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No More Reality, Crowd and Performance

31/01/2009 @ 11:00 - 05/03/2009 @ 17:00

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31 January – 5 March 2009

From the popular settings of art history we can recall two faces of the crowd: the first, recognized as the holder of political will (demonstrations or revolutionary masses), appearing in many historical or allegorical paintings, and the second one – more neutral and more dispersed, usually connected to the representation of the city, modernity and urban life. Of course, the crowd is never neutral… Apparently nameless bodies, anonymous minds and ordinary settings are always producing narratives and images related to the dominant politics of public spaces. Even impressionist chronicles that tend to be ’disinterested’ mass scenes are not only the random frames of the street life. As records of early modernity, they basically announce the standardization of the city crowd, the early control of public space and the regulation of the behaviour of the masses in the street.

Is that the only perspective?

Standing out as an individual in the crowd becomes the most important aspect that constitutes identity today. It becomes a recognizable sign of successfully realized authorship, originality and authenticity. But, the perspective of this claim can be observed as just another aspect of a new “experience economy”, where lifestyle industries are transforming the individual into a unique “commodity personality”.

In the culture of the spectacle, everybody is a performer.

The transformation of cultural and political space during the 1990’s encompasses different mechanisms of control of public space and, at the same time, establishes propaganda of guarantee and security. Spectacular reports of mass events and war scenes or violent demonstrants are turned into aestheticized images, which feed our imagination. These images we start to love and enjoy the same way we enjoy action movies, horror movies and disaster movies. They tell us that the horror is somewhere else and that we can freely surrender to the visual pleasure and the feeling of security.

Capitalist modernization of society and gentrification of core city areas across the world is taking place parallel with the entrenching and widening of political control of public spaces. The introduction of surveillance technologies and new regimes of behavior are induced through simultaneous processes of privatization of public space and new forms of division between the spheres of private and public.

No More Reality [Crowd and Performance: demonstration, public space, use of body] examines new possibilities of collective thinking and collective acting in public space. It is a theoretical-practical platform, which gathers a group of artists, activists, theorists, curators, magazines and radio broadcasters, investigating performative aspects of the crowd in the streets and the political implications of body practices in the public space. No More Reality is developing in stages starting from 2005. Exhibitions, publications and discussions accompanying this process are conceptualized as fragmentary situations and steps in the research, rather than final projects with fixed and definite conclusions.

Lecture: ‘Ecstasy, Fear & Number: From the “Man in the Crowd” to the Self-Organizing Multitude’ Date: 3 February 2009

As a part of the exhibition No More Reality: Crowd and Performance, Brian Holmes – the theorist, critic and activist from US – brings the broader theoretical perspective on the issues that artists, activists and various collectives are trying to examine within the visual and narrative materials presented in this exhibition. For the further information about Brian Holmes’ comments on art, politics, society, media, self-organization and contemporary capitalism see: http://brianholmes.wordpress.com

Curators: Claire Staebler and Jelena Vesic
Exhibition Producer: Vladimir Jeric
Artists: Fia Backström, Johanna Billing, Susanne Bürner, Chto Delat, Marcelo Exposito, Claire Fontaine, Igor Grubic, Sharon Hayes, Inventory, Olga Kisseleva, Ligna, Ciprian Muresan, Marta Popivoda/Illegal Cinema, Radek Community, R.E.P Group, Revolution Will Not Be Televised.

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 icon-file-text Booklet

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No More Reality, Crowd and Performance
Chtodelat News

No More Reality, The Exhibition


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31/01/2009 @ 11:00
05/03/2009 @ 17:00
Event Category:


Depo İstanbul
DEPO / Tütün Deposu Lüleci Hendek Caddesi No.12 Tophane
İstanbul, 34425 Turkey
+90 (212) 292 39 56 - 57