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"On Fire": Artistic exchange with South African artists on gender and tradition, 28.02-26.04 2014, Studio 44

Short before the 20th anniversary of the first multi-racial democratic elections in South-Africa, a prolific variety of talented south african artists and thinkers are engaged on these interrogations, questioning the norms and processes that assign categories and values, the never- ending negotiation of identity constructions in the specific cultural, historical, socio-economic and political landscape of the Rainbow Nation. Taking them seriously, is a choice to believe in Mbembe’s promise for deepening a reflection on the democratic order, the politics of recognition and inclusion and our relation to the other and the world.

A special focus in the program will be given to south african LGBTI (Lesbian, Gay, Bi -and Trans- Intersex) activists that are questioning the norms of gender/sexuality identity constructions, working in the space between the most progressive legislation of Sub-saharan Africa to this regard and a reality that remains conflictive. In a country that belongs to the so-called world’s “Champions League” in terms of gay marriage, the phenomena of corrective rapes and the specific vulnerability to violence for LGTBI’s and women are still a severe reality. Moreover, homosexuality is considered by some as “un-African”, namely a “decadent” import from North America and Europe. Paradoxically, this homophobic belief is a relic of a Puritan legislation inherited from the period of British colonial era. Yet, in order to craft narratives of a south-african identity that includes LGTBI it seems still hard to avoid dealing with more complex processes related to religious practices and powers, as well as the cultural and political interpretations, re-interpretations and sometimes an instrumentalization of tradition and heritage.

On the other hand, the re-evaluation of heritages and traditions long related to segregated cultural groups are being articulated in new ways with urban life, and with self-defined contemporary practices and productions, that we want to include in this program. This often links to a subaltern reflection on post-colonial/post-apartheid ongoing power struggles and the artistic deconstructions of colonial/patriarcal imageries of the other.

Curated by Constanza Macras and Tamara Saphir.

Upcoming showings and performances: 28. – 29.03.2014

19h30 – Showing Mamela Nyamza * (AIR)

A hoe is a traditional tool historically used by women to suppress weed and control the ploughing of seed in a straight row. A “hoe” might be confused with a “ho” (whore). A “hoe” is used to dig under. An understudy is a back-up for the person starring the dance role. A person below. During the residency, Mamela will work on traditional tools, with hoes and ballet points. A research going below and under, about good and bad seeds, endurance and bitterness.

21h00 – Showing Lucky Kele & Ronni Maciel * (AIR)
Between the inhabited body of the ritual and the rituals of the technical performance, a duo work at the moving edges of trans/cendant states and immanent formal virtuosism. Lucky Kele and Ronni Maciel will interrogate what moves them and how to move together.

Ticket price per Show 14,00€ / reduced 9,00€
Combined ticket for both showings 16,00€ / reduced 11,00€

More Informations

All showings are going to be presented in english language.

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