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I used Skulpturenpark as a stage for a mass choreography. The initial idea
for the project was based on the notion of mass ‘patterns’, the
connections and contradictions in the very basic of the conceptual, symbolic
and aesthetic values of the phenomena of mass (physical) displays. I was always
fascinated by the (un)controlled power of a mass and the unified dynamics
of individuals under a common goal. I found interesting relationships and
similarities between past and present forms of mass displays, such as protests,
group gymnastics, ritual gatherings, social movements, processions, and simple
Varying from the extreme right to the extreme left, from socialism to fascism,
‘coordinated movements’ of thousands of human bodies offer us
precise readings of the society as a whole.
" …the aesthetic pleasure gained from the ornamental mass movements
The structural principle upon which they are modeled determines them in reality
(The Mass Ornament, Siegfried Kracauer, 1927)
experiments with the idea of mass patterns and motions
of different scale, defined by our cultures or everyday habits. Whether in
order and rehearsed or spontaneous and self-organized, social formations reveal
how a society orders itself, and at times, legitimizes certain ideologies.
In this ‘choreography’, I attempted to subvert the conceptual,
aesthetic, and symbolic values inherent in these forms by borrowing their
gestures. As a ‘’choreographer’’, I implicated myself
as a facilitator, and observer of those who would otherwise be the audience.
Volunteers of all ages and backgrounds were invited to participate. Numerous
Berlin-based groups, civil organizations, schools, clubs, art or media spaces,
and individuals were contacted for this purpose. The event was performed without
previous rehearsals and planned without a fixed number of participants. On
the day, nearly 120 individuals joined the mass. The performance was documented
on video and photo as participants walked across the park following a few
Walk very slowly, in unison. Adjust to the pace of others around you.
Maintian a fixed distance
Always keep two meters distance from one another. Collectively, participants
will construct hexagonal formations and should maintain this form throughout.
Performance should happen in silence without background music, sound, slogans,
Project assistants: Olga Moskatova, Gergely László
Photo documentation: Arja Hyytiainen, Thorsten Kirchhoff,
Video: Matthias Einhoff, Andreas B. Krüger, Carolin
Nuwanda, Jack Pam, Katarina Sevic
Text by Katarina Sevic