confronting documents. confronting history

confronting documents. confronting history is an installative setting, a confrontation of documents and materials from 2011 and 2015 from the project thoughts meet space cairo with a live performance.
thoughts meet space cairo in Vienna is a lab and a walk-in performative installation as a continuation of the eponymous installation that took place in January 2015 in the Hotel Viennoise in Cairo. The starting point is the research journeys to Cairo and Alexandria by the artist and choreographer Claudia Bosse with the sound artists Günther Auer in October 2011 and January/February 2015, during which they conducted interviews on issues such as the concept of democracy, forms of law, lifestyles and the concept of freedom. These interviews were incorporated in the transnational interview collection some democratic fictions. In the one-week multimedia research confronting documents. confronting history Claudia Bosse and Günther Auer develop a multimedia setting with video and audio documents from Egypt in which in the second week the artist Kaya Behkalam, who was interviewed in Cairo, the theatre-maker and cultural manager Abdalla Daif and the artist Huda Lutfi meet live in this setting in order to confront their present-day perspective on the same questions with their own interview documentations.
In the performative installation confronting documents. confronting history interviews from 2011 and 2015 confront one another in various media interrelationships as well as the present-day positions of some of the Cairo-based artists Kaya Behkalam, Abdalla Daif and Huda Lutfi who were interviewed at that time. It concerns a confrontation of interview documents from 2011 and 2015, of historic documents in the form of personal interviews with different visions and experiences of various people from the time directly after the Egyptian uprisings and interviews that were conducted after the putsch by General al-Sisi, who established a new regime of political control in Egypt. The comparison of these materials from different times opens up the changed perspectives, political developments, references, estimations and disappointments. On an extended level, the comparison of thoughts expressed live in dialogue with their own documentary material (Kaya Behkalam, Abdalla Daif, Huda Lutfi) facilitates a further leap in time into the mutual questioning of the document and the present. An attempt at the confrontation, analysis, updating and shifting of history and its description. Through the artistic access to the documentary material, a contemporary space opens up that confronts the invited guests with themselves and with the altered perception of political systems and thus confronts us with our recent history. The installation together with live positions opens on 4 November.
In the second research week – confronting practice – the artists from Cairo together with the Vienna-based architect Baerbel Mueller and the Viennese artists Helmut Weber and Claudia Bosse reflect on the effects and the integration of their own work in different geopolitical contexts, colonial suspicions, evasive movements, failed projects and the consequences for their own artistic practice and the change in them caused by shifting political constellations and economics. Questions of censorship, responsibility and (political) aesthetics and social effectiveness. A comparison and a confrontation of working methods and strategies in dealing with the global and local relationships from which or in which one is working – with, within or against them.
The Artistic Research Lab opens for the public on 5 November and presents its findings and agendas from the research week and the questions that arose from it. In a second step, in confronting practice, the individual practices of the artists invited from Cairo and Vienna are presented and discussed together on the basis of the specific projects.
A production by theatercombinat, sponsored by Szenenwechsel of the Robert Bosch Foundation and the International Theatre Institute ITI and Wien Kultur. The research in Vienna is supported by the Tanzquartier Wien.
CONCEPT: Claudia Bosse, with media support by Günther Auer. With documents from the collection some democratic fictions from Cairo and Alexandria 2011 and 2015 and with the live participation of Kaya Behkalam, Abdalla Daif and Huda Lutfi.
Günther Auer, born in 1965, is a media artist who studied composition and electro-acoustic composition at the University for Music and Performative Arts in Vienna, where he then worked as a lecturer in the field of music and computers. He works in cooperation with various artists and in the most diverse formats. Since 2009 he has been primarily working with the director Claudia Bosse on vocal and sound architecture extensions in public and private space (IDEAL PARADISE clash, a third step to IDEAL PARADISE, a second step to IDEAL PARADISE, a first step to IDEAL PARADISE, catastrophic paradise, what about catastrophes?, designed desires, dominant powers. Was also tun?, vampires of the 21st century, dominant powers – landschaften des unbehagens, je veux un mot vide que je puisse remplir, 2481 desaster zone, rehe und raketen). In 2012/2013 he was senior artist in the field of digital art at the University of Applied Art.
Kaya Behkalam, born in 1978 in Berlin, lives and works in Berlin and Cairo, where he teaches as guest professor at the Institute for Visual Cultures at the American University Cairo. Behkalam is a co-founder of the artists’ group Reloading Images; his works have been shown i.a. at the Museum Folkwang Essen (2013), at the Heidelberger Kunstverein (2012) and in the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin (2010).
Claudia Bosse is an artist, choreographer and the artistic director of Theatercombinat. After a degree in theatre direction at the Ernst Busch Academy of Dramatic Arts in Berlin, she has worked in the field of (experimental) theatre between installation, (space) choreography and urban intervention and generates “political hybrids” as always space-specific settings with special constellations for different audiences. Claudia Bosse develops international installations and works for museums, architectures, theatres and urban spaces. She teaches, gives lectures, publishes, initiates or takes part in research projects and continuously works with artists and theoreticians from different genres.
Abdalla Daif, is a writer, theatre director and cultural manager based in Alexandria. He has been working in theatre since 1997. He was involved in the organisation of the first independent theatre festival in Alexandria and has also worked as a researcher at Egypt‘s National Centre for Theatre, Music and Folkore. Since 2004, he works as Programme Manager at the Gudran Association for Art and Development. He works using art as a tool for social transformation, encouraging audiences to discover, imagine and co-create possible new scenarios of social life. His work seeks to bring contemporary artistic practices closer to people who are usually removed from cultural and social participation, in order to enable them to re-think their lives and our shared future in creative and critical ways. His programmes allow contemporary artists to work on the streets and other public spaces like cafes and markets‚ establishing and developing a new generation of artistic spaces which can achieve a high degree of sustainability on both financial and intellectual levels. Abdalla Daif has worked with different local communities and groups in Egypt, Italy, France, Malta and Cyprus.
Huda Lutfi works like an urban archeologist, constantly digging up found objects and images as loaded fragments of history. She then re-packages them using bricolage and collage as interceptive strategies. Recognizable objects, images and icons are re-contextualized and made to tell a different story, playing on collective memory and shared iconography, Lutfi blurs cultural timelines and boundaries in her work. multilayered and playful, Lutfi is known to work with a wide range of media, collage, installations, assemblages, and more recently with photomontage and video. Trained as a cultural historian and, with her second career as an artist, Lutfi emerged as one of Egypt’s contemporary image-makers. She received her doctorate in Islamic culture and history from McGill University, Montreal, Canada (1983), and has been teaching at the American University in Cairo. Drawing upon the historical, cultural and local experiences and traditions of Egyptian society, she began exhibiting her artwork in the mid-1990s. She has exhibited locally and internationally, with acquisitions in Paris, London, The Hague, Virginia, Indianapolis, Amman, Bahrain, Dubai and Cairo. Lutfi currently lives and works in Cairo.
(c) Claudia Bosse(c) Claudia Bosse(c) Claudia Bosse(c) Claudia Bosse(c) Claudia Bosse


SCORES N°12 // artistic-theoretical parcours on border questions
3. NOV - 5. NOV + 17. NOV - 19. NOV

Admission free

Limited number available!
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