ART AS FORCE – Situationism and popular art
26. October 2018 11:00
27. October 2018 11:00
Venue: KODE1, 4th floor
In collaboration with The University of Bergen, theatre studies and KODE
Did you miss it? No worries. You can listen to the podcasts from the event below:
The situationist movement has been an important inspiration for group foundations in Europe, including Group 66 in Norway, and is crucial to the Nordic aesthetics as it’s seen internationally. For this reason, we want to establish an understanding of the Nordic tradition we come from through an extensive seminar on situationism in the Nordic region.
We consider it essential to seek knowledge about our historical background and culture, as visual arts explore boundaries between performance and theatre and more and more genres take an interdisciplinary perspective. The seminar is framed in a context of performing arts, and such an angle has not been presented previously in a Norwegian context. We think the time is due, and it is natural that Bergen is the site for such an event, which was a centre for the Norwegian situationism.
The artistic philosophy of the situationists was characterized by ideas about the relationship between art and society that the French art philosopher Guy Debord developed and which the Danish artist Asger Jorn contributed to. The seminar will present and give an introduc- tion to these theories and their work.
We have invited Danish art historian Mikkel Bolt Rasmussen to present and discuss the situationist theories in detail. Furthermore, we will introduce the Russian term Balagan as a new theoretical introduction to situationism and which actualizes the movement of the 1960s and 1970s. Knut Ove Arntzen, professor of theatre studies at the University of Bergen, intends to introduce this concept to a Nordic perspective on situationism, and draw lines to popular and ritual traditions where he points to terms such as polar surrealism and arctic hysteria.
The seminar is also a unique opportunity to acquire firsthand knowledge from former member of Gruppe 66, Elsebet Rahlff, who lives and works as an artist in Bergen. Gruppe 66 are living legends in Norwegian art history with its exhibitions characterized by actions and happenings. Not much has been written about this group, even though they were pioneers, and as the interest for visual art at the intersection of performance and theatre is growing, it becomes increasingly important to convey this knowledge of Norwegian avant-garde.