Performances: Dan Perjovschi, Lia Perjovschi, Teodor Graur

The event is part of Zona &.

Dan Perjovschi

With and Without Romania
A performative presentation about the context and practice of working with the body

“Right after the Revolution, when we were all broke, the artist’s body was the cheapest material. And the most radical. After all, people died for freedom in this country. In 1993, at the Zona 1 Festival, I tattooed on my arm the name of my country, as a reaction to the toxic nationalistic context, while in 2004 (Zona 4) I decided to take it out, as a response to my new condition of being an international artist. In the meantime, Romania had become an EU member and the transition from communism to capitalism was supposedly over. The local and international context surrounding my performances changed significantly. I no longer work with my body, but people and artists continue to tattoo my drawings on their bodies. In 2020, I got my Covid vaccine on the very same spot on my arm. My contribution to ZONA & looks at the history and post-history of my original action.”

Dan Perjovschi lives and works in Bucharest and Sibiu. He draws critically and with humor on the walls of contemporary art institution all over the world, commenting on the social, political and cultural events of our global society. He had personal exhibitions at Tate Modern London, MoMA New York, Macro Roma, Moderna Museet Stockholm, Reykyavik Art Museum, Vannabbe Eindhoven, Ludwig Köln, Kunsthalle Hamburg, Nasher Museum Duke University or Kiasma Helsinki, as well as group exhibitions at Centre Pompidou Paris, Tate Liverpool, Castello di Rivoli Torino, MoMA San Francisco, MUAC Mexico, MAM Varsovia, MCBA Lausanne, or MOT Tokyo. He took part in Documenta 15 and in many Biennales, among which those in Istanbul, Venice, Sao Paulo, Moscow, Sydney, Lyon, Dublin, Iași, Timișoara and Jakarta. He was awarded the George Maciunas in 2004, the ECF Princess Margriet Award, Amsterdam 2012 (with Lia Perjovschi), and in 2016 the Rosa Schapire Art Prize, awarded by the Kunsthalle Hamburg. Perjovschi is the laureate of the Foundation for Human Gheorghe Ursu (1999) and of the Civil Society Gala (2016). Since 1990 until today he has published his drawings in Revista 22, Bucharest. Since 2010 he has been involved in the public art project The Horizontal Wall in Sibiu. A permanent drawing installation made by Perjovschi, created in 2009, is exhibited at The National Library of Technology (NTK) in Prague.

Lia Perjovschi

I Am Fighting for My Right to Be Different  

“I revisit – by deconstructing it – my 1993 performance which took place at the Zona Festival in Timișoara. I place it in the general context of the 1990s, but I also integrate it in my professional trajectory, linking it with the other performances I did at the Zona Festival, in 1991, 1996, and 2004. I will use a PowerPoint with text and images, explaining them. I will highlight my work from 1993 (for which I staged a dialogue with my double, a human dummy made of cloth). For this intervention, I bring the dummy with me, but it is an altogether different performance, because I am in a different space and time (2023).”

Lia Perjovschi (b. 1961, Sibiu, Romania), lives and works in Sibiu and Bucharest. She studied at the National Academy of Arts, Bucharest, between 1987-1993. She is the founder and coordinator of CAA/CAA (Contemporary Art Archive and Centre for Art Analysis) an organic work-in-progress project (under different names since 1985) and KM (Knowledge Museum), an interdisciplinary research project from 1999-today. Her activity can be summarised as a journey from her physical body to the universal body of knowledge and was shown in more than 700 exhibitions, lectures, workshops around the world. While her artistic practice comprises various media, Lia Perjovschi has been concerned with producing opportunities for intellectual exchange. Among other venues, she has exhibited at the Ivan Gallery, Bucharest (2022), Muzeum Susch, Switzerland (2020); Kunsthaus Hamburg and Museum der Moderne Salzburg (both 2016); MUSAC, León, Spain (2015); Nasher Museum of Art, North Carolina, USA, and Bienal de São Paulo (both 2014). She has participated at the Zona Festival in Timișoara in 1993, 1996, 1999 and 2003.

Teodor Graur

Revizitare Speaking to Europe (From Europe)  

The author reprises the idea of his landmark performance from 1993, made for the Zona 1 Festival. The action consists of a monologue, as the obstinately repeated question „Hello, hello, do you hear me?”, addressed to a desired interlocutor, is left unanswered. After a series of unsuccessful attempts, while the artist moves inside the assigned perimeter and changes the position of the transmitter (to better capture the reception signals), the action stops. The second part is inspired, like the first one, by today’s international news, looking at the tensions and provocations which characterize the world’s geopolitical environment. Due to the fact that the armed defense of modern states imposes itself as an objective necessity nowadays, a new nationalist spirit is rising. Military parades are greeted by enthusiastic popular reactions. The hymns and marches accompanying these parades are regarded by many as veritable “masterpieces”, supporting this spirit. With this kind of soundtrack playing on the background, the artist proposes a new choreographic show.

Teodor Graur practices contemporary art since the 1980s. During the dictatorship, he reacted against the system through different artistic means (such as performance). Within the next decade of “transition”, he founded the Euroartist Bucharest group (together with Olimpiu Bandalac) and led an experiment-driven training program for students (STUDIO498), offering an alternative to the traditional curricula. In the 2000s he was invited to a series of international exhibitions which thematized the region of Central and Eastern Europe (such as In Search of Balkania, 2002 and Blood and Honey, 2003). He also founded the project space HT003 Gallery, which showcased the work of young artists. Within the last decade, he abandoned the narrative forms of representation (photography, painting), and favored instead spatial constructions and designed objects, presented in installations. He exhibited in various contexts, among which Sandwich, Bucharest (2023, 2021); Bienala Art Encounters, Timișoara (2017, 2015); Nicodim Gallery, Bucharest and Los Angeles (2018, 2016); Kunsthalle Bega, Timișoara (2020), Plan B, Cluj (2016), (2014).

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Neverending Timisoara 2023

Neverending Timisoara 2023