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HOME AS DES(S)ERT
Since our semester started, Corona/COVID-19 has directly affected the way people work, more and more from their homes, their bedrooms and kitchens. For the first time going to art school meant meeting online in a virtual digital space. In this way, we spent some months cooking weekly online, as a performative collective attempt to familiarise and appropriate the virtual realm from our kitchens, to deal with the pandemic, while corporal exercises were also incorporated leading to class discussions of daily and urgent matters. Then we hosted virtually two talks, the first by Laurence Abu Hamdan, and the second by Forensic Architecture to understand their works more deeply, specially that they deal with investigations, violence and matters that we estimate highly important to engage with. Pauline Oliveros’ Deep Listening has become extremely relevant in those days, and in echo with the works of Abu Hamdan and Forensic Architecture.
This continued to inspire us and investigate urgent matters: on one hand the Corona facts and mysteries, the impact on individuals, our families, the economy, conspiracy theories and fake news at times of highly racist state crimes, and on the other hand, personnal bodily urgencies that we and the students face around those days. Hence for Rundgang 2020, we collectively designed a 3D home which we call “Home as Des(s)ert”, whereby each student has a personal room to share her/his/their work in relation to our semester.
Questions we discussed during the last semester from our homes: Which laws in Europe and outside Europe are being forged to control the pandemic? How is that affecting our privacy? Our bodies at home? How are democratic states changing their way of being democratic amidst all this and getting closer to police states? Why and how does Corona affect people from more fragile and coloured backgrounds? How are people managing their timely and lively demonstrations such as Black Lives Matter, and demonstrations in Lebanon and elsewhere in the world amidst the pandemic? How can we still welcome and care for refugees and marginalised people, people who have no homes, no more income, in such days? What’s the situation of women in such times? How is China dealing with the matter now? How is Trump moving around with his elections amid Corona disasters in the USA? Why are people criticising G5 speedy internet? And what if we refrain from using the internet? How is this all transforming our current lives and how can we build something positive out of what's happening?
In our common library space artist talks with Laurence Abu Hamdan and Kishan San from Forensic Architecture can be found alongside with texts reflecting on the Forensic Architecture is a multidisciplinary research group, using architectural techniques and technologies to investigate cases of state violence and violations of human rights around the world. Abu Hamdan works with sound, sound documentaries, video, and installation. Another inspiring artist is Pauline Oliveros, who has written texts for generations to learn more in depth about how to practice Deep Listening. The American feminist sociologist Donna Haraway makes no distinction between people, animals and machines. Today, as we experience living in COVID-19 lockdown, we ponder upon her ideas and questions "What do we need to survive earth? And how do we need to act? Her long ago asked questions are at stake more than ever today we find.
Participants: Aly Landwehr, Annika Steiner, Birka Steinmetz, Cat Woywod, Franziska Ullrich, Hannes Drescher, Henrik Seidel, Ines Schäfer, Isabel Veganzones, ja&nein-Bande/Alwine Klooz, JueJun Chen, Kai Bannert, Kollektiv Kontrast/Herr v. Rehtanz, Lucine Moschref, Melina Becker, Mounira Al Solh, Ömer Yağmur, Tanja Böhme, Tanja Schomaker, Tristan Marie Biallas, Yasmeen Shirazi, Yiğit Yilmaz
The common library
Mounira Al Solh / Tanja Schomaker
Artist talks with Laurence Abu Hamdan and Forensic Architecture can be found alongside with texts reflecting on the Corona pandemic by Agamben, “Bifo” Berardi and Preciado. Two films broach the issue on historic pandemics such as plague and cholera. Another inspiring is Pauline Oliveros´s practice of Deep Listening. And Donna Haraway long ago asked questions that are at stake more than ever today, we find.
Unruheraum des Denkens
ja&nein-Bande / Alwine Klooz
An inaccessible room full of mirrors. Displays whose black back is a closed window into nothingness and resistance. Transcendence blurs with its reflection in the space of visibility, proving the crystalline opacity of reality. The tiny space between surface and back is what we call the world - or truth.
[Short description and audio in reference to Marcus Steinweg. "30 Splitter". In: Jean-Luc Nancy (Wilfried Dickhoff). Gott Gerechtigkeit Liebe Schönheit. Vier Vorträge für Kinder. Berlin: wdpress, 2020, p. 183, 192-195.]
"Suskunluğun değerini anlamak için sessizlik ve hatıra hayatın şartsız bir parçası olması lazım.
Yalnızlık aslında sevimli bir kabahat olmalı."
-Gerçekten gerek var mı?
"To understand the value of nonspeech, silence and memory must be an unconditional part of life.
Loneliness must actually be a cute fault."
What is all that for?
Investigations on the Past
Kollektiv K O N T R A S T / Herr v. Rehtanz
As the first stage of a long-term project on the topic of right-wing violence, we examine the past of Kassel during the Nazi era. This room deals with the Salzmann factory (former textile factory). A collection of various documents is intended to shed light on the history of forced laborers.
Family interventions and invitations
Setzen sich traumatische Erfahrungen in nachfolgenden Generationen fort?
Haben wir eine Chance es herauszufinden, wenn die Vergangenheit im Verborgenen liegt?
Ist jetzt eine gute Zeit, um so viele Fragen zu stellen?
Do traumatic experiences continue in subsequent generations?
Do we have a chance to find out if the past is hidden?
Is now a good time to ask so many questions?
"Mi abuelo tenía un campo de naranjos"
At the end of March during the lockdown my grandfather passed away. I was in Germany and he was in Spain and we couldn't say goodbye. At first, I didn't know how to deal with my feelings, everything was beyond me. But little by little, as I assimilate the situation, everything became more organised.
Those four walls with the furniture are me.
"Queer Ancestors" Radio Project
restored Music by queer American and German Artists of the 1920s-1930s
During times of growing attacks on LGBTQIA+ Rights during the COVID-19 Pandemic, this project reconnects us with those that came before us in order to take their legacies with us into the future.
"Hallo, How Are you Doing"?
In times of health concerns, "a girl" forces the quesiton that most people don't know how to answer: "How are you doing"? And does she even care?
Room of sexy worth
* According to the federal government, body-hugging services that are not medically necessary are currently prohibited. Many federal states have explicitly prohibited all types of body-fitting, sexual services: Despite the inexact wording of the nationwide regulation and the different wording in the regulations of the federal states (here, for example, Berlin), we can currently believe that a de facto prohibition of any kind of sex work going out with physical customer contact.
FOR THOSE WHO OWN A PHYSICAL BODY
Visual culture in mainstream media influences the perception of our own bodies, which alienates us more and more from what we really are — a composition of bones and flesh, which is formed by the society we’re born into.
And even though our bodies are socially distanced, they are our strongest political tool when we start to acknowledge what each body goes through for the sake of living with that body.
The sound piece in this room was produced and mastered by Konstantin Frey aka schlimme musik.
(use headphones if possible)
Tristan Marie Biallas
In meiner Wahrnehmung waren die Fäden zwischen den Leben IRL und URL noch nie so verwoben wie jetzt. Ich nehme sie auf und folge ihnen durch die Zeit. Ich nehme sie auf und webe meine Fragen hinein.
Sie finden den IRLspiegel meiner Webstube im Biotop Zack, Frankfurter Straße 203, Kassel
"Your Object Is My Subject"
The daily confrontation with one's own belongings during the lockdown. The environment in the room speaks nonverbally. Human being dissolves.
Schieb mich ab und tritt mich an,
So an deine Wahrheit gewöhn' mich ein.
How would you react if you had received a deportation letter all of a sudden, just before finishing your degree? Surprise! Maybe you could get some help from the responsible university institutions to correct the mistakes? Oh no, they have been quite incapable mostly (I wish the secretariats would work as well as the PR!!!). Better keep them out because half of what they say is wrong or useless: You don't want to feel worse! All you have is you and people believing in you. This is a fight against the system in which everybody truts so much so that it can not make any mistakes(!). But here we are: A chain of bureaucratical mistakes and incapabilities almost cost this life which I've been building with everything I had since I was 15.
Zoological Room – animals during lockdown
How do animals communicate if they are not able to touch and see each other?
Animals are using a variatiy of calls for communication, from ultrasonic to infrasonic sound. These sounds are capable of crossing natural borders from air to water and to the ground.
The deep infrasonic calls of blue whales can travel up to 11.000 miles.
And there is no ocean basin on earth that is that big.
(use headphones if possible)
Notes about the items on my desk
The Hanged Man was the card I draw first during the last Tarot reading I did with my mom. For me, it fits my personal and the general situation perfectly. The card indicates that you are in a situation where you are stuck. This might result in a period of indecision, waiting for the right time to come, but also having the chance of changing perspective and looking at your situation from a different angle, letting go of the past in order to progress forward – or sideways, for that matter...maybe while rearranging the items on your desk ;).
Writing a play can be a way to reflect on personal experiences as well as social and ecological aftereffects of the pandemic, research being the first step. this room contains the voices of people that have been affected in their work and activism in different ways. click on the phantom drawings to unravel the audio and learn more about what the interviewees have to say. in two weeks, a resulting theater scene will be displayed during the study profile interESD's 'present and future conference'.
Ines Schäfer / Franziska Ullrich
Was ist Zuhause /
Wo ist dein Zuhause /
Schau auf die Straße /
Was ist, wenn du kein Zuhause hast /
Wo sind die Grenzen /
Schau nach draußen /
Sie sind zu /
Halte dich fest /
Du bist so fern /
Du kannst mich sehen /
Nimm was du brauchst
where is the body /
where are you /
what is home /
where is your home /
look at the street /
what if you don't have a home /
where are the borders /
look outside /
they are closed /
hold on tight /
you're so far away /
you can see me /
take what you need
18.7. & 24.7.2020, 16 Uhr Performance am Königsplatz in Kassel
Corona time: there are circulating many pictures, texts, information around the topic. Many contain manipulations, which I usually cannot name concretely. Often it is only a feeling: I am manipulated. Shocked that many of my friends believe the presented information and do not notice the manipulation, I started to do researches. My room is dedicated to the critical examination of news and information: if one knows manipulation techniques, one becomes more and more aware of them.
Stones on the sea
Apart from the lies, the psycho-social basis for the existence of totalitarianism is the silence of the majority. Silence is a mutation of lies. The brave confession of a female doctor inspired an Internet movement that, though fleeting, should not be allowed to be forgotten.
What about chalk?
Yasmeen Shirazi & Rike Suhr
How can we protest in times of this pandemic? Which kinds of interventions are still possible?
We distributed self-made chalk in the Nordstadt of Kassel - an experiment which lead many people to participate in individual as well as collective public statements and debates, in writing, in drawing and in questioning. The project developed into a political and social platform of exchange.
© Kunsthochschule Kassel, Summer Semester/Rundgang 2020
Class Mounira Al Solh and Tanja Schomaker
Part of: Angesichts der momentanen Situation
3-D Design: Hannes Drescher
with Melina Becker and JueJun Chen
Design Webpage: Melina Becker
Coding Webpage: Hannes Drescher