Eszter Salamon - Dance for Nothing

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Performance 

23 – 24 November 2012 

8pm 

 

TheatreWorks is pleased to present Eszter Salamon at 72-13. In Dance for Nothing, Salamon will be performing John Cage's music, "Lecture on Nothing" (1949), followed by a discussion. 

 

Dance for Nothing was first presented as a draft by Salamon at TheatreWorks' Flying Circus Project 2010 in January 2010 at 72-13. Following that, it was performed in Berlin at the festival Tanz im August in the same year. Inspired by John Cage's Lecture on Nothing, the performance is a recitation and physical improvisation of Cage's text. The idea of using music done by words and performing a parallel action as another temporality follows the desire for interaction with the non-interference. 

 

Presenting Eszter Salamon's Dance for Nothing is part of TheatreWorks' aim to present innovative and contemporary performances that have yet to be seen in Singapore; exposing Singapore audiences to alternative perspectives to the accepted norms and mainstream in contemporary dance, theatre and visual arts. 

 

TheatreWorks was also the first in Singapore to present international artists such as Pichet Klunchun, Jerome Bel, Boris Charmatz, and Musee de la Danse. Before Eszter Salamon, TheatreWorks presented The Nacera Belaza Company who performed a double bill performance Le Temps Scelle & Le Trait: Solos in June 2012. 

Following her classical dance studies at the National Academy of Dance in Budapest, Eszter Salamon moved to France in 1992 and worked with several choreographers. 

 

Since 2001, she has creates her own work: the solos "What A Body You Have, Honey(2001) and "Giszelle" (2001) in collaboration with Xavier le Roy, "Reproduction" (2004), a piece for eight dancers, "Magyar Täncok" (2005) with Hungarian folk dancers and musicians, "Nvsbl" (2006), a film-choreography "AND THEN" (2007) and together with Arantxa Martinez, the concert performance "Without You I Am Nothing" (2007) starring Lukas Minkus and Ramon Pozo. Her piece, "Dance#l/ Driftworks" (2008), was created together with Christine De Smedt. 

 

In 2008, she participated in "6Month1Location", an artistic research project based on self-organisation and self-education at the Centre Chorégraphique National de Montpellier Languedoc-Roussillon. In 2009, together with the same group of artists, she co-curated and took part in the festival In-Presentable 09, in Madrid. 

 

In 2009, Eszter Salamon developed with Christine De Smedt "Transformers", a research project for a choral group piece through workshops and artist residencies in Brussels, Madrid, PAF-St. Erme, Mexico City, Vienna and Tokyo. In October, she creates "Voice Over", a piece commissioned and interpreted by Cristina Rizzo in the frame of "Dance #3", a choreographic project from Cristina Rizzo at RED festival (Reggio Emilia) and at Romaeuropa (Roma). 

 

In 2010, she presented "Melodrama", a piece commissioned by Les Halles de Schaerbeek, (Brussels) and following that, in 2011, she created a science-fiction music performance in the frame of Kunstenfestivaldesarts, in Brussels. 

 

Her future project "Operation" will use and question the history as well as the economy of production of operas while “Balletocracy" will be investigating ballet repertory as a field for social practice.

 

Salamon assisted in the direction of the opera "Theater der Wiederholungen" by Bernhard Lang at Steirischer Herbst (Graz - cultural capital 2003). In 2005, she staged the music of Karim Haddad in the frame of the project "Seven attempted escapes from Silence" (2005) at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden, Berlin. 

 

Eszter Salamon represents a broadly defined concept of dance and choreography, which, to her, are not formal principles, but forms of working and perception. 

- Frank Weigand, www.tanznetz.de 

Co-presented with Goethe-institut Singapore.

 
 

Marie Jose Arjona - Irregular Hexagon

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Residency

28 September – 13 October 2012 

Free admission 

Possessing an almost monastic rigour, Maria José Arjona subjects her body to intense tests of physical and psychological endurance, in which she often invites, involves or confronts the viewer. Most of her works involve long duration, silence, and impending danger to the body. In some of her actions, like "Retomo (return)", 2009 (done in an abandoned hospital), the artist constructs a perturbing image that evokes pain and suffering from the sustained repetition of the simple and apparently innocuous act of blowing a colored soap bubble. In "Vires", 2011, a series of three performances, Arjona reflects on the human condition through actions where issues like power, desire and destiny are put into play in a mise en scéne where the public has the choice of remaining passive in front of the acts that are inflicted on the artist, or taking action, making his or her choices evident in front of the rest of the viewers. Arjona was one of the performers chosen by Marina Abramovic for "The Artist Is Present", her retrospective exhibition at MoMA in New York in 2010. 

 

For Irregular Hexagon, Arjona chose to present four works, three of which were done in 2008 when in residency at the Watermill Center in New York, Robert Wilson's laboratory for performance. Upon arriving, Arjona was struck by the landscape and its linear quality (the wide horizon, the spiky grass, and the trees), and decided to do simple, long-duration minimal gestures of long duration, using different landmarks of this beautiful but barren site as her locations. The actions involved walking on pebbles for hours until her footsteps marked a ring ("Perfect Circle"), standing in the biting cold holding a bouquet of hay as a kind of offering ("Vertical and Horizontal Lines"), hanging from a tree as a limb until physical exhaustion made her fall ("Natural Lines"), and lying on the top of a stone column like the proverbial Stylites, ancient Christian monks who, as an act of penitence, sat on top of columns for years, sometimes until their death ("Permanence"). These actions were paired as two distinct two-channel videos for their exhibitionary mode. 

 

Two other works also make part of the selection. One of them, "Four-Legged Animal", was also done at Watermill, but, being indoors, lacks the relation with nature that the others have. It consists of the artist's interplay with a chair in a narrow corridor, a sort of intimate conversation between the body and the archetypal domestic object. The other is the performance "Right At The Center", 2011, developed for the Queadrilaterai Biennial in Rjeka, Croatia, where Arjona approaches long-duration as a voluntary ordeal. The artist stands upright with four razor blades placed on microphone stands marking the cardinal points around her neck, leaving her completely constricted. Any movement entails a risk for her body, so the tension between concentration and exhaustion, mind and body, becomes palpable. This performance was inspired by a tragic event in recent Colombian history, where delinquents, asking for a monetary ransom, attached a bomb in the form of a makeshift collar around the neck of a woman, who anguished for hours and the entire country with her- before the bomb exploded when an anti-explosives expert was attempting to remove it. 

 

As Arjona has remarked, her insistence in long-duration highlights the main material of performance, which is time. This emphasis is meant to signify that, besides the possible associations with specific events and contexts, her actions attempt to touch upon basic human experiences of pain, compassion and empathy, which are universal and shared across cultures. 

 

Maria José Arjona, together with Mateo Lopez who exhibited at 72-13 from 7 – 22 September 2012, is in Singapore as part of "Irregular Hexagon: Colombian Art in Residence". Hosting Mateo Lopez and Maria Jose Arjona is part of TheatreWorks' aim to present innovative and engaging visual artists who have yet to be seen in Singapore exposing the Singapore audience to a wider range of works and to be a bridge between Singapore artists and the international artistic community. 

 

Maria José Arjona was born in Bogota/ Colombia in 1973, currently living and working in New York and Miami. Arjona has developed a carrier fully focused in performance with an emphasis in long durational practices to address process, memory and power. Her performances have been exhibited in museums and galleries throughout South America, Europe, China and the United States and have been reviewed by Art Nexus, Ane Al Dia, The New York Times, The Guardian (UK), Whitewall Magazine, The Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald and many others. She participated as a re-performer at Marina Abramovic's retrospective at The Museum Of Modern Art in New York and toured right after with her performance cycle (VIRES) to The Madre Museum in Naples (Italy) as part of the program "Corpus, Arte In Azione". The itineration of this project included locations in Bologna (Italy), New York (US), Vienna (Austria) and Miami, ending in Bogota (Colombia) on September, to later on exhibit the first component of her new cycle "ACTIVE VOICE" at the Biennial of Croatia. In 2012 Arjona will start an artist in residency program at LOCATION ONE and will participate in two major exhibitions in Morocco and Asia. 

 

Other exhibitions include The Bass Museum (FL), El Museo Del Banco De La Republica (COLOMBIA), Location One (NY), Third Guangzhou Triennial (CHINA), The Ballroom Maia (TX), Miami Art Museum, Exit Art, Fred Snitzer Gallery (FL), Museo De Arte Moderno (COLOMBIA), Museo Del Chopo (MEXICO), El Museo Del Barrio (NY), Watermill Center (NY), IN-TRANSIT (GERMANY), Museum Of Contemporary Of Medeilin (COLOMBIA) Hilger Contemporary (VIENNA), Volta (NY), ART FIRST/ARTE FIERA, (ITALY), Madre Museum (ITALY), Galena AL CUADRADO (COLOMBIA) and Valenzuela & Klenner Gallery(COLOMBlA). 

"Irregular Hexagon: Colombian Art in Residence" consists of six distinct one-person exhibitions of artists from Colombia, which are hosted by six institutions, located in places as diverse as Morocco, Israel, Australia, Turkey, Singapore and Vietnam. Each artist does a three-week residency at two of the spaces, and each space hosts two artists over the course of a year. These short term residencies will provide the artists a unique opportunity to engage with the local context, its cultural particularities, its language and its images, subsequently contributing to the creation of additional new work for the exhibition realized at the respective host site. Curator of the project, Mr. José Roca states: 'Irregular Hexagon" wants to give visibility to a group of Colombian artists that have already an important body of work, establishing partnerships with independent spaces that have residency programs. This will provide a rare opportunity to engage with the local public, beyond the opportunity to show the work.' Other participating artists include Mateo Lopez, Maria José Arjona, Gabriel Sierra, Delcy Morelos and Johanna Calle.

Supported by Fundacion Giberto Alzate Avendano and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Colombia.

Mateo Lopez - Nowhere Man (Irregular Hexagon)

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Residency

7 – 22 September 2012 

Free admission 

 

Nowhere Man is a project conceived for the exhibition "The Peripatetic School-ltinerant Drawing from Latin America", presented at London's Drawing Room and which, fittingly, travelled to several venues afterwards both in Europe and Latin America. Nowhere Man appears to be a small office tucked behind a room divider, with a desk with its drawers open, a chair, a bed, a box and a bag. In the tradition of Duchamp's "Boite-en-valise" (box in a suitcase, 1935 – 40), most of the elements that Lopez created for the installation travel inside the suitcase, which is shown alongside them. On the table, there are notebooks with Lopez's drawings and a series of disparate objects that seem to tell a story — one that we as viewers do not know but have to decipher by combining the visual references and proposing a plotline based on mental juxtaposition. The story thus varies from individual to individual depending on the meanings we endow on what we see: the remnants of an apple, several polyhedra, an eraser, a roll of tape, a glass with a pencil, a map, an invoice, a piece of stone, a razor blade. Is this the office of a land surveyor? Or are we looking at the clutter of the desk of a bored clerk at a frontier outpost? Inside the drawers other equally banal but enigmatic objects establish yet more possible conversations: a flower, a cassette tape, an old photograph, a wristwatch, some keys, a playing card...all drawn and constructed by the artist out of colored paper, cardboard and other basic materials. In every place the piece is exhibited, Lopez creates new drawings and objects, so the work reflects its itinerant exhibitionary life by the sheer accumulation of images inspired by the places where it was shown. The nature of the nomad consists of his rootlessness, not being from a specific place but incorporating bits and pieces of the experiences of those he has been to, and his strength lies in that he takes his world with him, leaving nothing behind to anchor him. Neither here nor there, always in flux: nomad man, the world is at his command. 

Mateo Lopez, together with Maria Jose Arjona, is in Singapore as part of “Irregular Hexagon: Colombian Art in Residence”. Hosting Mateo Lopez and Maria Jose Arjona is part of TheatreWorks' aim to present innovative and engaging visual artists who have yet to be seen in Singapore exposing the Singapore audience to a wider range of works and to be a bridge between Singapore artists and the international artistic community. 
 

Drawing drives Mateo Lopez's artistic practice, but he does not dwell on his remarkable technical ability; on the contrary, his drawing is always at the service of a conceptual program. In Lopez's work one can speak of drawing as installation in the sense that it appropriates the exhibition space as a sculptural presence, providing the spectator a bodily as well as visual experience. On many occasions he creates a mise-en-scene of the artist studio, showing what appears to be the desk of a draftsman; on close scrutiny, an attentive gaze reveals that all the elements on the table, from the tools, materials, leftovers and the usual clutter of a working table have been patiently drawn and constructed with paper and other simple materials. In recent works like "The Motorcycle Diaries" (2007), Anecdotal "Topography" (2007), "Travelling Without Movement" (2008), and "Adrift" (2009) Löpez has invoked the figure of the travelling artist, crossing territories by bus, motorcycle or other means of transportation. These travels are ripe with cultural references — from the scientific expeditions of the 18th and 19th centuries to Che Guevara's mythical motorcycle trip. Lopez makes drawings, objects, architectural models and annotations, and shows the results at the point of destiny thus defining travelling as an instance of knowledge. 

Supported by Fundacion Giberto Alzate Avendano and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Colombia.

The Nacera Belaza Company - Le Temps scellé & Le Trait: Solos

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Performance

13 – 14 June 2012

8pm

Le Temps scellé was first performed at the Lyon Biennale in 2010. The movement inhabiting the bodies transports them towards an overwhelming question — who or what, on the brink of abandon, is able to resist? Up to what point is a man allowed, or capable of voluntarily disappearing? The momentary feeling of living a moment freed from its fears and physical constraints, while abandoning oneself to become the 'whole' is explored in the work. This piece assumes a new ceremony, creating an impressive and spellbinding performance. 

 

Le Trait: Solos is a two-part performance choreographed and performed individually by Nacera Belaza and Dalila Belaza which premieres in June 2012. The performance allows the audience to experience the emptiness that surrounds oneself, heightening the sense of loneliness. For Nacera, the starting point of a solo has not been about putting a being on stage to 'tell' or to 'perform', but rather, to offer the most radical interpretation of loneliness from oneself. It is a work that explains precisely the final act of being alone in the world. 

 

Le Trait: Solos will also be performed at Festival of Avignon in July 2012. 

Presenting The Nacera Belaza Company is part of TheatreWorks / 72-13's aim to present innovative and contemporary performances that have yet to be seen in Singapore; exposing Singapore audiences to alternative perspectives to the accepted norms and mainstream in contemporary dance, theatre and visual arts. 

 

Nacera Belaza, born in Medea, Algeria, arrived in France at the age of five. She devoted herself to dance and created her own company in 1989. Being established in her own inner development, her artistic path calls into question the presence of bodies in space. Her works are presented worldwide and she is regularly invited to prestigious festivals and venues in France, such as Festival of Avignon (2009) and Biennale de la danse de Lyon (2010). She currently works towards the creation of a dance platform between Algeria and France. 

Co-presented with Institut Francais.