May19. | 13:51
Between May 25-31, the Athens Biennale 2015-2017 “OMONOIA” resumes its activity with the second, and final, opening of Synapse 2.
In this condensed 7-day event, AB5to6 continues with a series of talks and projects inspired by the “OMONOIA” curatorial framework.
The programme begins on Wednesday 25 May in Bageion with a lecture by international curator Vasif Kortun who will talk about his experience in setting up and running SALT Istanbul, one of the most exciting cultural spaces in Turkey that brings together modern and contemporary art, archiving and research. Kortun was also the founding director of Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center, Istanbul, which he initiated in 2001. For more information on SALT, please press here.
On 27-28 May, the Athens Biennale is co-organising a symposium with the Onassis Cultural Centre, within the framework of the Fast Forward Festival in Stegi. OMONOIA Programme Director Massimiliano Mollona will be co-curating the symposium with Katia Arfara of the OCC. “Art at the borders: spatial politics and post-colonial strategies in the Middle East” will be a two day event with artists’ talks, screenings, keynote lectures and panels which will focus on the practices reflecting the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East. The first day of the symposium will be held at the Upper Stage of the OCC and the second at Bageion. For more information on the symposium, please press here.
The programme will continue with artist/architect Sofia Dona who will be holding an open presentation in Bageion on May 29. The project “AKINITO” is a research-based collaborative project on new models of co-habitation in the city of Athens. A working group of architects, lawyers, urban planners, economists and people that have already realised house projects will analyze previous experiences and processes, in order to create one or more possible new models of inhabitation in Athens. For more information on Sofia Dona, please press here.
On May 30, internationally acclaimed, Chicago-based, artist Theaster Gates will be giving a performance lecture. Gates has developed an expanded practice that includes space development, object making, performance and critical engagement with various urban publics. He is the founder of the non-profit Rebuild Foundation, and is currently a Professor in the Department of Visual Art and the Director of Arts and Public Life at the University of Chicago. His lecture performance will revolve around the areas of gentrification and urbanism. For more information on Theaster Gates, please press here.
Throughout the period of this second opening of Synapse 2, Oliver Ressler’s new short film will be screening at the ground floor of Bageion. “Emergency Turned Upside-Down” confronts the cynical and inhumane discourse that calls refugees’ presence in Europe an “emergency” when that word should be applied to the war, terror and economic strangulation that forced people to move. The film discusses borders performing their everyday function: managing, calibrating and governing global passages of people; dividing and “zoning” different types of migrants and non-migrants, who depend on the trickle of income squeezed from endless work. For more information on Oliver Ressler, please press here. Further, during the same period, Bageion residents continue their work with exhibitions, workshops and various artistic actions.
The programme of this final part of Synapse 2 will be complimented by Puerto Rico, a project that will be held in the new spaces of the Athens Biennale opposite the Varvakios Market, given to AB5to6 by the Municipal Council of Athens.Realised by artists Alexis Fidetzis, Panos Sklavenitis and Kostis Stafylakis, the project wishes to explore aspects of the (self)exoticisation of Greece through various representations of the country as quasi–Latin American. Theproject will consist of two parts. First, the opening of the Nick Boricua Museum, which will be dedicated to the emblematic figure of Nick Boricua, a Greek diplomat, intellectual and revolutionary and one of the leaders of the Grito deLares revolution in Puerto Rico against the Spanish Empire.The Museum’s opening will be followed by a Cabaret night with dance, food, performances, short speeches, music acts and Greek music.
Lastly, within the framework of Synapse 2, a number of artists commissioned to create art for the Biennale will be visiting Athens, including Dexter Sinister (David Reinfurt and Stuart Bailey) from New York and Wendelien van Oldenborgh from Rotterdam.
For any further information and press inquiries, please contact Rodis Savvakis at the Athens Biennale Press Office.