How is not keen about ‚dynamics '. Mechanics describes it as a concern for the "effects of forces on the motion of a body or system of bodies, especially of forces that do not originate within the system itself". I'm wondering how mechanics define borders of a "system" - what belongs to its inside, and what does not. I imagine it as a possibly unavoidable but finally arbitrary process of deciding. However, I myself, I consider dynamics connected to vitality - or let's call it breathing.
One year, six associates, three curators, several events and residencies, lots of contexts and thoughts, etc. - I think we can say, the research center was never as extensive as this new cycle. It was time for a.pass to come up to the promise of generating more publicly available content. The five associate researchers accompanied by three different curators have processed their contexts and brought them to a ripe state for publishing. Holding in, taking a breath, smelling the taste, enjoying the fill of the lungs, holding in again and softly pushing the are out - and so, the cycle can start again. What was here? What was nourished by the oxygen? What did come up by breathing the same air as five other researchers?
This block we take a breath. We are looking at what emerged. We are cleaning up, select what felt useful, archive and document, think about publishing, and try to evaluate the insights for the next cycle.
Of course, while wrapping up, the question comes, is this not what research anyway requires from us at any time? Isn't wrapping up just another word for going on? Or is wrapping up possible anyhow in a research that is at the end never ending? Sure, close looking, reflecting, evaluating and sharing are intrinsic to research. It just takes place in a different light than pondering, discovering, curiosity, surprise etc.
Nothing against ‚Research '- but 'search' comes first!
This summer I was standing in a forest, next to my child. We listened, imagined, looked in the search for bears and libels, mushrooms and orchids. There was no direction, just forest, we entered where it was possible, and continued where that forest opens vision. The structures are given but inscrutable. We learn, we wonder, we wish, we compare, and things fall into our memory to be linked to other memories. Search is big. Search is following the order of the woods - not the trees.
Research feels a bit like hide-and-seek. Everything takes place within a certain convention - the rules of the game. That's what the fun is about it. I exactly know what I'm searching for and what I have to do, I just don't know how it will happen, and when. We collect, we document, we reorganise, we create an overview, we create vision. Research is messing up the order. Research is taking perspective, so we don't see the whole woods for the trees.
The a.pass Research Center is dedicated to supporting advanced research and to collecting and making public methodologies of artistic research developed at a.pass. After being initiated as a platform for individual research trajectories, the Research Center shifted to welcoming a group of advanced researchers for a period of one year.
This winter block marks the closure and thinking back of the first cycle of the a.pass Research Center through publishing.
Cycle I - Associated Researchers
Adrijana Gvozdenović is an artist who notes, talks, writes, and collects. She is interested in anecdotal and peripheral art, the conventions of exhibition making, artists’ motivations, and responsibility in the general context of art and art-related politics.
Sina Seifee researches as an artist in the fields of narrative, performance and knowledge production. He has been working on the question of technology and storytelling in the arts and sciences of the middle ages and the past-present of material reading practices in collective life. He studied Applied Mathematics in Tehran, received his master in Media Arts in KHM Cologne and in 2017 finished an advanced research program in performance studies in a.pass.
Rob Ritzen works as a curator with a background in philosophy, museum studies, art and architectural history. His curatorial practice is focused on self-organised and co-operative formats in close association with cultural practitioners — consciously positioned on the margin of established institutions and outside of market oriented spaces, but in the middle of communities of cultural practitioners. Most recently he co-initiated That Might Be Right, an attempt to reconfigure the politics of making art and alternative forms of production and presentation.
Isabel Burr Raty is a performance artist based in Brussels interested in the ontological crack between the organic and the artificially engineered, between the unlicensed knowledge of minority groups and the official facts. Her research interweaves new media, body art, lectures, installations and participatory performance to propose hybrid narratives and bio-autonomy practices that play with synthetic magic and compose in situ Sci-Fi.
Sara Manente lives in Brussels and works as a choreographer and performance artist.
Her projects start from an understanding of dance as a performative language and exist at the limit of the choreographic: texts, dance pieces, films, workshops, experimental performances, artistic researches and collaborations.
At the a.pass Research Center she is gathering knowledge on fermentation techniques in order to consider her research from a perspective of bacterial/interspecies ethics and aesthetics.
Antye Guenther, born in former East Germany, has a theory based visual art practice dealing with epistemological questions within the realms of technology, post-humanism, science fiction and fictionality of science. Since her fellowship at the Jan van Eyck Academy in 2015-2016, Guenther, who has a background in medicine, is investigating neuroscientific research and imaging, particularly in its entanglement with neoliberal corporate structures and ideologies.