On the trail of embodied memories | Tracing the memories our bodies hold
Curators, artists and cultural workers deal with identities, belonging and embodied memories from diasporic, decolonial and queer perspectives. A research, archiving, exhibition and performance project that involves over 40 people. The results, encounters and questions that arose from the projects will be discussed during the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL presented and celebrated from April 8th to 18th.
Curators, artists, and cultural practitioners explore identities, belonging and embodied memories through diasporic, decolonial and queer perspectives. A research, archiving, exhibition and performance project involving 40+ people. The outcomes, encounters and queries which have come out of the projects will be presented and celebrated during the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL from 8th - 18th April.
Artistic Director / Art Direction: Madhumita Nandi
THE PROJECTS | THE PROJECTS
Who will we be when you stop telling us?
After two weeks of residency at Oyoun, Cornelia Becker and Kerim Melik Becker go on stage - they read, sing, move and play - and embody their questions and the answers to them in words and music. “A loved one dies. How do his closest relatives - partner and son - experience and process the time of dying and mourning? Dealing with this leads to existential experiences and, with the help of various artistic approaches, searches for answers that can comfort and heal. "
Following a two-week residency at Oyoun, Cornelia Becker and Kerim Melik Becker will take to the stage - reading, singing, making movements and playing - embodying their questions and sought answers with lyrical and musical language. “A loved one this. How do his next of kin - partner and son - experience and process the time of dying, of mourning? The exploration leads into these existential experiences and, with the help of various artistic approaches, seeks answers that can comfort and heal. "
Untangle & Mirage
During the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL, interdisciplinary artist Avril Stormy Unger Avril will present two world premieres :: Mirage, a performance intervention in an exclusive shopping center in Bangalore, India, highlights structural inequalities in access to basic needs such as health care and clean water. The long-term video work Untangle, on the other hand, deals with the redefinition of self and identity by bringing internalized social expectations to light.
Interdisciplinary artist Avril Stormy Unger will premiere two new works during the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL: Mirage - a performance intervention at an upmarket mall in Bangalore, India, highlighting structural inequalities in accessing basic necessities such as healthcare and clean water. And Untangle - a durational video work based on the redefinition of self and identity, through the journey of unpacking internalized societal expectations.
Tjef Sema Paut Neteru
For EMBODIED TEMPORALITIES, Nane invited people to embark on a yoga journey with her that follows the “Tjef Sema Paut Neteru” system based on ancient Egyptian knowledge. This somatic technique deepens the connection of mind, soul, and body in a way that celebrates human autonomy in cultivating inner strength and peace. The participants will record their experiences in various diary formats - a selection will be published. During the opening ceremony of the festival, Nane will guide us in a meditation.
For EMBODIED TEMPORALITIES, Nane Kahle invited participants to join her on a yoga journey, following the “Tjef Sema Paut Neteru” System based on Ancient Egyptian knowledge. This somatic technology heightens the connection with your mind, your spirit, your body and your inner world in a way that celebrates your autonomy in cultivating inner strength and peace. Participants will be recording their experiences in different journal formats - a selection of which will be published. During the festival's opening ceremony, Nane will lead us in meditation.
The Body Undone: In Conversation with Loss
Sana Rizvi is curating a program of screenings and discussions for the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL, which deals with different types of loss - with a focus on narrative through new voices. With the help of the medium of film, an embodied memory itself, it invites us to reflect: Can we discover new possibilities in dealing with loss and grief by opening up spaces for these feelings in which they can manifest themselves and find recognition?
Sana Rizvi will curate a program of film screenings and discussions for the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL. It will look at various kinds of loss held by different bodies - with a focus on storytelling from new voices. Using film, an embodied memory in itself, an invitation is made to reflect on the question: can we discover new possibilities in the workings of loss and grief by allowing spaces for these feelings to be held and acknowledged in an embodied way?
Taking Root in the Flesh
Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma is curating an evening of the festival: with Asmaa Sbou, Jessica Korp and Thokozani Heidi Sincuba she discusses the choreographies and cartographies of belonging. And she presents a new performance piece together with Purity Mkhize. Gugulethu's festival contributions invite you to think about melancholy, about psycho-spiritual instability and the color black.
Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma, was invited to curate an evening of the festival program: For a panel discussion exploring the choreographies and cartographies of belonging, she will be joined by Asmaa Sbou, Jessica Korp and Thokozani Heidi Sincuba. She will also present a new performance work in collaboration with Purity Mkhize. Gugulethu''s festival contributions invite contemplations on melancholia, psycho-spiritual instability and the color black.
Ahmad Hijazi (Cyclomorphosis), a Lebanese multidisciplinary performer living in Berlin, investigates queerness with Ilk عِلْق from a queer Arab perspective and searches for clues through centuries of queer life in Arab and Muslim societies. Ilk عِلْق presents a queer Arab-Muslim vision of the future that brings about healing: history is rewritten on its own terms, and queer Arab identity, almost always perceived in a distorted way and misinterpreted, is being (re) established.
With Ilk عِلْق, Ahmad Hijazi (Cyclomorphosis), a Berlin-based Lebanese multidisciplinary performer, is investigating queerness from a queer Arab perspective, tracking the roots of queer lives lived in Arabic and Muslim societies going back centuries. Ilk عِلْق will set out a queer Arab Muslim futuristic vision, that starts with healing through rewriting histories on one's own terms and (re) building an identity that has been much misinterpreted and distorted.
+ Mansur Ajang
Go Find Me
Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley is a black trans artist, game developer and mother. As part of EMBODIED TEMPORALITIES she is developing “Go Find Me”: a digital archive of black trans people. “The way that the stories and experiences of trans people are archived add to the violence we experience during our lives. An archive that preserves black trans experiences needs to be careful not to restore and focus the trauma. Archives that are created by trans people for trans people can enable us to grasp our existence more precisely. "
Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley is a London- and Berlin-based Black trans artist, game developer and mother. For EMBODIED TEMPORALITIES, she has been working on “Go Find Me” - a digital archive of Black Trans people. "If at all, the way trans people are archived reinforces or centers the violence we experienced whilst living. An archive that holds a Black trans experience needs to be careful about not recreating and centering trauma. Archives created by Trans people for Trans people can enable us to more accurately record our existence. "
Geography of Hate
With Geography of Hate, artist-activist Sujatro Ghosh examines what drives hate - namely the hatred directed against a specific religious community in a specific geographic location, in this case India. His goal is to curate a museum of remembrance to ensure that injustices are not swept under the rug but are captured in the collective cultural memory, bearing witness to the horrors of human history.
With Geography of Hate, Artist-Activist Sujatro Ghosh explores what powers hatred - specifically, hatred directed towards a particular religious community within a specific geographical location - in this case, the Indian subcontinent. The goal is to curate a museum of remembrance, to ensure that injustice isn't swept under the carpet but recorded within collective cultural memory as a testament to the horrors of human history.
+ Lalson Nghaite, Arijit Bhattacharyya, Sudeshna Saha Roy, Bernd Lützeler
DCADV (Decolonial Contemporary African Diasporic Visions)
During a residency at Oyoun, multidisciplinary Afrocentric artist Exocé Kasongo developed new works as well as recording short documentaries about his artistic process, street performances and previous collaborations. With his work he would like to inspire himself and other members of the African diaspora to (re) connect with African cultures and traditions in a contemporary way - a new Africa in search of cultural, historical, artistic and spiritual reparation.
During an art residency at Oyoun, multidisciplinary Afrocentric Artist Exocé Kasongo will delevop new works and record short documentaries about his process, his street performances and past collaborations. He works to inspire himself and others in the African Diaspora to (re) connect with African cultures and traditions in a contemporary way - a new Africa in search of cultural, historical, artistic and spiritual restitution.
+ Etsuki, Ibrahima Ndiaye, Souleyman, Astan Meyer
Black Post Box
Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma and Dylan 'Hunter Chee' Greene are curating an interactive installation in collaboration with video artist Ayanda Duma. The BLACK POST BOX is an audiovisual experience - a spatialized feeling of melancholy - which invites participants to communicate and hear what is hidden in their lived experiences of race, culture and migration. The audience's reflections are written down and sent through the flame to the ancestors during the closing ceremony of the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL.
Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma and Dylan 'Hunter Chee' Greene co-curate an immersive installation in collaboration with video artist Ayanda Duma. The BLACK POST BOX is an audio-visual experience - a spatialized feeling of melancholy, - that invites individual participants to communicate and listen to what has been concealed within their lived experiences of race, culture, and immigration. Audience reflections will be written down and mailed through flame to the ancestors during the EMBODIED ARTS FESTIVAL closing ceremony.
Ascension - Intimate Bodies Forbidden Stories
Dr. Maiada Aboud works with seven participants in a series of workshops on identity, femininity and pain, taboos around menstruation, equality and social change. The project results include a series of testimonies and a new performance that will be shown during the festival. In addition, Maiada takes up a series of discussions on gender and taboos, which will be published in the run-up to the festival.
Following an open call, Dr. Maiada Aboud has been working with seven participants in a series of workshops focusing on identity, femininity, pain, taboos around menstruation, equal rights and social change. Project outcomes will include a series of testimony videos and a new performance which will be showcased during the festival. Maiada is also recording a series of discussions on gender and taboos which we will be releasing in the run up to the festival.
+ Antonia Führ, Christina Gabriela Galli, Maria Trinks, Uli Pilwax
Ancestral body noise
Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma, cultural researcher, future folk musician and lifelong psycho-spiritual student, guides five participants, who identify themselves as part of the BIPOC diaspora in Berlin, through a six-week intercultural healing process via biomythography and reconnection with ancestors. In this process, the remnants of rituals are honored through kinesthetic and vocal intimacy, harnessing the power of collective creativity that has developed in an era of social distancing amid political and social resistance.
Cultural researcher, future-folk musician and life-long psycho-spiritual student, Gugulethu 'Dumama' Duma is guiding 5 participants who identify as part of the BIPOC diaspora in Berlin through a 6 week long, intercultural healing incubator on biomythography and ancestral reconnection. The focus will be on honoring the remnants of ritual through kinaesthetic and vocal intimacy, engaging the power of a collective creativity developed amidst political and social resistance in a time of social distancing.
+ Duduetsang 'blk.banaana' Lamola, Sailesh Naidu, Suelen Calonga, Indrani Ashe, Yin Cheng-Kokott, KooChaa.