Open call to participate in performance by Chto Delat

Garden of Catastrpophes

We invite you to take part in the performance “Heavy weight of mass-media images” (work title). You do not need to be a professional performer, dancer or singer. But you need to love performing, speaking, tell stories, move and communicate. And you need to be curious for the world around, follow the news, and have some personal political judgements.

We – the artist from collective Chto Delat will rehears and develop this piece together in a period before the opening of our solo show at CAAC  between 18th and 24th of May. The way how performance will be narrated very much depends on your position and articulations. The main idea behind the performance is rather simple. We produce a set of images taken from the media coverage of different catastrophes of our time – refuges’ crisis, wars, ecological disaster (unfortunately we have plenty of them) – this images are pasted on the large MDF plates and placed in a composition at the space of the museum garden.

You and several co-participants will come once in a week and move them around the space thus constructing every time a new composition of pictures/objects at the same space. You can recompose it the way you feel you need it – hide one images, bringing to the fore another developing a new relations between them. In this process you can tell the story of the images to the public, explain what you might think about them, about the representation and circulation of them in media (media critique is very welcome) but the most important thing is to reveal your possible personal relations to them. This protocol is very open and we can finalize it together.

The approximate duration of performance is 30 -40 minutes. The performance will be realized in Spanish.

Performance will be filmed and screened as documentation in a time between performances on the monitor.

On the definition of Catastrophes (by Oxana Timofeeva) 

Catastrophe defines the boundaries of a collective and the true sense of what we call history. Catastrophes are, according to Oxana Timofeeva’s paradoxical concept, what people do to other people or to nature, and what nature or gods do to people. This includes wars, genocides, bomb explosions, hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, but also mythical events like the expulsion from Paradise, the Flood, and, of course, the Apocalypse.

But above all, there is the catastrophe of one’s own existence, the apocalypse of the now, an irredeemable nature defined by the present moment. You cannot change anything; the worst is what just happened: a loved one just died, your child just died, a giraffe in the zoo just died, god died, too, you yourself just died or woke up in your bed to find you have turned into an uncanny insect, like Kafka’s Gregor Samsa. That is meant by “catastrophe”; contrary to what is usually said, its time is not in the future, but in the present, which we can only grasp as the past, because it flows, just as the waters of the Flood: time itself is catastrophic. Catastrophe has always already happened, although people are still expecting some bigger, some ultimate catastrophe in the future, as if the previous ones did not really count. Our collective imagination, flooded by all kinds of pictures and scenarios of a future final collapse—be it another world war, Armageddon, an alien invasion, an epidemic or a pandemic, zombie viruses, a robot uprising, an ecological or natural catastrophe—are nothing but projections of this past-present. We project into the future what we cannot endure to have already occurred, or to be happening now. We still believe that the worst is yet to come—it is a perspective, but not a reality—and that our reality is still, therefore, not that bad. Fear of the future and anxiety about what can happen, about some indefinite event (“we will all die”), is easier to endure than a certainty, the irreparableness, irreversibility and horror of what has happened (“we are all already dead”). Only Walter Benjamin’s angel, the Angelus Novus from Paul Klee’s eponymous drawing, sees history as “one single catastrophe”. His face turned towards it, he looks back with horror: “The angel would like to stay, awaken the dead, and make whole what has been smashed.” That things just go on is the catastrophe, says Benjamin. We look at the future and for the future; we have some visions of future catastrophes in reality, and these visions prevent us from grasping the catastrophe of the real, or the real catastrophe, which is just happening. After all, isn’t capitalism itself a catastrophe? This concept generates an emancipatory potential of despair, as opposed to hope, on which traditional messianic politics are based.

The list of cut-outs

1. Donetsk airport, May 2015
    After 252 days of fighting for the airport Ukrainians left the field leaving airport in total destruction for the control of separatists

2. The road after the Earthquake in New Zealand, November 2016 

3. Syrian jets pound Islamic State-held Palmyra, 19 Sep 2015

4. The dead lion in Gaza Palestine, Mar 5, 2016
     Died from hunger in the zone totally blocked by Israel

5. Norwegian mass murderer Breivik makes Nazi salute at court, 2013

6. Migrant crisis in Germany. 2015
     Refuges ask for help

7. The flood in far east Russia and China, 2013
    Russian soldiers protect a land from flood

8. The car stuck in the flood, Greece

9. Isis fighter looting ancient sites, 2016
Shocking destruction in the Syrian city of Palmyra is part of the militant group’s ongoing campaign against archaeology..

10. Ebola pandemic, 2013
        Doctors rescue the kid 

11. Syria medical help on the street, 2015

12. ISIS fighters
       Advertisement picture for ISIS recruitment