.



„In the name of the Father.

In the name of the Father.
In the name of the Father.
I look for You, I dig You out.
How much pleasure can we afford?
A maximal and total pleasure that annuls me
A woman turned upside down.
Self-Canibalization.
Darkness.
How much light can you afford when the light is not yours? It is someone else's.
The thick fingers are not enough, the long arm not even, your whole body: 
sink it back and it won't be enough.
The whole world remains to be devoured. A destructive desire.
A hand. And with the other I'm making a cross.
In the name of the Father.In the name of the State.
In the name of the Empire.
In the name of Capital.
In the name of You, Masters, I clog myself.
I silence myself. Cover myself. Blind myself.
In your name I turn my refused gaze in myself.
The lacking Rib? But I am Lack itself.
(...)”


The Wretched in the Sand

performance/video documentation/photography

Inter-format symposium:

On Hosting and Displacing: Critical tourism, site-specificity and post romantic condition, Nida Art colony
16-19 May, 2013 Nida, Lithuania.



In 1961, Franz Fanon’s Wretched of the Earth is published in France with a preface by Jean-Paul Sartre. The event, by way of publicizing one of the great works of anti-colonial literature, affirmed (once more) the necessity and urgency of anticolonial and decolonial struggle in Europe. Sartre’s contribution, a Western voice confronted with the urgency of the anticolonial project, is a landmark for the history of the White, Western position in the anti- and de-colonial struggles.
Four years later, Jean-Paul Sartre together with Simone de Beauvoir travel to Nida. A famous picture depicts a dark-clothed lonely white man, walking on sand dunes effortfully in the strong wind. The sand dunes could be anywhere, but necessarily evoke a margin of a mental or physical empire. Not just a tourist, Sartre is there as a Western leftist intellectual taking a trip to the land of the new other, the East, the Soviet empire, communism.
the wretched in the sand merges the two historical events into a lecture-performance. Starting with an interpreted reading of the preface we continue with a workshop by engaging participants to discuss the performance. Myself, I am coming from a certain East, from the post-communist context of Bucharest, Romania. The performance explores what is at stake when such a performer, a woman, an Easterner, a post-communist reenacts Sartre’s anti-colonial writing in a remote location he once visited.
Sand, Algeria, the West, Europe, margin, communist, empire, tourism are critically used to redefine our (myself and the participants) positions. Questions such as: What is North, South, West and East? Who is the Wretched? How Western/European do the participants/public feel? And what is this Europeanism: guilt, shame, pride, desire? will be put forth in the workshop.



>>> The Wretched in the Sand. Nida dunes panorama.






>>> Excerpt from Jean-Paul Sartre’s preface to Frantz Fanon’s “Wretched of the Earth”.

(…) You know well enough that we are exploiters. You know too that we have laid hands on first the gold and metals, then the petroleum of the ‘new continents’, and that we have brought them back to the old countries. This was not without excellent results, as witness our palaces, our cathedrals and our great industrial cities; and then when there was the threat of a slump, the colonial markets were there to soften the blow or to divert it. Crammed with riches, Europe accorded the human status de jure to its inhabitants.
(...)A few years ago, a bourgeois colonialist commentator found only this to say in defence of the West: ‘We aren’t angels. But we, at least, feel some remorse.’ What a confession! Formerly our continent was buoyed up by other means: the Parthenon, Chartres, the Rights of Man or the swastika. Now we know what these are worth; and the only chance of our being saved from, shipwreck is the very Christian sentiment of guilt. You can see it’s the end; Europe is springing leaks everywhere. What then has happened? It simply is that in the past we made history and now it is being made of us. The ratio of forces has been inverted; decolonization has begun; all that our hired soldiers can do is to delay its completion. (…)”

                                         
                               Read full text here.




>>> Captions from „The Wretched in the Sand” performance, video, 18 min.




On the Harmlessness of Art

(...)
#6 Art and legality (2)
From a legal point of view, there is an important distinction between radical politics/direct action and art. In the contemporary Western legal systems, art is seen as a fundamental right. There is therefore a tendency to tolerate, legalize and defend something that is considered art. Enacted radical politics are always directed towards forms of governmentality, and the most cohesive expression of this governmentality is the law. Take the form of revolution as the privileged form of enacted radical politics: it is fundamentally illegal. It is this definite distinction between the tendency of legalizing art and illegalizing radical politics that is at the core of the configuration of the harmlessness of art.


Fragment from  "So You Think You’re Political ?! Seven Notes on the Harmlessness of Art" published in  ArtLeaks Gazette, #1.


Other Us project


The Other Us/Ceilalți Noi
workshop on re-imagining identity
20 November - 9 December, 2012
Platforma, Bucharest.


On the verge of the re-emergence of nationalisms due to recent geo-political changes, the Other Us is an attempt to draw a critical political position towards national identity. Organized through an open call to participation, the workshop gathered about 40 participants including about 10 facilitators. The program included artists, social scientists and activists that engaged in various forms of discursive exchange with the participants and public. By reconfiguring identity politics and through a practice of active critique, the participants of the workshop engaged in a process of re-imagining national identity and the politics of art in the makings of this identity.

The workshop was composed of three slots: 1) a program of lectures and debates, 2) a performance with alternative (other) flags created by participants and 3) an exhibition open to the public consisting of interventions and resources developed throughout the duration of the workshop.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Debates and lectures program

Facilitators: The Feminist Reading Circle (Cercul de Lecturi Feministe), Irina Costache, Florin Poenaru, Ovidiu Țichindeleanu, Cristian Cercel, Marian Ursan, Ovidiu Anemțoaicei, Mihai Lukacs, David Schwartz, Alice Monica Marinescu, Simona Dumitriu, The Fan-Club of Romanian Successes, (Fan-Clubul Reușitelor Românești).

Program synopsis
The Circle for Feminist Readings (Cercul de Lecturi Feministe) inaugurated the workshop with an open session on „What is the nation?” starting from a reading of Nira Yuval-Davis' Gender and Nation and developing the inherent genderized structure of the nation-state. Irina Costache's intervention, “The Fathers of the Nation: the European dimension of attempts to limit access to abortion” effectively illustrated the real anti-women consequences of nationalism. The role of affect and the genderized affective roles in the “Love for the Nation” were explored by Florin Poenaru. Ovidiu Tichindeleanu outlined the possibilities of linkage with the local Romanian context of post- and anti-colonial concepts and struggles for creating a new, emancipatory “Us”, situated in a geo-political context. Through a visit to the National Military Museum organized by the Fan-club of Romanian Successes (Fan-Clubul Reuşitelor Româneşti), the contemporary institutional textures of nationalism were explored in the historical representation of the military men of the nation. A historical approach was also conceived by Cristian Cercel with his analysis of the foundational text of the Romanian Proclamation of Independence, the same text that marks the 1st of December, the nowadays national day. Ovidiu Pop together with Veda Popovici sketched a portrait of the national subjectivity by investigating its creation by 19th century scholars and revolutionaries. The status of the national day was problematized by Marian Ursan as he talked about the difficulties encountered by AIDS activists such as himself in the Romanian context because of the coincidence of the AIDS international day with the Romanian national day. The position of the “Other” was also tackled by Mihai Lukacs and Ovidiu Anemţoaicei in a theoretical approach on the body and bodies of Self and the Other. The debates and lectures series of the workshop ended with a lenghty discussion on the political potential of art and its relative harmlessness in the context of national identity formation (with Simona Dumitriu, Alice Monica Marinescu, Veda Popovici and David Schwartz).


Below: mind map created during the workshop by the contribution of all participants.



Other Us (exhibition)







opening: 05.11.2012 @ Platforma

We have dutifully celebrated the 1st of December (the alleged Romanian National Day). With a talk on the situation of AIDS-diagnosed people in Bucharest. The workshop for reimagining identity has ended. From the Other Us remain various flags, video and written documentations, read and unread books, messages on walls, drawings, mindmaps and some blue, yellow, red canvas.

Flags by: 
Irina Botezatu, Larisa David, Răzvan Drăgoi, Simona Dumitriu, Ileana Faur, Veda Popovici, Jean-Lorin Sterian, Alexandra Terzi, Daniel Tristan, Roxana Vasile.

Resources and interventions: 
the Alternative Library (Biblioteca Alternativă), the Library of the Fan-club of Romanian Successes (Biblioteca Fan-Clubul Reuşitelor Româneşti), Larisa David, Ger Duijzings, h.arta, Mihai Lukacs, Arnold Schlachter.

Other Flags performance (part of the Other Us/Ceilalti Noi project)


the Other Flags from veda popovici on Vimeo.

Other Flags (public performance)

1st December 2012, Bucharest, University Square
camera: Iulius Costache; 
video editing: Larisa David

With: 
Irina Botezatu, Larisa David, Simona Dumitriu, Ileana Faur, Alice
Monica Marinescu, Veda Popovici, Daniel Tristan, Roxana Vasile, David
Schwartz, Arnold Schlachter.


Flags by: 
Irina Botezatu, Larisa David, Răzvan Drăgoi, Simona Dumitriu, Ileana Faur, Veda Popovici, Jean-Lorin Sterian, Alexandra Terzi, Daniel Tristan, Roxana Vasile.


part of the Other Us/Ceilalti Noi project, Platforma art space, December 2012, Bucharest.

Tree @ the Blind Museum












The Blind Museum presents: The Tree Under Which I Grew.


part of MMCP: More Than Perfect/Perfect Continous
18-30 September 2012
Platforma Space

Within the framework pf the Blind Museum, a careful research was initiated to find out the inner genealogy of the Department of Painting of the National University of Arts in Bucharest. For this, we have chosen all the professors that have been educated at this department and/or have educated future professors. Thus, the selection purposefully leaves out the persons that have not been educated at the Painting Department and who have not had students that became professors at the same department. However, even with this omission, the people selected form the majority of the professors that have taught at this department.
...
Indispensable to the representation of the nation-state, the Academy of Fine Arts in Bucharest, the today National University of Arts, has from its inception considered the painting department its cornerstone.
In this disciplinary model the central figure is the Master or the Professor. His function is a key position for establishing the norms for the figure of the modern artist. Our research has followed various embodiments of this function. The multitude of names designating these embodiments pertain to various working styles, attitudes and mentalities. Only one dimension seems to be common: their masculinity.


Full text here.

the Blind Museum presents: Future Exhibition Preview.





























Future Exhibition Preview

part of the Open for Inventory collective project, Platforma Contemporary Art Space, October 2012.Participants: Marina Albu, Emil Avasilichioaiei&Sabin Gârea, Ștefan Bandalac, Raluca Croitoru, Larisa David, Marian Dumitru, Ileana Faur, Cosmina Ivanov, Iulia Mocanu, Veda Popovici/muzeul orb, Diana Ursan.  
Facilitator: Simona Dumitriu
The project consisted of the exploration of the collection of Romanian art of the National Museum of Contemporary Art by a group of artists that eventually developed works/interventions/concepts starting from the material found in the deposit. As a result, a number of artworks from the 70s and 80s were taken out of the deposit and exhibited.

The Blind Museum's intervention in the collection was to select works pertaining to the nationalist tendency of the 70's and 80's and to exhibit them facing the wall, in what seems to be an exhibition that is just about to be mounted. The "Future Exhibition" is a glimpse into a not-so-improbable future where nationalism is again in the institutional spotlight.





















Each artwork awaits to be hung on a nail hammered in the wall just above it.














Details: "Vasile Pop N., Hommage to the Great Unification, 1983" (left) and "Patriotic composition" (right).

On the back of each artwork there is the title. The audience is left to imagine how the artworks actually look by reading the titles, and thus participating in their actualization.

BEZNA #3

The new Bezna covers the controversial Shelter at the House of People events.

BEZNA = CONSISTENT DARKNESS + DIFFUSSED FEAR



READ IT! FEEL IT! SPREAD IT!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

BEZNA @ truth is concrete in graz.
Thanks to: Critical Practice.



Eva Peron at the House of People

The Presidential Candidate offers Shelter 

@ the House of People

25 - 29 April 2012, in the House of the People


With: Valentina Desideri, Vali Zaharescu aka The Romanian Bum, Franco Bifo Berardi, Aparat Security, Elena Adam (SamuSocial), Mihai Lukacs, the Bureau for Melodramatic Research, Akseli Virtanen, Florin Flueras, Alexandru Gurita, Caroline Keppi-Gurita, Ion Dumitrescu, Eva Peron, Cosima Opartan, FRR.

Everyday at the Shelter: 

- Simple yet Nourishing Food - Simina Guga, Ovidiu Anemțoaicei, Ștefan Tiron.
- Political Therapy - Valentina Desideri
- Medical Care - Iuliana Stoianescu







 That what had to be done in my country was nothing less than a Revolution. 
And when what needs to be done is a revolution, then the persons capable to venture all the way on a such difficult path are not many. They are actually so few, that we could say they are missing. Many revolutions have been started here and elsewhere. But a revolution is a new, difficult road and it is only for those that feel an irresistible attraction for risky endeavors. This is why have failed and will always fail those revolutions desired by the people and even done with its total support. (…)
 It is important to talk about “Evita”, and not out of pride, but because the one who understands “Evita”, can more easily understand the descamisados, the people themselves, and it will never feel of itself more than it is... Never will it become oligarchic, the most feared thing that can happen to a Peronist!

(part of Eva's speech at the Shelter)







Fragment from "What is Eva P.?"
text in Bezna #3.


(...)
There is a great prophecy which says that in the end times, the prostitute will lead the world. Those are the times of Apocalypse, the lifting of the veil, the times of dis-order and chaos. Eva Peron was the closest to the fulfillment of such a prophecy, however authoritative agencies kept his-story going and the fantasy postponed. Called upon at the Shelter, Eva Peron becomes Eva P., an incantation for the reality of the Apocalypse prophecy. 
The time of the AntiRepublic haunts our present. It is there in the anti-communist ideology, in the virulent demonization of the looser of the Cold War, the so-called anti-democratic, communist East. It is there in the recent fall of the so-called Arab dictatorships. It is also there, in the visions of anarchists of all times and now in the practice of the ones in Greece. The AntiRepublic is also so present in the measures of radical neo-liberals that prophet the reign of the free market. But most of all, the AntiRepublic is already present everywhere in what is obvious to many: the failure of representative democracy. 
Eva was the first of her kind to vote but eternally enable to be voted. She is always just about to be named the Leader. Eva P., a ghost of true representativity, is powerless, she represents no real multitude. She is just an image of the Other, the one perpetually out of the space of authority, the imperfect powerless double. Brought to the Shelter, Eva P. is the model of anyone becoming a candidate for leadership and never a leader, the perpetual candidate for the great position of presidency, an archetype for the times of the AntiRepublic, when everybody will be a candidate and nobody will be president. 
(...)


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


About the Shelter:
It looks like what we, The Presidential Candidate, have been anticipating in the last years, with our "no hope" messages and slogans, is already at work. This is not perceived as an eccentric, provocative vision anymore, it is the banal reality that everybody can feel. So what now? What’s happening when you give up hope and you are pushed into the corner?

There is a feeling of urgency, fundamental issues need to be immediately confronted and we will do exactly that. The House of the People (Ceauşescu's Palace) will be transformed temporarily into a real house of the people, where, for a few days, free education, free health services, free food, political therapy, a bit of everything that now is disappearing, will be provided.

Still, there is a sensation that it's too little and, maybe, already too late, so we don’t know if we can avoid adding a dystopian dimension to the whole situation. The events within the House of the People will be a good opportunity for thinking the present and feeling the (no) future in this first Postspectacle shelter.

Participants: Aparat Security, Franco Bifo Berardi, the Bureau of Melodramatic Research, Valentina Desideri, Ion Dumitrescu, Florin Flueras, Simina Guga, Alexandru Gurita,Caroline Keppi-Gurita, Mihai Lukacs, Cosima Opartan, Eva P. & Veda Popovici, the Presidential Candidacy, Elena Adam & Samu Social, Iuliana Stoianescu, Akseli Virtanen, Vali Zaharescu aka the Romanian Bum.

Details on the program here.

BEZNA #2

A new, fascinating issue crossing apocalypse with the January-March protests in Bucharest.

READ IT! FEEL IT! SPREAD IT!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

fragment from "The Carnival, the Spectacle and the Non-event"

text in Bezna #2


(...)
Tons of white, cold matter still cover the city. It feels cold, hard and deadening. Snow has become from an object a subject. It determines our lives, our needs, our actions and even politics. The few protesters who still remain in the streets sometimes sing: „The Souls melt the the Snows”. They already feel that the snow is the new body, the new flesh of the revolts, as the oppressive State-Media duo tell us. Carne vale, goodbye to the flesh is now a somber perspective. We are the snow and the snow should be cleaned, collected and disposed of.

Invitation to War


Statement

On Friday, the 16th of March 2012, the artist activist group Voina (Russian: „war”) had a public presentation at the National Museum for Contemporary Art situated in the House of People in Bucharest. 

Each person attending this event had to pass through a control of his/hers belongings and a body control through a metal detector, including the Voina artists. They were even longer and more thoroughly searched. The reason for this is that the building is a military objective. A space totally dedicated to State authorities, it hosts various institutions of „national importance” like the Parliament. 
We consider the event a invitation to war. 
The war is against today's form of the Romanian State, a police state that has progressively straighten its repressive character in the last six months. The fundamental right to protest and contest state authority has been and still is seriously broken. Too many activists and not only have been picked up and fined abusively and even physically assaulted by the military arm of the State, the privileged Jandarmeria. 
Inside the House of People, the war can only be symbolic, a representation of that real war through which the protest is, as each day passes, domesticized and annihilated. We have come to war in the only way we can: with toy guns. Just as freedom of speech is just a toy and protest just a simulacra in the eyes of the authorities. We played the role of harmless harlequins, toy-terrorists, a role that the same authorities attribute to artists. Responding to a symbolic war invitation, we try to push the limits of security and surveillance at the security check of the Museum. The toy guns are confiscated at the entrance, the art gesture is amputated in the hallway of the Great House. The reason: with toy guns one can threaten and create panic. In the space that the State dedicated to contemporary art, contemporary artists are not welcome if they undermine its authority. Two pistols out of five manage to get across the tough security check. Throughout the presentation, anyone could observe the other guns left next to the metal detector. At the first floor of the Museum, the Voina presentation is about to begin. At this moment, we place ourselves in front of the obedient audience, two of us holding our guns at sight. The others are wearing the message: „I came to Voina, but this plastic gun had to stay at the security check of the Museum”. Although we threaten the audience with our guns, nobody panics.
 We are perfectly safe in the most guarded building in Romania. 
The limits of security and surveillance seem unreachable. 
A threatening as a simulacra and the neutralization of any conflict, this is the only Voina possible at the House of People. 

 Arnold Schlachter / Bogdan Drăgănescu / Mihai Bumbeș / Mihai Lukacs / Veda Popovici.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

An extended version of this text was presented at the Anarchist Studies Network Annual Conference, 3-5 September 2012, Loughborough University, U.K.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Manifestos of the Harmless Nature

The Manifestos of the Harmless Nature
text, site intervention and installation
Eight and a Half Works, group exhibition
Curators: Magda Radu, Alexandra Croitoru.
Salonul de Proiecte, Bucharest.







The Dilettante’s Manifesto


Starting today we don’t care anymore of you. You are here just to be cited. We cut, we copy, we paste, download and steal. Especially steal! And what a robbery. We rob you of your beloved culture, build in so much time. Oh, bearded, white one: we had till today to deliver you bows. From now on that’s over! Your God has showed its true face: it is like your own dirty cheek. Take a good look: from now on we steal even what you are!
We are now specialists in quantum physics, closed circuit systems, postructuralism.
We spit formulas, theories, critiques. Non-stop.
Take a better look: we are already like you. We are alike. We ingurgitate you. And then regurgitate you.
We have no education, no mother, no father. We have no country. He have no s h a m e.
Tomorrow, today, we are already here from yesterday.
From before Homo Sapiens. It is us, the monkeys. And we are here to claim you! Your monkey-like masturbation
spits truth, so you say. Your most precious essence, the most authentic one, the marvel of philosophy!
We swallow it and then we spit it back.
We’ve melted your golden God into a Chinese plastic calf!
We speak your language, we make your gestures, we’ve reproduced all your brands.
It is time for you yourselves to be assimilated. Don’t worry though, our beaten knees won’t be your own. We won’t give you
pyramids to build or guns to make. Your place is in the sweet cemetery that you’ve already built: the museum!
From now on, you’ll remain locked here, in your own crypt.
From persons, you’ve become references. From Heros, citations!
Suckers, history is not over! History is burying you!



Manifestul Diletantului



De azi nu ne mai pasă de voi. Sunteţi aici doar pentru a fi citaţi. Tăiem, copiem, alipim, descărcăm, furăm.
Dar mai ales furăm. Ce furt! Vă furăm cultura aceea atât de dragă vouă, construită atâta amar de vreme.Bărbosule şi albule: trebuia până acum să îţi livrăm plecăciuni. De azi, gata! Dumnezeul vostru şi-a arătat adevărata faţă: e precum obrazul vostru mânjit. Uitaţi-vă bine: de azi vă furăm şi cine sunteţi!
Suntem specialişti în fizică cuantică, sisteme de circuit închis, poststructuralism.
Scuipăm formule, teorii, critici. Non-stop.
Uitaţă-vă şi mai bine: suntem deja ca voi. Vă semănăm. Vă ingurgităm. Şi apoi regurgităm. Nu avem şcoală.
Nu avem mamă, nu avem tată. Nu avem ţără. Nu avem r u ş i n e.
Mâine, azi, suntem deja de ieri.
De dinaintea lui Homo Sapiens. Suntem noi, maimuţele. Şi am venit să vă revedicăm! Masturbarea voastră maimuţărită scuipă adevăr, cică. Esenţa voastră cea mai scumpă, cea mai autentică, minunata filosofie!
Noi o înghiţim şi o scuipăm înapoi. V-am topit Dumnezul de aur într-un viţel de plastic chinezesc! Vă vorbim limba, vă mişcăm gesturile, v-am reprodus toate brand-urile. E rândul ca voi înşivă să fiţi asimilaţi.
Nu vă faceţi griji însă, genunchii noştri bătătoriţi nu vor fi şi ai voştri.
Nu vă vom da piramide de construit sau arme de fabricat. Locul vostru e în dulcele cimitir pe care vi l-aţi construit deja, muzeul! Veţi rămâne de acum înainte încuiaţi aici, în criptele voastre.
Din persoane aţi ajuns referinţe. Din eroi, citări!
Fraierilor, istoria nu s-a sfârşit! Istoria vă îngroapă!






The Epileptic's Manifesto


You open your eyes. The terrible pressure overwhelms you. The entire world is pushing on you. You can’t lift up your head. It is heavy like the burden of two thousand years. You move your hands just a bit , enough to know that you are still alive. This is the true face of the world: it squashes you close to death, just enough for you to know you’re clinging to life.
Science, medicine, progress! The bullshit of modernity! We are tired of your lies.
Behold: nobody and nothing can explain our delirium. Tell me, doctor, how come my brain overcharges with electricity functioning at its fullest capacity and we just crash? How come?
But you stay quiet, you have nothing to say, because you don’t know anything.
You thought the Apocalypse will come from a tiny electronic brain... Ridiculous!
You haven’t taken a look in the mirror to see in yourselves the electrical spark that will overcharge the world and will galvanize it!
We are the answer: we exist to taste the drop of death, of nothingness in life.
We fall one by one into nothingness and we remind you, unworthy ones, that everything is dust!
Your being stops and then you start over. The absolute opens through us!
The new metaphysics is already here! It is pathology!
Who isn’t, will wish to be an epileptic!
Your body lives without you. 2000 volts, it carries through it in the most intense experience possible for a human being.
The brain functions totally and the revelation of the world comes totally! Poor Friedrich, he didn’t understand anything!
We are the Übermensch!
We deliver the image of absolute and sublime!
The über-life of the epilepsy is a drop of death through the screeching teeth of the little man.
The world will shiver in spasms!



Manifestul Epilepticului



Deschizi ochii. Te copleşeşte apăsarea extraordinară. Întreaga lume te apasă. Nu-ţi poţi ridica capul.
E greu ca povara a două mii de ani. Mâinile ţi le mişti doar puţin cât să vezi că eşti în viaţă.
Iată adevărata faţă a lumii: te striveşte aproape de moarte, atât cât doar să mai ştii că te agăţi de viaţă.
Ştiinţă, medicină, progres! Iată balivernele modernităţii. Ne-am săturat de minciunile voastre.
Iată, delirul nostru nu-l poate explica nimeni şi nimic. Spune, medicule, cum de creierul se supraîncarcă brusc de energie electrică funcţionând la capacitate maximă şi noi ne prabusim. De unde?
Dar voi tăceţi, nu aveţi ce spune, pentru că nu ştiţi nimic.
Credeaţi că apocalipsa va veni din pana de curent dintr-un mic creier electronic... Ridicol!
Nu v-aţi uitat în oglindă, să vedeţi în voi scânteia electrică ce va supraîncărca lumea şi o va galvaniza!
Noi suntem răspunsul: Noi existăm pentru a gusta picătura de moarte, de neant, de nimic în viaţă.
Cădem unul câte unul în neant şi vă aducem aminte, nevrednicilor, că totul e praf! Te opreşti punct
şi o iei de la capăt. Absolutul se deschide prin noi! Noua metafizică e deja aici! E patologie!
Cine nu este, îşi va dori să devină epileptic!
Corpul tău trăieşte fără tine. 2000 de volţi îl străbat în cea mai intensă experienţă posibilă pentru o formă de viaţă. Creierul funcţionează total şi revelaţia lumii vine total! Sărmanul Friedrich, n-a înţeles nimic!
Noi suntem supra-oamenii!
Noi livrăm imaginea absolutului şi sublimului! Supraviaţa epilepsiei e strop de moarte printre dinţii scrâşniţi ai micului om. Lumea va fi cuprinsă de spasme!

Full english version in booklet format.

Harmless Artist Manifesto/gânDac Manifesto





The Harmless Artist Manifesto


I am a harmless artist.
I sit in front of you and I cannot do you anything. I struggle and toss. I mutilate and kill myself. I model my body like plaster. But it all stays at me. I do not touch you.
The only production is of my own self.
You just go on living, loving, working and buying! Most of all, buy! With every share you buy, you neutralize us more. I got these four white, immaculate walls. Walls like invisible limits, they are here and they are not. Pushed towards o seductive cage, you’ve made us hate our harmlessness. Made us want your power!
The power to impose, hit, manipulate, posses and despise!
The power to kill!
But today is a new day: the harmless one is not ashamed anymore! Today, we impersonate choice.
The small power to propose and not impose. I choose for myself, and you will follow me only if you choose for yourself. This is the radical change! To choose for oneself! We do not offer the illusion of choice: the freedom to choose between whitening washing powder or a colored one. We offer the choice between white and colored!
The cynical nature is through! There’s no more need to pretend that you know,
to pretend that you’re happy, to pretend you have security in your future.
Follow us!
The cynical nature is through even in the self-forgotten art! To pretend to be political when you force me to wear my political identity like a coat?! Like an ornament?! To play the monkey even more?!
We declare today: we are harmless and affirm it! We cannot impose anything on anybody. And our stubbornness to not submit will move mountains.
Our power is so small, it is the smallest. Our power is zero.
And from this point on, it all begins.


Manifestul Artistului Inofensiv

Eu sunt un artist inofensiv.
Mă aşez în faţa ta şi nu-ţi pot face nimic.Mă zbat şi zvârcolesc. Mă mutilez şi sinucid. Îmi modelez corpul ca pe o plastilină. Însă rămân la mine.Nu te ating.
Singura producere este a propriului sine.
Voi trăiţi, iubiţi, lucraţi şi cumpăraţi în continuare! Mai ales cumpăraţi. Cu fiecare acţiune pe care o cumpăraţi, ne neutralizaţi mai mult. Am primit patru pereţi albi, imaculaţi. Pereţi ca nişte limite invizibile, ce sunt şi nu sunt. Împinşi către o cuşcă seducătoare, ne-aţi făcut să ne urâm inofensivitatea. Să ne dorim puterea voastră! Puterea de a impune, de a lovi, de a manipula, de a poseda şi batjocori!
Puterea de a omorî!
Dar azi e o nouă zi: inofensivului nu îi e ruşine. Azi, noi întruchipăm alegerea. Puterea mică de a propune şi nu impune. Eu aleg doar pentru mine, şi tu mă vei urma doar dacă alegi pentru tine. Iată marea schimbare! Să alegi pentru tine! Noi nu oferim iluzia alegerii: libertatea de a cumpăra detergent pentru rufe negre sau detergent cu înălbitor. Noi îţi oferim alegerea de a fi alb sau negru. S-a terminat cu natura cinică! Nu e nevoie să te mai prefaci că nu ştii, să te prefaci că eşti fericit, să te prefaci că ai siguranţă în viitor. Urmează-ne!
S-a terminat cu natura cinică şi în nefericita artă! Să mă mai prefac că sunt politic când voi mă puneţi să îmi port identitatea politică ca pe o haină?! Ca pe un ornament?! Să vă mai joc pe mamuţa?!
Noi, declarăm azi, suntem inofensivi şi ne-o asumăm! Nu putem impune nimănui nimic. Şi încăpăţânarea noastră de nu ne supune va muta munţii.
Puterea noastră e atât de mică, e cea mai mică. Puterea noastră e zero.
Şi de aici începe totul!










Manifesto of the gânDac *

The most dac(ian) of all the dac(ians) is the ganDac.
It is small, dark but strong. It spreads unnoticed everywhere. Under the rocks, dumpsters and kitchens, he crawls rapidly. He spreads today, slowly but surely his anti-civilization throughout all Europe.
Europe, Mother, what’s wrong with you? The fear for the total mushroom is eaten away your ideals! The Cold War is over and you are still not through with it. Don’t worry, mother, if it will get rid of you, we remain. We will survive you.
The hero, History, God, all are pathetically agonizing. Only the ganDac knows no death.
The post-atomic world will be his. Until then, it crawls, it crawls.
When the Dacians were following their glorious destiny through the merciless Ancient History, they were dreaming of what will be the true fulfillment of their historical destiny: the ganDac!
Once, great battles have been fought on the old motherland. The Dacian, the bravest of all warriors, was dieing, but he was dieing in freedom! His thought on the verge of death was towards himself: the Dacian dies a free man!
This is the historical root of the ganDac.
Since then centuries of sweeping history have passed. The masters have come, ruled, oppressed and exploited. They left and others like them came. But the thought of the free death of the Dacian has been kept somewhere buried deep in the motherland. There have been attempts: from beneath the earth the vampire emerged. But he was just a Dacian simulacra. In a short time, his cold flesh became a commodity. But the ganDac cannot become a commodity. And why? Because he has already sold himself. His husky shell, the so called “labor-force” is already the exchange coin of corporate octopuses. Patience, though.Crawling and crawling, the ganDac is becoming from instrument, Subject.
He knows no humiliation, has no pride or needs. He will be the total master!
Tomorrow a new day awaits, the Sun will melt the ice, the water will drown life and behind it will remain the
anti-civilization over which the ganDac will reign.

*ganDac = wordplay between gandac, Romanian for cockroach, and dac, Romanian for a member of the ancient Dacian population, an Indo-European people, very close to the Thracians, inhabitants of Dacia (located in the area in and around the Carpathian Mountains and east of there to the Black Sea including the present-day countries of Romania and Moldova, eastern Ukraine, Eastern Serbia, Northern Bulgaria, Slovakia and Poland. The Dacian identity is used in some Romanian ideological discourses to trace the ethnic direct descendance of modern Romanians.



Manifestul gânDacului


Cel mai dac dintre toţi dacii este gânDacul.
gânDacul e mic, negricios dar puternic. Se răspândeşte neobservat peste tot. Pe sub pietre, tomberoane şi
prin bucătării se târăşte agil. Îşi răspândeşte azi, încet şi sigur, anti-civilizaţia prin toată Europa.
Europa, Mamă, ce-i cu tine? Teama de ciuperca totală îţi mănâncă idealurile! A trecut Războiu Rece şi tu tot
n-ai scăpat de ea. Fii fără grijă, măicuţă, dacă scapă ea de tine, noi rămânem. Noi îţi vom supravieţui.
Eroul, Istoria, Dumnezeu, toţi agonizează patetic. Numai gânDacul nu cunoaşte moarte.
Lumea post-atomică va fi a lui. Până atunci însă, se târăşte, se târăşte.
Când dacii îşi croiau destinul glorios prin nemiloasa Istorie, de atunci visau la ce va fi
adevărata îndeplinire a sensului lor istoric: gânDacul!
Mari lupte s-au dat pe bătrâna glie. Dacul, cel mai vajnic luptător, murea, însă murea liber! Gândul său în
pragul morţii a fost către sine: dacul moare liber! Aceasta e rădăcina istorică a gânDacului.
De atunci, secole de măturare istorică au trecut. Stăpânii au venit, au domnit şi exploatat. Au plecat şi alţii
la fel au venit. Însă gândul morţii libere a Dacului s-a păstrat adânc adormit în glia-mamă. Au mai fost
încercări: din pământ a ieşit vampirul. Însă a fost doar un simulacru dac. În scurt timp carnea sa rece
a devenit marfă. Însă gânDacul nu poate deveni niciodată marfă. Şi de ce?
Pentru că el deja s-a vândut. Carapacea lui scorţoasă, aşa zisa „mână de lucru” e deja moneda de
schimb a caracatiţelor corporatiste. Răbdare însă. Târâş-târâş, gânDacul devine din instrument, Subiect.
El nu cunoaşte umilire, orgoliu sau nevoi. Va fi stăpânul total!
Mâine va fi o nouă zi, soarele va topi gheţarii, apa va îneca viaţa şi în urmă va rămâne
anti-civilizaţia peste care va domni gânDacul.


Installation view of the falling manifestos.





the Blind Musem, model for a building and poster for the next exhibition.
(the Blind Museum at the Ist Fair of the Spectral Institutions, June 2011, Gallery of Contemporary Art, Brukenthal Museum, Sibiu, Romania). Photo frames (plaster).





Details.
Above: text on the base of the model;
(The Blind Museum – model for a future site. -poster for the next exhibition: Marcel Broodthaers, Musee d’Art Moderne. Department des Aveugles/Museum of Modern Art. Department for the Blind.
Scale 1: 2000)
Under: print on the top of the model.