Konteksty (Postartistic Congress) Launches Program at Floating

May 31, 2024

What can be done with art today? This is the question Konteksty (Postartistic Congress) explores in its public program at Floating University in Berlin. The three-day event will take place from June 6th to 9th, 2024 and will offer various activities including lectures, workshops, screenings, performances and reading and listening sessions.

Konteksty. Postartistic Soft Seminar 2023, Sokołowsko // Photo by Karolina Pawelczyk

Previous iterations of the Postartistic Congress were convened in the village of Sokołowsko in Poland—alongside the renowned performance festival Konteksty—and the Gwangju Biennale in South Korea. For these occasions, the congress showcased artists and practitioners whose work appears in different and unexpected forms—including climate activism, education, beekeeping, political campaigning, poetry and more—and pushes the boundaries of traditional media. With a focus on process and method, the postartistic assembly and its participants aim to keep art alive, by emphasizing collective work, self-organizing and self-learning, the exchange of knowledge as well as situated and embodied practices.

Konteksty. Postartistic Soft Seminar 2023, Sokołowsko // Photo by Karolina Pawelczyk

This year’s congress will kick off on Thursday, June 6th with an opening event at Zabriskie Bookstore in Kreuzberg, which will host a conversation around the ninth issue of ‘Robida’—a situated and multilingual cultural magazine published by Robida collective, who are based in Topolò/Topolove, a village on the border between Italy and Slovenia. Digging into the dirt of the latest issue, which is about soil, members of the collective and the bookstore, as well as Marianna Dobkowska and Rosario Talevi, will discuss the six categories of the issue, each proposed by one editor of the magazine: symbolic, feminist, theoretical, dwelling, contaminated and tactile soils. There will also be a “food intervention” by Jasmine Parsley and Paula Erstman.

Robida Magazine #9: Soil, 2023 // Courtesy of Robida Collective

On Friday afternoon, the program continues with a “Kinship Walk” in Hasenheide, led by Sina Ribak, Lorena Carràs and Jean-Marie Dhur, as a way to approach the idea of nature rights. On the route, participants may encounter an oak, a pond, or a hawk—how would the latter negotiate their needs? Learning the landscape through different practices and methods, including walking, collective situated readings and a listening exercise, prompt us to take a more inclusive perspective. The program extends well into the evening at Floating, with an illustrated lecture by Kuba Szreder, a performative feast by Eliza Chojnacka and Martix Navrot, a sonic ritual by spalarnia and a screening after dark of Deirdre O’Mahony’s film ‘The Quickening,’ about the reality of farming life and the centrality of soil to human, animal and insect life.

On Saturday afternoon, more inspiring events are offered, including a plein-air painting session and composting ceremony with Ana Vogelfang and Julieta García Vazquez, a workshop on data and plant collections with Maja Demska and Krystyna Jędrzejewska-Szmek, a climate walk with Centrala, a polyvocal dialogue between Ana Vogelfang, Julieta García Vazquez and ZAKOLE and a performative soirée of Alicja Czyczel, Bartosz Jakubowski and Jagna Nawrocka (members of the Queer Academy of Movement).

Konteksty. Postartistic Congress 2021, Sokołowsko // Photo by Karolina Zajączkowska

On Sunday from noon until 2pm, the final event of the congress will take place on Tempelhofer Feld. Centrum Centrum will conduct a game inspired by ‘The Game on Morel’s Hill’—a participatory event, mythologized as a vital part of neo-avant-garde art history in Poland. During the Young Creators’ Encounter organised in 1971, a group of artists, tired of the endless discussions, decided to play an outdoor visual game. Two teams—Black (“spiritual”) and White (“rational”)—were tasked with formulating non-verbal messages using artistic materials, fabrics and strings. Each move in the game was then interpreted by the second team, providing an impulse for another demonstration.

MOPI (Museo Ocasional de un Paisaje Increíble) on Isla Clucellas

With a full and diverse program of events, Konteksty (Postartistic Congress) hones our consideration of the different dimensions of art practice today. Citing Allan Kaprow in his essay ‘The Education of Un-Artist. Part 1,’ the organizers reiterate: “Non art is more art than art art.” Kaprow concludes the text with the lament: “Artists of the world, drop out! You have nothing to lose but your professions.” With this sentiment as a backdrop, they ask: are we ready to move on?

Festival Info

Floating University

Konteksty (Postartistic Congress)
Festival: June 6-9, 2024
Lilienthalstraße 32, 10965 Berlin, click here for map

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