NEON + MAI presents As One, an artist and education driven project consisting the Abramović Method, newly commissioned performance pieces by Greek artists, and an extensive public program of lectures, workshops, discussions and other public participatory events at the Benaki Museum in Athens, Greece. The largest and most ambitious project dedicated to performance art in Greece to date, As One will place this contemporary art form in the spotlight in order to engage and inspire the Greek public.
With this collaboration, NEON and MAI aim to provide a platform and help foster a new generation of Greek performance artists. A number of emerging Greek artists have been selected by Abramović to train and perform, and have been commissioned to develop and present new works for the project.
The Abramović Method is a public participatory experience that utilizes exercises designed by Abramovic to engage the public in individual and communal connection to the present moment. The Method draws upon a huge reservoir of the artist’s experiences, performances and practice over the last 40 years that is gradually being distilled into a series of exercises that explore boundaries of body and mind. The Method is founded upon individual and collective participation, and forms an experiential approach to immaterial art. The exercises from the Method draw on the artist’s desire to provide a simple way for the public to reconnect with themselves and with the present moment. This opportunity to free oneself from distraction, Abramović maintains, ‘has never been more relevant, than in Greece in these trying times.’ Since this process is being continually explored and reshaped by its creator, the specific form of the Method to be presented in Athens will be a unique evolution of comparable works presented by the artist across the world over the years.
Commissioned Durational Performances
Over the course of the seven weeks, 24 artists of Greek origin will present new durational work - six performing everyday the at the Benaki, while 17 will present interventional works. The Greek performance artists were selected and developed with Marina Abramović and MAI.
The commissions are as follows:
Seven Week: Yota Argyropoulou, Virginia Mastrogiannaki, Lambros Pigounis, Nancy Stamatopoulou, Thodoris Trampas, Despina Zacharopoulou
Intervention: Yannis Adoniou, Stavros Apostolatos, Thanassis Akokkalidis, Elena Antoniou, Spyros Charalampopoulos, Dimitris Chimonas, Thomas Diafas, Serafita Grigoriadou, Giannis Karounis, Marianna Kavallieratos, Alexandros Michail, Katerina Oikonomou, Nikolaos, Anastasia Papatheodorou, Yiannis Pappas, PASHIAS, Evgenia Tsanana, Christina Vasileiou
Historical works by Marina Abramovic, Art must be beautiful. Artist must be beautiful. (1975) and Cleaning the Mirror (1995) will be performed several occasions during the exhibition for 8 hours each.
Art Must Be Beautiful, Artist Must Be Beautiful (1975) will be performed with: Dimitris Bampilis, Dimitra Billia, Gitsa Konstadoudaki, Martha Pasakopoulou, Eliane Roumie, Vassiliki Spachou, Kalliopi Zervoulakou.
Cleaning the Mirror (1995) will be performed with Martha Pasakopoulou.
In addition, the series of long durational performances will also include works and workshops by acclaimed international performance artists: Rafael Abdala & Jessica Goes (Brazil), Maria Herranz (Switzerland), Amanda Coogan (Ireland) and Kira O’Reilly (UK).
MUTUAL WAVE MACHINE
Develop in collaboration between Marina Abramovic Institute, Suzanne Dikker, Matthias Oostrik, Peter Burr, Diederik Schoorl, and Matthew Patterson Curry, the Mutual Wave Machine is an interactive neurofeedback installation that embodies the elusive notion of ‘being on the same wavelength’ with another person through brainwave synchronization. Enclosed by an intimate capsule and immersed in an audiovisual environment that responds and reflects their shared brain activity, two visitors can directly experience and manipulate their internal efforts to approach each other, or distance themselves from each other.
The As One project includes a parallel programme of talks that aim to educate the public about the history and development of performance art, highlighting interconnected practices such as theatre and dance. A series of workshops with participating and invited artists will help the public better understand the structures and mechanisms employed by performative works digging deep into the ways artists develop their work. The talks and workshops are supplemented by a daily programme of screenings, with short films and features on the work of Marina Abramović, the pieces that influenced her practice, films by our invited speakers, and other materials drawn from the Greek Film Archive.