WORKS: (scroll down)


ON THE SURFACE OF TEXT:
A READING SESSION WITH PROPS

A series of reading performances
that combine texts, sound recordings,
archival media and takes place with the participance of the audience. 


Performed in various formats in:

– Harburger Bahnhof Kunstverein, Hamburg, 2017
– TellTales Festival, Orga Orga, Mainz, 2017
– Circle 1 Gallery, Berlin, 2018.
– Colleex, Cieszyn, Poland, July, 2019
– Göttinger Centrums fur Geschlechterforschung, September 2019
– CfP Workshop European Network for Queer Anthropology, September 2019
– Stadtlabor for multimodal anthropology, Humboldt University, December, 2019
– Gallery in HFBK University, Hamburg, January, 2020



The reading session examines the manner in which literacy plays a role in the establishment of colonial power. It follows the story of Sankama, “the first of the Amazonian Piro tribe who claimed to know how to read” (Peter Gow, 2001), which was put into writing in 1947 by the missionary and linguist, Esther Matteson. In the story, Sankama expresses his outlook on the condition of his people through a radical, critical oral performance. By claiming he is able to read the newspapers that his white patrons threw away, Sankama prophesies the arrival of airplanes with Western goods and the uprising of the colonized people.

The text for the reading session is featured through various objects; paper airplanes, branches, sheets of paper, prints on T-shirts and field recordings taken with members of the Yine (*aka Piro) community in Pucallpa, Peru. The items are scattered in the room and the reading of the text is done voluntarily from one object to the next.The reading session examines the manner in which literacy plays a role in the establishment of colonial power. It follows the story of Sankama, “the first of the Amazonian Piro tribe who claimed to know how to read” (Peter Gow, 2001), which was put into writing in 1947 by the missionary and linguist, Esther Matteson. In the story, Sankama expresses his outlook on the condition of his people through a radical, critical oral performance. By claiming he is able to read the newspapers that his white patrons threw away, Sankama prophesies the arrival of airplanes with Western goods and the uprising of the colonized people.

The text for the reading session is featured through various objects; paper airplanes, branches, sheets of paper, prints on T-shirts and field recordings taken with members of the Yine (*aka Piro) community in Pucallpa, Peru. The items are scattered in the room and the reading of the text is done voluntarily from one object to the next.

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QUIRCABUE YUIYUI (Speaking with the books)

Pahoyan, Ucayali region, Peru, 2017. Video projection (15 min loop), paper, flashlight & Objects: branches, coconuts, turtle-shell, green blackboard paint, chalk

Exhibited in:

"The shadow is waiting for the full moon", Obrońców Stalingradu 17, Szczecin, 2017

"The relative naive", Gallery Weisser Elefant, Berlin, 2019





According to a dictionary published in 1904 by Karl von den Steinen, the word for ‘reading’ in the native Amazonian Shipibo language is ‘Quircabue Yuiyui’, which he translated to ‘speaking with the books’. Succeeding Western researchers related the phrase to the Shipibo own artistic practice of painting geometrical designs on various objects, textiles and pottery, a practice that is depicted in songs and oral histories. However, in modern Shipibo language there is no apparent reminiscence of the phrase. The video was recorded unpremeditatedly during nighttime, with children from the village of Pahoyan (Jean-Brayce, Lucy, Anita and Andres) while they were reading and inspecting various academic papers and photographs about the Shipibo language and design that I have brought with me.

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SPRACH-TOURNEE/ A LANGUAGE TOUR

An intervention in the collection of IFA; Institue for International exchange, Germany.

Text, Performance

Currently ongoing in:
Spheres of Interest, IFA Gallery, Berlin, 2022


follow the composition here:
SPRACH-TOURNEE



SPRACH-TOURNEE is an ongoing text based translation piece conceptualized for the exhibition Spheres of Interest, IFA Gallery, 2022. For the group exibition the artists were invited to curate and develop a work in response to IFA’s massive art collection. I chose to relate to Joseph Kosuth’s photographic pieces: Art as Idea as Idea: Purple; Art as Idea as Idea: Volume; & Art as Idea as Idea: Meaningless from 1967-68. IFA purchased Kosuth’s works for the exhibition Kunstraum Deutschland (Art Space Germany) that has been touring the world for the last 22 years.

For the exhibition I intiated a translation chain of a text based on the content of the lexical definitions depicted in Kosuth’s works. The text is translated by professional translators from one language to the next according to the route the exhibition took. The final result will be performed in IFA gallery in September 16th, 2022
Text composed by Michal B. Ron

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SILVER
Publication based on an ongoing performative meetups. Together with Marija Petrovic

Forthcoming December 2022
published by Material Verlag


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SILVER was created as an artistic research project about a collection of 3000 pieces of silverware from former Jewish households which is currently in the possession of the Museum for Arts and Design Hamburg. Some of these objects are kept in storage and some are on display as part of the permanent exhibition, titled  "Looted Art?".  One display case in particular stands in stark contrast to the others; In this small display case made of wood and glass, the silver is not lined up so that it can be seen from all sides, but rather seemingly carelessly spread out in disarray. This arrangement imitates the destruction of the houses, from which the silverware was stolen, but at the same time recalls the image of a lively chaos after a dinner party. This suggested diorama of a re/deconstructed memory instigated the idea to invite people to our home for dinner conversations, which became the subject matter of this book.

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NAHARGARH SHOWCASE
Site-specific project developed in collaboration with Shreyas Karle for the exhibition “Imitating Atmosphere”, second edition of the Sculpture Park in Madhavendra palace, Jaipur, India, 2017





Madhavendra palace within Nahargarh Fort was build by Madho Singh II with the intention of remaining a secured and secluded private space. Yet, with the dissolution of the princely state it has opened its gates to the wider public and is currently swept by hundreds of visitors every single day. The walls of the palace that were once guarded from the outside are now guarded from within. In response to the shift that the space has undergone, I asked the guards, who are working on site, to lend objects for the forthcoming exhibition. One by one, the guards brought various old objects, coins, puppets, cooking appliances and saris, to be displayed in showcases of the palace, objects they will be guarding for the next year. In return for the loan they received a framed photograph of their object placed in the palace. Photographs of their contributions were also displayed on the palace’s walls.

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PARTAPUR SHOWCASE

Site-specific project developed at Sandarbh Artist in Residence program in Partapur, Rajasthan, India, January 2012.

Exhibited in: Habitat Centre, New Delhi, 2012 Kala Ghoda Gallery, Mumbai, 2012 Days of Overlap, Rosenfeld Gallery, Tel Aviv 2013

During a one-month stay in the village of Partapur, I have transformed an empty shop into a display space, which was exposed to the public in its different making phases. The people of Partapur were asked to hand over an object of their choice to me, personal or historical artifacts: out of their own personal home ‘showcases’ into the public realm.

Every single one of the contributions has found place in the ongoing developing display. The project was aiming at creating a counter ethnographic representation of village life in Partapur, which was not governed by methodological pre-selection, but was formed from within as a result of public intervention. My daily encounter with the people shaped the course the exhibition took. Never have I declined an object suggested. The final collection was displayed in Delhi and Mumbai, and then sent back to the people of Partapur.

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©ofrilapid 2022