Kinisis-AB performance (2021, MOMus – Experimental Center for the Arts, duration 45min).
In the Kinisis-AB performance, I executed a mapping of shapes and of my lyrics using the body and a felt fabric. I placed the felt on the floor, and I interacted with it, as a wider parallel to the body. Felt was a key element in Joseph Beuys’s works – as this performance was created in response to celebrating 100 years since his birth. Walking towards the future impersonating space and time, I gradually moved my body in every part of the felt and spoke of assertions: that the future needs more trees, more teachers, new words-poems, a new technology that places humans at its centre together with a balanced co-existence with nature. Each of the assertions was performed in a separated/splitted (mapped) part of the felt, illustrating a step by step approach towards the future. During the performance, I used green and dried leaves as ceremonial elements of the transformation of self and the experience of time, through a sequence of right-wrong, life-death and thoughts-actions. A scent based on herbs was also used to purify the body and its surroundings on the way to the future. Finally, I walked around the completed mapped felt playing live the meditative sounds of the tambourine.
Kinisis-AB was designed and directed as a ceremony of space and time with three key attributes: a) a physical movement from geographical location A to B, b) a spoken narrative from time moment A to B, c) an imagined relocation of the body and its hybrid language from history and ‘now’ towards the future. Overall, Kinisis-AB is a live index-map that seeks human fulfillment through social and ecological assertions. The starting point is Beuys’s view on the shamanistic ability of performance art and its role in politics and society.
The performance was the outcome of an open call advertised and managed by MOMus – Experimental Center for the Arts and Goethe-Institut, inviting artists to submit proposals reflecting on Beuys’s work, in celebration of 100 years since his birth. Kinisis-AB was one of the selected/supported pieces that won a place in a 3-day events programme dedicated to Beuys, titled We Can't Do It Without Roses. Kinisis-AB has references to Beuys’s 7000 Oaks, while the claim of teaching is connected with establishing the Free International University. Kinisis-AB creates a single set of sculpture-human-mass-nature, through the body and the objects, but also the senses of smell and hearing. The creation of such a hybrid ‘sculpted’ language is a reflection of Beuys's work.
The Shark performance (2021, Philippi Festival, duration 45 min).
The Shark is a performance in dialogue with the poem of the same title written by the national poet of Greece, Dionysios Solomos. The poem is based on a real incident; a young British soldier lost his life in 1847 after a shark attack in the Ionian Islands. This tragedy was reported in newspapers at the time and deeply touched Solomos. I started the performance by presenting research files from the Ionian Islands Newspaper that reported the incident. Then I performed selected extracts from versions of the poem in both Greek and Italian, focusing on the relationship between language and nature (Solomos was writing in both Greek and Italian and he did not conclude on a version). Highlighting the act of eating and the sense of smell, I presented nature for what it is; neither angelic nor evil, but a place of differences: in parallel to performing lyrics, I sprayed a table cloth with a leather ‘skin’ scent and slowly added plates on top of the fabric, while a composed sound of sea waves was heard. This was followed by packaging the fabric and plates together, and then smashing them on the floor. A period of birds singing composition followed, where I touched myself with a rose, and smelled it.
Then, in dialogue with the poem, I explored possibilities of an imagined future relationship between humans and nature. The exploration was enabled through composed electronic sounds and spoken parts, narrating a hypothetical world where mortality has mutated to be just a choice (a mutated human right), a utopian optionality based on advanced technology, allowing people to continue living without dying. The narration also included ways of producing future food at home, dystopian scenarios of environmental destruction, and future humans born as senior citizens turning into dots. As narrations were heard, using chalk, I wrote slowly down the Greek alphabet on blackboards. Finally, I cut the rose in pieces, declaring that the future is the place of reconciliation. The performance highlighted language’s power as a way to reconcile the body and nature.
The Philippi Festival is the second biggest festival in Greece after the one in Athens and Epidaurus; in 2021, referencing 200 years since the Greek War of Independence, it focused on re-reading the work of Dionysios Solomos. I was commissioned by the Philippi Festival director, Thodoris Gonis, to work on the particular poem by Solomos, while it was entirely up to me how I responded to it. The lighting was also directed by me.