In his latest performance, Giacomo Veronesi collaborates with citizens residing in the Estonian-Russian border city of Narva, some of whom have been living with gray “aliensʼ passports” since the collapse of the Soviet Union. In a time newly obsessed with maps and borders, Veronesi invites the audience to engage with undefined states of citizenship and their potential labels in an age of war, challenging the notion of Europe and its perceived boundaries.
Performers: Lena Pavlenko, Olga Kirn, Natalja Orehhova, Jelena Sergejeva, as well as changing members of the artistic team
Concept and devising: Giacomo Veronesi
Spatial concept and costumes: Anita Kremm, Liisamari Viik
Movement: Kirte Jõesaar
Sound design: Kymbali Williams
Artistic collaboration: Serafima Kolodkina
Commissioned by steirischer herbst ʼ23, Produced by steirischer herbst ʼ23 in coproduction with Vaba Lava, With the kind support of Linda Kaks OÜ and the Estonian Embassy in Vienna
Memento Mori is a participatory performance that deals with the theme of Death. How do we, as individuals and society, deal with the fact that we will all come to an inevitable end? How does the quality of our presence and experience of life become affected by the fact that we constantly forget that we will all die?
Memento Mori is an invitation to come and perform your last dance with your own death. A danse macabre where prime ministers, supermarket cashiers, vagabonds, CEOs, elders, healthy young athletes, fools, and erudites alike join in. Regardless of your status, wealth, or accomplishments in life, death comes equally for everyone.
This piece is born from fear. From the fear of forgetting. From the fear of being at my deathbed and realizing that “when I was alive I saw nothing of life”.
Dance. Dance at last.
Oh, dance, dance to your last.
Your last breath. Dance.
When Death comes, may it find us alive.
Created by: Javier Cárcel Hidalgo-Saavedra and Anita Kremm
Performer: Javier Cárcel Hidalgo-Saavedra
Video artist: Anita Kremm
Sound artist: Kymbali Williams
A Safe Space For Male Bodies
Performers: Philipp Finsterer, Christoph Griesser, Selman Kličić, Gordan Kukić, Kenneth Constance Loe, Johannes Mayrhofer, Peter Roll, Marwin Strutz
Concept: Giacomo Veronesi, Sammy Van den Heuvel, Anita Kremm
Physical work: Giacomo Veronesi
Space: Sammy Van den Heuvel
Media design: Anita Kremm
Commissioned and produced by steirischer herbst ’22
In the performance for the spaces of Neue Galerie Graz’s BRUSEUM, Veronesi collaborates with a group of men who have been trained in the Austrian military service, the Bundesheer, drawing upon his background in experimental theater and acting techniques. Creating a “safe space” in precarious times, he invites the audience to take a closer look at the shifting perception of the male, potentially militarized body in the context of an approaching war.
The performance challenges the images of heroism and masculinity associated with the military and explores the incomprehensible contradictions of young male bodies that might be trained, armed, and finally destroyed in the name of peace.
Giacomo Veronesi, A Safe Space for Male Bodies (2022), performance, photo: Clara Wildberger
You Have Only A Moment
The aim of the project is to create functioning artistic compositions in front of the spectators, while at the same time carrying out a creative research into the collective memory of tastes, most of which are unknown and unconscious.
It is a collection that is not established by the creation of new objects, but by the setting the scene for an infinite number of combinations from different elements of the surrounding reality.
The deconstructed fashion game You Have Only A Moment is, in its essence, anti-fashion. The game is based on a sense of composition, speed and the courage to make decisions. Participants in the game have an average of 1 minute to create an outfit live on stage, which is not only inspired by aesthetic canons, but also plays with deconstructed forms and associative colours, silhouettes and rhythmic choices.
This technique was first put into practice a few years ago and has been experimented with in various locations to document the gradual changes and impact of a moment in time on the compositions created.
Questioning the growing pressure to simplify interpersonal communication and the reign of verbal description as the primary means of ‘mainstream communication’, we have deliberately chosen a different path. The aim of the Lab of Figurative Thought is to explore non-linguistic forms of communication through the use of the visual arts.
It is a collection that does not establish itself by creating new items, but by setting the scene for an infinite array of combinations of different elements, creating the joy of discovery and the possibility of participating in collective conversations. The decision to create the compositions from recycled pieces was a matter of principle.
The Lab of Figurative Thought (based at the Estonian Academy of Arts) has spent the last two years collecting objects from our surrounding reality, analysing the information they contain and (re)conceptualising them on different levels of meaning.
Each object that surrounds us has colour, form, weight and texture, and therefore possesses different associative and visual-semiotic potentials.
The result of the compositions that unfold on stage can be seen as a self-reflection of the young artists, as well as a periodically renewed and evolving work of contemporary art.
Artists: Anita Kremm, Linda Mai Kari, Kristel Zimmer and Liisamari Viik