#6: Athens – Documenta 14@Benaki Museum Pireos street

May 24, 2017

Today EX-MÊKH’s fans from Holland arrived at the fair. We took the opportunity in the morning to visit another Documenta site and after the fair Artemis had arranged for everybody in the fair to have drinks and a meal together in Petralona, a busy neighbourhood with lots of bars and restaurants.
So in the morning we went to the Benaki annexe in Pireos street, another beautiful new building that normally houses modern Greek art. Now, Documenta occupies the ground floor with, to my opinion, the best part of Documenta in Athens.

The Benaki Museum Pireos Street Annexe

Hiwa K: One Room Appartment – 2017

Roee Rosen: Live and Die as Eva Braun – 1995-1997

A series of beautiful graphic art, drowned in German culture

The banners in the room show a monologue of Eva Braun and her love for Adolf Hitler

and how they commit suicide together

A great work of art, from collections in Israél

Nilima Sheikh has a number of painted canvases hanging from the ceiling under the title: “Each night put Kashmir in your dreams” – 2003-2014

On the back classical Hindu texts are printed

In the space it looks impressive

Aarin Rungjan: And then there were none, (Tomorrow we will become Thailand) – 2016 In this video a classical singer elegantly sings of horrible things, accompanied by a beautiful istrument of bamboe sticks

In the video and the accompanying paintings the artist juxtaposes two events: the Thammasat university Uprising in 1973 and the Polytechnic university uprising in Athens in 1973 Oral history in the video’s witness the happenings of the time.

Return to Khodurciur, Armenian Diary – 1974 Again Oral history about the happenings in Armenia: the father reads his diary from that time.

Congolese history by Tshimumba Kanda Matulu

It is a room filled with Congolese history, from the beginning until now

El Hadji Sy: la nouvelle Muséologie

André Pierre: Grand Bois

Myriam Cahn: ertasted (e.-arb)(touched – may 16, 1992)

R.H. Quaitman: Parthian Shot

R.H. Quaitman: Parthian Shot

Myriam Cahn

Myriam Kahn

Back on the fair we had a quick look at our work

and Geeta Rooparine came by with presents. She liked my textile texts, I got some beautiful silk threads from her and she showed me what she made of them!

KRAATZ changed their booth again, and this time their collaborators Stéphan Guéneau and Louise Crawford had arrived and immediately they added new work: a textwork

and these pictures (with the & from Isolde Nagel)

The pictures close up

And today again we couldn’t complain about the visitors

I took another round in the cellars, here with the VSVSVS

and the 24 hours project, completely different again!

At night we had a great dinner, because the next day would be the last day of the fair

Constantinos is very sure about something!

The Extra Muros crew rocks!

Shooting back at Artemis

Der Deutsch-Holländischer Tisch

And once more shooting back at Guillaume

Documenta 14

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#3: Athens – Platforms Project 2017

May 21, 2017

This sunday was to be the longest day of the Fair: from 12.00 untill 23.00 h. Unfortunately it was also a day that some religious nameday was celebrated and that  important sportsevents took place. It was very quiet at the fair and it felt desencouraging to have so little people coming by, but everybody made the best of it. I visited some booths that I didn’t see yet as you can see here:

On the way to the Platforms we run into a Documenta project: Rasheed Araeen: Food for Thought: Thought for change – 2017 In this location refugees can have free meals every day. There’s a kitchen in the middle and  there are terraces all around.

The design is very efficiënt: recognisable from afar

Arriving at the Platforms the KRAATZ-artists appear to have liven up to their promise: the booth changes, here with added posters by Stéphan Guénau

Marian Wijnvoord and Isolde Nagel are stil in doubt about one wall

But this A-Trans wall is well done

Alexander Peev at Dadada Academy

Klitsa Antoniou: But at the End the Light was Shed on us and it got us to the shore – 2016.  A horrible video with a girl that tells about loving her father and how she likes to help him put shrapnel in bombs and how they flee to the west where she gets to know other children of her age

En Flo: Project Xouthou Street – a door from a house in the centre of Athens you can go through

after which you can write down what it brings about in you. Left under is my comment.

Extra Muros from Nantes was good again: they had subtle ceramic works by Cat Fenwick

It’s all about equilibrium

Guillaume Krick showed a very non-commercial installation with an old French flag

And Romain Rambaud was his usual elegant self with these sculptures

That I rather like

Diensgebäude is also present with work from Andreas Martí

and Chloe Cheuk

Elisabeth Wheeler

This work at Harrington Mills Studios was nice

I like the materiality of it

A sneak peak at the new unnoticed art exhibit featuring a small work by yours truly

Haïtian art at Kallio Kunsthalle, cut from car tires

Petri Saariko, the curator did well himself too

In the mean while our publicity was great: Ellen Rodenberg’s picture of her Malieveld piece was in a large national newspaper in an article about Platforms project

And I was interviewed by George Oreopoulos for Beton7 Art Radio (my favourite radiostation)

Our Dutch Globalist Willem Jan Smit made a round through the neighbourhood, created a sculpture

And projected it’s shadow on the wall by means of the dust he took off it

And of course some materials he used

One more view at Lo and Behold in the cellar

With work by Linda Weiss

Ed’s Video from Canada had surprisingly analogue art with him this time

End we ended up nearby in a restaurant during a blazing thunderstorm

Nico Parlevliet from Unnoticed Art joined us from Holland and everybody sang for me after midnight because of my birthday!

Platforms Project 2017

#2: Athens – Documenta 14 @ Athens Conservatoire – Platforms Project 2017

20 mei 2017

Today the Platforms Project opened for the public. Before I had some time to visit a venue of Documenta 14, The Athens Conservatoire or Odeion as Greeks call it. In the next reports I will show the works I thought worth while, in the end I shall try to eveluate Documenta as a whole.

At the entrance – David Lamelas: Time as Activity – a three channel live feed from resp. the German parliament, the Acropolis and the Greek Parliament.

Susan Hiller made a beautiful work, a sound-booth with recordings of vanished or endangered languages

Of course, in a conservatory, music can not be omitted. The Contemporary Music Research Centre, founded by Iannis Xenakis, Giannis Papaioannou and Stephanos Vassiliadis conducted research and engaged in educational projects as well as festivals and collaborations.

For instance Mycenae Polypoton, a site specific performance set in the ruins of Mycenae in 1978. It involved musicians, singers, sheperds and lit sheep as well as other recitals of movement and light.

On the occasion of Documenta 14 an old synthisizer was restored, the EMS Synthi 100, a rare analogue synthesizer built in London in 1971. Four compositions have been written for it to be played during Documenta 14.

Akinbode Akinbiyi: Passageways, Involuntary and the Sound of Crowded Spaces – 2015-2017

Pélagie Gbaguidi: The Missing Link, Decolonisation Education by mrs. Smiling Stone – 2017

Pélagie Gbaguidi: The Missing Link, Decolonisation Education by mrs. Smiling Stone – 2017

Guilermo Galindo: Score for Boca de la noche – 2016 (from the series “Border Canto’s”)

Guilermo Galindo: Score for Border Planetarium – 2016 (from the series “Border Canto’s”)

Kettly Noël: Strange Fruit

André du Colombier: Untitled

Peter Friedl: Report – 2016

Ganesh Haloi: Untitled – 2016

Ganesh Haloi: Untitled – 2016

Hiwa K: Pre-Image (Blind as the Mother Tongue) – 2017 A video of a man escaping his country with a stick on his head with mirrors attached to it. He sees his surroundings and himself in the mirrors while we see him walking to his destiny. A voice-over relates his feelings in all this.

Hiwa K: Pre-Image (Blind as the Mother Tongue)-2017

After the Conservatory I walked to the venue where Platforms project was beïng held,. On the way I stopped at some of the places where small presentations in Documenta could be seen. The Nikos Hadjikyriakos- Ghika Museum, one of the four locations of the Benaki Museum is a beautiful house in the centre of the city. It shows biographies of well known writers, actors, poets, composers and painters and sculptors. The building used to be the house of Ghika, one of the famous Greek modernist painters, the two top floors show his living quarters and his studio. In between all this Documenta had placed work of forgotten painters. The paintings were not very interesting, apparently they were chosen because of their subjects: immigrants and other non Greek persons.

Beautiful sketches of renovation of The Niche, the 8th gymnasium school chapel of Athens

And this is the chapel, a nice modernist buiding

A picture of Greek poet Seferis together with Ezra Pound

This is the official document which was given to Giorgos Seferis when he won the Nobel Prize for litterature

36 Black and white pictures by Nikos Hadjikyriakos- Ghikawere added by Documenta

They show Greek living in the thirties

but you can recognise the painter in the structures and the compositions

The Numismatic Museum showed one work: that of Dan Peterman, who also shows at the EMST

It’s a bar of metal, the form suggests gold, from under the sea maybe?

Back in Platforms an impression of what is beïng shown by different artists initiatives:

Oversight EX-MÊKH booth

EX-MÊKH: Maarten Schepers

Maarten Schepers close up with his night-pictures of stars

Ellen Rodenberg: detail

Kees Koomen: oversight

KRAATZ is an interesting collaboration from Berlin with A-Trans’ Isolde Nagel, painter Marian Wijnvoord, musician Yorgos Dimitriadis, Stéphan Gueneau, Louise Crawford and philosopher Forbes Morlock. This installation was to change every day, though I found it interesting as it was

A-Trans showed photographs by Ekkehard Keintzel and pantings by Marian Wijnvoord

The combination of which worked out well

Moving landscapes by Marian Wijnvoord

Rosa Lux collaborated with other galleries again, this is Tiny Domingos at Beaston Projects

With slightly surrealistic pictures too

And this is Linda Weiss at Paper from UK

She had a beautiful presentation by the way, for instance with these Trump Tower grids!

National TV was present at the opening, interviewing Dutch globally based artist Willem-Jan Smit

The cellar was the real underground with nice work at ID:I

At Future Scenarios pictures were taken of the public

I don’t have the name of this collective, but it was a lively lot

At 24 hours project a daily change would take place also, I liked this as it was though!

With great graphic art up in the corner

and a protagonist on the side

Unnoticed Art presents an unnoticed exhibition, but it also executes performances of these artists regularly!

Unnoticed Art makes one curious for its intentions

but it appears to be a very intimate exhibition, featuring the works of EX-MÊKH-members

This is the wall in the cellar where the Lo and Behold shows their project, EX-MÊKH is presented in a nice context

After the opening of Platforms drinks in a local bar. On the way there we passed the Panathinaikos stadium, covered with grafitti!

Platforms Project 2017

Documenta 14

 

Art Athina 2016 Socially

28 mei 2016

Some pics made by different people at the fair

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Waiting for the public

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And there’s a lot of small talk!

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Art on location

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Group Picture of A-Trans and EX-MÊKH

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Maarten Schepers likes this work, folding flyers!

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here’s the public

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Collaborating on Navine Khan Dossos’ beautiful Capacity-project at Out Of The Box media

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A hit, the finger lights that Ellen Rodenberg took with her

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The French guys from Nantes at Extra Muros: Romain and Guillaume

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Artemis took the director of the fair to our Booth

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And my dear and faithful friend Triantafyllia also visited our booth

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A light from within ….

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The Druid

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A beautiful square, a delicious meal….

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View from the hotel room with a half moon

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The new Opera/cultural centre by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation by Renzo Piano

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And a view from the side.

EX-MÊKH

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TALKS@Art Athina 2016

28 mei 2016

On saturday EX-MÊKH was invited for TALKS@Art Athina. First four platforms were able to introduce themselves and after that we had the opportunity to describe our collaboration with A-Trans from Berlin. It was interesting to hear what other initiatives had to say about their practice, Some were very pragmatic and fast moving and some were very serious and theoretical. Social and political circumstances are having a great influence on the way initiatives function, but motivated artists find their way allways!

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KangarooCourt from Greece made a serious and deliberate statement about their intentions. Their presentation in the booth on the other hand, a performance called Worst Case Scenario, was light and ironical.

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A video from one of their activities

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As allways, George Oreopoulos moderated the talks

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Linda Weiss explained about Scotty Enterprises Berlin. She made an installation of the booth of this initiative in which she worked with a poster she found in Athens to make a statement about “Strategies of the non-stratified: Thinking the outside (Power)”

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The story of Amrali Ghasemi of Parking Gallery from Iran impressed me: curating exhibitions in Teheran in the garage of his parents he developed a program, constantly reacting on different kinds of pressure he continued by making pragmatic adaptations to the exhibitions.

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Petri Saariko from Finland represented Kallio Kunsthalle. Petri likes to work with socially deviant people as could be concluded from the booth of his initiative. Coming from the world of computertechnology it is a great step, but the lively presentations we were happy to experience seem to suggest this is far more satisfactory than the world of ICT.

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In his images we could also see that the Kallio Kunsthalle can do much with little

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Then the Collaborative Projects took their place behind the table: Beaston Projects, rosalux and A Brooks Art explained how they organized their very successful presentation at Platforms projects by word of Bella Easton (left), Julia Riddiough (middle) and Tony Domingos

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One of the projects at rosalux in Berlin

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Peetri Saarikko was very interested in the stories of the artists

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Then it was time for Greek artists collaborating: Orizontas Gegonoton and En-Flo that had the large amount of suit-cases around one of the booths. Apparently it was part a a large project that took the artists all over the country.

naamloos

The last collaborative project was the project under construction of EX-MÊKH and A-Trans. Your humble servant told about the practice of EX-MÊKH and how, during the first Art Athina A-Trans and EX-MÊKH found themselves to be having a similar attitude and  similar interests, which might be the basis for collaboration.

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There was quite some public during the talk

08 - Malieveld - Maarten Schepers

Then I talked about the parallel Malieveld Project the artists of EX-MÊKH were involved in. For example here with a work by Maarten Schepers. The Malieveld is a large public space in Den Haag where artists gather on saturday-mornings to make, present and document works between 11.00 and 12.00 h

013 - The Second Explodes - Kees Koomen - Mirror Man

EX-MÊKH collaborates with other initiatives as here in Italy with Werkbank, Kunsthalle Eurocentre Lana and Quartair. This is a performance of mine during the opening of the exhibition called Mirror Man

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And recently we started to collaborate with A-Trans. We made an exhibition called Augentausch in the space of A-Trans in Berlin, which fitted in the series Recipro-City of A-Trans

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Here Isolde Nagel of A-Trans talks about the history of her platform

022 - Opening Augentausch - Performance Ellen Rodenberg

During Augentausch we also  did performances. Ellen Rodenberg tries to have visitors collaborate in making art during the opening.

036 LRP 2016

And Marian Wijnvoord, artist with A-Trans, has similar interests. She invades private space with her Living Room Project in which she has her work in peoples living space for three months. This is documented and an exhibition is made of the project later.

TALKS@Art-Athina 2016