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The Book of the Great Rabbit   Anythinglandia   A  field  Journal  of  a  m eandering  mind  traveling  thoughts  through  uneven  surfaces,  circling   walking    and  canoedelling    


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            Anythinglandia:                 a  guide  for  jumping  through  varied  ambiences   or     A  field  Journal  of  a  m eandering  mind  traveling  thoughts  through  uneven  surfaces,  circling   walking    and  canoedelling  


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  Welcome  to  

Chapters A Circular

Note to the Reader, Rabbit Doesn’t, Stories, Canoe, The voices that tell a Story, The Migrant, The Tourist, The Practitioner And One Canoe, Rabbitography, Rabbitness, Walking as political action, The Arrested [as in motion] Walker: Walking as a political action, Space, Speculation for performed space, Texts as sites, Spaces and Places, Sites: Walking through varied spatiality for performed space, Performing Spatialities: Walking Practices, The wanderer and time as public space problem The Reading of site, Non-Site, The Story: an attempt to re-write the whole story in collaboration with An Iceberg in the middle of the sea chapter, a Project Report with a Monkey Mind, When I walk, May 13 Osman: Paying out your freedom, This chapter is dedicated to Monkey mind , Group Concerns, Omonia Bells J+R, , Omonia Square at 22:00 , Wrapping up everything into a site of sites: Summary of Miwon Kwon Notes on Site Specificity, In and Through Space: the situation constructed between two bodies talking, The City, Back here, Over there, Sometimes Over here in nowhere, The Statue of Liberty the ensima in the Azax and Scavengereeism , The Rabbitness in the Outlandia, Iceberg in the middle of the sea (report), Materials- immaterial, Why am I not leaving Greece The logic of nomadism and


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Impermanenc e

Anythinglandia          

                 


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        Note to the Reader Addressed  to:  examiners                    This  written  component  is  aimed  to  assist  in  the  evaluation  for  my   practical  research  for  transart  for  the  period  of  2012-­‐2014.  It  is  written   in  a  way  not  to  complement  my  practice  but  to  create  one  more   extension  of  my  work.  In  this  way  I  regard  it  as  creating  new  possible   spatiographies  for  my  performative  work  through  which  my  journals,   diaries,  monthly  process  and  the  events  are  re-­‐visited  here,  creating  a   new  space  for  my  practice  to  inhabit.       I  regard  this  document  as  a  book  whose  chapters  are  infused  with   thoughts  and  reflections  before,  during  and  after  performances.  Those   are  my  walking  stories  I  have  written  side  by  side  with  my  practice,   photos,  maps,  and  video  materials.       It  is  not  necessary  to  read  this  document  in  the  order  in  which  I   presented  it  here,  but  one  can  start  reading  the  book  from  any  chapter   of  his/her  desires.  I  would  really  appreciate  your  thorough  looking  into   the  book  asking  for  your  care  and  attention.  If  you  would  like  to  follow   more  research  and  theory  oriented  considerations  for  this  investigation,   please  follow  the  blue  letters  trail  …     Feb  27,  2014   Rosina  Ivanova       Adressed  to  the  reader        When reading about rabbits, canoes and chapters you can take your time. You can read one sentence or one word as many times as you like. You can regard this text as instances of performances now brought together in variation of spaces, of their pasts and the new performative ways in whish these instances in space encounter what they are. Start reading any part,


6 stop reading any time you like. 1 I think of beginnings, ends and somehow makes middles seem important. I did not intent for an end of this book however, there was some intention in sculpting some openings so as to create an entrance for you into the texts and let you into this world. Grab this book and run fast as in a creative act. Walk as slow as in a creative act. Think of it as a compilation of performances you could visit, as an exhibition site in which you are part of it in spatial and durational terms. If you like to participate I may have to offer you something that intrigues you- like promising you that we will fly in the end of the book or that we will explore cracks and document all the cracks off the surface of an abandoned street. We will do something similar here, though the intensity with which you create other imaginaries and give other spaces to what I have written here depends on your willingness to put your imagination in all sorts of disguises, lands and looking glasses. Imagination is here material for spreading and covering far lands with flying trees in the sky, swimming rabbits in the sea, rolling heads of statues on triangular islands, walking in underground burrows, statues with multiple heads, long lines of flowers in the sea, flower chains on the necks of singing people. A gardener is taking a sip of water break. He is standing on top of hill witnessing a female in a canoe disappearing in the far end of the blue, leaving behind her a trail- a sound of a bell; the sense of longing; sensing all that there is as sounds, smells, you are reading and noticing the ways in which the human mind interprets and taxonomies these to create new surprising combinations, of what was not2 said here. 3 Feb 27, 2014 From Outlandia

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‘Start  reading  anywhere  and  you  will  realize  that  you  don’t  read  anything’,  from  a  conversation   with  Giannis  Stamatopulous     2    from  a  conversation  with  Michael  B.     3  Note  to  myself:  What  is  triggering  our  curiosity  to  visit  various  spaces  so  as  to  encounter  a  stranger   with  a  small  talk?  Do  we  have  tipping  hat  friends?  Is  barefoot  cooking  important  practice  in   contemporary  performance?    


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        March 16, 2014 This written element will take the reader through my process4, the decision making of my project and will ‘tell the story of an impossible journey’, ‘to tell the story of walking and canoeing journey’. In relation to my conceptions and methods for ‘space’, public art, new genre among others, I will write for the uncanny of long durations, the transformative event of space and for the specific details of the liminal circumstances in which I happened to be. In this perspective I will observe the elements and the ways in which ideas, theory and artists’ practices are related to my walking experiences. I will pause at moments at which I identify with the writers’ concepts and artists’ works in my practice 5 for performance art in lived life situations. How do I record the ways in which I think ‘space’, the group, the liminal, the walking body? How are those important and related to my story? Is space performed, lived or political? A big part of the stories and the reflections for this Project Report6 will be created in the progress of physical movement and will be written in the ways in which I lay them out to myself while and as a result of walking, talking with strangers and talking to my self or the person walking with me. I will mix them into a story of preconceptions, encounters with strangers during my walks and threshold moments marked by performances and the ideas recorded on my way. Taking you through my long walking, stream writing and canoeing, I face the challenge to demonstrate how could (1) ‘people oriented art’7 inform my (2) ‘secluded actions’ without audience, and vice versa. How are my experiences relocated and shifted across and through the two above                                                                                                                 4

practice  in  my  studio  and  written  research  elements  for  my  MFA  in  Creative  Practice  for  the   transart  Institute  2013-­‐2014     5  studio  work     6  a  written  element  discussing  relationships  in  my  studio  practice  in  which  I  import  studio  elements   such  as  ‘walking  stories’,  ‘stream  writing’,  images,  etc.  It  records  ABC  theories  and  artists  practices   related  to  my  practice  such  those  of  walking  explorations,  new  genre  public  art,  space,  ‘the   transformative  event’  and  specific  examples  of  artists  works  in  relation  to  those.       7  (group  art,  community  art,  community  performance,  or  one  that  develops  a  relationship  with  an   ‘audience’,  creates  a  sense  of  community,  or  one-­‐to-­‐one  group)  


8 ‘performative zones’? What is the nature of this exchange? These written stories will be given to people to edit them and to select intriguing parts that will make up the body of the final written work. Are oranges and rabbits essential to writing about performance art in the everyday life? How can a story of solo and group situations be told? Is it a story of the Self imagining talking to people? Are concepts of duration, the transformative event, place, space, here, and elsewhere important to this writing from walking and speech journey?

                 


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10 Somewhere  in  between  the  border  house,  love  Cave  beach  and  the   Island  with  the  beheaded  statue,  whose  head  with  city  walls  crown   might  have  fallen  in  the  sea,  I  am  asking  questions  about  what  the   experiential  walking  bring  us  in  duration,  time  as  public  space  problem,   access  to  public  spaces  and  the  potential  of  canoeing  and  kisses  in   Grekoland.  I  will  (dis)engage  with  problems  of  weight,  time,  space,   sound,  water  and  immigration,     The  Rabbit   Sometime  in  2014    

Rabbit Doesn’t I am the Rabbit Doesn’t and you cannot tame me. I talk ‘nonsense’ for 24 hours or 43 km (from Bulgarian ‘километри’[kilometri]. Like Alice, I have a circular orange marmalade problem but my problem is in the circularity of the orange and the circularity problem while making the orange marmalade, it is not that much that the jar is empty. As a Rabbit of society I ask the questions about time as public space problem, access to public spaces and the potential of canoeing and kisses with the weather in Grekoland. I will (dis)engage in durational actions of space, time, sound, weight, water, and immigration problems in Xeniland (from Greek ‘ξενη’[kseni]- foreign, someone from the outside, not from our land).

March 11, 2014 Are oranges and rabbits essential to writing about performance art in the everyday life? How can a story of solo and group situations be told? Is it a story of the Self imagining talking to people? Are concepts of duration, the transformative event, place, space, here, and elsewhere important to this writing from walking and speech journey? How can solosecluded actions inform more interactive art practices and vice versa

       

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Stories9 Stories about canoes, rabbits and migration practices are another way of telling the story10. Speculating and writing for stories is another way of inventing space. Then, I  am  unlearning  estrangement.  It  is  like  assuming   a  new  home  in  the  provisional  here,  there  and  anywhere11-­‐  where  one  is   led  by  a  movement12.                                                                                                                       9

‘[…](to  tell  one  slef’s  legends)  as  practices  that  invent  spaces’,  Certau,  Michel  de  1984  The  Practice   of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of  California  Press  Berkley,  p.107     10  ‘Stories  about  places  are  makeshift  things’  (ibid.)     11  ‘Linking  acts  and  footsteps,  opening  meanings  and  directions  these  words  operate  […]  by   emptying  out  and  wearing  away  of  their  primary  role.  They  become  liberated  spaces  that  can  be   occupied.  Such  indetermination  gives  them  […]  the  function  of  articulating  a  second  poetic   geography  on  top  of  the  geography  of  the  literal  forbidden  or  permitted  meaning  (ibid.,  p.105)’.     12  ‘by  emptying  themselves  [the  stories,  the  spaces,  the  site]  of  classifying  power  they  acquire  that  of   “permitting”  something  else.’,  (ibid)  p.105-­‐106    


12      I  am  walking,  speaking  and  re-­‐tracing  what  I  say  in  the  works  of  other   artists  and  in  the  words  of  people  I  encounter  on  my  journey.     If these constellations of letters were to tell the story13 about my entanglement with my experiences they would be in constant movement, ever-changing their position, negotiating with one another. New meanings will be created when its bits and pieces are placed in new and unexpected ways (spaces) in proximity to one another14. All these pieces are telling the same story, they are one another, they are becoming the Other (space) (the one becomes the Other and so the one is an Other). 15 The conceptual entanglement and the post event reflections are displaced into here and added to the previous stories and create a kind of a third story- the textual site of the lived spaces. They create an underlying thread of talking when walking and reorganizing the pieces scattered over Outlandia to unleash a story for its social aspect.   In  Outlandia  there  are  no  disconnections  and  disruptiveness    of  the   pieces  for  the  story  is  said  as  one  flowing  narrative  of  multiple  little   stories,  that  displace  themselves  at  all  times.  They  shape  shifting  so  as   to  create  some  new  unexpected  encounters  with  the  Other  parts  that   never  met16.  Meeting  the  pieces  is  not  merging  them;  It  is  more  an   adding  17  to  the  previous  more  extensions,  covering  the  empty  space   with  a  never  ending  story  in  which  the  roads  are  represented  in  a  map   that  is  not  two  dimensional  but  ever  changing  from  the  situation-­‐  taking   us  to  the  next  route  story  map18.           The  2nd   kilometer    13                                                                                                                […]  fragments  of  scattered  semantic  places.  These  heterogeneous  and  even  contrary  elements  fill     the  homogeneous  from  the  story.  Things  extra  and  others  (details  and  excess  coming  from     elsewhere  insert  themselves  into  an  accepted  framework,  the  imposed  order’.  One  thus  has  the  very   relation-­‐ship  between  spatial  practices  and  the  constructed  one.  The  surface  of  this  order  is   everywhere  punched  and  torn  open  by  ellipses,  drifts  and  leaks  of  meaning:  it  is  a  sieve-­‐order.’  p.107       14  Conversation  with  Michael  Bowdidge     15  Chardys,  Christina:  map  of  aquatic  realm  of  Porto  Rafti     16  Encountering  Other  parts  (in  the  text)  as  strangers  (the  text  is  a  meeting  with  the  Other,  a  calling   to  meet  the  Other,  an  acquaintance  and  knowledge  between  different  Others  (the  original  idea  of   platonic  epistemology),  you  realize  your  own  memories  so  knowledge  is  recollection  in  Plato’s   Theatitus).     17  Note  to  myself:  ‘addition’  is  an  ‘edition’  to  the  previous;  argue  with  your  self  that  ‘addition’  is  an   ‘edition’  of  the  past       18  Note  to  myself:  The  idea  of  extension  of  space  in  Descsartes,  idea  of  the  card,  ‘Descartes  in  the   card’.  Reminder:  his  idea  of  extension  of  space  and  Poltinius’s  idea  about  ‘there’,  ‘home’  as  a  journey   back  to  the  ‘intellect’  ,  to  the  one  finding  home  in  being  homeless.  My  return  is  not  to  the  intellect   but  to  going  home  (as  in  transit)  in  performance,  which  creates  the  space  of  the  everyday.    


13           Those experiences and stories sink again in the here, sink in the far distance of the story being told by a voice of the person in a canoe. The canoe goes through all sorts of storms, but what’s significant about the canoe is to slide the human body in the ever-changing waters with all its weight. After all we hardly know our depths19. That canoe is getting to Outlandia.

The body and the voice keep on departing to some place else, coming back to here.

Canoe

“Day 356   the  other  day  i  was  in  a  canoe,  and  it   was  a  tiny  storm,  i  was  feeling   overwhelmed  and  amazed  by  natures’   power  to  take  me  and  slap  my  canoe   and  turn  me  around!  I  then  left  the   canoe  go  with  the  current  and  the   20

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Solnit,  Rebbeca  2006.  A  Field  Guide  to  Getting  Lost.  Reprint  Edition.  Penguin  Books.  

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Photo  of  a  book  page  shown  to  me  by  a  JN  from  the  book  The  Whole  Brain  Child  by  Daniel  J.   Siegel.    


14 storm  passed,  taking  me  safely  back  to   the  coast  in  calm  waters.  Writing  and   being  in  the  canoe  is  one  of  the  most   solitary  practice.  Every  so  often  i  sit   down  on  a  computer  to  write  and   gaze  down  the  infinite  abyss  of  the   currents  of  my  soul,  the  deep  caves   and  the  multiple  high  ways  of  artistic   practices,  looking  down  the  water   from  the  highest  rock  close  by  trying   to  jump.  I  ve  jumped  from  that  rock   multiple  times  with  my  mind  and  in   my  sleep.  What  i  value  is  all  the   thoughts  that  crossed  my  mind  before   i  actually  jumped  from  there  and  the   conscious  feeling  of  fear.  Then  I  climb   in  my  canoe  and  start  going  to  the   nearest  island.  On  my  way  i  meet  all   sorts  of  current  and  disasters,  police,   dogs  carrying  stones,  winds  and  life,  i   feel  exhausted  but  i  get  on  rowing  and   then  I  meet  a  mere  stranger  in  the   water  unknowing  that  i  have  drifted   far  away  from  the  island  and  the  initial   course  that  i  am  so  away  from  the   island  that  i  don’t  even  see  it  on  the   horizon,  complete  disaster.  Then  we   talk  about  drifting.  When  i  was  a  small   girl  i  had  an  epiphany  with  the  light,   wines  and  air  creating  shadow-­‐light   art  works  on  the  pavement  and  i   would  stay  and  watch  for  hours   because  i  had  time  to  do  so.  Now,  i  am   walking  and  having  epiphanies  not   from  the  words  that  strangers  tell  me   but  from  their  ability  to  address  me  in   the  present  and  by  my  ability  not  to   judge  them  for  i  don't  know  anything   about  their  context  and  life  and  this   gives  me  the  freedom  to  be  there   attending  the  present  carefully  to  the   feeling  of  interaction  not  so  much  to   the  content  of  what  they  are  saying   with  words  but  the  ability  to  feel   interaction  as  intention  from  both   sides,  even  though  i  am  going  to  the   cave  to  photograph  holes  and  he  is  


15 walking  with  a  goat  and  looking  for   wild  asparagus.  His  first  intention  was   to  greet  me  and  his  second  intention   was  to  give  me  the  plants  he  collected   because  i  was  interested  in  how  they   look.  The  people  i  meet  in  galleries   seem  not  to  be  there  for  the   opportunity  to  contact  or  interaction   with  a  stranger  but  they  are  in  a  hurry   to  talk  with  and  only  with  someone   very  specific  because  they  want   something  from  him,  because  they  are   working  on  the  plan,  their  plan  may  be   about  drifting  also  but  i  will  never   know  because  there  isn’t  enough  time   to  talk  about  drifting.  I  am  myself   often  in  this  superhuman  state  leading   to  individuation,  not  practical  for   interaction  with-­‐  people-­‐  works.  Are   there  any  Artist  Talks  that  are   organized  in  the  city,  where  artists  can   go  and  talk  about  their  practice  or   things  and  overgrowth  they  may  have   on  their  mind  within  the  context  of   care  and  civilized  interaction,  not   judged  for  who  they  are  in   stereotypical  ways,  but  motivated  to   take  risks  and  given  a  realistic   feedback  that  is  encouraging  the  artist   to  take  the  work  further,  and  not   saying  oh  well,  the  work  is  boring  and  i   don’t  understand  it,  it  must  be  spoken   in  my  language  to  get  it  and  must   respond  to  what  essential  and   important  work  is  for  me  to  even  get   me  to  listen  to  your  nonsense  ?  is   there  any  nonsense  group  around   then  i  can  contribute  to  with  my   nonsense?   21 I  talked  to  stranger  with  the   asparagus  about  my  work  and  he  liked   many  things  about  it.  He  also  had   some  critical  inquiries  on  it  and  we   met  again.  The  first  time  I  saw  him  he                                                                                                                   21

st

photo:  two  maps  made  in  New  York  during  the  ’13  Residency.  The  1  one  (on  the  left)  is  a  map  for   a  walking  performance  and  the  2nd  is  a  map  to  aid  my  movement  in  the  city  (for  lived  performance).  


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was with  a  goat.  The  goat  also  had  a   bell  so  I  somehow  felt  familiar  with   the  goat.  We  talked  about  her  name   and  how  it  came.  Then  we  talked  that   his  profession  was  to  lift  weight.  We   found  similarities.     Art  practiced  in  galleries  has  it  own   very  specific  audience  sometimes   living  in  isolation  from  goats  and   strangers.  There  is  a  huge  gap  there.   This  is  not  ‘the  gap’  in  a  philosophical   sense  like  in  Documenta.  This  is  not  a   gap.”  

Study this image well. You may never see it again.


17

While the consistency of these multiple processes may at first sight be hard to see, what connects this miscellaneous body of work is a sense of pronouncement, life experimentation and engagement- an entanglement with time and multiple trajectories of unexpected coincidences, contradictions and care. 22

Photo: snapshot from a video walking and leaving threads traces on the Island Photo: Practice excerpt . On Writing Wrongs. From my Daily diary Photo: snapshot from the video ‘Tying and Untying my shoes for some time now’, duration: 2 hours

                                                                                                               

22

Such  a  multiplistic  story  telling  about  experiencing  the  world  could  introduce  all  sorts  of  actors,   entities,  people,  seclusions,  forces,  movements,  atoms  and  geographies.  Being  multiple  already   accounts  for  it  being  made  out  of  many  things.    Such  stories  would  be  many  stories  happening  at   different  places.  Such  stories  would  be  happening  in  the  same  space  and  each  would  have  its  meta-­‐ story.  Such  stories  have  an  intensified  sensitivity  to  the  moments  at  which  they  relate,  or  else,  to  the   moment  at  which  a  story  draws  away  back  to  the  story  itself.      


18

23

The voices that tell a Story24 The person in the canoe is the solitary walker that slides through the city and travels through the water. She encounters all sorts of strangers on her way. She opens all sorts of doors and is attentive to the sounds, the time, the surroundings and the unexpected. The hidden potential of water, the hidden in walking and journeys is like the potential of all unacknowledged people25 in the world that create: the street musicians, the walkers, the migrant on the street, the hidden refugee on people from different places that never met but all have this invisible devotion to dream, create and invent freedom and experiment in their mind...They play music in their heads on abstract poetic fragments like 'earth’, ‘water', 'waves', 'freedom'...'constraints', 'identity’ somehow alike the singing of the glasses, the forks, the plates and the chairs in a busy restaurant a walking voice and a paddling voice Both carry a bell sound, anywhere they go

                                                                                                              23

Photo:  snapshot  from  video  ‘Bell  in  the  water:  all  over  again’  

24

See  flyer,  Michael  Bowndidge  Monopolydialogiphonia  Workshop  Syllabus  text  for  External-­‐ internal  voices  and  bibliographies.  ‘questioning  of  assumptions  about  the  individual  voice  of  the   practitioner.  From  there  […]to  consider  the  possibilities  inherent  in  the  dialogical  context  and  ways   of  finding  and  using  other  voices.’     25  Conversation  with  Jennifer  Nelson  


19

Texts as sites26                                                                                                               26

26

the  site  of  textuality     Some  may  argue  that  the  problem  with  writing  about  performing  and  sites  and  the  experience  of   spaces  is  the  very  being  taken  away  from  that  performance  of  experience  that  is  to  re-­‐present  space   and  not  to  experience  it.  I  would  rather  propose  that  the  entanglement  with  text  and  textual   analysis  is  the  very  site  of  exploration  of  spaces  their  interrelatedness  and  multiple  compositions   and  the  re-­‐invention  of  their  co  existence  create  sites  and  off  sites  of  my  experiences  with  texts.   Wiriting  about  performance  here  is  done  as  a  site-­‐specific  work,  an  embodiment  of  the  texts  and   text  is  to  be  understood  as  habitus:  of  how  to  move  through  the  spaces  in  this  text.  Habitus  here   would  be  to  live  inside:  to  open  doors,  to  sit  in  those,  to  walk  in  those,  to  make  sounds  with  the   cutlery  and  when  flushing  the  water,  the  sounds  of  the  backgrounds  like  the  bird  talking  to  me  from   the  near  by  building  I  can  clearly  understand  when  I  am  standing  on  the  edge  of  my  balcony:  we   converse.  Sometimes  I  walk  in  the  neighborhood  just  to  talk  with  the  nearby  balcony  caged  animals.   They  whistle  I  whisle,  They  talk  I  talk  back...  I  wish  I  had  more  time  to  talk  with  these  birds:  they   make  the  population  of  my  best  freinds.  I  feel  that  some  very  exploaratory  conversations  can  come   out  of  this.  But  I  have  to  continue  walking  for  now,  and  at  times  return  to  those  sites,  when  on  the   way  I  find  other  paths…           Such  a  site-­‐specific  work  about  writing  takes  upon  the  inter-­‐  and  intra-­‐  relationality  of  all  elements   involded  but  also  those  missing  in  and  around  the  body  of  the  performer.  What  are  the  spaces  his   body  inhabits  while  performing    (in  life).  What  are  the  spontaneous,  extra  leaking  textual  spaces  his   body  strays  to  while  writing  /performing    (in  life)?  How  is  that  a  performed  space?  The  performed   spaces  of  my  interest  reaches  ends  of  bodily  concerns  that  turn  into  new  beginnings.  Every  text  here   is  a  beginning.  The  far  ends  of  imagination  and  those  participating  elements  and  people  is  what  at   times  lines  up  the  thoroughness  of  space  we  are  looking  for  in  this  specifc  site.  Specifically,  the  ways   in  which  space  is  being  performed  with  text  and  is  embarked  but  not  represented  there  and  written   about.  Principles  and  bases  here  would  be  unthinkable  (Bachelard).  However,  space  as  performed   constellation  of  multiple  elements  and  their  relationships  is  carefully  thought  of,  discussed  and  re-­‐ invented.  Space  is  the  indented  spontaneity  while  walking  through  varied  ambiences  in  and  outside   of  the  city,  and  the  principle  of  taking  unknown  roads.  That  cautions  way  of  writing  by  no  means  can   be  anchored  only  in  principles  that  allow  for  imagination  to  move,  change,  practice  and  be  re-­‐ invented  but  new  unknown  pathways  are  ever-­‐started.       26 A  departure  through  which  the  sites  and  the  events     of  investigation  become  apprehended  as  ‘texts’  (and  latter  on  as  –  landscape,  city  space,  place  ),   where  ‘the  text  is  seen  in  terms  of  the  self-­‐realisation  or  contestation  of  [ideas,   ideologies  and]  identities,  is  here  understood  as  part  of  the  impulse  to  not  just  as  a  piece  of  self-­‐ realization.  This  would  be  a  piece  taking  into  consideration  our  relationships  with  and  the  exchanges   that  append  within  and  with  our  surroundings  (not  just  in  terms  of  space  sound  and  movement  but   in  terms  of  interaction  between  two  bodies  talking).  Here  texts  are  considered  as  sites  but  they  are  


20

                                         

photo: snapshot  from  the  video  ‘The  Rabbit  Doesn’t’  collaboration  with  Ivan  Ivanov  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        sites  happening  within  the  site  of  walking  is  moving  through  the  ambiences.  The  text  is  an  Other.   This  implies  invention  and  duration  in  both,  while  the  situational  its  re-­‐invention  in  documentation   textual/video  in  both  co-­‐creative  and  solo  settings.    There  is  an  ongoing  speculation  about  the   relationship  between  these  elements  aforementioned  and  they  constant  movement  and  negotiation   between  one  another  and  with  others.  The  more  the  engagement  with  it  the  more  relationships  and   exchanges  occur  the  more  of  the  space  explored  becomes  covered/uncovered  and  questioned  for  its   alternative  modes  of  creation  and  the  inventiveness  that  it  proposes  to  its  engaged  agents.  This  way   seemingly  hidden  corners  become  unfolded  and  moved  at  a  foreground  (mystified  and  demystified).   Whereas  new  hidden  corners  and  more  found  sites  dicovered  are  uncovered  and  the  feeling  of  that   same  space  is  now  changed  in  its  with,  breath  and  complexity.    Those  newly  created  corners  are  also   reveled  and  so  the  here  and  the  foreground  right  before  and  inside  the  body  is  changed  once  again.   Each  text  is  considered  in  relation  to  itself  within  the  other  text  but  many  of  those  sites  of  exchanges   26 are  missing  because  they  were  experienced  and  there  was  not  enough  time  to  record  them.   This  texts  keeps  on  pasting  themselves  in  new  pages  in  new  configurations  starting  new  beginnings   every  day  anew  constantly  re-­‐cited  and  re-­‐referenced  to  themselves  and  with  the  new   investigations.        


21 27  

           

The Migrant, The Tourist, The Practitioner And One Canoe

                 The traveling female, becomes a stranger to her society, to her family to her own story, detached and removed in the far distance of a displaced past, her displaced selves constantly negotiating their multiplicity. The passionate entanglement of the migrant writer disrupts the economic traditional writing and can never be content with the presence of any stability. Merging the layers is too permanent. Everything is bound to sink in the here process that translates into nowhere. I am a stranger to myself and now I am stranger in a strange land. ‘It is problematic to be stranger even more so to stop being one’28. Everyday anew. The migrant displaces himself voluntarily from one place to another, from one context to the other. This voluntarily tricky part depends on his ability to re-invent space and context. The provisional elsewhere in the here becomes a process of other-ing (ting, thing, - ness). Identity is constituted by other-ing. This process is always the processional becoming and is not a state- it is an ongoing dynamic transformative event29. The origin is always somewhere else (other) than where is thought to be. Staying home means reaching out. Anticipation means moving towards and waiting. Not knowing is a movement across the pieces scattered in Outlandia- in the here.30The margins of here, of home are being displaced                                                                                                                 27

Note  to  the  self:  [Danger  of  everything  becoming  important]   [Insert  Gertrude  Stain  and  Moris  opposing  views]   James  Meyers  ‘functional  sites’  in  Kwon    [Marcel  Duchamp  writes    about  the  coefficient  of  ..]     28  Minh-­‐ha,  Trinh  2010,  ‘Other  Than  My  Self,  My  Other  Self’.  Elsewhere,  Within  Here:  Immigration,   Refugeeism  and  the  Boundary  Event.  New  York,  NY:  Routledge     29  linked  to  chapter  for  transformative  event     30  ‘If  you  don’t  know  you  don’t  move’,  greek  saying  from  an  encounter  with  a  stranger  on  the  street,   argue  for  the  opposite:  The  Artists  Doesn’t  Know!    


22 according to how one positions himself. Where is home? The traveler always brings questions about the ‘over there –home’ and the ‘over here – abroad’31, they challenge dwelling with specific experiences. They disrupt the possibility of defining authentic cultural identity. The traveler is not a tourist but an imitator, the migrant of the Other, constantly inscribed as a non-tourist and by being different from his kind. The voyage out of the known into the unknown seems to be of an outlander -of the here land. This is a provisional here where everything is being destabilized and the feeling of any unitary aspect is broken down. Whereas over there- in Outlandia everything shifts but it contracts into a flowing current of connections with perfect timing between the tiniest of details, the story of the past to the future, the body, the sounds and the surrounding. Imperfections lead to new realms of exploration where one shuttles back and forth between the limits of blindness and tender perceptiveness. The limbo tactic of becoming could be said to be a kind of re-siting the boundaries of here. Sometimes words are unrecognizable or they separate themselves from other words. They stick out from the crowd.          

The 4th   kilometer                                              

       

photo: snapshot from the video ‘The Rabbit Doesn’t’ collaboration with Ivan Ivanov

                                                                                                              31

This  text  is  inspired  and  infused  with  ideas  coming  from  Minh-­‐ha,  Trinh  2010,  ‘Other  Than  My  Self,   My  Other  Self’.  Elsewhere,  Within  Here:  Immigration,  Refugeeism  and  the  Boundary  Event.  New   York,  NY:  Routledge    


23                    

Rabbitography Performance in art practice as practice-based methodology is fearfully exposed as acts of investigations and experimentations with cautious writing. They record experiences of performing and conceptualizing about walking, taking, canoeing, migrant, the rabbit, the explorer. This entails questions about an identity of the performer, the rabbit, the archer, the lover, the walker, the traveling female, walking, duration, space and a secret that contains other things. Those meanings leak in this text. Their contiguous and contagious relationships are spread out on the topography of multiple trajectories in between these chapters. None of these ‘chapters’ is more important than the other32. They occur in time and space and sometimes simultaneously at a ‘Anythinglandia (here)’, a ‘there’ (border house)’ and an ‘Otlandia (elsewhere)’33. By saying out loud the word ‘practice’ a pause occurs equal to schism in writing.

Though that schism questions about who the artists is, the rabbit, the educator surface and are re-arranged into these chapters and thus create another geography anywhere in-between the geography of ‘here’ and the practiced voice of the past. That pause is taking a moment of stillness34 in                                                                                                               32

‘by  emptying  themselves  of  classifying  power  they  acquire  that  of  “permitting”  something  else’,   Certau,  Michel  de  1984  The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of  California  Press  Berkley,   pp.105-­‐106’.     33  Minh-­‐ha,  Trinh  2010,  ‘Other  Than  My  Self,  My  Other  Self’.  Elsewhere,  Within  Here:  Immigration,   Refugeeism  and  the  Boundary  Event.  New  York,  NY:  Routledge     34  Note  to  myself:    Is  stillness  possible  at  all?  Is  motion  possible  at  all?  What  is  their  relationship  to   space?  The  story  of  space  of  infinite  invisibility  is  found  in  Zino.  Atoms.  Individuals  that  they  move   into  space  and  they  constitute  a  reality  by  their  own  movement  so  that  they  are  divisible.  This  kind  of   division  denies  infinity  in  space  but  permits  infinity  in  motion.  To  be  individual  is  to  be  a  dynamic   entity  that  transforms-­‐  an  atom  not  in  terms  of  limitation  but  in  terms  of  exploration.  One’s  body  is  a   traveling  atom.  By  following  the  idea  infinite  space  we  are  denying  space,  but  I  am  putting  under   question  infinite  space  because  spatiality  is  necessary  for  my  temporality  yet  transformation  and   relationships  are  ever  re-­‐invented  and  this  is  a  kind  of  contradiction  that  can  be  resolved  latter  with  


24 writing to shape something into almost an object with words, but never concluding (in motion). It could be like sculpting a book but this unknown sculpture changes its shapes as it goes- through the sculptor’s experiences, entanglements, appreciations and contradictions, adding layers to it at all times (maybe). In the arts is rarely according to plan35, or else, it is a plan that allow for the flow of new elements, never concluding 36. That moment of pause is actually long hours and days of sitting on a chair (on the edge of some-thing) and writing (on on on the edge of some-thing), walking (on on on on the edge of some-thing-else) and rowing on lines in the waters of the endless streets between border house, Athens, Porto Rafti and the Aegean Sea(where is the border between the Aegesn sea and the Mediteranean, why is it there? Who sais is there? How do people agree on ‘where’. (it is a re-sitting, re-walking and re-inventing the relationships between those spaces and the encounters with people on my way). Where is the studio of the performance artist, when does art occurs where and why does art occur? How are rabbits and oranges essential to this investigation?

The why and the how is restless and is inscribed anywhere in here. This kind of post-structural practice could be said to re-invent on rabbitomatic vertices, on my accounts of spatial conceptions and encountering, storytelling, waiting and walking all practicing bodily limits affecting my state of mind. Then the sculpture evaporates but there is an overflow current taking one through ambiences of spaces I have visited and others vising here for a first time. Those chapters ever-connect and contract every-thing into an undetermined journey of practice. Or, else,. the sculpting is more of an invisible rabbit. business in the mind, and the practice is out in the open37                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         the  explanation  of  referring  to  spaces  as  dynamic  entities  based  on  multiple  trajectories  of   relationships  created  in  real  time  and  negotiated  by  people.     35  ‘We  have  differently  colored  clothing;  can  move;  feel,  speak,  and  observe  others  variously;  and   will  constantly  change  the  "meaning"  of  the  work  by  so  doing.  There  is,  therefore,  a  never-­‐ending   play  of  changing  conditions  between  the  relatively  fixed   or  "scored"  parts  of  my  work  and  the  "unexpected';  or  undete1  ·∙i/lined  parts.  In  fact,  we  may  move   in  and  about  the  work  at  any  pace  or  in  any  direction  we  wish.  Likewise,  the  sounds,  the  silences,   and  the  spaces  between  them  (their  "here-­‐"  and  "there-­‐"ness)  continue  throughout  the  day  with  a   random  sequence  or  simultaneity  that  makes  it  possible  to  experience  the  whole  exhibit  differently   at  different  times.  These  have  been  composed  in  such  a  way  as  to  offset  any  desire  to  see  them  in   the  light  of  the  traditional,  closed,  clear  forms  of  art  as  we  have  known  them’  Kaprrow,  Allan  1993   Essays  on  the  blurring  of  Art  and  Life,  editor  Jeff  Kelley,  University  of  California  press,  Ltd.  London,   Endgland,  p.11-­‐12’     36  This  is  the  case  especially  when  humans  are  involved  and  when  new  discoveries  are  accounted  for   and  let  in  the  work  to  create  new  trails  to  an-­‐other  unknown  scopes  of  the  ever-­‐changing  conditions   of  our  surroundings  and  of  the  artist’s  mind.  According  to  plan  is  more  the  business  of  the  architect   the  interior  designer.  The  artists  develop  something  that  undergoes  changes  according  to   conceptions  of  time,  evaluates  those  changes,  why  they  occurred  and  the  situations  in  which  they   occurred.  It  is  moving  and  shape  shifting  at  all  times.         37  ‘What  has  been  worked  out  instead  is  a  form  that  is  as  open  and  fluid  as  the  shapes  of  our  


25 accompanied by journaling insights created side by side with my explorations. This way of practicing art and the everyday life, is a journey through ambiences and spaces necessary for temporality. The Self is an entity that forms and transforms things and, through that process invents the ever transformational event: one participates in, and this experience must be communicated because of the urgency of the here issues in questions.

It takes a great effort ‘to out’ and practice and it takes even a greater effort to negotiate a work with others (people). Even more so, when in the arts it is not about setting scopes but disrupting38 them (at times) and when human elements are unpredictable business, like rabbits are.39

Rabbitness Rabbitomatic relations do not seek judgments and therefore when I make an affirmation in this text is more the mixture of two or more events together. For me is jumping to the next hole and inside. It is putting my hand, my head and then. my entire body inside, and running through the tunnel of the unknown where I meet all sorts of strangers. and perform all sorts of transformations and encounters with found objects and people. It is at a very                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         everyday  experience  but  does  not  simply  imitate  them.  I  believe  that  this  form  places  a  much   greater  responsibility  on  visitors  than  they  have  had  before.  The  "success"  of  a  work  depends  on   them  as  well  as  on  the  artist.  If  we  admit  that  work  that   "succeeds"  on  some  days  fails  on  other  days,  we  may  seem  to  disregard  the  enduring  and  stable  and   to  place  an  emphasis  upon  the  fragile  and  impermanent.  But  one  can  insist,  as  many  have,  that  only   the  changing  is  really  enduring  and  all  else  is  whistling  in  the  dark’,  Kaprrow,  Allan  1993  Essays  on   the  blurring  of  Art  and  Life  (editor  Jeff  Kelley).  University  of  California  press,  Ltd:  London,  Los   Angeles,  Berkley.  p.12       38  even  if  this  means  to  challenge  one  self  to  blend  with  a  crowd  as  performance-­‐invisibilita!       39  It  is  an  enormous  effort  to  communicate,  understand  and  be  understood,  yet  it  is  natural  and   gentle.  To  meander  in  thoughts  and  to  float  in  the  space  of  the  sounds  created  between  two  bodies   talking,  making  sounds,  listening  sounds,  and  contracting  in  a  moment…  It  makes  conceptual  and   physical  efforts  to  the  Other  (space)  in  anticipation  to  make  openings  for  encounter  with  others   (people).  


26 slow speed inter-city walking journey; it is walking but slowing down my sensations and becoming more aware of things and people surrounding mebeing attentive to things I otherwise do not observe everyday. Instead, I explore rabbitness situations as an approach to spaces for furthering performance practice in everyday life. In doing so, I invite you and your community to consider situations performed through rabbitness as a personally, politically, people and sensory informed investigations – as methodologies for situations in performance life. This Story provides a way of elaborating on and celebrating the duration of a process in practicing performance life in order to provoke the creation of sites as space transformations of existing landscapes and texts. This is provided as reflective and reflexive attitude to situational investigations of what I refer to as ‘solitary’,‘group’ and ‘participatory’ practices in performance. Walking here (an everyday act) at times can be staged as performance that leads you into entering a new realm in which a non-everyday acts becomes the practice of a new living. Walking as performance act is re-inventing the real, re-considering the ‘real’. One enters the realm of a non-everyday act, and vice versa: the performance of walking journey becomes an everyday life and, exploration is to be found at every second of living. These story-telling-writing is a characteristic of textual and meta- textual connectivity while walking; Making relations is essential for such a methodology of ever-changing situations in the lived. the imagined and the performative event. Occasionally; often; never; sometimes; rarely; all the time.- those cannot be distinguished

The Arrested [as in motion] Walker: Walking as political action Edited by Giannis Stametelous

Is space performed, lived or political? How is lived space performed politically? How is the political performed as lived space? Can lived experience be performed? Can lived experience be performed politically? Is there a human body in space that is not political? How and why is body-space relationship a political issue? Should any of those questions be answered with words?

Here, is worth to know the movement of illegal immigrants crossing the


27 borders to come to Greece by long distance walking and by boats. In this case walking without crossing the borders keeps the illegality of immigration without necessarily to be an immigrant. Immigration is illegal. Walking is illegal. How is immigration happening? Though walking. Since I walk I am offended. Walking shows the potentiality of immigration. Walking is so much strange that I am arrested for walking. Even worse, I am not arrested – I was unlawfully detained and there is no documentation of that. Or, there is but when I go to ask for such possible information, no one seems to know where and how to get it from… I am authority because I can stop movement. I need to capture you, to legitimize you. Same with photography and documentation for performance. The legitimacy of stability of specific positionality. I can control you because you are in a specific position. When you are stable (not moving) you are lawful legitimate person. When you travel, when you are moving – a freedom act, which can really bring revolution, is to move. You are not going to be captured. Walking is against capture. The artist should show the artwork as a political protest. Marx said that the work should be not a voice but a political shout. Without that ‘SHOUT’ art is just a legitimization of the already authoritative powers. Everything becomes obsolete in transience, in constant movement.

Walking, as a way for the immigrant to move from one country to the other and crossing borders could be used as political acts of moving within the same country. Being arrested by the police which represents authority shows the denial of autonomy or the person to move as its own self decision to a particular place. It is an arrest of the mind to move by itself and the justification of authority as a representation of a mind to control the body, to control the will. The autonomy of walking shows the first step to transform space. Being detained for walking shows a traumatic sense of control in our civil society. While walking I am not transforming the place artistically, I am revealing the political dead ends of civic movement. By my attempt to move they are un-walking my civic right to move my body freely by taking left and right steps in space, in nature, on the missing sidewalks… If one is unlawfully detained for deciding to walk 43 kilometers, it seems that there is something strange about a woman walking alone that distance. It reveals also the detainment of the officers in the spontaneity of the act. It was unclear if I was arrested for walking (absurd action in this case,- “not meaningful”) but also for being an alone woman walking that could have possibly awaken their interest as a being. And who am I to judge them for their creative interest in me? However, all in all, their official statement for my detainment was for the suspicion that my Greek residence permit card may be a fake and I need to wait for a reassurance (guilty until proven


28 innocent) and for the suspicion that a woman walking is a their valid suspicion of a spy in the country. When you walk you have an intention a purpose, they don’t want people to walk just because there is no point in walking. Through the capturing I see is serious political issue. Imigrations, walking, time of the day, who walks all other questions related. Walking is not only a threat, is a threat for themselves… but because they have the piatza…

How is then walking used as a political action by artists?

Space

Stories are beginnings and are alike spaces. Spaces are being produced though speculations. To speak of spaces means to account for their enclosed ends and that they are dreamt of, constructed, imagined, concrete, real, etc.40

The problem here is not accounting for space as open, processional, everchanging and made up of multiple trails that are not separate, but are the relationships between multiple fragments being told as stories that are one big story. Being at many places at the same time- is like being at the same place. 41 Another problem with the previous sentence would be that it does not mention anything for social space.

                                                                                                               

40

Lefabvre  

41

‘The  project  I  am  outlining,  however,  does  not  aim  to  produce  a  (or  the)  discourse  on  space,  but   rather  to  expose  the  actual  production  of  space  by  bringing  the  various  kinds  of  space  and  the   modalities  of  their  genesis  together  within  a  single  theory  (Lefabvre,  p.16)’  


29 The problem with space is that is said to be imagined, enclosed and speculated about. The ‘no land’ is not an empty space but it ends up being what one is filling it up with; For a longtime now I have found a provisional home in the far edge of the seas’ fabric- on the line between the two blues, of where you can never go to, full of endless distances you can never go to. The longing for spaceless.                    

Speculation for  performed  space     These  following  chapters  demonstrate  forged  speculation  for  performance  and  the   performance  of  speculation.  They  wheel  to  better  understand  the  relationship   between  performance  and  the  site  of  speculation  (of  here  writing  text)-­‐  of    how  one   forges  the  other  and  vice  versa.  Those  spaces  are  to  be  understood  as  performed  space   while  a  performance  is  happening  (at  all  times  including  writing  here).  These  are   experienced  through  lived  spaces  of  walking  and  canoeing  and  are  documented  as   ‘textual  sites’,  ‘performed  spaces’  as    ‘lived  stories’-­‐  all  of  those  performed  spaces.         This  specific  speculation  for  ‘performing  spaces’  and  ‘lived  performance’  is  located   within  the  field  of  experimentations  with  what  is  discussed  and  observed  in  life  for   making  such  a  performing  work.  It  draws  on  years  of  conversations  with  strangers,   with  collaborative  group,  practice  research,  and  while  practicing  life  in  performance   art  and  performance  in  life.     The  hereby  text  is  created  through  an  ongoing  collection  of  peoples’  suggestions  and   and  on  conversations,  and  is  being  sited  here  to  re-­‐invent  on  spaces  where  I  can  give   life  to  my  work.       I  later  on  discuss  those  within  the  fluid  fields  of  specific  conceptions  of  spaces,   happenings,  events,  actions,  solo  performance,  group  performance  in  what  we  may  or   may  not  call  art.  Their  aim  of  my  actions  and  these  texts  is  to  overcome  the  gap   between  artistic  world  specific  audiences  and  audiences  unfamiliar  with  performance   art.     One  of  the  Tbiggest  of  challenges  was  to  re-­‐create  and  research  on  referred  to  as   ‘situations  for  encounter  with  strangers’,  ‘unexpected  situations  for  contact’.         The  Performance  (of  walking,  texts  as  sites,  lived  stories)  is  observed  as  a  moving  site   specific  work  here  is  again  made  of  multiple  relations,  spaces,    and  their  exchanges  are   not  foreign  to  the  process  of  its  creation,  nor  detached  to  the  process  of  its  


30 happening,but  as  space  where  this  is  constantly  being  forged  and  speculated  about  in   the  ‘here’  text.  It  is  the  speculation  of  performance  as  an  open  space  for   experimentation  in  art  practice,  performance  as  a  thinking  and  documented  process  in   inventiveness  of  and  with  spaces,  inhabiting  those  space,  moving  those  spaces  (re-­‐ organizing),  and  moving  the  elements  that  constitute  them:  these  paragraphs.           This  essay,  is  then,  the  speculation  for  performative  art  and  how  forging  speculations   invents  on  relational  and  more  secluded  ways  to  perform  spaces.  The  speculation  for   performance  here  refers  to  performances  and  speculation  constitutes  the  specific   conversation  (site)  that  performance  (lived  space),  the  space  (meta  texts)  and  this  text   has  including  the  body  of  the  participants:  the  performance  of  speculation  on  the   other  hand,  it  refers  to  the  speculation  upon  performance.  Here,  all  that  will  be   understood  in  the  context  of  performance,  how  performance  is  understood  as   relational  and  spatial  work.  That  is  -­‐this  is  a  site-­‐specific  workis  at  all  times  moving   and  re-­‐attempting  to  talk  through  the  politics  of  living  people  and  spatial   considerations,  and  the  possibilities  that  walking  and  Sisyphean  practices  present.       This  essay  therefore  considers  the  performative  and  the  spatiall  perspectives   informed  by  specific  contemporary  texts,  spatial  theories  and  artists’  works.  Using   these  texts  as  references,    thematic  concerns  of  spatial  practices  will  be  articulated  so   that  a  working  performative  piece  if  possible,  be  provided  and  with  its  departures  to   other  spaces  [and  conversations]  sited  in  the  ‘Book  of  the  Great  Rabbit’.  After  the   meaning  of  performance  art  has  been  explored  (in  the  book)  several  spatial,  walking,   public  art  and  practices  in  walking  will  be  cross  referenced  with  reflections  to  gain  a   richer  understanding  of  the  possible  sources  from  which  performance  art  and   community  art  develops.  What  are  the  reasons  for  the  political  consideration  of  this   type  of  work:  in  my  walks,  in  my  storywalking  and  within  my  collaboration  with  the   Guerrilla  Optimists.     From  this  knowledge  the  research  chapter  ‘  ‘  will  strive  to  demonstrate  the  following   questions:    How  can  we  use  text(meta)  to  perform(meta)  performance  and  the   performance  for  spaces  and  lived  performance  without  taming  it  to  singular  thematic   considerations,  but  encompassing  encounters  with  variety  of  sources,  and  what  kind   of  meta  spaces  do  these  create  with  the  additional  research?     Everyting  in  ‘here’  is  done  with  the  aim  to  re-­‐consider  a  new  space  for  my   performances  while  walking  and  find  new  ways  to  relate  the  creative  texts  that  sprung   as  a  result  of  the  acquaintances  with  strangers  on  my  ways,  on  my  inter-­‐city  walks  and   with  concepts  in  artistic  process  as  research.  It  is  done  with  the  aim  to  inform   performance  as  relational  work;  to  find  the  exchange  elements  between  the  solitary   practices  and  group  interactive  projects  with  other  artists  and  people  I  meet,  the   conversation  between  the  various  texts  I  write  as  a  result  of  my  encounters  with  other   researched  texts.     For  this,  I  will  take  you  through  well  known  seeds  of  performance  practiced  in  the   Dada,  Fluxus,  spatial  considerations  coming  from  non  representational  theories  and   human  geography,  site-­‐specific  art,  public  art  and  relational  and  perform  to  re-­‐invent   a  retracing  of  a  moving  site  specific  performance  while  walking  and  the  relationships   invented  on  my  way.  Performance  (art)  is  a  much  more  recent  concept  still  under   debate,  of  which,  there  are  numerous  definitions  and  variations  from  the  first  known   performative  stagings  as  site-­‐specific,  as  public  sculpture,  to  such  that  initiate   community  dialogues.  


31    

Texts as sites42                                                                                                               42

4242

the  site  of  textuality     Some  may  argue  that  the  problem  with  writing  about  performing  and  sites  and  the  experience  of   spaces  is  the  very  being  taken  away  from  that  performance  of  experience  that  is  to  re-­‐present  space   and  not  to  experience  it.  I  would  rather  propose  that  the  entanglement  with  text  and  textual   analysis  is  the  very  site  of  exploration  of  spaces  their  interrelatedness  and  multiple  compositions   and  the  re-­‐invention  of  their  co  existence  create  sites  and  off  sites  of  my  experiences  with  texts.   Wiriting  about  performance  here  is  done  as  a  site-­‐specific  work,  an  embodiment  of  the  texts  and   text  is  to  be  understood  as  habitus:  of  how  to  move  through  the  spaces  in  this  text.  Habitus  here   would  be  to  live  inside:  to  open  doors,  to  sit  in  those,  to  walk  in  those,  to  make  sounds  with  the   cutlery  and  when  flushing  the  water,  the  sounds  of  the  backgrounds  like  the  bird  talking  to  me  from   the  near  by  building  I  can  clearly  understand  when  I  am  standing  on  the  edge  of  my  balcony:  we   converse.  Sometimes  I  walk  in  the  neighborhood  just  to  talk  with  the  nearby  balcony  caged  animals.   They  whistle  I  whisle,  They  talk  I  talk  back...  I  wish  I  had  more  time  to  talk  with  these  birds:  they   make  the  population  of  my  best  freinds.  I  feel  that  some  very  exploaratory  conversations  can  come   out  of  this.  But  I  have  to  continue  walking  for  now,  and  at  times  return  to  those  sites,  when  on  the   way  I  find  other  paths…           Such  a  site-­‐specific  work  about  writing  takes  upon  the  inter-­‐  and  intra-­‐  relationality  of  all  elements   involded  but  also  those  missing  in  and  around  the  body  of  the  performer.  What  are  the  spaces  his   body  inhabits  while  performing    (in  life).  What  are  the  spontaneous,  extra  leaking  textual  spaces  his   body  strays  to  while  writing  /performing    (in  life)?  How  is  that  a  performed  space?  The  performed   spaces  of  my  interest  reaches  ends  of  bodily  concerns  that  turn  into  new  beginnings.  Every  text  here   is  a  beginning.  The  far  ends  of  imagination  and  those  participating  elements  and  people  is  what  at   times  lines  up  the  thoroughness  of  space  we  are  looking  for  in  this  specifc  site.  Specifically,  the  ways   in  which  space  is  being  performed  with  text  and  is  embarked  but  not  represented  there  and  written   about.  Principles  and  bases  here  would  be  unthinkable  (Bachelard).  However,  space  as  performed   constellation  of  multiple  elements  and  their  relationships  is  carefully  thought  of,  discussed  and  re-­‐ invented.  Space  is  the  indented  spontaneity  while  walking  through  varied  ambiences  in  and  outside   of  the  city,  and  the  principle  of  taking  unknown  roads.  That  cautions  way  of  writing  by  no  means  can   be  anchored  only  in  principles  that  allow  for  imagination  to  move,  change,  practice  and  be  re-­‐ invented  but  new  unknown  pathways  are  ever-­‐started.       42 A  departure  through  which  the  sites  and  the  events     of  investigation  become  apprehended  as  ‘texts’  (and  latter  on  as  –  landscape,  city  space,  place  ),   where  ‘the  text  is  seen  in  terms  of  the  self-­‐realisation  or  contestation  of  [ideas,   ideologies  and]  identities,  is  here  understood  as  part  of  the  impulse  to  not  just  as  a  piece  of  self-­‐ realization.  This  would  be  a  piece  taking  into  consideration  our  relationships  with  and  the  exchanges   that  append  within  and  with  our  surroundings  (not  just  in  terms  of  space  sound  and  movement  but   in  terms  of  interaction  between  two  bodies  talking).  Here  texts  are  considered  as  sites  but  they  are   sites  happening  within  the  site  of  walking  is  moving  through  the  ambiences.  The  text  is  an  Other.   This  implies  invention  and  duration  in  both,  while  the  situational  its  re-­‐invention  in  documentation   textual/video  in  both  co-­‐creative  and  solo  settings.    There  is  an  ongoing  speculation  about  the   relationship  between  these  elements  aforementioned  and  they  constant  movement  and  negotiation   between  one  another  and  with  others.  The  more  the  engagement  with  it  the  more  relationships  and   exchanges  occur  the  more  of  the  space  explored  becomes  covered/uncovered  and  questioned  for  its   alternative  modes  of  creation  and  the  inventiveness  that  it  proposes  to  its  engaged  agents.  This  way   seemingly  hidden  corners  become  unfolded  and  moved  at  a  foreground  (mystified  and  demystified).   Whereas  new  hidden  corners  and  more  found  sites  dicovered  are  uncovered  and  the  feeling  of  that   same  space  is  now  changed  in  its  with,  breath  and  complexity.    Those  newly  created  corners  are  also   reveled  and  so  the  here  and  the  foreground  right  before  and  inside  the  body  is  changed  once  again.   Each  text  is  considered  in  relation  to  itself  within  the  other  text  but  many  of  those  sites  of  exchanges  


32      

Spaces and Places, Sites: Walking through varied spatiality for performed space

        This  essay  is  written  with  the  aim  to  re-­‐consider  a  new  site  for  my  walking,  canoeing,   writing  and  other  Sisyphean43  explorations  indexed  in  a  site-­‐specific  work  with  an   initial  fixed  location.  The  aim  of  tracing  theoretical  concepts  in  other  writers'  works   was  to  find  new  ways  to  relate  the  creative  stories  that  sprung  as  a  result  of   acquaintances  with  strangers  during  my  intercity  walks  with  concepts  ever-­‐leaking   inside  and  outside  the  initial  site  in  artistic  process  as  research.  This  way  I  intend  to   inform  the  ephemerality  of  site-­‐specific  work  and  to  identify  every  idea  in  relation  to   my  discoveries,  which  is  an  impossible  thing  to  do.       Here,  then  one  will  find  the  record  of  texts  and  artist’s  works  informing  the  creative   texts  I  write  as  a  result  of  durational  reading  across  sources  and  ideas,  and  my   perception  of  the  relatedness  between  different  thoughts  and  different  artists'  works.   These  research  and  creative  texts  together  inspire  the  solitary  and  group  actions  that   currently  make  up  my  practice.       I  explore  performed  and  site-­‐related  spaces,  and  their  absence  as  a  result  of  being  re-­‐ sited  to  some  place  else.  I  discuss  the  relationship  between  spatial  and  walking   practices,  the  logic  of  nomadism  and  impermanence  in  site-­‐specific  art  within  the   context  of  contemporary  art,  itself  the  reflection  of  ever-­‐changing  spaces  and  ways  to   perform  space.  That  is  to  say  that  the  texts  serve  as  a  departure.     Immigration  in  and  to  Greece  happens  on  foot  and  by  boat.  Walking  is  transportation.   Walking  to  the  unknown  and  getting  to  an  island,  shows  the  potential  of  instability   and  immigration.  Walking  and  canoeing  implies  the  instability,  the  impermanence  and   the  ephemerality  necessary  to  a  creative  act.  To  move  one’s  body  freely  in  space   shows  freedom  of  will  and  the  spontaneity  of  the  act.  Walking  is  against  capture.   Walking  defies  the  specificity  of  positionality.  Walking  is  a  departure  from  an  original   fixed  position.  Walking  is  discontinued  by  newly  arriving  thoughts  while  walking  but   walking  and  talking  creates  the  duration  and  the  continuity  in  which  a  story  is  told  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        42

are missing  because  they  were  experienced  and  there  was  not  enough  time  to  record  them.   This  texts  keeps  on  pasting  themselves  in  new  pages  in  new  configurations  starting  new  beginnings   every  day  anew  constantly  re-­‐cited  and  re-­‐referenced  to  themselves  and  with  the  new   investigations.         43  From  Jean  Marie’s  evaluation  text    


33 through  its  smaller  stories  and  their  connectivity  and  ways  of  telling  may  not  be   chronological.  A  smaller  story  tied  to  the  original  story  is  a  departure  from  the  initial   story  but  is  also  the  duration  spent  in  that  displacement.  The  duration  spent  in  the   leak  of  the  story  related  to  some  place  else  or  to  the  ‘here’  that  departs  from  the  main   story  is  a  drift  off  the  initial  site  and  a  proximity  spent  in  leaking  feelings  and  extreme   details  related  to  the  site.  Walking  to  nowhere  and  in  different  directions  decentralizes   ideology  of  one  thematic  exploration.  Walking  through  various  spaces  shows  the   potential  of  sampling  in  a  continuum  of  space.  This  points  to  the  possibility  of  re-­‐ inventing  one's  space  and  context  through  new  arrivals.  However  that  ability  to  re-­‐ invent  and  access  spaces  is  a  privileged  position,  tied  to  capital  and  power,  and  should   not  be  confused  with  the  creative  act  of  willful  displacement  –  nomadic  creative  work.   What  the  two  have  in  common  is  spontaneity  and    embarking  into  the  unknown,  and   the  practicing  of  place  in  unusual  ways.  What  are  the  physical  explorations  of  such  a   work  and  how  is  walking  practice  connected  with  the  stories  of  people  one  meets  on   the  way  and  how  are  their  stories  leaked  back  to  my  explorations?   Walking  and  canoeing  are  related  to  immigration  because  those  are  the  two  ways   through  which  people  cross  borders  to  come  to  Greece.                  

‘[…](to  tell  one  slef’s  legends)  as  practices  that  invent  spaces’,  [..]   ‘Linking  acts  and  footsteps,  opening  meanings  and  directions  these  words  operate  […]  by  emptying   out  and  wearing  away  of  their  primary  role.  They  become  liberated  spaces  that  can  be  occupied.   Such  indetermination  gives  them  […]  the  function  of  articulating  a  second  poetic  geography  on  top   of  the  geography  of  the  literal  forbidden  or  permitted  meaning.’              Certau,  Michel  de  1984  The   Practice  of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of  California  Press  Berkley,  p.105;p.107.  

              In  her  book  For  Space  (Massey  2005)44    the  critic  Doreen  Massey  discusses  how   relationships  subject  to  practical  explorations  of  space  are  to  be  found  within  the   conceptual  entanglement  in  the  very  politics  for  space.  In  his  essay  For  Space   (Anderson  2008)45  Ben  Anderson  points  to  Massey's  suggestion  to  ‘open  up  the   political  to  the  challenge  of  space’46.  In  my  view  this  is  an  opening  of  the  performative   to  the  challenge  of  space  and  vice  versa.  In  her  opinion,  the  disruptiveness   (performance)  of  formulations  (spaces)  opens  an  alternative  inventiveness  to  view  

                                                                                                              44

Massey,  Doreen  2005,  For  Space,  1  (ed.),  SAGE  Publications  Ltd.;  Also  available  [ONLINE]  at  <   http://selforganizedseminar.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/massey-­‐for_space.pdf>     45  Anderson,  Ben  2008.’  Doreen  Massey:  For  Space’.  Phil  Hubbard,  Rob  Kitchin  &  Gill  Valentine  (eds).   Key  Texts  in  Human  Geography.  Edition.  SAGE  Publications  Ltd,  pp.  227-­‐235.;  Also  available  [ONLINE]   at  <  http://www.corwin.com/upm-­‐data/18967_26_Hubbard_Ch_26.pdf>     46  Anderson  2008,  p.228    


34 and  perform  new  spatialities.  This  way  to  view  space  is  similar  to  what  de  Certau  saw   in  the  possibility  that  performing  space  is  to  disrupt  its  singularity  (de  Certau  1984).   Moreover,  Massey’s  view  of  space  opens  the  fluidity  and  dynamism  of  spatiality  by   saying  first  that  space  is  a  sphere  ‘of  dynamic  simultaneity’  (Anderson  2008),   ‘constantly  disconnected  by  new  arrivals’  (Massey  2003)47,  constantly  waiting  to  be   determined  (and  therefore  always  undetermined  [and  never  closed])’  ‘by  the   construction  of  new  relations’  (Anderson  2008)  (that  space  is  interrelated  as   constituted  through  interactions  of  the  newly  coming  elements).  ‘Space  is  always   being  made  and  is  always  therefore,  in  a  sense,  unfinished  (except  that  “finishing”  is   not  on  the  agenda)’  (Massey  2003).  This  means  that,  secondarily,  space  is  the  ‘sphere   of  multiplicity’  because  ‘it  is  made  out  of  numerous  heterogeneous  entities’  (Anderson   2008).  Furthermore,  space  is  the  gathering  together  of  multiple  open-­‐ended,   interconnected,  trajectories  to  produce  what  Massey  names  as  ‘sometimes   happenstance’:  that  is  re-­‐made  (even  if  this  is  hidden)  by  provisional  happenstances   that  may  be  reached  or  not  (space  is  open  to  the  ‘throwntogetherness’  of  place  –  the   way  that  a  place  is  ‘elusive’  because  it  is  made  out  of  multiple  trajectories  and  the   negotiation  of  their  relations  that  will  always  be  re-­‐invented)(Anderson  2008).  Site-­‐ specificity,  it  follows,  is  found  in  use  as  a  performed  space  of  multiple  relationalities,  is   always  being  produced,  and  so  is  subject  to  instability,  ephemerality,  and  temporality   revealing  the  acting  out  of  a  perpetually  practiced  place  within  a  work  of  single  artist.   (See  note  on  Miwon  Kwon  ‘relational  specificity’  and  Doreen  Massey  ‘relational   spatiality’  i).  This  way  of  viewing  space  is  also  similar  to  what  Deluze  and  Guatarri   explained  as  ‘chance  convergences  forged  by  encounters  and  circumstances’.   Following  Massey’s  thought  one  can  speculate  that  the  spatial  ‘opens  up  the  political   to  the  challenge  of  space’  and  that  it  opens  up  the  political  to  the  challenge  of  the   performative.  Space  ‘opens  up  the  political’  because  to  think  of  spatiality  is  to  engage   in  multiple  processes  of  their  very  co-­‐existences’  (Anderson  2008)  48.     Massey  writes  further  that  ‘everything  is  connected  to  everything  else’  and  that  there   are  always  connections  to  be  made-­‐links  that  may  never  be  established.  Space   according  to  her  ‘is  not  a  completed  simultaneity  in  which  all  interconnections  have   been  established,  in  which  every  place  is  already  linked  to  everywhere  else.’;  ‘There   are  always  loose  ends’.  If  you  were  to  make  a  map  that  really  had  the  characteristics  of   this  space,  it  would  be  entirely  possible  to  fall  through  it’  (Massey  2003).  Here  it  is   important  to  note  the  impossibility  of  writing  everything  that  there  is  related  to  a   work  of  art.  Once  you  attempt  writing  everything  you  end  up  writing  about  the   impossibility  to  write  everything  and  texts  are  ever  re-­‐siting  (linked  and  thus  moved)   to  some  place  else.  However,  that  linking  of  things  for  Massey  is  not  the  experience  of   another  place  rather  it  is  the  experience  of  a  complex  here  and  now  evoking  histories   and  memories  that  make  up  the  very  present.  (Massey  2005)  This  is  closely  related  to   the  reading  of  a  site-­‐specific  work.  A  site-­‐specific  work  in  this  context  is  made  up  of   events  that  constitute  its  meanings  and  those  that  re-­‐define  the  process  and  so  new   readings  of  the  site  are  opened  up.  In  his  book  Nick  Kaye  quotes  Pearson  who  believes   that  ‘one  can  view  site  as  a  performance  of  complex  overlaying  of  narratives,  historical   and  contemporary,  [creates]  a  kind  of  saturated  space,  or  scene-­‐of-­‐crime,  where  [.  .  .]   “everything  is  potentially  important”’49.       Doreen  Massey’s  thinking  for  space  favors  new  ways  to  practice  the  site  (as  the  ‘event   of  place’)(in  accordance  with  ‘elusive’  multiple  trajectories)  rather  than  sticking  to  the   continuity  and  fixity  of  an  initial  claim  (Massey  2005).  One  ends  up  recognizing  the  

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Massey,  Doreen  2003  Some  Times  of  Space  In  Olafur  Eliasson:  The  Weather  Project.  Edited  by   Susan  May.  Exhibition  catalogue.  London:  Tate  Publishing,  107-­‐118  [ONLINE]  available  at  <   http://www.olafureliasson.net/publications/download_texts/Some_times_of_space.pdf  >     49  Kaye,  Nick  2000.  Site  Specific  Art:  performance,  place  and  documentation.Routhlege:London  and   N/Y    


35 constructive  interrelatedness  and  the  potential  of  situational  occurrences.  Her  idea   however  makes  it  seem  impossible  to  establish  finite  exhaustion  of  a  concept  since   ‘everything  is  connected  to  everything  else’.  Secondarily,  the  ‘interrelatedness’  and  the   ‘negotiation  through  range  of  means’  I  relate  to  questions  of  participation  in   collaborative  group  works  and  as  a  reflection  of  how  we  experience  space  in  the   everyday.  Here,  the  dynamics  of  work  and  ‘happenstances’  are  open  to  change   according  to  the  situational  and  specific  ‘negotiations’  and  conversations  practiced  in   relation  to  a  work/the  event/the  place  50.  She  points:  ‘politics  of  place  would  not  be   simply  a  politics  of  ‘community’  but  would  involve  processes  of  ‘negotiation’  that   would  confront  the  fact  of  difference  via  ‘the  range  of  means  through  which   accommodation,  anyway  always  provisional,  may  be  reached  or  not’  (Anderson   2008);(See  original  text  51).  This  is  closely  related  to  what  Tom  Finkelpearl’s  saw  as  a   ‘nuclei  of  contradiction’  when  discussing  the  politics  of  intra-­‐group  relations,  and  how   a  work  can  be  driven  by  negotiations  in  a  conversation  within  a  group  (Finkelpearl   2001)52.  That  is  to  say  that  space  is  no  longer  a  singular  thematic  model  believed  to  be   the  subject  of  a  work,  but  is  instead  directed  by  the  material  ephemerality  of   ‘presence’  found  in  physical  movement,  and  by  relational  engagement  with  people’s   ideas.  The  fluidity  of  such  a  migratory  model  for  making  a  work  produces  possibilities   for  ‘the  production  of  multiple  identities,  allegiances  and  meanings  in  the  encounters   of  the  aforementioned  possible  circumstances  and  a  work  that  ever-­‐changes  according   to  those  circumstances’  [Deluze  and  Gattari  in  (Kwon  1997)(Kwon  2004))53.  This  way   of  thinking  of  space  is  a  constant  going  back  and  forth  between  performed  space  (as  in   performance  art  discourse)  and  lived  space  (as  in  everyday  life),  the  nomadic  and  the   ephemeral  (the  re-­‐sited)  in  the  site-­‐specific.       This  understanding  that  space  is  a  practiced  (performed)  space  and  that  it  presents  to   us  the  challenges  of  place  as  always  open,  under  construction  or  constantly  being   made,  is  the  constellation  of  multiple  relationships  between  the  ever-­‐changing   trajectories  that  produce  it.  This  multiplicity  means  that  space  is  the  condition  for  the   spontaneous,  improvisational  and  the  unexpected.  Consequently,  ‘space  is  an  ongoing   achievement  that  is  never  finished  or  closed’.  Space  becomes,  therefore,  the  very  

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note  to  myself:    This  allow  for  the  situational,  complex  sociocultural  and  perpetual  in  making  to  enter  the  work  as   constantly  being  re-­‐made  by  the  stories  and  by  the  conditions  in  which  those  were  made.  This  is  of   the  characteristic  of  site-­‐specificity  today  that  the  site  has  become  aware  of  the  environment  ad  the   context  and  the  players  involved.  The  ‘reasons’  and  the  conditions  of  a  work  are  not  singular  but   somehow  created  in  the  course  of  actions.     51  Anderson  (2008)  writes:  ‘Massey  offers  three   practices  that  follow  from  opening  up  the   political  to  the  spatial  –  that  is  to  ‘the  challenge   of  our  constitutive  interrelatedness’.  First,  a   politics  of  receptivity  that  is  open  to  the   ‘throwntogetherness’  of  place  –  the  way  that  a   place  is  ‘elusive’  because  it  is  made  out  of   multiple  trajectories.  Thus  a  politics  of  place   would  not  be  simply  a  politics  of  ‘community’   but  would  involve  processes  of  ‘negotiation’   that  would  confront  the  fact  of  difference  via   ‘the  range  of  means  through  which   accommodation,  anyway  always  provi-­‐  sional,   may  be  reached  or  not’.       52  Finkelpearl,  Tom  2001.  Dialogues  in  public  Art.  The  MIT  Press:  Cambridge,  Massachusetts  London     53  Kwon,  Miwon  2004,  One  Place  After  Another:  site-­‐specific  art  and  locational  identity,  The  MIT   Press:  Cambridge,  Massachusetts,  London.    


36 ground  ‘to  engage  with  the  existence  of  processes  of  coexistence.’  In  the  context  of  art   this  can  be  a  way  to  view  interactive  space  being  produced  between  humans  as  a   relational  situation  of  exchanges  and  movements  through  varied  space.       ‘Changing  place’   Space  is  no  longer  a  container  that  is  made  out  of  specific  processes  that  constitute  it.   A  space  like  Rafti  island  is  understood  as  the  changing  atmosphere,  changing   temperature,  changing  green  color  of  bushes,  changing  water  tides,  the  changing   aquatic  life,  its  temporary  network  of  visitors  and  the  ever  changing  stories  that  are  in   the  process  of  being  made  by  people  via  memories,  experiences  and  imagination  that   connect  it  to  some  place  else.  Place  is  different  at  different  social  occasions.     This  processual  and  impermanent  essence  of  space  (the  opposite  of  static  and  stable)   is  used  by  ethnographers  to  understand  how  public  space  is  performed  by  its   temporary  participants.  Using  ‘observational  details’  they  demonstrate  how  that  same   place  is  performed  differently  at  different  times  of  the  day  via  the  different  relations   and  ways  of  co-­‐existence  between  its  participants.  Place,  then,  is  the  gathering  of   different  so-­‐existing  situations  of  a  place  that  are  ever  re-­‐performed  by  its  temporary   visitors     ‘The  event  of  place’   But  how  are  we  in  the  here  and  now  if  everything  is  moving?  Temporality  seems  a   prerequisite  for  spatiality  or  else  temporality  tames  spatiality.  Thus  relationality  is  an   instance  and  a  capturetaking  of  instantaneous    happenstances  that  may  or  may  not  be   made.  Some  connections  and  links  are  never  established,  and  the  absence  of  those  also   constitute  the  space.     The  ‘here  and  now’  for  Massey  is  the  very  crossing  of  categories  and  spaces  in  social   and  natural  orders.  This  encounter  of  diverse  elements  into  relations  is  a  spatial  and   political  challenge  of  our  ‘constitutive  interrelatedness.’  In  her  chapter  Elusiveness  of   Place  with  the  subchapters  Migrant  Rocks  and  The  event  of  place  she  explains  that   ‘here’  is  where  the  ‘spatial  narratives  meet  up  to  form  configurations,  trajectories,   meetings,  accumulations,  encounters,  and  those  have  their  own  temporalities.  But  this   in  my  opinion  means  that  those  are  subject  to  duration,  connectivity  and  continuity.   But  the  returns  to  temporalities  and  continuities  for  her  are  ‘always  to  a  place  that  has   moved  on’.  They  intersect  and  weave  into  one  another  and  create  what  she  names   space-­‐time.    'Here'  is  an  intertwining  of  stories  which  are  in  constant  negotiation.   Moreover  ‘here’  is  space  that  creates  the  simultaneity  and  connections  of  those  stories   (Massey  2005).  The  key,  though,  is  that  there  are  no  portable  rules  because  of  the   uniqueness  of  place:  ‘the  negotiation  will  always  be  an  invention;  there  will  be  need   for  judgment,  learning,  improvisation’.  In  this  sense  site  specificity  is  not  only  moved   under  certain  circumstances.  The  whole  work  is  made  anew  for  the  new  space  where   new  trajectories  cross  to  produce  the  specificity  of  that  place  and  its  newly  created   relations.  For  me  her  texts  open  new  questions:  ‘What  is  distinct  about  encounters?’   ‘What  are  non  encounter  (solitary  practice  maybe)?’  How  are  spaces  and  places   understood  as  duration  spent  in  them?  Why  are  spaces  repeated  and  endured?  Do  we   need  to  disclose  the  constellations  of  space-­‐time  that  were  never  made  material?  How   do  we  do  that  in  a  non-­‐material  way?     In  his  book  The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life  54de  Certau  was  concerned  with  the  practice   of  place  and,  similar  to  the  idea  of  Doreen  Massey,  he  recognizes  that  space  is   disconnected  by  new  arrivals,  by     ‘  […]  fragments  of  scattered  semantic  places.  These  heterogeneous  and  even   contrary  elements  fill  the  homogeneous  from  the  story.  Things  extra  and  

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Certau,  Michel  de  1984  The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of  California  Press  Berkley,   p.107    


37 others  (details  and  excess  coming  from  elsewhere]  insert  themselves  into  an   accepted  framework,  the  imposed  order’.  One  thus  has  the  very  [relation-­‐ ship]  between  spatial  practices  and  the  constructed  one.  The  surface  of  this   order  is  everywhere  punched  and  torn  open  by  ellipses,  drifts  and  leaks  of   meaning:  it  is  a  sieve-­‐order’  (De  Certau  1984)55.       These  relationships  according  to  Nick  Kaye,  are  to  be  found  also  between  spatial   practices  and  a  site-­‐specific  work  (Nick  Kaye  2000)56.  They  test  the  stability  and  limits   of  these  very  places  with  the  creative  curiosity  to  disrupt  and  produce  meanings  that   are  unbounded  by  place.  In  this  sense,  ‘the  event  of  place’  is  to  be  found  precisely  in   these  ellipses,  drifts,  and  leaks  of  meaning,  through  which  the  artwork  and  its  place   may  be  momentarily  articulated  one  in  the  other:  in  its  drifting  and  detournements   from  the  original  site-­‐inhabiting  [to  reside]  once  again  in  a  new  space.  Nick  Kaye   further  explains  that  ‘the  real  site-­‐specific  works  that  we  do,  are  the  ones  where  we   create  ‘a  piece  of  work  which  is  a  hybrid  of  the  place,  the  public  and  the   performance’.57  That  is,  at  moments  these  texts  depart  to  someplace  else.     How  are  the  spaces  created  in  this  text  that  I  am  writing?  How  are  spaces  here   performed  within  the  ever-­‐changing  complexity  of  re-­‐siting  to  some  place  else  and   within  the  here-­‐situational  negotiation?  Where  is  here  if  everything  is  moving  at  all   times?  These  texts    can  be  understood  in  terms  of  the  articulated  exchanges  between   the  work  of  art  and  the  conversations  between  the  references  that  speculate  and  forge   its  very  meaning  are  created.  The  practiced  space  experience  is  expressed  through  the   histories  of  its  encounters  with  the  aforementioned  concepts  documented  or  not  in   between  the  footnotes,  endnotes,  references,  appendices  and  indexesii5859.  The  ‘here’  is   where  these  spatial  narratives  meet  up  to  form  encounters  with  one  another  and  each   sentence(s)  has  its  own  temporality,  duration,  continuity  and  connectivity  with  other   sentences.  They  are  constantly  connected  to  one  another  but  also  disconnected  to   connect  with  an  Other.  That  is,  they  are  in  a  continuum  that  is  both  connected  and   disconnected  by  duration.  Each  paragraph  is  ever-­‐shifting  and  can  be  put  next  to  any   other  one.  When  I  write,  a  new  space  opens  and  a  new  relationship  is  created  that   takes  me  closer  to  somewhere  I  want  to  go.  I  do  not  know  where  I  am  going.  The   newly  written  paragraph  becomes  more  specifically  closer  to  where  I  am  going  and  it   pastes  itself  atop  all  previously  written  paragraphs.  Then  the  conclusion  can  become   the  introduction  as  a  new  context  and  as  a  beginning,  and  this  process  never  stops.   The  paragraphs  are  disrupted  by  the  throw-­‐allingness  of  space  and  are  like  the   impossibility  to  hold  together  many  things  at  the  same  time.     De  Certau  makes  a  clear  distinction  between  space  and  place  but  he  also   writes  that  place  is  a  ‘performed  space’.  In  his  mind  it  is  possible  to  disrupt  the   singularity  of  space  through  performing  space  with  actions  like  walking  through  the   city.  (See  also  note  on  Lefebvreiii)  As  will  be  discussed  later  Miwon  Kwon  gives  an   overview  of  site-­‐specific  art,  initially  tied  to  the  fixed  place  of  its  location,  and  then   explains  how  site-­‐specificity  is  performed  through  its  evolving  spatial  conceptions.   However,  she  points  out  that  those  concepts  are  not  to  be  understood  as  evolving  one  

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ibid  

56

Kaye,  Nick  2000.  Site  Specific  Art:  performance,  place  and  documentation.Routhlege:London  and   N/Y     57  ibid     58  What  are  the  fictional  selves  that  continue  to  return  to  inform  our  sense  of  location,  identity?     59  Can  it  be  said  that  those  fictional  selves  are  means  for  survival?    


38 after  the  other  but  by  being  ever  in  relational  negotiation  within  a  site-­‐specific   work6061.       In  that  sense  relational  specificity  is  close  to  Doreen  Massey's  idea  of   sometimes  happenstance  and  the  throwntogetherness  of  place,  as  well  as  De  Certaus   idea  of  practiced  places.  Lastly,  Nick  Kaye  discusses  specific  concerns  and  works   associated  with  site-­‐specific  art  hinting  to  the  idea  of  the  ‘reading  of  the  site’,  the  ‘off   site’,  the  ‘entry  to  the  work’  and  ‘non  space’  as,  understood  by  Marc  Augé.    

A ‘site-­‐specific  work’  articulates  itself  through  qualities  or  meanings  produced   in  specific  relationships  between  an  ‘event’  and  a  position  it  occupies,  or  though  its   absence  from  that  location.  Relational  aesthetics  have  been  critiquing  spatial  theories   and  public  art  for  its  purely  theoretical,  ethical  and  political  aspects  rather  than   actually  applying  those  ideas  among  people  in  lived  spaces.  There  is  small  emphasis   on  results  consequential  to  durational  participation.  These  works  are  invested  in  the   idea  of  permanence  rather  than  nomadic  feeling  through  situations.  How  can  an   ephemeral  idea  of  moving  through  spaces  initiate  a  durational  permanence  within   changing  conversations  and  contexts?  All  aforementioned  issues  call  into  question  the   spatial  consideration  of  where  the  work  of  art  is  being  made  and  its  very  absence  from   “where  it  is  supposed  to  be”  (off  site,  non-­‐site,  lived  work).     In  order  to  describe  surroundings  and  how  people  invent  relations  though  spaces  and   places  many  anthropologists  and  philosophers  like  de  Certau  (unlike  Doreen  Massey  )   use  two  oppositional  terms  to  distinguish  “place  ”  and  “space”.  According  to  many,   place  is  a  static  concept  without  the  option  of  movement,  whereas  space  is  lively  –  it   involves  the  process  of  arriving  anywhere  by  a  person  and  thus,  it  is  connected  with   movement.    

In The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life  (de  Certeau  1984)62,  de  Certeau  investigates  the   relationship  between  ‘place’  and  ‘space’  and  their  distinction  space  (espace)  and   place(lieu).  ‘[  [A]  place  (lieu)  is  the  order  (of  whatever  kind)  in  accord  with  which   elements  are  ordered  in  ‘relationships  of  coexistence’  and  thus  are  ‘an  instantaneous   configuration  of  positions’.  This  ‘implies  an  indication  of  stability’.  Contrary  to  place  he   refers  to  a  space  as  ‘composed  of  intersections  of  mobile  elements’.63iv  Contrary  to   place  de  Certeau’s  states  that  ‘space  is  a  practiced  place’.      

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The  possibility  of  a  work  can  be  understood  through  the  trajectories  of  its  ever-­‐relating  successful   contexts.  He  starts  from  the  idea  that  site-­‐specific  work  tied  to  its  original  fixed  location,  to  concerns   about  the  presence  of  the  artist  body  in  the  work,  to  the  site  moving  to  the  space  of  conceptual   discourse,  to  the  site  being  the  relationships  between  the  artist  and  the  instruction  or  the  social  to   the  site.  All  ways  to  see  site  specificity  is  in  my  view  practicing  a  kind  of  removal  from  the  site).  One   can  provide  a  provisional  understanding  that  the  nomadic  and  ephemeral  in  specificity,  which  is  to   practice  a  removal  from  the  work  but  the  initial  fixed  site,  is  a  needed  index  to  the  work  (like  the   island  and  intercity  walking  and  this  text  here  and  my  creative  walking  stories).  His  concerns  are   closely  related  to  presence,  originality,  authorship  and  transferability  of  the  site-­‐specific  work.     61  They  move  us  to  the  idea  that  encounters  in  long  terms.  This  hints  back  to  idea  of  relational  art   that  any  site  is  a  potential  place  for  a  work  and  the  all  relationships  made  count  and  that  the  work   can  happen  with  more  relaxed  settings  of  the  everyday  where  the  audience  and  the  artist  resort  to   actions  akin  to  everyday  but  also  create  common  spaces  (more  sedentary)  with  audiences-­‐  a  space   for  dialogue.     62  Certau,  Michel  de  1984  The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of  California  Press  Berkley.   Also  available  [ONLINE]  <  http://www.melaniecrean.com/interface2010/wp-­‐ content/uploads/2010/08/deCerteau_PracticeofEverydayLife.pdf>     63  ibid    


39 Place,  like  language  he  believes  is  the  production  of  a  system  of  specific  rules  that   produce  meaning  according  to  their  location.  The  ways  though  which  a  practice   obtains  its  place  [lieu]  at  a  very  specific  position  makes  it  conceptually  impossible  for   two  things  to  be  at  the  same  location  [place]  in  that  order  of  ‘place’.  However,  he  sees   the  regularity  and  stability  of  place  disrupted  though  the  possibilities  in  ‘spatial   practices’  and  calls  into  question  ‘the  effect  produced  by  the  operation  that  orient[s]   it’.  Practiced  place  according  to  him  does  not  reorganize  fragments  within  a  given   order  but  simply  operates  on  ordering  activities  like  walking,  listening,  watching.   However,  the  incompatibility  he  perceives  can  perform  the  various  possibilities  of  a   single  space.  Writing,  the  act  of  talking,  thinking  and  walking  situated  in  the  present   change  into  somethings  else  because  they  transform  through  its  successive  contexts   and  through  the  newly  created  meanings  leaking  from  them  being  practiced.       According  to  him  ‘the  constructed  street  by  urban  planning  (place)  is  in  the  process  of   being  transformed  into  space  by  walkers’.  This  makes  walkers  possible  participants  in   the  construction  of  social  space  and  brings  practical  questions  such  as  the  access  to   public  spaces.  This  means  that  he  brings  into  question  how  perpetual  journeying   resists  the  stability  of  place.  The  immense  social  experience  of  walking  into  the  city   multiplies  the  transient  nature  of  spaces.  De  Certau  ‘identifies  that  there  is  a   population  of  passers-­‐by’,  a  ‘network  of  temporary  citizens’  ‘that  are  approved   (ordered  language)  by  the  architecture  and  the  pedestrian  traffic  and  that  they  are   going  ‘to  nowhere’  they  are  in  symbolic  ‘dreamed  of  places’.64       In  the  same  way,  the  act  of  writing  and  reading  is  the  production  of  a  performed  space;   the  act  of  walking  is  the  practice  of  movement  through  particular  places.    Following   this  though,  the  disruption  of  contextualizing  and  the  disruption  of  the  classic  ways  to   write  through  a  stability  of  continuity  and  relationships  makes  it  possible  to  overcome   the  tradition  of  economic  writing  (associated  with  efficiency  in  capitalist  culture)  and   opens  up  the  participation  of  non-­‐trained  writers,  migrants,  bodies  to  participate  in   writing  as  a  creative  act  through  which  they  can  articulate  the  very  circumstances  of   their  living.       Performative  practices  in  art  since1917  (Dada,  Fluxus,  Situationists  International),  the   manifestations  of  ‘walks  to  nowhere’.  ‘detournments’,  happenings,  events,  situations   provides  us  with  interesting  examples  of  ‘relationship  to  site’,  ‘the  absence  of  location’   ,  movement  through  ‘varied  ambiences’  off  site,  ‘works  without  logic’,  ‘non  spaces’  and   questions  about  where  the  site  of  performative  work  is  to  be  located.     The  earliest  documented  explorations  of  non-­‐site  specific  art  works  can  be  found  as   early  as  the  Dadaists,  who  operated  on  the  streets  in  their  multiple  locations   throughout  Europe.  Dada  can  be  considered  as  the  first  manifestation  of  performance,   of  an  off-­‐  site  work,  and  that  of  a  community-­‐creation  oriented  work.  The  Paris   Dadaists  led  a  series  of  "excursions  and  visits"  to  places  that  had  "no  reason  to  exist,"   as  explained  in  the  flyer  and  public  invitation  published  in  several  newspapers  to   announce  the  visit  (Demos  2010)  65.  

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The  practice  of  the  here,  the  spoken  world  resist  place  and  even  the  symbolic  participates  in  this   movement  because  it  can  never  be  set  in  order  according  to  its  fixity.  The  symbolic  is  tamed  to   lacking  a  place  because  representation  is  itself  the  lack  of  its  object.  From  this  follows  that  a  ‘real   place’  is  not  to  be  found  in  presence  which  though  does  give  us  conceptual  liberation  to  do  it  in   language-­‐  as  a  meta  space.     65  Demos,  T.J.  2010.  Dada’s  Event.  Communities  of  Sense,  ed.  Jaleh  Mansoor  et  al.,  Durham,  N.C.:   Duke  University  Press;  Also  available  [ONLINE]  <  http://www.ucl.ac.uk/art-­‐ history/about_us/academic_staff/dr_tj_demos/further_publications/Demos-­‐DadaEvent.pdf>    


40   ‘Only  areas  considered  not  picturesque,  nonhistorical-­‐or  at  least  not  conventionally   historical-­‐and  unsentimental  would  qualify  for  Dadaist  tours,  beginning  with   St.Julien's  abandoned  courtyard,  which-­‐although  it  was  situated  next  to  the  oldest   standing  church  in  Paris-­‐existed  in  a  state  of  disrepair  and  was  then  mistreated  as  a   garbage  dump  by  residents  of  the  fifth  arrondissement’  […]  ‘They  do  so  most   commonly,  as  is  well  understood  by  now,  to  critique  the  false  autonomy  of  art,  which   is  shown  to  be  fully  immersed  within  capitalist  institutions,  and  to  create  spaces  of   sociability  different  from  those  enmeshed  within  a  reality  perceived  to  be   domininated  by  commercial  spectacle  and  its  reified  social  relations  (ibid).     The  idea  of  movement  through  sites  and  places  was  later  embarked  upon  by  the   Situationists,who  ‘challenged  people's  passive  conditioning  with  […][the]  playful  tactic   of  detournement’  Dérives  is  a  technique  of  ‘rapid  passage  through  varied  ambiences’.  It   involves  playful-­‐constructive  behavior  and  awareness  of  psycho-­‐geographical  effects,   and  claims  [to  be]  if  different  from  the  classic  notions  of  a  journey  or  stroll  (Debord   2014,  initially  written  in  1985)  66.     Space  cannot  produce  the  ‘stability  of  its  place’.  To  walk  is  to  be  absent  of  place.  From   this  it  follows  that  movement  without  destination  (arrival  site)  is  against  stability.  A   pedestrian  walker  processes  multiple  spaces  and  re-­‐formulations  of  linguistic  and   experiential  spaces.  67The  walker’s  experience  of  being  aware  of  himself  performs  the   space  through  the  ever-­‐changing  stories  that  re-­‐site  it  as  he  walks  with  his  body.            

Performing Spatialities: Walking Practices See list of Walking works68

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Debord,  Guy  2014  ‘Theory  of  the  Dérives’  [originaly  created  1958]in  Bobsecrets.org;Situationists   International  Online  [ONLINE]  Available  at:   <  http://www.bopsecrets.org/SI/2.derive.htm  >;  <  http://www.cddc.vt.edu/sionline/si/theory.html  >   [Accessed  15  February  2014].     67  note  to  myself:  To  walk  means  no  stability  but  to  walk  is  to  be  absent  of  a  place  and  in  between   the  re-­‐siting  of  the  multiplicity  of  experienced  spaces.     68  Vito  Acconci,  Following  Piece  (1969)  New  York  City   Janine  Antoni,  In  Migration   Tristan  Tzara,  Excursions  &  Visites  Dada  /  Premiere  Visite  (1921)  Paris   Francis  Alÿs  in  The  Green  Line  (1995)  Jerusalem,  The  Collector,  Honoré     d’O,  Duett  (1999)  Venice   Tsai  Ming-­‐Liang    ‘Walker’  2012   Marina  Abramović  and  Ulay,  The  Lovers  –  The  Great  Wall  Walk  (1988)     China     Guy  Debord,  The  Naked  City  (1957),  Paris   Tehching  Hsieh,  One  Year  Performance  (1981)  New  York  City   Pilgrim,  Peace  (1992),  b.  in  1908-­‐1981,  Peace  Pigrim  (adopted  name)  is  a     spiritual  teacher  and  an  activist.    She  walked  across  United  States  for  entire  28  years   devoting  her  entire  life  to  writing  for,  walking  and  encountering  the  strangers  on  her   unknown  routes  and  experiences.       Yyoi  Kusama  Walking  Piece  New  York  City   Alex  Villar,  Upward  Momility   Valie  Export,  Body  Configurations  


41     The  following  material  is  obtained  from  the  flyer  announcing  the    exhibition  Walking   in  the  City:  Spatial  Practices  in  Art,  from  the  Mid-­‐1960s  to  the  Present  curated  by   Melissa  Brookhart  Beyer  and  Jill  Dawsey,  and  brought  to  my  attention  in  a  workshop   in  Berlin  by  Nicolás  Dumit  Estevéz  also  available  here.       It  is  based  on  de  Certau’s  chapter  Walking  in  the  City  69.    His  idea  of  lived  experience   within  the  city  is  ‘inhabited  by  walkers’  and  is  here  used  by  artists  to  comment  on   built  architecture  enforced  by  urban  progress.  As  noted  in  the  flyer  “Walking”  in  this   exhibition  is  used  as  substitute  for  other  spatial  practices  closely  related  to  it  like   standing  still,  loitering  in  the  city  and  encountering  people  while  walking.  Their   performances  introduce  new  language  and  new  voices  to  talk  about  their  newly   created  spatial  system-­‐  as  a  commentary  on  the  existing  one.  “They  point  to  the   heterogeneity  of  lived  experience,  a  global  unevenness  articulated  locally  through  the   stubborn  insistence  of  the  body.  “       One  of  the  works  featured  in  this  event  was  Yoyoi  Kusama’s  Walking  Piece  during   which  she  walked  through  Manhattan  under  her  flower  parasol  wearing  her  kimono.   She  points  to  the  state  of  being  a  stranger,  an  immigrant,  and  the  status  of  her  body  as   point  of  difference  in  the  city.  During  the  walk  she  encounters  a  stranger-­‐  a  homeless   man.  This  act  works  by  looking  for  a  different  kind  attachment  to  the  city  and  to  a   pointing  to  a  population  of  people  that  already  live  there  in  migration  mode,  practicing   the  city  as  a  way  of  living.  

David  Wojnarowicz  photographed  Brian  Butterick,  disguised  as  phantasmagoric  figure   exploring  somewhat  promiscuous  and  abandoned  city’s  spaces:  underneath  bridges,   piers,  red  light  districts,  run-­‐down  apartments.  He  declares  ‘a  right  to  a  public  life  for   marginalized  groups  and  their  refusal  to  be  removed  from  urban  reality’.         Valerie  Tevere’s  project,  A  Preliminary  Guide  to  Public  and  Private  Space  in  Amsterdam,   is  a  mapping  of  Amsterdam  ‘based  on  citizens’  perceptions  of  private  and  public   space’.  She  interviews  residents  to  gain  their  perspective  on  how  they  think  of  these   spaces  and  how  they  practice  the  city  as  individual  walkers  by  asking  them  which   paths  they  take.  She  looks  at  how  people  find  ways  to  navigate  regulated  public   spaces.         I've  selected  three  of  the  works  featured  in  the  flyer  because  they  resonate  with  the   unfolding  of  my  work,  Lazarka:  Bulgaria,  Lovech  -­‐  Greece,  Porto  Rafti,  From  one  place   to  another,  here  within  elsewhere  where  I  walk  in  the  city  without  the  Lazrka  costume   but  with  my  identification  card,and  encounter  the  police  who  bring  me  to  the  police   station  where  I  discover  a  tv  with  a  live  feed-­‐  a  real  time  screening  of  the  population  of   arrested  deviants  living  in  an  under  ground  police  cell.  Through  this  action  I  ask   questions  about  access  to  public  space  within  the  migrants  rights  to  the  city,  to  their  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Kim  Soja,  Needle  Woman   Sophie  Calle,  Suite  Venitienne  (1979),  The  Sleepers,  The  Shadow  (1981),     Address  Book  (1983),  The  Telephone  Booth     Grigoris  Lamprakis-­‐  a  person  walking  with  the  flag  of  Greece  and  a  peace     symbol  that  was  latter  on  joined  by  spontaneous  followers  on  the  road  and  mysteriously   killed  shortly  after,  believed  to  have  been  a  political  murder.       69  Certau,  Michel  de  1984.  ‘Walking  in  the  City’  in  The  Practice  of  Everyday  Life.  The  University  of   California  Press  Berkley;  Also  available  here   <http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/rogerbb/classes/berlin/de%20certeau.pdf>  


42 bodies  and  the  right  to  my  body.  This  work  turns  into  another  work  which  is  a  protest   against  arrested  spontaneity  in  the  act  of  walking,  and  a  protest  against  the  unlawful   detainment  of  refugees  in  Athens.  These  refugees  don't  have  the  right  to  identification   cards  and  thus  no  rights  to  their  own  bodies.  As  part  of  the  immigration  process,   sometimes  waiting  for  their  legal  papers  can  take  years  during  which  time  they  can   neither  leave  nor  stay  in  the  country  legally.  v       The  rabbit  doesn’t  is  another  work-­‐  a  phantasmagoric  figure  that  inhabits  space  and   the  right  to  the  city  as  a  rabbit  rather  than  as  a  stranger/immigrant.  The  body  of  the   rabbit  does  not  become  a  point  of  difference  but  an  encounter  for  small  talk.  The   rabbit  acts  as  human  walks  through  the  city’s  hidden  corners  and  most  public  spaces   like  the  metro  and  cafes  and  encounters  people  and  reflects  upon  the  nomadic  in  the   conceptions  that  world  presents  to  us.  Identities  then  can  be  understood  as  stories  of   self-­‐realization,  as  fictional  selves  but  also  as  our  relationships  within  the  exchanges   that  append  and  index  within  and  with  our  surroundings.   The  third  work  comes  out  of  the  stories  I  write  and  collect  about  Rafti  Island  as  well  as   about  people  I  encounter  during  my  city  and  intercity  walks-­‐  not  so  much  to  gain  a   perspective  for  navigating  public  space  there  but  as  an  intervention  of  their   connections  to  the  island  in  my  work.  I  pose  the  question  about  how  to  let  their   suggestions  and  perspectives  direct  the  decisions  in  “my”  work.  Or  else,  how  is  it  that   strangers  and  imaginaries  can  direct  the  work?    

The walker  is  in  a  constant  process  of  performing  the  continuous  and  contingent  of   practiced  spatiality  -­‐  walking  to  it,  getting  to  it,  and  anticipating  it.  The  anticipation   and  the  perpetual  getting  to  the  original  site  is  re-­‐sited  in  the  becoming  site:  the  site  of   the  process  to  there.  This  means  that  there  is  the  possibility  that  even  the  site  to  get  to,   is  constantly  referred  to,  sited  from  some  place  else  and  at  first  sight  excludes  the   possibility  of  being  in  the  present.  How  are  those  conceptual  limitations  of  space   challenged  through  artists’  practices?  Is  it  in  the  very  presence  of  a  body  in  space?   70       71     Moving  though  a  place  or  a  space  would  allow  for  the  simultaneity  of  sensual   experience,  however  those  places  again  can  be  referred  to  as  the  fragmented  space  of   ‘other  spaces’  (as  spaces  coming  from  other  places)  like  the  site  of  hearing,  the  site  of   vision,  the  site  of  talking,  the  site  of  the  background  etc.  72  This  means  that  space  is  in   the  constant  process  of  a  way  of  conscious  reading  being  made  across  the  sites  of   sensual  experience,  the  site  of  speech,  the  site  of  walking,  the  site  of  talking,  the  site  of   writing,  the  site  of  sensing.    73  Those  spaces  can  be  considered  as  a  walking  across  

                                                                                                               

70

This  suggests  to  art  practitioners  that  a  possibility  of  being  present  in  the  work  is  to  be  found  in   the  immediate  artistic  practices  of  the  happening  of  the  walking,  the  happening  at  the  site  and   defying  the  previous  conceptual  limitation  with  the  physical  action.     71  Resonates  also  in  Sophie  Calle  when  she  gives  her  stories  to  be  edited  by  professionals.   The  conceptual  layer  expressed  in  the  ‘textual’  can  allow  room  for  re-­‐creation  of  the  performed   space  to  be  re-­‐performed  as  a  textual  story,  that  initial  performance  can  be  written  on  top.       72  Maybe  moving  across  those  could  bring  some  reconciliation  within  the  site  of  re-­‐citing  and  re-­‐ placing  their  original  site  of  creation  within  one  another,  or  the  very  opposite  -­‐of  practicing  the   experience  of  a  singular  activity  at  a  time.     73  This  can  further  be  downsized  to  the  site  of  saying  one  word,  one  gesture,  one  bell  ring,  or  the   durational  tying  and  untying  of  shoes  bracketed  in  boundaries  of  time  to  be  analyzed  as  a  succession  


43 sites  that  constitute  the  experience  of  being  conscious  of  that  presence  at  the  same   time,  making  and  experiencing  those  connections.         Janine  Antoni  focuses  exactly  on  that  tension  between  the  process  of  work  being  made   and  its  finished  product.    She  uses  her  body,  as  a  site  for  experimentation  with   attention  to  body  parts  as  tools,  utilizing  her  mouth,  hair,  and  eyelashes  to  perform   everyday  activities  to  create  her  work.  In  her  Migration  (2000)  video  –documentation   of  a  performative  action  (mentioned  here)  she  walks  along  the  beach  leaving  footsteps   while  being  followed  by  another  pair  of  feet  of  Paul  Ramirez  Jonas  fitting  within   another’s  wet  footsteps  in  the  sand  (capture  of  work).  Janine  Antoni  explores   territories  of  a  human  condition  and  that  of  the  body  to  document  the  histories  of  her   own  body  though  the  use  of  ephemeral  everyday  walking.  Her  action  suggests  a   relationship  between  her  body  and  the  ephemerality  of  the  everyday,  and  also  her   body’s  relationship  to  another’s  body.  The  two  artists’  relationship  mentioned  above   point  to  a  whole  other  invisible  world  of  bodies'  communications.         Francis  Alÿs  (a  transnational  artist  working  in  Mexico)  works'  major  focus  is  the  act  of   moving  through  cities,  countries,  locations  and  spaces.  The  nomadic  aspect  in  his  work   is  expressed  as  the  act  of  walking  through  urban  spaces  and  how  this  is  documented   becomes  central  to  the  work.  His  video  work  Railings  (2004)74  depicts  the  artist   walking  through  the  streets  of  London,  sliding  a  wooden  drumstick  on  the  enclosed   fences  (click  here  to  listen  as  your  read)  of  properties  he  passes  by  to  create  a  sound   that  articulates  a  performance  of  boundaries  within  public  spaces  and  outlines  how   spaces  are  regulated  through  man-­‐made  urban  architecture.  However  his  childish  and   playful  act  asks  us  to  consider  the  re-­‐invention  of  public  build  borders  in  a  creative   way  as  a  child  would  do:  he  makes  a  sound  piece  and  a  journey  into  the  city  unbound   by  its  regulations,  signifying  its  limits  and  making  a  subverted  entrance  for  the  viewer   to  enjoy  a  seemingly  playful  act  that  is  nevertheless  loaded  with  issue  of  anonymous   borders.    Another  of  Alÿs’  performance  was  the  gathering  of  500  volunteers  in  Peru  to   move  a  sand  dune  a  few  inches  to  the  side-­‐  problematizing  his  role  in  the  organization   of  the  piece.  Also,  this  work  is  the  very  event  of  place  where  a  seemingly  impossible   and  absurd  act  takes  place-­‐  people  moving  a  sand  dune.  Again  this  act,  alike  the   previous,  activates  the  romanticism  of  fairytales  and  children's  play.  He  ensnares  us  in   both  a  collective  absurd  and  the  power  position  of  artists  to  make  people  ‘move   mountains’  and  in  this  way  also  exposes  the  seductive  possibility  in  the  impossibility   of  creative  practices  75  76.  In  his  performances  The  Green  Line  and  The  Leak  we  see  him   dripping  green  paint  from  a  can  -­‐  a  work  he  did  at  different  places  (São  Paolo  and   Jerusalem  (1995  and  2004)  and  Paris  (links  to  video  works  of  the  walking   performances)    This  way  he  calls  into  question  the  different  meaning  that  a  work   acquires  according  to  its  geo-­‐location.  Thus  the  forces  that  define  and  contextualize   the  understanding  of  a  work  of  art  are  made  graspable  when  thinking  of  those  works   in  relation  to  one  another.  Finally,  Alÿs  work  comes  to  re-­‐invent  ‘its’  place  in  these   public  spaces  allowing  its  own  spaces  to  remain  ethnographic  backgrounds,  realized   in  events  of  walking  and  practices  which  counter  public  space  access  with  unexplored   spaces  and  actions.  In  this  sense,  Francis  Alÿs'  spatial  explorations  obtain  a  specificity   to  site  by  producing  a  kind  of  negative  space,  where  the  ‘pedestrian’  becomes  aware  of   one’s  own  performance  in  the  city.  Francis  Alÿs  also  becomes  the  author,  a  trickster  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and  as  interconnectedness  of  spaces  one  experiences:  the  background  noise  space,  the  noise  form   trying  the  shoes,  the  noise  from  speaking  body.     74  Railings     http://www.francisalys.com/public/railingsfitz.html     75  Faith  Moves  Mountains  http://www.francisalys.com/public/cuandolafe.html     76  Potts,  Jonh  2014,  ‘The  Theme  of  Displacement  in  Contemporary  Art’.  Erea  reviews.  [ONLINE]   Available  at:  <  http://erea.revues.org/2475  >  [Accessed  15  February  2014].  


44 mastermind  figure,  that  subverts  actions  associated  with  space  and  uses  walking  to   problematize  connections  we  make  with  spaces  to  reveal  their  hidden  sociopolitical   load.    He  doesn’t  struggle  to  find  agency  within  the  regulated  spaces  –  he  exposes  their   confines  and  plays  with  them.     Other  examples  of  long  standing  walkers  are  Tehching  Hseih  and  Peace  Pilgrim.   Tehching  Hseih  announced  his  One  Year  performance  1981-­‐1982  out  in  the  open  to  the   readers  of  a  single  document  and  a  single  picture  promising  that  he  will  not  enter  any   enclosed  area  for  the  period  of  one  year,  including  vehicles.  He  practically  lived  one   year  within  the  experiences  that  the  outside  and  the  streets  presented  to  him.  Though   he  used  movement  and  walking  to  complicate  his  participation  in  open  space  he  also   problematized  the  relationship  of  the  moving  site  (his  body)  with  the   transferability/nontransferability  of  mass  produced  art  objects.  He  leaves  us   disconnected  from  our  fictions  of  what  may  have  happened  to  him  during  that  time  in   terms  of  survival,  strolling,  access  to  public  space  for  sleeping  and  the  like  because  we   cannot  experience  the  work  unless  we  do  it.  Even  if  we  do  it  we  will  be  subject  to  other   specific  circumstances  one  cannot  contain  in  a  fore-­‐seeing  plan,  unlike  his  previous   one-­‐year  piece  from  1978  in  which  he  lived  in  one  cell-­‐room  solitary  confinement.   Activist  Peace  Pilgrim,  on  the  other  hand,  walked  for  an  entire  28  years  in  the  open   across  the  United  States,  traversing  state  borders.  She  walked  and  slept  in  trenches   but  wrote  about  her  attachment  to  the  instability  of  the  circumstances  that  such  a   journey  presented  to  her  (book  available  here).  She  faced  different  rules  for  access  to   space  from  state  to  state,  even  encountering  some  in  which  walking  and  strolling  were   prohibited.  Yet  she  found  a  home  in  the  transitory  state  of  movement.  She  also  found   home  in  talking  to  strangers  she  encounters  on  the  road,  those  who  offer  her   accommodation,  and  even  the  police  that  picked  her  up  for  illegal  walking.  By  walking   without  knowing  what  people  and  spaces  may  offer  her,  she  disengaged  from  people's   pasts  and  insisted  on  experiencing  the  moment  of  encounter  as  a  deeply  appreciated,   shared  interaction  with  her  surroundings.  

The  wanderer  and  time  as  public  space   problem   In  the  article  The  Theme  of  Displacement  a  range  of  artists  gathered  to  refer  to   the  critique  of  our  modern  capitalist  society,  but  also  to  show  how  this  is  subverted  by   the  practice  of  walking  and  how  that  displacement  occurs  in  modern  capitalist  society   through  the  prism  of  art  in  the  very  ‘spaces  of  its  production’.  John  Potts  refers  at  the   begining  of  the  article  to  the  theorist  and  curator  Nicolas  Bourriaud  who  views  the   times  we  live  in  as  “altermodernity”  comprising  a  “translation-­‐oriented  modernity”.   ‘Such  a  culture  must  be  “polyglot”,  because  “the  immigrant,  the  exile,  the  tourist,  and   the  urban  wanderer  are  the  dominant  figures  of  contemporary  culture”  and  we  live  in   a  “globalized  culture  busy  with  new  syntheses”  [...].  ‘The  global  network  becomes  a   space  of  exchange,  of  diverse  representations  of  the  world,  in  which  translation  of   ideas  and  representations  places  a  crucial  role  in  “discussions  that  will  give  rise  to  a   new  common  intelligibility’  (Pott  2013)77.  Contrary  to  this  idea,  site-­‐specificity  has   been  resisting  transferability  and  the  nomadic  model  as  a  way  to  overthrow  the  power   of  capital  but  has  lately  re-­‐considered  new  ways  to  transfer  a  site-­‐specific  work  as  a   resistance  for  the  same  reasons.  Such  concerns  open  up  questions  of  access  to  spaces   and  places,  not  just  their  possibility  to  transform  knowledge  into  something  else  but   to  make  visible  the  dead  ends  of  current  capitalist  ideologies  as  a  bodily  problem.This   is  a  problem  within  and  for  the  human  body  affecting  its  spatial,  temporal  and  creative   borders.  Walking  to  nowhere  in  this  context  then  challenges  political  and  national  

                                                                                                              77

Ibid  


45 ideologies  of  ‘putting  the  people  into  a  certain  frame  of  mind’,  concrete  destinations   and  inverts  the  dead  ends  as  well  as  the  mythological  ‘conditions  of  possibility’  of   modern  capitalism  earlier  questioned  by  the  Frankfurt  School.78     Today,  in  my  neighborhood  there  is  no  unified  public,  social,  or  cultural  space   because  of  complex  cultural  and  economic  powers  controlling  our  time  and  space.   Because  of  the  time  needed  to  accumulate  the  capital  needed  for  survival,  space  and   time  are  being  made  obsolete    and  less  effort  and  less  physical  movement  is  favored.   That  specific  lack  of  movement  is  fairly  addressed  by  Rebeca  Solnit  through  her   longstanding  writing  that  resembles  walking.vi  The  more  we  see  the  lack  of  movement   and  the  more  we  see  others  and  ourselves  busy,  the  more  we  get  used  to  the  idea  that   the  ways  in  which  we  live  in  houses  and  operate  within  limited  movement  (in   containers  of  rooms)  and  affected  by  technology,  the  more  we  think  that  this  ways  of   movement  and  experiencing  spaces  are  natural.  People  park  as  close  as  possible  to  the   entrance  door.  These  time  and  space  concerns  are  directly  co-­‐related  to  creative   practices  in  art.  Art  is  a  complex  and  vast  subject  related  to  many  elements,  players,   philosophies  and  ways  to  talk,  walk  and  move  the  body.  The  capitalist  containment  of   time  enforces  extreme  limitations  to  finding  the  time  to  make  and  talk  and  ‘to  space   art’.  Durational  walking  within  this  context  is  the  very  making  of  space  and  time  for   artistic  exploration.  Many  artists  are  time-­‐oriented  and  interactions  are  tamed  down   to  quick  and  condensed  feedback  answers  (as  opposed  to  complex,  meandering,   disparate  walks  to  nowhere,  without  points  and  unknown  subjects  of  explorations),  to   an  economy  of  words  limiting  artistic  expression  and  creative  interrelations.  This   condensed  way  of  doing  things  is  in  direct  conflict  with  how  time  has  become  a  public   spatial  problem,  which  is,  at  heart,  the  great  obstacle  to  making  art,  and  making  time   for  art  in  the  contemporary  world  79.  I  speak  of  an  art  based  on  exploratory  practices.   We  are  ourselves  durational  creatures.  Capital  and  attention  and  time  and  meaning  in   our  life  have  been  given  to  the  things  that  hold  the  greatest  results-­‐  often  putting  us  in   a  position  of  someone  not  having  time  for  meandering,  talking  to  strangers,  or  just   walking  to  nowhere.  We  are  now,  even  in  the  art  world,  timed,  scheduled,  on  the  goal,   success-­‐oriented  and  thus  alienated,  especially  with  audiences  not  art-­‐related.   Questions  of  time  problematize  the  ability  to  develop  long-­‐term  relationships  with  site   and/or  audiences,  or  to  create  integrative  spaces  for  socially  isolated  individuals  that   previously  did  not  have  access  to  art  creative  practices.  This  time  problem  is   especially  crucial  when  considering  projects  born  out  of  developing  relationships  with   audiences.    The  great  challenge  for  the  artist  whose  work  is    made  through  those   interactions    with  “audience-­‐participants”  is  very  much  related  to  inventing  space,   time  and  capital  for  re-­‐occurring  interactions  with  them.  Traces  of  such  concerns  can   be  found  in  the  discussion  on  the  evolution  of  conceptions  for  site-­‐specificity  as  Kwon   Suggests  in  her  book  One  Place  After  Another,  discussed  later  in  this  essay.       One  may  consider  a  walking  body  and  its  surrounding  as  an  event  of  place.  To   adhere  to  chance-­‐to-­‐chance  and  unknown  encounters  is  both  a  performance  and  a   lived  space.  This  opens  up  several  sites  for  the  work:  the  body  as  site,  the  relationship   between  a  moving  body  and  the  speculations  the  body  engages  in  while  walking,  and   even  the  conversation  between  two  bodies-­‐walker  and  stranger  (a  situation  as  a  site,  a   conversation  as  a  site,  a  situation  for  contact  as  a  site).  Stability  of  a  single  space  and  

                                                                                                              78

Time-­‐success-­‐  individuation.  Time  as  public  space  problem  and  obstruction  to  making   contemporary  art.     79  For  example  I  cannot  feedback  a  work  within  five  minutes  and  even  if  i  am  asked  to  do  so  for  an   artistic  research  I  would  turn  to  addressing  the  limitations  of  this  approach,  though  i  understand  that   this  spatial  problem  comes  from  the  high  price  for  survival  in  contemporary  and  the  displacement  of   art  from  leisure  into  profession/labor,  which  at  first  place  occurred  for  the  exact  reason  of   legitimizing  time  for  art.  However,  there  are  many  programs  in  arts  that  favor  the  time  of  the  artist   and  allow  room  for  the  collaborative  design  of  spaces  where  profound  discussions  and  succession  of   relationships  with  an  audience  can  be  created  and  deeply  investigated.  


46 even  time  becomes  obsolete  during  moving  activities:  walking,  canoeing,  writing,   paddling,  and  talking.  This  points  straight  to  questions  between  site-­‐specificity  and   mobility.  How  one  inhabits  and  moves  through  spaces  -­‐  the  very  question  of  access  to   those  spaces-­‐  is  always  affected  by  global  and  mass-­‐production  society,  by  ideological   powers  and  the  time  [and  stamina]  we  have  to  engage  with  those.                                                                      

The Reading  of  site     In  the  book  One  Place  After  Another: site-­‐specific  art  and  locational  identity    Miwon   Kwon  discusses  site-­‐specificity  in  the  context  of  public  art  and  how  its  sociopolitical   ambitions  have  been  imagined  in  the  last  decades.  Within  the  last  40  years  of  public   art  she  discusses  3  distinct  cases:  art-­‐in-­‐public-­‐space,  art-­‐as-­‐public-­‐space  and   Suzanne’s  Lacy  ‘new  genre’  approach.  The  first  two  are  considered  ‘public’  because   they  are  legitimate  art  in  public  outdoor  locations,  and  they  can  be  accessed  by  the   public  freely  in  city  plazas,  public  streets,  airports,  parking  lots  and  the  like.  Those   were  the  1960s  and  70s  modernist  abstract  sculptures  that  are  enlarged  replicas  of   works  normally  found  in  museums  and  galleries.  Their  function  would  be  ‘an   aestheticized  vision  of  an  object  inserted  in  space  and  would  enhance  the  aesthetics  of   the  space’  as  well  as  be  little  if  at  all  concerned  with  the  qualities  of  the  site  (here  the   concerns  for  the  site  are  limited  to  the  physical  architectural  entity  in  the  space  and   the  formal  qualities  of  the  site)  (Kwon  2004).  80  

                                                                                                              80

Kwon,  Miwon  2004,  One  Place  After  Another:  site-­‐specific  art  and  locational  identity,  The  MIT   Press:  Cambridge,  Massachusetts,  London.p.82  


47   The  suggestion  that  a  work  is  tamed  to  its  location  (site-­‐specific)  is  directly  related  to   the  idea  of  public  art  from  the  1960.  The  interpretation  that  to  move  the  work  or  to  re-­‐ place  it  and  to  make  it  something  else  as  discussed  by  Miwon  Kwon  through  the   example  of  the  famous  Tilted  Arch.  According  to  the  artist  the  work  created  in  public   space  acts  a  commentary  on  that  specific  site  reflecting  and  returning  the  gaze  back  to   the  people  working  close  by.  This  work  was  not  to  be  site-­‐readjusted  but  was   conceived  to  re-­‐structure  that  specific  site  (the  Federal  Plaza)  conceptually  and  as  a   critique  of  the  very  people  working  there.  But  according  to  those  working  and  living   around  it,  it  was  not  wanted.  This  came  to  be  in  complete  conflict  with  ideas  of   conceptually  integrating  the  audience.  

Whereas  community  based  public  practices  since  the1960s  have  been  named  by   Suzanne  Lacy  “new  genre  public  art”.  They  reside  in  the  ‘intensive  engagement  with   the  people  of  the  site,  involving  direct  communication  and  interaction  over  an   extended  period  of  time’(Kwon  2004).  The  ambivalent  result  of  the  Tilted  arch  raised   important  questions  about  engagement  with  the  site  as  a  discourse  rather  than  a   succession  of  practical  decisions  coming  from  the  people  who  constitute  the  site.    As   noted  by  Suzanne  Lacy,  art-­‐specific  concerns  ‘had  little  bearing  on  the  lives  of  the   people  who  constitute  the  actual  reality  of  the  site.  In  the  introductory  chapter   Cultural  Pilgrimages  and  Metaphoric  Journeys  in  her  book  Mapping  the  Terrain  she   writes  ‘what exists in the space between the words public and art is an unknown relationship between artist and audience, a relationship that may itself become the artwork’. ‘In short, the dialogue moved from knowing more and more about what art was to wondering about what life was, the meaning of life’ 81.

  In  his  attempt  to  disclose  the  role  of  social  participation  within  the  context  of  art,  the   French  critic  and  museum  curator  Nicolas  Bourriaud  named  it  Relational  Art.  At  the   heart  of  this  kind  of  relational  aesthetics  was  the  function  of  the  ways  in  which  artists,   viewers,  environment,  and  objects  participate  and  interact.  What  is  persuasive  about   relational  art  is  that,  by  calling  into  question  human  relations  it  announces  that  all   spaces  are  potential  sites  for  artistic  explorations  in  themselves.  This  way  human   interactions  and  the  social  circumstances  fall  into  the  assertion  of  independent  form  of   spaces;  independent  from  the  institution  or  the  very  relationships  with  the   institutions  is  the  site  in  question.  Miwon  Kwon  explains  that  by  saying  that  the  ‘site   falls  into  its  literal  space’,  this  includes  communication  with  curators  and  interactions   with  people  in  the  everyday    (Kwon  1997);(Garland  2010)’  82.     In  many  social  occasions  relational  performances  are  mundane  acts.  The  work  of   Rikrit  Tiravanija  prepares  Thai  food  for  the  exhibition’s  visitors  reflects  and  creates   the  situation  in  which  art  is  created  and  observed  (ibid).  Another  such  instance  is  his   film  Chew  The  Fat  2008  which  is  a  conversation  between  the  artist  and  his  friend  in  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

81

Lacy,  Suzanne  1994,  Mapping  the  Terrain:  New  Genre  Public  Art.  Bay  Press:  Seattle,  Washinton.   p.26     82  Garland,  Vaughn  2011,  Releasing  space:  relational  aesthetics  and  the  making  of  the  artist  removed   from  the  work,  [ONLINE]  Available  at:   <http://www.vaughngarland.com/UnpublishedTexts/FINAL%2005-­‐12-­‐ 2011%20Vaughn%20Garland%20Final%20Relational%20Aesthetics%20Releasing%20Space.pdf>   [Accessed  15  February  2014].    


48 New  York  83.  The  work  is  a  relaxed  situation  in  which  a  conversation  can  flow.  While   Relational  Art  seems  too  ordinary  or  unqualified  to  count  as  an  artistic  experience,   Bourriaud’s  arguments  make  room  for  an  art  that  references  the  social  environment   and  the  process  by  which  all  art  becomes  a  commodity.  In  that  sense  it  is  much  like  the   multiple  relationships  between  the  spaces  it  inhabits,  it  is  much  like  new  genre's   concerns  of  ‘where  is  the  site  of  importance’  and  the  possible  entry  to  the  work  for  the   participants.  Successions  of  public  art  such  as  new  genre  and  relational  athletics  pose   a  major  question  for  the  ability  to  invent  social  space  and  its  ability  to  “invite”.  Also,   the  'site’  of  the  work  is  reconsidered  not  as  object  or  a  research  but  as  an  event  of   interaction,  or  the  event  of  ethnographic  observation  translated  into  the  living  world   and  self-­‐defying  when  translated  into  the  art  world.               While  radicalism  introduces  different  approaches  for  (art/site/community)  making,   ‘for  duration  (re-­‐visiting  the  site)  approach’  addresses  ways  to  relate  and  connect  to   the  site  and  how  is  it  performed.  In  non-­‐art  scenes  (relational,  everyday,  experimental   but  outside  of  a  gallery  and  museum  context),  work  with  other  artists  and  inhabitants   of  a  site  would  entail  many  critical  tasks,  but  mainly  that  the  actions  and  their   negotiation  are  complex  and  ever  changing.  There  is  always  a  tension  between  the   discursive  site  of  artistic  theory  and  an  ideology  of  the  artist,  with  that  of  the   community  not  affiliated  with  art.  Specifically,  here  I  will  refer  to  my  engagement  in   the  one-­‐year  Public  Dreaming  project  with  the  Guerrilla  Optimists  at  Omonia  Square.   The  project  manifested  as  steady  engagement  with  the  public  square  every  week.   Sleep  actions,  napping  at  the  square,  manifestoes  and  meeting  its  inhabitants  was  at   the  heart  of  our  project  supported  through  the  everyday  exchange  of  dreams  via   emails  (for  one  year)  among  group  members  (Jennifer  Nelson,  Amalia  Charikiopoulou,   Alexandros  Georgiou  and  Manos  Tsatiris).  The  actions  of  choice  are  the  result  of  intra-­‐ group  negotiations  about  how  we  could  develop  that  project  on  Public  Dreaming.  This   lead  to  somewhat  more  steady  weekly  visits  to  the  site.  In  other  words,  the  work  was   not  preconceived  but  developed  in  the  course  of  our  actions.    (See  a  detailed  dicussion   of  this  initiative  in  the  Chapter  Group  Concerns  entirely  devoted  to  this  project,   observed  as  a  case  study  towards  the  end.)     Another  project  that  involved  the  engagement  with  the  audience  (but  an  audience  that   was  mostly  never  affiliated  with  art  prior  to  the  project)  over  a  less  extended  period  of   time  was  Hymn  to  Freedom  organized  by  Jennifer  Nelson.       The  Hymn  To  Freedom  action,  involved  the  bringing  together  a  group  of  immigrants,   including  myself,  in  an  artist's  studio  in  the  center  of  Athens    to  work  with  a  musician   on  a  weekly  basis  -­‐to  study  and  learn  the  Greek  anthem.  The  idea  was  that  we  would   learn  the  Greek  anthem  and  sing  it  in  front  of  the  Supreme  Court  in  Athens.  For  me   this  act  was  about  both  finding  an  attachment  to  each  other  and  a  peculiar  protest   concerning  our  belonging  to  this  country  in  the  minds  of  others.  However  mainly  it   created  a  sense  of  interaction  and  community  with  the  other  participants.  (See   detailed  description  of  how  this  project  evolved  and  specific  circumstances  in  which  it   was  developed  herevii).     Many  community  and  participatory-­‐oriented  projects  start  with  the  concern  of  how   one  encounters  and  invites  participants,  or  else  how  one  creates  an  entry  into  the   work  for  others  that  can  be  maintained  afterward.  Of  course  those  concerns  depend  

                                                                                                              83

Chew  The  Fat  2008.  Film.  Directed  by  Rirkrit  Tiravanija  [ONLINE]  available  at:  <   http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1680695/>  [Accessed  10  February  2014].    


49 on  the  audience  involved,  and  so  when  one  works  with  people  not  affiliated  with  art,   the  action  could  be  one  where  the  public  perceives  the  work  as  performing  some   useful  task.  The  question  about  the  action  of  course  depends  on  many  factors,  and  is   indeed  problematized  by  the  authorship  of  the  artist,    how  much  he  is  willing  to   diffuse  the  work  to  his  or  her  collaborators,  and  how  willing  they  are  to  work  on  it.   The  notion  of  entry  into  a  work  was  described  by  public  artists  and  was  expressed  in   creating  shadings  and  spaces  for  seating  so  that  it  can  be  used  by  the  audience,  That   idea  of  “inviting”  audiences  is  associated  with  site-­‐specific  works  and  it  creates  a   physical  and  public  commitment.  (Kaye  2000)84  According  to  Kwon  ‘Space  as  a  social   experience,  communal  scope,  individual  response,  may  insure  a  larger  measure  of   support.”  In  these  critics’  writings  of  the  early  1980s,  physical  access  or  entry  into  an   art  work  is  imagined  to  be  equivalent  to  hermeneutic  access  for  the  viewer’  Kwon     2004  )85  .     Today  we  see  the  usefulness  of  the  piece  in  which  Suzanne  Lacy  took  the  idea  of   engaging  with  audience,  where  her  work  was  entirely  based  on  the  ideaof  meeting  the   inhabitants  of  the  place.  A  material  documentation  of  this  work  shows  Lacy  shaking   their  hands.  Another  project  based  on  engagement  was  taken  upon  Nicolás  Dumit   Estevéz  and  María  Alós  to  create  a  museum  from  pockets  of  passers  by.  For  his  current   Let’s  Meet  at  the  Bridge,  art  and  life  experience,  2011-­‐  present,  he  goes  to    Mostar   (Bosnia  and  Herzegovina)  to  Meet  the  People  .  They  participated  in  gatherings  and   celebrations  bringing  togetherpeople  from  both  sides  of  a  bridge  in  a  city  that  was   separating  the  inhabitants.  ‘Estévez  also    acts  as  a  cultural  conduit,  bridging  people  he   has  met  with  specific  places  in  their  town  or  inviting  them  to  bridge  their  histories  and   memories  through  conversations’  (more  information  on  his  work  here)  Similarly   Jennifer  Neslon  and  Dimitris  Kotsaras  bought  products  from  the  supermarket  and   created  a  chance  map  to  knock  on  people's  doors  and  cook  for  with  them  while   engaging  in  conversations  about  [anything  including]  the  changing  demographics  of   their  neighborhoods,  producing  a  Limerick  Cookbook  from  the  histories  of  their   encounters  that  included  drawings  of  children,  maps  of  their  movement  within  the   city,  and  their  conceptual  entanglement  with  the  sites  they  visited  and  the   relationships  they  created  during  their  cooking  experiments.  The  relationship   becomes  a  very  specific  set  of  recipes  ‘actually  on  behalf  of’  86the  ephemerality  of   conversation,  as  if  the  conversation  becomes  a  tension  between  intelligible  matter  of   choreographed  steps  to  be  taken  and  the  unknown  route  they  will  take  to  reach  an   unknown  house  according  to  a  chance  map  that  helps  them  fall  through  someone’s   door.  Someone  performs  the  entry  into  the  work  by  accommodating  the  [unexpected]   artists  in  his  home.  The  exchange  and  an  assumed  relationship  is  reversed:  the  artists   bring  food,  the  people  fill  in  details  on  the  situational  and  the  sociopolitical  context  in   which  the  people  of  the  neighborhood  live.      

Non-­‐Site

‘Here,  ‘the  site  is  a  place  where  the  work  should  be  but  isn’t’  [..];the  site  appears  in  the   promise  of  its  occupation  by  the  Non-­‐Site,  where  a  recognition  of  the  site  assumes  the   absence  of  the  work,  [..]  Indeed,  the  Non-­‐Site’s  site-­‐specificity  is  an  effect  of  this  

                                                                                                              84

Kaye,  Nick  2000.  Site  Specific  Art:  performance,  place  and  documentation.Routhlege:London  and   N/Y     85  Kwon,  Miwon  2004,  One  Place  After  Another:  site-­‐specific  art  and  locational  identity,  The  MIT   Press:  Cambridge,  Massachusetts,  London.     86  Conversation  with  Jennifer  Nelson    


50 contradiction,  in  which  the  work  and  the  site  threaten  to  occupy,  and  be  [linked  in,  the   same  precise  place  (ibid,  p.93)’   The  interior  space  of  a  work  (inside  the  site  -­‐outside  the  site)  can  be  explained  by   taking  into  consideration  the  exterior  circumstances  of  its  presentation,  and  that  very   comparison  of  an  ‘interior  space’  to  ‘exterior  space’,  one  may  argue,  is  the  illusion  of   access.  There  is  a  fictional  tension  created  between  the  ‘real  space  of  the  work  ’and   what  is  ‘outside  of  it.  That  relationship  falls  into  confusion  then  a  relationship  between   the  elements  is  revealed  to  the  viewer.  If  space  is  to  be  mapped  as  spatial  (from  single   to  multiple  complex),  temporal  (from  permanent  to  temporary  concept)  and  social   (private-­‐  public  spaces)  the  work  of  Hector  Zamora  [would  be  a  kind  of  departure   from  the  physical  site  of  the  artist’]  falls  into  the  discursive  sites  of  private  -­‐public   spaces.     Héctor  Zamora´s  work  87  lies  outside  the  conventional  and  institutional  exhibition   ‘space,  reinventing  it’,  generating  oppositions  and  pressure  between  ‘organic  and   geometric’,  ‘real  and  imaginary’  88  He  addresses  the  discursive  site  in  which  the  viewer   is  engaged  in  the  reading  of  the  site.  Specifically,  how  is  space  conceptualized  and   what  kind  of  disruptions  is  he  installing  to  speculate  on  the  function  of  spaces  and  the   objects  he  inserts?  He  often  uses  public  unconventional  spaces,  and  a  big  part  of  his   creative  acts  turn  into  a  bureaucratic  quest  for  permits.  His  parasitic  structures  filling   in  between  buildings,  grow  out  of  their  confines,  and  spill  out  of  windows  (See   Zeppelin  Swarm89)  always  unfitting  or  outfitting  the  space  and,  in  other  occasions   completed  without  the  sanction  of  the  local  government,  what  his  objects  acquired  is  a   mass-­‐produced  sense,  economic  crisis  and  the  symbol  of  excess.909192       Vito  Acconci  performed  his  removal  from  the  gallery  in  Following  Piece  1969,  when  he   followed  different  strangers  on  the  streets  everyday,  and  documented  this  in  his  notes   and  with  a  photograph  of  him  following  some-­‐one.  In  Seedbed  his  body  was  displaced   under  the  floor  of  the  gallery  where  the  artist  masturbated  and  the  audience  could   hear  some  of  his  mumbling  to  imagine  the  rest  of  the  act.  Once  more  he  removed  his   body  from  the  gallery's  central  space  and  lets  the  viewer  watch  a  video  feed  of  him   (Claim  excerpts  1971)  from  someplace  down  below  the  gallery  space.  Squatting  in  a   corner  with  a  crowbar,  the  site  appears  in  the  promise  of  his  occupation  by  the  Non-­‐ Site  (the  feed)-­‐site(his  space  in  the  corner).  A  recognition  of  the  site  assumes  the   absence  of  the  work.  Staking  claim  to  his  territory,  he  tries  to  hypnotize  himself   through  language  into  an  obsessive  state  of  possessiveness:  ‘The  talk  should  drive  me   into  a  state  where  everything  is  possible.’93  

                                                                                                              87

Hector  Zamora  web-­‐site:  http://www.lsd.com.mx/  

88

See  http://scapebiennial.org.nz/artists/hector-­‐zamora  

89

See  http://www.lsd.com.mx/files/bienalw.pdf  

90

See  http://www.labor.org.mx/wp-­‐content/uploads/downloads/2011/07/Carpeta-­‐Hector-­‐ Zamora.pdf   and  from  redcad  Héctor  Zamora:  Panglossian  Paradigm,  accessed  on  Sunday,  July  21,  2013  to   Sunday,  September  1,  2013  

91

see  also  Pedro  Gomez  (double  interactions)   http://www.pedroreyes.net/07.php?szLang=en&Area=work&SubArea=07     92 See  also  Interactive  work,  Melanie  Bonajo  (allows  the  audience  to  leave  with  the  piece)     93  Vito  Acconci  1969.  Following  Piece.  New  York  City  in  <  


51   Sigalit  Landau94  focuses  on  an  exploration  of  her  own  body  and  its  relationship  to   territories  and  boundaries.  Landau  reflects  on  the  theme  of  physical  and  internal   boundaries  and  on  the  achievement  and  loss  of  identity.  In  her  video  Barbed  Hula,   2000  video  projection,  a  naked  woman  on  the  seaside  rotates  a  hula  hoop  ring  made  of   barbed  wire  around  her  waist.  Her  head  is  removed  and  cannot  be  seen.  ‘What  you  see   is  a  living  female  torso,  of  somebody,  anybody.  Everywoman  is  hula  hooping  on  the   beach.’95.  By  the  act  of  removing  her  identity  in  the  video  the  conversation  becomes   about  identity.  Removing  the  harmless  hoola  hoop  the  conversation  becomes  about   playing  with  pain.  Inserting  the  barwire  hoola  hoop  the  conversation  becomes   reversed  -­‐  about  internal  pain.        Within  the  containment  of  the  architecture  of  a  room  Emily  Speed  finds  both  an   exploration  between  private  and  public  spaces,  inside-­‐outside,  the  interior  and  the   façade,  and  an  anonymity  in  the  hiding  spaces  that  interior  space  and  urban   architecture  presents.  Alike  Acconci  she  moves  from  the  physical  body  to   psychological  interiority,  from  exteriority  speaking  of  interior  transactions.       To  practice  the  place  means  to  make  a  removal  from  it.  In  the  video  The  Walker,  Tsai   Ming-­‐Liang  makes  a  durational  slow-­‐motion  walking  throughout  the  fast  moving,   working  and  never  sleeping  city.  The  work  turns  into  the  experience  not  of  the  slow   walking  as  an  act  itself  but  into  the  background  noises  and  movement  of  people  that   practice  and  reveal  the  city's  busy  liveliness  around  the  slow  walking  monk  performer   who  sinks  entirely  into  his  deeply  concentrated  state.    

MAY  10,  The  Story:  an  attempt  to  re-­‐write  the   whole  story  in  collaboration  with  An  Iceberg  in  the  middle  of   the  sea  chapter   -­‐  a  Project  Report  with  a  Monkey  Mind    

My current  specific  (non)  site-­‐specific  work  is  a  continuation  of  my  previous  year   exploration  which  was  a  lot  about  “inviting”  and  creating  entry  into  the  work  and  as   such  all  my  interactions  with  the  visitors  became  a  subject  of  the  work.  The  site   specific  was  my  home  address  where  people  would  come  and  in  my  mind  that  specific   place  is  changing  through  the  successful  interpretations  and  actions  of  the  visitors   with  the  hint  that  they  are  those  that  accommodate  me.       One  of  the  people  I  talked  to  for  many  long  hours  in  the  house  challenged  me  to   recreate  this  idea  of  house  within  his  house.  His  vision  was  that  ‘the  containment   within  the  room’  calls  for  consideration  of  outdoors  activities,  away  from  virtual  world   and  technology.  In  his  view  exploring  the  outdoor  could  put  me  in  much  more   unpredictable  circumstances,  in  his  opinion  very  important  for  the  making.  His   suggestion  surely  put  me  in  a  position  to  question  the  entire  framework  for  my  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.metmuseum.org/collections/search-­‐the-­‐collections/283737  >  [Accessed  17  September   2014].     94  See  the  following:  http://www.e-­‐flux.com/announcements/unstable-­‐territory/   http://rfc.museum/past-­‐exhibitions/alone-­‐together/artwork-­‐images/sigalit-­‐landau   http://www.sigalitlandau.com/downloads/KW-­‐dining%20hall.pdf     95  See  http://mucsarnok.hu/new_site/dl/peter_kantor_opening_speech_sigalit_landau.pdf    


52 experiment  in    reconsider  decentralizing  my  sole  structure  and  seek  a  whole  new  way   to  explore  the  meaning  of  art  making  and  how  I  exist  in  spaces.         It  is  the  idea  of  going  to  a  place  I  don’t  know  anything  about.  It  implies  spontaneity,   movement  and  a  relationship.  So  Yes,  I  accepted  the  proposition  and  went  on  my   journey.  In  a  way,  I  created  a  reverse  project  of  the  previous  year's  idea.  The  location   was  important  (the  space  to  which  he  invited  me)  the  exploration  was  focused  on  me,   and  my  movement  outdoors  to  a  specifically  chosen  site  I  called  Outlandia.  The  ‘here’   considers  my  movement  inside  the  site  and  outside  the  initial  site  of  exploration.             What  looks  like  an  iceberg  in  the  middle  of  a  Aegean  sea  or  maybe  a  mirage,  or  a   photoshoped  reality,  is  actually  an  ‘open  space’  on  the  tip  of  the  Rafti  Island  and   beyond  Outlandia  is  an  open  space  in  the  Agean  sea  located  35  km  south  east  of   Athens,  in  the  city  of  Porto  Rafti  city  whose  administration  depends  on  [is  hinged  to]   one  of  the  Athenian  Districts.      We  are  in  the  atmosphere,  the  aquatic  life,  from  the  sand  to  the  moon.  The  Elephant   Rock  together  with  the  Love  Cave  beach  his  private  Garden  and  the  Rafti  Island  make   up  Outlandia  site.  Where?  There.  No  people  live  in  Outlandia  with  the  exception  of  a   temporary  inhabitant  at  the  Love  Cave  beach,  the  occasional  inhabitants  that  visit  and   is  where  my  new  collaborator  works  and  lives  it  which  make  it  ideal  to  spent  time  in   solitary  loitering  and  even  more  to  turn  it  into  an  interactive  approach  for  exploring   space.96       About  x,  y,  z  meters  beneath  in  time,  it  can  take  up  to  x,  y,  z  ideas  in  the  air  and   examine  both  how  I  invent  performative  spaces  there  (some  imagined),  want  is  the   nature  of  these  transient  spaces  and  who  else  does  the  rabbit  become?  There  are   many  political  edges  for  I  do  this.       I  started  collaborating  with  my  adviser  Jean  Marie  in  August  2013  and  the  1st  ‘lead’  we   had  was  that  I  intend  to  move  a  bed  and  sleep  at  the  beach,  which  turned  into  the   concern  of  ‘how  to  explore  the  space’.  The  intention  to  move  the  bed  was  because  of   the  need  to  stay  in  the  space  and  have  a  place  to  write  and  sleep.  As  a  result  of   discussing  it  with  my  collaborator  we  came  to  the  conclusion  that  I  don’t  need  a  bed  to   ‘exist’  there  and  as  a  result  of  discussing  it  with  my  adviser  we  decided  that  it  would   insert  itself  as  frame  that  does  not  fit  the  ephemeral  feeling  of  situations  I  attempt  to   document…    The  2nd  important  concern  was  how  to  re-­‐create  the  site  and  think  in   terms  of  interactive  space  but  also  be  my  private  space,  my  escape  vehicle,  my  9   moths  planning  on  escapism  and  isolation  and  the  possibly  upcoming  of  1  month  of   isolation.     I  started  scheming  how  to  explore  the  space,  how  to  get  there,  canoeing  and  straying   from  the  Outlandia  site  for  intercity  walking  on  my  walking  journeys  without   destinations.        

                                                                                                              96

Whereas  my  1st  project  year  living  life  was  limited  to  living  and  writing  in  a  75  square  meter  house     in  Athens,  and  inviting  a  few  visitors  to  talk  with  on  my  couch,  in  2013,  I  moved  into  a  40  square   meters  house  in  the  city  of  Porto  Rafti.  However,  in  the  latter  the  square  meters  of  the  house  are   not  important  anymore  because  I  was  out  in  the  open.  The  action,  the  experimentations  occurred  in   the  space  between  the  island  and  the  coast.    I  started  scheming  about  how  to  explore  the  space,   how  to  get  there,  canoeing  and  straying  from  the  Outlandia  site  for  intercity  walks  on  my  walking   journeys  without  destinations.      


53 During  this  time  I  also  spent  many  days  sitting  in  the  40  square  meters  room  and   outdoors  writing  about  it  and  telling  it.            

     


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I  kept  a  stream  of  writing  logs  as  a  result  of  my  daily  concerns  long  duration  walking   and  travels  with  the  canoe.  And  somewhere  bordering  and  fusing  between  private   actions  and  public  appearances,  I  considered  my  public  manifestations  with  the  group   Guerrilla  Optimists  to  be  a  parallel  project  to  that  of  Outlandia.  There  were  always   elements  exchanging  between  the  sites,  but  I  always  returned  to  discussions  and   explorations  within  and  around  Outlandia.  Within  all  that  walking  and  moving  from   one  place  to  another  I  referred  to  the  works  as  invisible  works,  walking  stories,  site  for   chance  encounters,  walks  without  destinations,  walks  to  nowhere.         Because  it  was  very  important  to  me  that  I  don’t  create  a  very  certain  thematic,  a   framework  from  which  to  work,  and  say  ‘this  is  what  this  project  is  about’.  I  would   embrace  the  possibility  to  change,  adjust,  survive  in  its  looseness,  decentralize  the   idea,  and  in  this  way  practice  the  unhinging  from  the  site.  By  questioning  the   ideological  frame  in  which  it  is,  I  can  begin  to  understand  its  power  and  control.     This  work  is  based  a  lot  on  what  people  tell  me  as  the  material  of  the  work.  In  a  way   everything  in  the  project  was  based  on  their  creative  input  about  what  are  directional   and  non  directional  decisions  for  my  work-­‐  that  is,  I  do  not  know  what  will  happen   even  if  I  want  to  and  the  heart  of  all  that  marching’  and  streaming  energy  is  driven  by   the  creative  nature  found  everywhere  in  peoples'  suggestions  about  directionality  and   non  directionality,  hinging,  unhinging,  staying,  moving,  waiting,  exploring  spaces,     ‘getting  lost’  ‘going  nowhere’  This  often  puts  in  question  the  negotiation  that  occurs   between  the  Self  and  Other.     It  was  important  to  me  ‘not  to  direct  the  people’  (which  is  a  kind  of  direction)  into  a   specific  project  that  is  about  xyz  –  i.e.  ‘putting  the  hearer  into  a  certain  frame  of  mind’.  


58 So  I  decided  to  undergo  through  that  state  myself.  That  is,  by  talking  to  people  about   what  is  the  islands,  what  could  be,  what  happens,  what  can  happen,  why  a  canoe  etc.  I   also  create  a  situation  for  contact.  I  felt  I  was  re-­‐directed  constantly  because  the   combination  of  people’s  suggestions  and  their  visions  of  it  (including  my   interpretations)  cannot  be  predetermined  in  advance  and  even  decentralizing  my  own   self.  I  would  keep  on  attempting  to  tell  the  story  of  what  has  happened  and  create  a   kind  of  continuity  in  jumping  from  story  to  idea  to  story  but  the  main  story  can  never   be  told  fully.  I  re-­‐attempted  to  tell  the  main  story  but  there  is  never  time  to  finish  it.   Then  I  approached  putting  the  one  story  in  the  other,  making  the  detail  ‘the  central’  of   an  experience  and  the  central  the  detail,  and  putting  the  one  story  next  to  the  other.       It  was  very  important  that  I  didn’t  direct  the  people  into  a  certain  frame  of  mind  so   there  was  a  continuous  friction  between  intention  and  chance  circumstances.  Non-­‐ directing  would  mean  non-­‐shaping  a  meaning,  which  rationally  would  mean  no   language  (or  everchanging  language).  And  yet  I  attempted  to  re-­‐tell  the  story  multiple   times  and  write  stories  about  it  in  various  ways  (free  writing  and  more  controlled   strategies,  and  writing  from  speaking  while  walking).       In  order  to  explain  the  departure  from  the  initial  site  Outlandia,  going  back  and  forth   and  jumping  and  walking  across  sites  (The  sites  around  it  and  outside  of  it  (like  the   collaboration  with  Guerrilla  Optimists,  my  intercity  walks  and  my  public   performances  outside  Outlandia)..       So  Miwon  Kwon  said  that  site  specificity  implies  a  fixed  relationship  with  the  original   site,  with  grounding  through  the  site,  and  the  kind  of  relationship  between  the  site  and   the  work.  She  also  explained  that  those  site-­‐specific  and  therefore  unmovable  works   were  initially  made  as  a  result  of  the  intention  of  artists  to  create  a  work  that  resists   the  transferability  of  capitalist  goods.    Many  of  the  works  imply  an  inseparable   relationship  to  the  site  in  the  kind  of  physical,  experiential  and  phenomenological   relationship  of  the  body  to  the  site  but  she  also  explained  how  later  on  that  very   ‘transferability’  of  a  site-­‐specific  work  was  practiced  by  artists  as  a  resistance  to  the   same  issues.  Its  predecessors  saw  it  communicated  in  the  unmovable  work  and  its   successors  saw  moving  the  work  from  the  original/fixed  site  as  a  new  adaptation  for   the  work  and  its  permeability  and  adaption  into  the  new  site  be  a  challenge  that  open   new  venues  in  the  artistic  world  and  considers  relationships  with  all  kinds  of  sites  and   be  less  confined  and  marginalized  by  its  own  specificity.  That  allowed  for  specificity  to   be  re-­‐invented  as  site  transferred  ‘under  certain  circumstances’  and  those   circumstances  make  the  work  alive  and  redefined  in  the  new  compromise,  but  in  my   view  this  is  mainly  important  because  the  work  is  communicated  in  reasons  for  their   circumstance  to  the  new  people  related  to  that  new  site  and  so  they  function  as  an   ‘entrances’  in  to  the  work  but  complicated  enough  as  frames  for  the  work.                  

When I  walk   When  I  walk  I  am  moving     When  I  walk  I  feel  freedom  act  in  my  body     When  I  walk  I  make  time  to  explore  the  creativity  in  the  act   When  I  walk  I  practice  space  and  a  removal  from  it   When  I  walk  I  think  of  my  left  and  right  foot     When  I  walk  I  think  of  how  I  feel  the  feet  on  the  ground   When  I  walk  I  feel  one  flowing  narrative  


59 When  I  walk  I  am  forming  a  narrative  that  is  not  a  capture   When  I  walk  I  feel  inseparable  from  the  physical  surrounding   When  I  walk  I  listen   When  I  walk  I  feel  the  continuity  and  the  connections  between  all  the  pieces  scattered  coming   from  and  going  to  some  place  else   When  I  walk  I  think  of  the  invisible  line  I  leave  behind  me   When  I  walk  I  don’t  know  where  I  am  going     When  I  walk  I  connect  stories   When  I  walk  I  think  about  my  knees  cups   When  I  walk  I  get  thirsty     When  I  walk  I  think  of  the  continuity  of  the  act     When  I  walk  I  perform  the  nomadic  of  human  thought     When  I  walk  I  decentralize  on  theme   When  I  walk  I  free  myself  from  the  conceptual  confines  of  the  original  and  destination  location   When    I  walk  I  practice  unhinging  of  the  initial  site   When  I  walk  I  free  of  the  ideological  confined  of  my  own  original  structure   When  I  walk  I  tell  stories   When  I  walk  I  meet  strangers  which  are  chance  encounters   When  I  walk  strangers  tell  me  their  stories     When  I  walk  and  meet  strangers  I  talk  with  then   When  I  walk  and  strangers  tell  me  their  stories  I    connect  theirs  with  mine   When  I  walk  and  consider  their  story     When  I  walk  I  consider  how  to  implicate  their  story  in  my  story   When  I  walk  I  complicate  their  story     When  I  walk  I  think  of  their  story  as  a  direction  chance  encounter   When  I  walk  and  consider  many  stories  in  many  direction  and  thus  a  non  direction     When  I  walk  I  consider  conversations  as  chance  encounters   When  I  walk  I  re-­‐organize   When  I  walk  I  don’t  control  my  thought   When  I  walk  I  let  my  thought  flee  to  tell  the  situation   When  I  walk  I  I  hinge  and  unhinge  myself  from  the  main  story   When  I  walk  I  pass  through  vegetation,  architecture,  sand,  rocks  and  sounds   When  I  walk  I  see  sounds   When  I  walk  I  enjoy  the  activity  of  walking  within  and  on  my  body   When  I  walk  I  develop  conceptually   When  I  walk  I  learn  about  the  neighborhood   When  I  walk  I  walking  towards  the  next  story  but  I  don’t  know  what  that  is     When  I  walk  I  don’t  feel  confinement   Wen  I  walk  I  don’t  have  to  organize  because  the  fleeing  thought  is  complete   When  I  walk  the  pieces  are  falling  together     When  I  walk  I  have  the  full  right  to  my  body  to  walk  on  the  ground  and  earth   When  I  walk  I  don’t  transform  the  space,  the  act  of  practicing  the  space  transforms  me  

             


60

      May  13  Osman  :  Paying  out  your   freedom       Provisional  conclusion:  a  return  to  all  the  people  that  told  me   stories  about  the  island        

I grabbed  a  bag  with  tomatoes  and  started  walking  with  my  rolling  snail  on  a  string   towards  Love  Cave  beach  to  meet  with  Sami  and  return  to  the  1st  person  who  ever   told  me  a  story  about  the  Island.  Ivan  had  invited  him  for  a  pic  knick  in  the  dark  and   had  prepped  to  cook  for  us.  In  a  way  he  created  a  situation  for  contact  between  Sami   and  myself.    Sami’s  story  was  how  him  and  his  brother  stole  a  water  bike  and  rowed   during  the  night  to  the  island.  That  night  he  further  elaborated  on  the  light  around  the   island  created  by  the  night  tower…  Didn’t  you  find  holes  there?,  he  asked.  I  said-­‐  yes,  I   found  many  holes.  So  I  shared  with  him  that  I  was  writing  a  book  about  the  island  (I   hadn’t  seen  him  for  a  year  since  I  started  the  project),  through  what  people  tell  me  and   for  my  walking  and  canoeing  experiences.  And  so  he  said,  yes,  writing  through  and   about  people  is  how  books  happen.  You  have  to  experience  it,  but  also  to  invent  the   situations  for  “it”  to  come  out.  We  must  further  talk  about  that.  I  can’t  wait  to  meet  


61 him  again  and  ponder  on  his  words.  I  told  him  how  walking  also  made  me  think  a  lot   about  both  legs.  Sami  also  explained  how  the  hands  and  the  mouth  of  humans  are   probably  the  most  developed  areas  and  that  the  legs  are  not  really  the  most  stable   part  of  the  body.  The  mouth  he  said  and  the  hands  are  well  trained  because  we  use   them  often  in  the  everyday.     Osman  was  also  there.  Osman  was  the  1st  person  I  talked  to  on  the  beach  for  the  island   and  one  of  the  1st  strangers  I  shared  with  that  I  would  like  to  “get  there”.  Osman  is  an  a   way  the  temporary  but  also  a  permanent  inhabitant  of  the  Love  Cave  beach  because  he   lives  inside  a  tiny  wooden  construction  that  turns  into  a  bar  in  the  summer.  He  guards   the  place  and  sleeps  inside  both:  during  the  winter  and  summer.  So  in  a  way  he  is  the   keeper  of  the  beach  to  secure  the  bar  and  cleans  the  beach  every  morning  and  so  he   sees  the  island  every  morning.  But  that  night  we  didn’t  talk  about  making  a  raft  and   going  to  the  island  as  much  as  we  talked  about  walking.  Maybe  he  said  something   about  walking  or  I  said  something  about  walking.  Maybe  Ivan  said  something  about   walking  because  I  had  spoken  before  on  several  occasions  how  migrants  walk  for   many  days  to  cross  borders  and  at  first  it  seemed  odd  to  him.  Other  nights,  Ivan  and  I   talked  extensively  about  how  migrants  cross  borders  by  long  walking  and  by  boats   and  how  is  that  related  to  my  43  km  long  walking  experiment  and  so  he  noted  how  the   few  people  walking  intercity  are  the  migrants  and  I  explained  how  walking  is  used  for   transportation  and  in  my  view  that  walking  within  the  borders  of  the  same  country   shows  the  potential  of  immigration.  Osman  was  talking  a  lot  about  how  people  from   his  country  Pakistan  would  walk  days  and  sometimes  9  months  through  mountains,   and  through  snow  to  come  to  Greece.  People  die  sometimes  during  the  exhausting   walking  but  he  dint  have  an  immediate  friend.  He  explained  that  his  trip  was  quite   different  and  that  it  took  him  only  7  days  to  come  because  he  was  smuggled  with  a   speedboat  through  Turkey.  Then  once  he  arrived  here  together  with  another  40   people  they  were  placed  in  an  underground  room  in  a  house  secluded  from  central   spaces  where  the  police  cant  find  them.  They  let  you  go  out  of  that  room  only  if  you   pay  the  money,  he  said.  And  so  I  asked  what  happened  if  you  don’t  pay  the  money?  He   said,  well  they  beat  you  up  but  they  don’t  let  you  go.  And  so  I  wondered  did  he  have   the  money  on  himself?  He  further  explained  that  he  stayed  in  that  room  locked  with   the  others  only  for  two  days  because  it  was  a  way  of  doing  things  that  there  was  an   arrangement  with  people  in  Pakistan  and  his  father  would  pay  from  the  other  side,   once  Osman  is  in  Greece.  They  communicate  on  the  phone  Osman  confirms  that  he  is   here  and  so  his  father  sends  the  money  to  pay  Osman’s  freedom.  I  was  there  only  two   days,  but  there  are  others  that  stay  there  for  months  until  they  pay  their  freedom.  He   talked  about  the  impossibility  to  get  residence  permit  or  Greek  passport  that  he  had  to   wait  about  7  years  to  start  the  process  and  explained  how  difficult  that  was  for  him  to   go  to  Petrou  Rali  [see  what  is  Petrou  Rali  in  the  story  Why  I  am  not  Leaving  Greece]   and  deal  with  the  bureaucracy  there.  He  explained  that  he  couldn’t  go  back  to  Pakistan   because  he  didn’t  obtain  the  needed  documents  to  do  so  and  so  he  can’t  see  his  family.   It’s  been  four  years  he  is  in  Greece.  He  talked  a  lot  about  the  position  of  the  woman  in   Pakistan  and  how  only  men  work  there  and  the  woman  stays  at  home.  We  talked   about  what  are  the  consequences  if  a  woman  is  caught  having  sex  with  a  man  before   marriage.  He  explained  how  things  are  with  the  deviant  places  like  brothels.  Ivan   asked  him  about  how  people  in  Pakistan  make  vacations  and  there  was  not  much   Osman  mentioned  on  that  but  explained  that  one  can  rent  a  hotel  and  this  way  have   fun.     I  knew  Osman  from  going  at  the  beach  and  also  knew  that  he  has  a  special  relationship   with  the  island  because  he  sees  the  island  everyday.  I  had  no  idea  about  Osman’s   border  crossing  story  because  I  never  asked.     The  Old  spy  was  the  1st  person  I  met  that  told  me  in  extensive  detail  specific  things   about  the  island  and  when  to  find  the  rabbits.  Mitaka  was  the  1st  person  that  told  there   are  rabbits  fucking  at  the  island  and  so  shared  that  Sami  has  a  story  for  the  island.  And   the  stranger  I  met  in  the  water-­‐  was  the  1st  person  that  explained  to  me  that  once  I  go   behind  the  island  the  island  drastically  changes  its  shape  and  that  there  is  a  place  to   park  –  a  tiny  beach  tiny  beach.  That  day  I  started  going  to  the  island  with  the  canoe   without  knowing  if  at  all  there  is  a  way  to  access  it  because  I  had  observed  it  with  my   binoculars  and  saw  only  inclined  rocks  that  cannot  be  accessed  but  with  the  


62 binoculars  I  could  not  see  what  was  behind  the  island  because  there  isn’t  a  point  from   the  lands  that  gives  you  visual  access  to  what  is  beyond  the  island.  That  tiny  beach  he   explained  was  a  perfect  and  easy  place  to  park.  But  when  I  got  there  I  realized  that   there  are  dangerous  rocks  near  by  the  coast  and  must  be  careful  when  I  park  my   canoe  vehicle  there,  not  to  have  a  tide  because  the  tide  can  take  me  and  slap  me  and   the  canoe  against  the  near  by  rocks.  So,  in  a  way  there  are  specific  hours  favorable  for   approaching  the  tiny  beach  with  a  shallow  canoe.  I  know  those  hours  well,  and  enjoy   both  canoeing  in  smooth  waters  and  when  there  are  waves.  These  two  experiences   and  other  tides  variations  are  very  different  but  they  are  all  connected.     Surprisingly  enough  Alex  (a  Guerrila  Optimist  collaborator)  had  a  very  profound   relationship  with  the  island  (what  a  coincidence!  He  doesn’t  even  live  near  by,  what  is   the  possibility  to  collaborate  with  someone  on  a  project  in  Athens  for  the  central   Omonia  square  and  not  to  know  him  and  that  person  to  also  have  visited  the  Rafti   Island  (35  km  outside  Athens)  and  to  have  a  profound  relationship  to  that  specific   place!).  He  told  me  he  went  there  with  his  brother  and  father  in  his  childhood  many   time  by  canoeing  and  that  the  island  for  him  was  that  spontaneous  and  childish   exploration  linked  to  physical  experiments  with  the  body  that  we  lack  today.  For  that   same  experience  and  connection  to  childhood  we  talk  about  a  lot  with  Jean-­‐Marie…        

     

Advisor Meeting  May  13   (forth  meeting  with  Studio  Adviser)     Dear  Jean-­‐  Marie,     I  really  understand  what  you  said  about  the  tying  and  untying  shoelaces,  learning  and   the  accomplishment  that  a  child  feels  when  the  bow  is  looped  for  1st  time  in  the   difficult  way.  I  still  remember  my  fist  time  i  did  that-­‐  I  remember  the  smell  of  the  room   and  the  textile  of  my  gradfathers'  jacket.  We  were  in  the  atrium  of  my  kinder  garden   where  my  locker  was,  sitting  on  a  wooden  bench.  My  shoelaces  were  then,  as  they  are   now,  so  long  that  I  had  to  master  double  loops.  That  trick  I  learned  from  my  mother   while  practicing  on  ribbons  and  perfected  gift-­‐wrapping  whose  durations  may  involve   hours  of  doing  so.      


63   It  really  spoke  to  me  when  you  said  in  which  tying  and  tying  is  related  to  learning  and   childhood  and  in  my  view  is  also  related  to  the  physicality  of  things  and  being   ‘present’  on  the  site  of  exploration.  I  think  about  that  on  several  occasions.  It  is  indeed   connected  it  with  the  lack  of  physical  experience  and  technology,  and  with  the  lack  of   hands  dexterity  of  children  today  due  to  technology  trends  operating  our  lives.  In  this   context,  technology  controls  the  movements  of  our  bodies  and  even  bodies  abilities   and  potential  to  develop  like  the  example  you  gave  with  the  use  of  iphone  by  children.     As  you  noted  the  hands  of  children  are  limited  to  the  movement  of  sliding  the  screens   of  the  iphones.  In  a  way  I  see  the  lack  of  passion  and  the  need  to  play  outside  with   sand  and  stones  and  wooden  sticks  and  dress  up  as  Indian  costumes,  play  with   arrows,  weeds  and  costumes...All  the  invention,  the  discoveries,  and  the  messiness  in   climbing  up  a  tree  and  searching  for  something  mysterious  that  may  or  may  not  live  in   the  water  are  fading  away…displaced  by  computer  games  and  ipads.    Since  I  got  my   snail  I  ‘ve  been  thinking  a  lot  about  the  ephemerality,  the  invention  and  the  constant   transformation  of  things  in  children’s  games.  What  many  of  those  games  have  in   common  is  the  Sisyphean  act  that  you  pointed  at  many  times  -­‐as  the  sun  has  it  when  it   rolls  on  the  island  contour  skin  (like  Sisyphus’  stone).  The  rowing  with  paddles  has  it,   as  walking  has  it  as  weaving  flower  chains  has  it.  I  think  a  lot  about  rolling  objects  we   played  with  when  we  were  small,  towers  from  cards  that  fall  down  but  we  build  them   back  up,  making  sand  castles  with  walls  and  towers  that  change  and  transform-­‐    every   minute  they    become  something  else.     Sincerely  yours,       Ro  ko  ko  


64  

This chapter is dedicated to Monkey mind We talked  about  how  the  time  after  May  15  (the  time  that  the  book  is  almost  finished)   I  have  the  chance  to  explore  those  games  and  return  to  my  initial  proposal’s  aspect   about  finding  ways  to  collaborate  with  Ivan  (among  the  initially  indented)  and  the  -­‐ unfolding  (unintended)  aspects:  exploring  the  space,  finding  a  way  to  relate  of  what  I   am  doing  with  people  (intended);  exploring  paths  that  practice  what  the  journeying   presents  in  the  course  of  action  which  turned  out  to  be  in  the  walking,  in  the  canoeing,   in  and  the  getting  to  the  island  (unintended-­‐  found  sites).  The  more  I  write  about  the   more  I  am  flooded  with  lengthy  stream  writing  logs  …       How  is  that  the  initially  intended  and  non-­‐intended  actions  unfold?     In  order  to  explore  the  space  I  walked  and  canoed  a  lot.  I  canoed  because  I  was  given   the  canoe  for  the  project  as  an  obvious  everyday  way  to  reach  it,  even  though  I  would   secretly  intend  to  get  there  by  swimming  and  by  raft  of  some  sort.     The  idea  was  that  while  I  walk  it  could  be  possible  to  talk  with  people  met  by  chance   encounter  about  what  is  this  as  an  artistic  work,  what  is  the  island,  what  could  it  be,   and  be  decentralized-­‐directed  and  thus  informed  by  people’s  creative  ideas.  In  that   way  the  ‘work  of  art’  can  be  considered  in  the  living  life  with  people  who  haven’t  been   acquainted  up  close  with  art  but  most  importantly  I  can  acquaint  my  self  with  seeing   through  the  prism  of  life  and  how  a  work  happens  naturally  in  its  literal  space  of  the   everyday  but  threatened  to  be  erased.      


65 This  is  how  I  started  with  the  idea  of  Outlandia  around  the  island.  I  retell  the  story  of   ‘getting  to  it’  by  using  the  peoples’  reflections  on  the  idea  and  what  they  knew  about   the  island  and  used  the  stories  about  what  they  see  in  their  life  (not  only  in  the  work)   that  becomes  a  the  work.  A  key  word  from  their  stories  would  be  the  central  site  of   exploration  in  my  story  and  in  my  view  a  departure  from  the  island.  In  short  and  to   repeat,  My  idea  was  the  idea  of  going  to  the  island,  and  exploring  the  space  around  it   but  also  finding  ways  to  relate  the  work  to  people  and  collaborate  with  the  very   person  that  invited  me  to  live  there.       The  story  I  re-­‐tell  about  ‘getting’  to  the  Island  (chance  circumstance)  makes  a  situation   for  encounter  with  strangers  but  it  was  also  important  for  my  bodily  contact  with  the   physicality  of  the  space  and  the  physicality  of  movement.  It  was  in  a  way  a  resistance   to  the  lack  of  contact  with  outdoor  space  and  the  lack  of  time  to  explore  long  durations   due  to  the  ways  in  which  I  work,  create  capital  for  survival.     As  a  result  of  journeying  to  the  island,  walking,  and  canoeing  I  became  very  aware  of   my  two  hands  and  legs.       While  walking  I  discovered  the  bougainvillea  flower  that  was  important  because  it   was  available  both  within  the  Garden  (inside  Outlandia)  and  outside  Outlandia  and   third,  they  were  important  because  they  seem  to  be  used  by  people  as  their  fences  or   on  top  of  their  fences-­‐  and  thus  were  used  as  some  kind  of  private  boundary.  Also,  the   bougainvillea  flower  was  a  material  that  was  readily  available  and  free  and  was  well   known  by  all  people  so  it  was  another  possible  situation  for  encountering  a  small  talk   with  strangers.  As  well,  in  many  occasions  I  asked  people  to  open  their  doors  or  to   share  the  flowers  leaking  on  the  outside  of  their  fence  with  me.-­‐  one  more  way  to   learn  something  more  about  Porto  Rafti  and  the  island  and  ways  of  living  and  seeing   life  as  well  as  seeing  the  creativity  in  making  a  flower  chain  intended  to  reach  the   island.  This  way  the  bougainvillea  flower  had  the  potential  to  be  turned  into  a   conversation  about  secluded  action  of  collecting  it  and  walking  and  be  turned  into   interactions  and  vice  versa.     Discovering  that  common  thing  between  the  Garden  and  the  Outside  world  that  I  can   use/collect  as  material  in  durational  work,  An  element  that  I  discovered  in  walking   while  exploring  the  spaces  around  but  one  that  is  also  used  as  reason  to  walk.  So,  it  is   the  idea  of  the  bougainvillea  in  the  walking  and  the  walking  in  the  bougainvillea.     Kept  on  weaving  the  flowers  into  a  long  line  but  then  I  observed  that  instead  of   making  my  intended  line  reaching  the  island  I  started  making  flower  chains  [closed   circles]  for  necks  and  giving  those  to  people.  So  the  knitting  of  one  36  meters  long  line   turned  into  a  line  that  was  getting  longer  and  shorter,  longer  and  shorter,  until  one   day  it  disappeared.  Then  I  started  talking  about  and  how  to  turn  the  flowers  into   invitation  and  into  the  practice  of  walking  into  connecting  sites  (the  beach  with  the   island,  the  city  with  the  idea  of  going  to  a  island).  I  started  my  intercity  walks  without   destinations  as  a  way  to  practice  a  public  invitation  for  people  who  may  want  to  come   to  Love  Cave  beach  and  near  the  Island  at  the  Athens  Photo  Festival  at  the  Gazi   Museum  (in  the  center  of  Athens).  My  performative  action  would  be  a  to  weave  chains   for  7  days  (no  relation  to  Christian  rituals)  and  would  distribute  those  to  people  in  the   several  galleries  as  an  invitation  together  with  the  story  about  what  I  knew  at  that   point  about  the  island  and  that  I  invite  them  to  connect  the  garland  rings  in  one   common  line  in  the  water.  Ideally  this  would  be  a  situation  for  meeting  strangers  with   strangers.  I  dug  deeper  and  discovered  an  invented  relationship  of  walking  with  an  old   Bulgarian  ritual  Lazarka    [which  is  about  walking,  encountering  strangers  and  letting   flower  chains  in  the  water-­‐  but  this  is  my  adaptation  of  the  ritual].  The  original  ritual   is  on  Lazarus  day,  some  time  before  Easter  according  to  which  small  girls  in  the   Bulgarian  villages  collect  eggs  for  dying.  They  walk  from  their  house  with  a  basket  and   knock  on  people’s  doors,  perform  something  of  their  mastery  and  then  return  with  the   collected  eggs  to  the  house.  Prior  to  starting  to  walk  the  girls  are  dressed  up  in  specific   handmade  clothes  and  adorned  with  red  on  their  chicks,  with  coins  and  flower  chains.   At  the  end  of  the  ritual  I  would  go  with  my  grandmother  and  throw  the  flowers  in  the   river  and  watch  it  fluid  going  in  all  directions  and  restless  in  the  water  for  as  long  as  it  


66 leaves  our  sight.  Every  time  I  imagined  that  I  am  that  flower  ring-­‐  free  and  floating   (see  Lazarka  book)97     After  practicing  for  the  long  walk  that  would  connect  the  Gazi  site  with  the   space  around  the  island  I  went  on  walking  that  distance  of  43  km  walk  in   between  the  two.  The  ways  in  which  I  exist  in  those  spaces  is  through  actions     [the  Sisyphean  actions  in  the  duration].  I  created  a  stream  writing  story  of  for   43  km  of  walking  tittles  Almost  the  Whole  Story  and  a  video  telling  the  same   story  titled  Outlandia  Now:  encounter  with  the  police  and  further  created  the   chapter  The  Arrested  [as  in  motion]  walker  in  The  Book  of  the  Great   Rabbit:Anythinglandia  elaborating  on  the  idea  of  how  the  detainment  by  the   police  during  my  walk  is  the  capture  of  the  spontaneity  in  the  action.  After   that  I  continued  walking  and  canoeing  with  and  additional  element  –  a  bell   tied  to  my  body  and  to  the  canoe  paddle,  which  permeated  in  both  my   exploration  at  Outlandia  and  my  collaborative  project  with  the  Guerilla   Optimist.  As  a  result  of  going  in  between  the  two  sites,  in  between  walking   and  canoeing,  in  between  solitary  wandering  and  talking  to  people  I  though  a   lot  about  ‘movement  in  between  the  so-­‐  called  sites  here,  but  in  the  everyday  I   absorb  them  as  lived  spaces  ’.  I  continued  writing  stories  as  a  result  of  going   to  the  island  with  other  people,  as  a  result  of  making  new  acquaintances  and   as  a  result  of  canoeing  alone  and  with  others.  This  way  I  could  use  elements   from  experience  and  what  people  tell  me  but  also  through  writing  I  can   depart  to  other  places.  Through  writing  I  could  put  the  one  [chapter/element]   in  the  other  [story/site].     After  the  walk  I  returned  to  the  bigger  picture  (and  how  is  this  related  to  a  bigger   picture?  –  the  physicality  of  experience,  and  immigration)  I  discovered  how  walking  is   related  to  potential  of  immigration,  to  the  encounters  with  strangers,  to  physical   experience  and  to  the  idea  of  using  walking  as  both  an  exploration  of  the  site  and  as   departure  from  the  initial  site  and  its  potential  to  invent  encounters).     I  kept  on  collecting  flowers  and  tied  a  bell  (to  the  body  and  to  canoe  the   paddle)(the  bell  I  see  as  my  co-­‐traveler,  as  attached  to  my  body  while  walking   and  as  a  device  signaling  my  location  in  the  water  from  far  away,  a  sound  that   can  be  used  to  record  walking).  How  is  it  that  getting  to  the  island  and  talking   about  it  with  others  creates  a  consciousness  of  the  island  and  a  situation  for   exploration?  Working  on  storytelling  through  encounters  with  people  and  the   here  concepts  related  -­‐  I  try  to  re-­‐tell  and  re-­‐write  the  story  over  and  over   again.       The  way  in  which  the  bell  is  in  the  walking,  the  walking  in  the  bell,  the  bell  in  the   canoe,  the  bell  in  the  island.  The  bell  in  Outlandia  and  the  Bell  in  the  collaboration  with   the  Guerrillas  (very  different  from  that  of  how  is  use  in  Outlandia;  See  information  on   that  in  chapter  Group  Concerns)….  the  bell  is  an  element  that  was  transferred  into  all   sites.  The  idea  of  using  personal  actions  for  communication  like  what  stream  writing   and  the  bell  was  alike  the  idea  of  writing  the  stories  in  the  book.  There  are  other  texts   I  kept  logs  of  that  are  more  irregular  and  written  in  a  stream  of  fast  typing.  After   collecting  and  selecting  some  of  those  freely  written  texts  and  stories  I  matched  them   with  a  corresponding  image  from  my  physical  experiments  and  walks  to  create  an   Album.  That  album  uses  the  stories  from  the  book  and  some  that  were  not  featured   inside  so  as  to  start  telling  the  story  all  over  again….  

                                                                                                              97

I  am  guessing  that  this  ritual  as  once  talked  with  a  stranger  is  a  way  to  get  the  small  girls  think   about  marriage  and  fertility  and  show  her  beauty  and  tricks  to  the  others  of  the  village  so  that  she   can  be  liked  for  marriage  and  known  for  her  special  character  exhibited  during  the  performance  she   gives  in  every  house>      


67 The  book  was  that  attempt  to  tell  the  whole  story  through  its  smaller  departing  stories   but  it  has  started  to  leak  out  again,  out  of  the  book  ….and  to  the  island.  I  am  leaving  I   am  going  there  now…           Put  in  a  paragraph  what  was  your  research  on  all  that     The  researching  ideas  of  places,  spaces,  and  sites  and  the  practice  of  walking   This  idea  of  de  Certau  that  to  tell  ones  legend  is  to  invent  space  and  his  idea  that  to  the   very  drifts  and  leaks  of  meanings  are  the  creation  of  space  related  to  the  (out  of  place)   and  that  the  idea  to  observe  a  site  as  a  departure  from  the  site  as  in  Miwon  Kwon.   Related  all  that  to  the  idea  of  Massey  that  telling  a  story  is  the  very  ‘here’  and  is  the   very  creation  of  space  that  is  constantly  re  negotiated  through  the  multiple   trajectories  of  elsewhere  space  is  related  to     Space  is  always  open,  under  construction,  never  finished  linked  to  some  place  else.   That  space  is  negotiated  through  the  provisional  happenstances  that  may  or  may  not   be  met.  Related  to  the  idea  of  collaboration  and  a  work  is  not  preconceived  but  it   happens  in  the  course  of  action  and  in  my  case  due  to  chance  circumstances  and  the   provisional  explanations  of  my  experience  and  peoples  stories.  That  people’s  stories   (but  written  by  me)  and  intentions  in  a  way  is  what  directs  my  explorations:  Ivan   invited  me  (inspired  me  to  the  physicality  of  things,  the  present  and  canoeing),  that   the  Spy  told  me  about  the  rabbits  in  on  the  island  (which  further  excited  me  about   going  to  the  island  and  question  what  rabbits  do?  the  idea  of  being  a  rabbit  inspired   me  to  make  up  methodology  for  rabbitness  as  a  way  to  explain  the  negotiation  of  the   various  sites  I  walk  across)  (See  chapters  Rabbitness  and  Rabbitography  and  the   Rabbitness  in  the  Outlandia)        

 

Group Concerns

GUERRILLA OPTIMISTS: Case Study The exchanges between group and solo In this  text  I  reveal  some  concerns  from  my  engagement  with  the  Guerrilla  Optimists   group  (est.2006  in  Athens).  Specifically  I  will  refer  to  my  engagement  in  the  last  one-­‐ year  2012-­‐2013  and  ongoing  Public  Dreaming  project  in  Omonia  Square.  The  project   manifested  as  steady  engagement  at  the  most  central  public  square  in  the  city  of   Athens  (Greece)  every  week.  Sleep  actions,  napping  at  the  square,  manifestoes  and   meeting  its  inhabitants  were  actions  at  the  heart  of  our  project  and  these  were   supported  through  the  everyday  exchange  of  dreams  via  emails  among  group   members  (Jennifer  Nelson,  Amalia  Charikiopoulou,  Alexandros  Georgiou  and  Manos   Tsatiris).  The  actions  of  choice  are  the  result  of  intra-­‐group  negotiations  about  how  we   could  develop  a  project  on  Public  Dreaming  and  this  resulted  in  somewhat  more   steady  weekly  visits  to  the  site.  We  started  with  sleeping  over  at  each  other's  homes   (slumber  parties)  in  order  to  create  the  space  for  discussions.  Those  developed  into  an   idea  of  public  sleeping  and  into  a  relationship  for  our  experimentations  with  Omonia  


68 Square  as  a  specific  site.  This  demanded  live  engagement  in  public  space,  constant   reinvention  as  well  as  extensive  writings  of  manifestos,  statements,  every  day  dreams   and  complex  forging  of  promotional  materials  like  flyers,  a  newspaper  and  a   handbook,  press  releases  and  the  like  (the  opposite  of  advertising).  Even  though  those   promotional  materials  were  disseminated  through  known  professional  channels  and   to  artistic  audiences  locally,  the  true  ‘audience  of  our  actions  were  the  people  at   Omonia  square’.    98       The  idea  for  making  a  book  arose  after  one  year  of  writing  and  sharing  dreams  on   daily  a  basis,  including  sounds  created  out  of  our  slumber  parties,  with  the  aim  to   communicate  how  those  are  related  to  our  public  actions  in  Omonia  Square.  The  book   was  barely  half-­‐way  when  we  were  invited  to  create  documentation  of  the  project  for   Bozar,  for  the  exhibition  No  Country  for  Young  Men:  Contemporary  Greek  Art  in  Times   of  Crisis.  Given  that  the  transferability  of  the  work  was  unthinkable  unless  as  a  sound   streamed  live  or  performed  some  place  else,  and  that  an  institution's  regulations   would  limit  the  nature  of  our  exploration,  we  found  the  ‘right  circumstances  under   which  a  work  can  be  documented’  without  being  streamed  or  performed  (Kwon  2008)     The  idea  of  a  newspaper  is  the  result  of  the  feeling  that  all  the  ephemeral  actions  of   the  same  group  since  2004  constitute  extensive  work  and  must  see  the  light  of   document,  despite  the  fact  that  Optimists  engage  in  invisible  ephemeral  actions:  the   work  was  substantial  and  the  voices  in  it  could  reach  audiences  in  other  sites.    It  was  a   question  of  whether  we  should  or  should  not  ‘appear’  in  a  museum.  In  questions  such   as  this  I  try  to  escape  the  limitations  of  this  idea,  and  so  we  saw  the  possibility  of  being   present  in  a  museum  as  an  opportunity  to  make  new  acquaintances  and  share  our   creative  materials  with  other  participating  artists,  get  acquainted  with  each  others'   work  and  participate  in  an  exhibition  that  was  addressing  times  of  economic  crisis  for   Greece.  The  Guerrillas  have  been  talking  about  other  kinds  of  social,  spiritual  and   experiential  crises  due  to  forces  operating  within  an  economy  of  corruption  and   isolation.     A  series  of  non-­‐traditional  actions,  events  and  human  concerns  were  introduced  to   those  spaces  and  we  further  questioned  our  abilities  to  operate  in  more  connected   ways  with  the  local  communities,  as  difficult  as  this  can  be  without  funding  or  much   free  time  on  our  hands  for  such  explorations.         In  addition  to  our  actions,  other  special  events  had  been  organized  in  the  city  by   Jennifer,  Toby  and  Alex  over  the  years,  offering  not  only  critical  insights  and   challenging  disruptions  in  the  ways  in  which  we  think  and  make  art,  but  also  in  the   very  link  with  doing  this  in  public  space  out  on  the  streets.  (For  selected  actions  since   2004  See  Guerrilla  Optimists  Newspaper  pages  here:   <http://www.transart.org/ivanovar/2014/03/20/the-­‐dreamers-­‐handbook-­‐and-­‐in-­‐ between/>         The  purpose  of  sharing  dreams  was  to  speculate  on  the  inability  to  distinguish   between  reality  and  dream.  I  discovered  that  violence  has  invaded  my  dream  space   and  was  somehow  permitted  and  dissolved  into  our  dreams.  Can  they  own  our   dreams?  Then,  dreams  did  not  turn  out  to  be  fairytales  -­‐they  were  filled  with  worries,   fights,  violence,  uncomfortable  leftovers,  sexual  material,  fears  and  fears  of  something   else.  This  to  me  showed  the  lack  of  common  space  for  re-­‐considering  those  in  our  city.   Jennifer  referred  to  a  trauma  in  the  collective  unconscious.  Somehow  through  ‘re-­‐

                                                                                                               

98

conversation  with  Jennifer  


69 calibrating  the  acoustics’  of  the  dead  square  one  could  heal  then  a  collective   unconscious…  Whether  that  was  the  unconscious  of  the  city  or  the  people  living  in  it  is   still  negotiable.  For  Alex  the  square  needed  healing.    And  for  me  –  I  was  trying  to   concentrate  on  the  situation  as  an  opportunity  for  contact  with  them.    I  was  trying  to   ‘get  my  body  there’  which  was  a  tremendous  effort  as  it  was  for  the  other  members   given  that  we  would  have  to  cross  30-­‐40  km  distances  to  meet  at  the  square  for  the   weekly  occasions  in  the  center  of  the  city.  It  could  be  said  that  our  presence  would   produce  the  occasional  questions  of  statements  and  ways  to  challenge  the  ways  in   which  we  all  think  about  what  is  our  relationship  to  this  space  and  people,  to  art,  how   we  exist  in  performance  life,  how  we  do  not  record,  what  we  record  and  how  we   approach.  Mainly  how  we  let  each  other  to  be  challenged  by  one  another  and  how  we   navigate  contradicting  views  within  a  group.           There  were  constantly  elements  from  other  personal  projects,  excitements   and  biases  infiltrating  the  politics  of  our  organization  and  elements  flowing  in  and  out.   The  challenge  for  me  was  not  to  separate  my  personal  work  from  that  project  but  to   let  it  infiltrate  me  and  fluidly  let  elements  come  and  go  and  affect  the  practices  of  my   walking,  island  site  and  non  site  explorations.  I  would  use  elements  and  aspirations   from  their  wanderings  and  unconsciously  what  we  were  talking  about  was  inhibiting   the  group  and  changing  the  course  of  actions.  It  took  time  to  decipher  everyone’s   intentions  and  motivations  for  participation  as  the  activities  over  time  were  changing   and  they  would  require  new  ways  of  modalities  to  speak  and  ponder  upon  how  would   an  action  be  done.  With  the  impact  of  Alex  much  of  our  groups  activities  turned  to   doing  instead  of  scheming  on  planning  and  on  how  to  be  done  or  recording  it.   Jennifer’s  [impacts]  would  be  manifestos  and  that  would  keep  urgent  issues  moistly   and  sound  and  into  the  unknown  for  a  long  time  now.     The  exchanges  that  happen  within  the  group  reside  in  many  layers.  Our   communication  would  occur  within  the  daily  dream  texts,  ‘getting  into  each  others   heads’  and  occasionally  we  wont  be  able  to  recognize  who  was  the  original  creator  of   the  text  in  question.  Other  way  to  communicate  would  be  through  the  ‘reports  of  what   happened’  after  our  actions  and  whom  we  met  at  the  Square  and  what  we  learned   about  this  person-­‐  however  this  strategy  was  not  used  regularly.  Ideas,  images  and   flying  elements  from  the  dreams  exchange  was  affecting  all  of  us  and  exposing  states   of  mind  to  one  another.  There  was  no  censorship.  Many  concerns  were  freely  exposed   and  stripping  down  to  identity  questions  of  the  things  the  self  is  willing  to  censor  to   the  group-­‐if  anyone  ever  did  that.    I  was  pushing  for  trespassing  and  smuggling  of  non   dream  experiences  of  daydreaming  and  conversations  and  questions  that  may  or  may   not  have  happened,  like  conversations  with  strangers  I  meet  in  the  metro  and  how   they  react  to  the  sound  of  the  bell  attached  to  my  body.  The  line  between  what  was   presented  as  my  dream  and  what  was  ‘real’  was  gone  presenting  new  ways  to  re-­‐ consider  my  personal  work  for  transart-­‐  to  consider  my  experiential  walks   experiment  with  the  writing  of  fictious  stories  as  if  they  had  happened  and  keep  on  re-­‐ contextualizing  the  work  and  considerations  for  new  actions.  What’s  ‘real’  and  ‘reality   that  I  experience’  I  also  re-­‐framed  for  myself  in  that  being  a  Rabbit  does  not  make  me   any  less  real.  The  use  of  the  bell  was  also  an  element  that  entered  both  the  group   project  and  my  transart  project.  The  ways  in  which  it  was  used  in  the  one  was  helping   me  differentiate  how  is  used  in  the  other.  In  my  walks  the  bell  was  the  sound  following   me  everywhere  I  go,  signaling  of  my  presence  in  the  space.  The  sound  of  the  bell   attached  on  my  body  or  on  the  paddle  of  the  canoe  was  my  co-­‐traveler  and  ringing  the   bell  intentionally  was  a  celebration  of  imagining  walking  and  travel.  The  bell  would   ring  when  I  move  as  a  result  of  the  movement  and  the  ring  of  the  bell  when  I  am  not   moving  reminds  is  time  to  go  out  on  the  street.    With  the  Guerrillas  the  bell  was  more   of  discipline  to  which  we  would  attend  every  week.  We  would  sit  down  at  Omonia   Square  in  a  triangular  formation  to  ring  the  bells.    The  re-­‐doing  of  that  allowed  us  to   see  this  action  extended  in  time,  re-­‐think  it  without  changing  it  but  through  practicing  


70 it  at  different  occasions  in  the  same  site.  The  bell  ringing  with  two  other  people  was   much  about  making  music  and  conversing  through  the  sounds  of  the  bells  and   occasionally  re-­‐inventing  on  conversations  after  the  ringing  with  passers  by  about   ‘why  is  it  that  we  are  ringing  the  bells’.  For  many  passers  by  this  was  a  religious  act  of   some  sort  they  would  come  to  explain.  For  me  this  was  an  entrance  into  the  context  of   the  bigger  work  on  Public  Dreaming.  For  Alex  this  was  sound  therapy  for  the  hurt   spirit  of  the  square.  For  Jennifer  this  was  a  practice  in  experimenting  with  new  ways   to  approach  one  another.  There  was  a  constant  tension  coming  from  Alex  that  we   must  think  of  it  the  same  way.  My  understanding  was  that  it  is  previous  because  we   found  the  commonality  in  the  very  act  of  ringing  the  bell  and  the  symbolic  reasons  of   each  did  not  matter  as  context  as  much  as  it  mattered  that  we  have  the  bells  as  the   context  bringing  us  at  Omonia  Square  (neglected  space)  every  Tueasdays  and  that  we   were  there  actually  doing  it-­‐  carrying  for,  giving  time  for  this  invisible  action.  The   development  of  the  bell  action  was  in  the  sole  importance  in  the  act  of  doing  it  and  not   that  much  an  act  of  re  imagining  it  through  its  successful  meanings.    This  made  its   textual  explanation  somewhat  obsolete,  and  to  be  sited  fully  only  through   experiencing  it.      ‘Non  of  us  own  these  ideas.  They  are  (un)consciously  collaborative’99  

Omonia Bells J+R A page from The Dreamers

Handbook

Since September 29, 2013, A, R, and J have been ringing bells for one hour, nearly every week in Omonia Square. We arrive from our various lives, spend time reconnecting to each other and the square, and then begin. We sit on the ground, or on a piece of cardboard when the concrete is too cold, facing each other in a triangle- about 2 meters apart. Some days it is hard to concentrate, but when we finally settle into the action- made with small, multi-toned but inexpensive bells that penetrate the sound field of Omonia- we notice change in ourselves and the people around us. The bells, miraculously, can be heard above the circling traffic. Their specific frequency sends vibrations across the cement. Passersby pause. Some sit nearby and listen. A few come to speak to us. Who are you calling to? I know what you are doing. Some draw spiritual connections, some just enjoy the strange intervention. Drivers stare out their window as they pass. We are focused.

                                                                                                              99

Lacy,  Suzanne  1994,  Mapping  the  Terrain:  New  Genre  Public  Art.  Bay  Press:  Seattle,  Washinton  


71 We are dressed casually. We are not on drugs. We are greeted by the dealers, the users and the man who sweeps the square. We have noticed many details about the square in our time there. Small moments of beauty: the bird shit accumulates on the glass wall until it looks like a painting, the light on the pavement in the morning shines across the dark lines, the pigeons are free in the sky above and cast shadows on us as they move, if you are low to the ground it is quiet. The gesture, of course, evokes the symbolic nature of bellsbut for us it is active. After ringing the bells we are all calmer and happier, in an alert but trance-like state. We chose Omonia Square for flying and dreaming because its problems seem so obvious. We can activate a painful awareness of this absurd landscape by juxtaposing our own vulnerability with such a harsh place. We did not expect that we would come to Omonia Square to heal ourselves. But of course we do. Engagement- rather than avoidance, in dreams and awake, is a way to celebrate life. Despite the long geographical distances that separate us, the frequent strikes that block our movement in the city, we believe that our interactions catalyze important space where we can further our inquiries and discussions on how to invent our peaceful vibrations that are in real contact with our surrounding, the people there and between each other. We all come from different culture, different backgrounds and pasts and there is something very specie sprouting from our dreams (as in sleep), bell sounds exchanges, our new encounters with Omonia inhabitants and mainly ideas that spring from our disagreements as artists. We invent, we challenge one another for and during our actions because we see in in group practices the potential to shake and reconstruct both the problematic setting of Omonia and our assumptions as people. We have to continue communicating through actions, manifestations, bell sounds, everyday dreams exchanges for the sake of optimism and find new ways to navigate from and to each other, through the harsh setting in which we weak up. We weak up in loud Athens congested with sirens, cars, buses, people, dispersing in the concrete. We weak up with all our different feelings, concerns and others coming from the stories of the strangers we meet at Omonia square. We travel to Omonia to meet, to sit down and start ringing. It is our attempt to put together a ways to catalyze the co-presence of our interactions in urban public space and to observe how the spatial configurations underpin to co-create concrete behaviors in public spaces. It has come to our attention that one place is constructed by the multiplicity of the situations coexisting in a space. Places are not mere settings but they are reorganized and co-produced through lived experiences. Observing Omonia square has made us create dynamic views of how public spaces are constructed and performed by its inhabitants- it changes from morning to the afternoon- just like our ringing explorations evolve into something else every time; and our bells produce different sounds in different areas of the square. We have a devotion to the same act but it changes through our experiences and new observations of Omonia Square. Each one of us incorporates his understanding of the space and the situation into combined modes of situation and this is very much what this book is about. We make use of the potential of the ‘open space’ the ‘open access’ and the activities performed in that space to examine what are the dimensions of the situations. What is ‘open public space’ in different social occasions? We become acquainted with the community found at Omonia and of the community we create among each other as a group so as to challenge our own preliminary assumptions of the space and the nature of our interactions. Here Omonia (space) is the Other. The bell sounds we exchange with each other is another way to become acquainted and communicate with one another, the space and learn about the people there. We are sending intriguing bell calls to each other and those present there so as to slip into the possibility for new and unexpected ways in which we may spontaneously re-organize a situation. We simply create a situation for contact. In the midst of individuation, fragmentation, public and city crisis we are optimistic that our actions leave traces in the bodies of the living people.


72

The logic of nomadism and impermanence

The  more  that  we  walk  into  the  logic  of  nomadism,  the  more  the  ungrounded   transience  gives  us  ‘the  feeling  of  being  at  home’.    Home  is  ‘here’  and  is  always   negotiating  through  elsewheres.  How  are  we  assuming  home  in  the  provisional  here?;   how  is  that  the  feeling  of  fleeing  situations,  chanced  encounters  making  us  participate   in  homelessness?  When  one  has  found  home  in  a  provisional  space  –it  is  the   permanence  in  the  impermanence.       It  has  occurred  to  me  that  the  inability  of  the  human  mind  to  organize  multiplicity  and   navigate  the  body  through  physicality  is  assumed  to  be  the  result  of  capitalist  creation   of  the  experience  of  disorientation  and  fragmentation.  This  alarming  disjunction   points  between  the  body  and  ground,  water  atmosphere,  even  between  the  body  and   the  (built  environment),  and  the  lack  of  time  to  re-­‐invent  on  how  those  affect  our   body.  The  ‘breakdown  of  spatial  experience’  in  both  the  perceptual  and  cognitive  is   lost,  disoriented,  alienated,  is  the  feeling  ‘out  of  place’,  and  consequently  unable  to   make  coherent  meaning  of  our  relation  to  our  physical  surroundings-­‐it  is  the  cultural   symptom  of  late  capitalism's  political  and  social  reality  100.  The  impermanent  feeling  of   ephemerality  of  creative  works  has  been  associated  with  the  choice  to  experience   impermanence,  to  experience  nomadism  as  a  practical  decision  in  ones  work  been   wrongly  confused  with  the  forced  instability  caused  by  forced  immigration.         These  concerns  are  at  the  very  heart  of  postmodern  heterotypologies  of  disorientation   –  the  inability  of  oneself  to  map  the  self  in  the  world  of  transitional  capitalism.   Unwillingly  one  is  put  into  disorientation.     Now  –here-­‐  so  many  things  were  mentioned  –  and  gaps  are  left  open-­‐  exactly  because   of  that  un-­‐mapping.  The  challenge  here  is  to  distinguish  between  the  variations  of   transitionality,  ephemerality  and  instability  and  the  variations  of  un-­‐mapping.  That  is,   how  the  first  can  be  practiced  as  freedom  of  will  and  the  other  is  a  political  instability   and  a  political  problem.  In  that  every  citizen  is  required  to  perform  the  stability  of   legitimization  with  identification  cards  and  income  and  the  other  is….     Am  I  walking  through  or  am  I  moved  through  the  architecture  of  space  –  the  physical   structure  (unused)  ?  And  are  people-­‐device  oriented  and  reduced  to  few  experiential   walks  in  front  of  the  computer;  Can  we  see  this  in  another  way?  Or  is  it  again  about   inducing  irresistibility  of  the  goods  of  God101  Capitalism  and  God  bank  account  and   God  car  and  God  travel  outside.       “Qualities  of  permanence,  continuity,  certainty  and  groundedness  (physical  and   otherwise)  are  thought  to  be  artistically  retrograde,  thus  politically  suspect,  in  this   context.  By  contrast,  qualities  of  uncertainty,  instability,  ambiguity  and  impermanence   are  taken  as  desired  attributes  of  a  vanguard,  politically  progressive,  artistic   practice”(ibid)  and  wrongly  accused  for  not  being  able  to  progress  on  continual  local   relationship.  

                                                                                                              100

http://www.google.gr/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=wrong+place+kwon&ie=UTF-­‐8&oe=UTF-­‐ 8&gfe_rd=cr&ei=791pU9TYDIrc8ge-­‐24HICw   101  inspired  by  Toby  Short  from  his  statement  on  mageia  in  the  Guerrilla  Optimist  Newspaper    


73   We  need  to  closely  understand  why  is  it  that  impermanence,  movement  are  not   vanguard  (discourse)  instances  but  are  related  to  conjunction  of  the  body  with  its   material  surrounding  and  the  body  accessing  public  space,  revealing  both  the  dead   ends  of  the  state  power  [by  showing  the  limited  access  and  instability  advertised  by   media]  To  be  out  is  something  unknown,  unstable,  where  anything  can  happen  to  you.   It  reveals  some  kind  of  ‘a  fear  society’  whose  feelings  of  safety  and  well-­‐spent  time  are   tied  to  God  credit  card.  Deluze  and  Guattari  saw  in  the  ‘displacement  of  fixed  bound   place  identity  with  the  fluidity  in  a  migratory  model  producing  multiple  allegiances   and  meanings,  identities  based  on  non  rational  convergences  forged  by  chance   encounters  and  circumstances’  (in  Kwon,  repeated  for  a  3rd  time),  I  have  found  in   those  three  to  manifest  walking  on  the  streets  and  encountering  strainers  and  in   canoeing  to  a  fixed  site.       What  I  am  proposing  is  not  ‘Moving’  beyond  the  inherited  conception  of  site-­‐specific   art  as  a  grounded,  fixed  (even  if  ephemeral)  for  the  forthcoming  of  nomadic  practice,   rather  is  the  interplay  of  the  two,  or  else,  there  is  a  departure  of  the  initially  fixed  site   and  returns  to  it  for  the  site  is  no  longer  where  is  supposed  to  be  but  there  is  the  need   to  refer  back  to  the  site  and  the  grounding  site  is  a  necessary  index  to  the  work.  That   is,  it  is  not  the  work  a  necessary  index  to  the  site  but  is  the  movement  and  the   negotiations  between  the  site  and  the  space  in  which  I  walk    (the  removal  from  the   site)  that  supposes  the  possibility  to  forge  ever-­‐changing  conditions  of  a  work  created   through  the  conversations  on  my  way.  What  brings  the  permanent  by  practicing  the   impermanent  of  that  act  and  the  possibility  that  the  work  is  conditioned  by  human   relations  and  physical  presence.  In  my  view  that  is  a  nomadic  work,  based  on  chances   that  may  or  may  not  have  the  provisional  ability  to  create  local  longstanding   relationships.    

Omonia  Square  at   22:00       Friday,  May  17  

 There  were  at  least  4  other  sleeping  bodies  on  the  stairs  when  we  came.    We  placed   Amalia's  blanket  on  the  ground.  We  felt  the  vibrations  of  the  subway  vent.    I  was  tired   but  I  knew  I  couldn't  sleep.  The  Square  was  alive.  Cars  were  circulating,  sounds  were   coming  from  all  around.    A  massive  group  of  bikers  populated  the  roads  around  the   Square.  We  were  waving  at  them.  They  were  waving  back  at  us  and  smiling.  We   learned  that  they  meet  every  *  at  *  and  then  they  go  around  city's  roads,  trying  to   make  space  for  their  circling  activities.    Spiros  and  Marie-­‐Rose  passed  by  our  square  blanket,  smoothly  approaching  us  with   not  a  real  question  but  a  gesture  of  intent  to  interact.  What's  different  is  that  we  said   we  are  trying  to  dream  and  fly  in  our  dreams  and  Rose  said:  Yeah  I  want  to  get  to   another  place  too.    It  felt  friendly,  honest,  natural  and  beyond  safe  to  have  their  


74 presence.     They  opened  their  hearts  and  shared  their  struggles  with  us.  They  are  both  in  a   program  for  detoxification  and  explained  their  involvement  there.  I  saw  their  intent   for  the  future.  She  told  me  about  a  book:  Love,  Life  and  Hope  had  the  format  of  verses   and  said  everything  that  there  is  to  be  told  about  life!  She  shared  her  fears.  We  talked   about  death.      Spiros  was  helping  her  go  through  that  and  was  himself  going  through  the  program.   She  had  her  purse  filled  with  various  books,  notebooks,  and  more  notebooks.  She   shared  them  openly  with  us.  I  felt  and  understood  everything  else  she  said.  She  said  on   several  occasions  that  she  wanted  to  travel.  In  one  of  her  notebooks  I  saw  her  budget   estimate  to  travel  to  Nafplio,  a  kind  of  dream  she  wrote  in  her  little  book.      I  talked  with  Spiros  for  more  than  an  hour  and  learned  that  you  can  read  about  a   person's  personality  from  his  wrinkles,  specifically  to  find  out  and  see  how  young  his   soul  is;  That  people  are  like  colors,  but  there  are  so  many  colors  that  you  cannot  judge   who  they  really  are.  He  shared  about  'being  himself'  and  'being  stable'.    He  told  me  about  the  changing  nature  of  people,  that  we  are  all  in  transit.    He  told  me   about  presenting  who  you  really  are,  about  his  home,  about  another  2  kinds  of  people:   the  ones  that  make  pictures  with  their  mind  and  the  others  that  act  on  pictures  and   change  the  physical  setting  around  them.  We  talked  about  the  intent  of  people  and   their  Dark  Beast  inside.  He  said  on  several  occasions  how  important  and  what  a   special  person  Marie-­‐Rose  is.  His  eyes  were  honest.      Marie-­‐Rose  and  Amalia  were  talking  at  that  time  next  to  us  about  things  that  filled   their  eyes  with  tears.  It  was  as  if  Rose  was  transitioning  into  a  new  space  in  her   dreams.  Her  tears  that  were  full  of  pain  were  also  vessels  for  her  spiritual  growth  and   a  way  for  claiming  her  future.  Rose  started  drawing.  I  trusted  her.  Her  last  words   were:  'I  want  to  have  that  which  people  are  jealous  of'.   The  Square  calmed  down  slowly  and  we  all  went  our  ways.       I  want  to  thank  Amalia  for  her  all-­‐day  support,  for  caring,  for  helping  me  with  my   luggage,  for  carrying  it  with  me,  for  being  honest,  for  the  rides  around  the  city  with  her   blue  dreamy  vehicle,  for  the  green  beans,  and  for  her  demonstrative  and  tender   sensitivity.  For  seeing  the  good  in  the  bad  I  see.    

  Endnotes     In opposition to previous singular event works, the work of younger artists are seen to advance an altogether different notion of a site as predominantly an 'intertextually' coordinated, multiply-located, discursive field of operation.' This is the reading, for example, of art historian and critic James Meyer, who has coined the term 'functional site' to distinguish recent site-oriented practices discussed in Miwon Kwon.[…]  

Wrapping up everything into a site of sites: Summary of Miwon Kwon Notes on Site Specificity “‘substantive’ notion  of  site,  such  site-­‐specific  work  might  even  assert  a  ‘proper’   relationship  with  its  location,  claiming  an  ‘original  and  fixed  position’  associated  with   what  it  is.     Summary    of  the  whole  document   In  One  Place  After  Another:  notes  on  Site  Specificity  also  featured  in  the  book  site-­‐specific  


75 art  and  locational  identity  Kwon  starts  with  writing  that  site  specificity  is  concerned   with  something  grounded,  subject  to  laws  of  physics  and  is  very  much  engaged  with  the   ide  of  ‘presence’  even  when  the  work  is  materially,  ephemeral,  nomadic,  immobile,  or  is   made  to  be  erased.  Site  specificity  starts  with  the  idea  of  being  tied  to  a  specific  location,   an  actual  tangible  place  or  a  complex  site  composed  of  multiple  elements.  If  modern   abstractionists  made  their  work  places,  transportable  and  nomadic  site  specific  reversed   that  and  was  concerned  with  the  environmental  context  in  which  the  work  was  made.    A   real  place  is  experienced  by  the  body,  which  involves  sensory  immediacy  and  temporal   duration  of  a  site.    This  establishes  an  indivisible  relationship  between  the  site  and  the   work.  The  demand  for  physical  presence  was  seen  as  the  body  resistance  to  institutional   discipline,  market  economy  transportability  and  virtually,  transporting  art  goods  as   exchangeable  commodities.    To  be  ‘specific’  also  meant  to  decode  institutional   conventions  and  their  motivated  operations  trying  to  generate  economic  value  of  their   product.  The  site  falls  into  the  ‘coincidence  with  the  literal  space’,  the  physical  condition   of  a  specific  location  and  the  previous  conceptions  of  the  site.  Many  have  argued  that  the   work  falls  under  the  definitions  of  the  institution  and  the  production,  dissemination  and   communication  of  the  work  become  parts  of  the  site  as  a  critical  intervention.  Going   against  institutional  habits  and  commercialization  site  specific  works  become  extremely   antithetical  and  even  antivisual  to  come  to  be  textual  and  didactic,  expositional  or   performances  bracketed  by  temporal  boundaries.  The  site  specificity  is  moved  to  the  site   of  critical  site:  to  the  site  of  viewing  provoking  the  viewer’s  critical  understanding  and   regarding  the  ideological  conditions  of  viewing.  In  this  case  the  relationship  with  a  site  is   not  based  on  physical  permanence  but  on  the  unfixed  impermanence  experienced  as   ‘fleeing  situation’.  The  dominant  practices  of  site  specificity  however  today  turn  to  more   site-­‐oriented  practices  in  pursuit  for  engagement  with  the  viewer  and  the  real  space  of   the  everyday-­‐  a  critique  on  culture  that  is  inclusive  of  non-­‐art  spaces,  non-­‐art   institutions,  and  non-­‐art  practices.  So  public  sites  are  being  considered  outside  of  the   confines  of  the  physical,  the  institutional  and  the  intellectual  property.  Furthering  these   practices  site-­‐specific  works  occupy  hotels,  supermarkets,  staircases,  metro  stations,   buses  and  the  city.  Within  this  site  –specificity  is  informed  by  a  wide  range  of  disciplines:   anthropology,  sociology,  mechanics,  hydraulics,  urbanism,  political  theory,  even   everyday  cooking).  The  distinguishing  characteristic  if  the  site  specific  work  is  both  the   relationship  of  the  work  to  the  actuality  of  the  location  and  the  social  conditions  in   which  those  happen.  Unlike  previous  conception  of  site  specificity  the  work  is  not   preconceived  but  becomes  generated  in  the  course  of  action.    However  even  in  those   instances  many  works  are  brought  back  to  the  institution  (referred  to  as  the  third  site)   due  to  artists  finding  ways  to  meet  their  work  with  society  in  curatorial  frameworks   where  their  site  specific  artworks  are  residing  and  are  being  made  for.  So  here  we  have   again  a  relationship  to  the  institution  but  a  more  integrative  one.    Many  artists  working   with  site-­‐specific  art  deal  with  variety  of  concepts  revolving  around  that  and  many  find   their  works  anchored  in  the  discursive  site.  They  perceive  cultural  debates,  theoretical   concepts  and  political  problems,  community  or  seasonal  events  as  particular  sites  that     can  house  the  discursive  potential  of  the  awareness  and  the  addressing  of  the  ideologies   needed  to  be  addresses  through  artistic  frameworks.  [Explain  ‘functional  site’,  p.95  is  Site   oriented  practice  functioning  between  sites,  a  mapping  of  institutional  and  discursive   filiations  and  the  bodies  that  move  between  them.  Is  a  site  of  overlaps  of  texts,  images,   videos,  physical  spaces  devoted  to  a  particular  focus’.  A  chain  of  meanings  which  is  to  say   that  the  site  is  structured  around  (inter)textually  rather  than  physical  locations  and  the   sequence  of  events  happens  through  spaces,  that  is,  a  nomadic  narrative  whose  paths  are   articulated  by  the  passage  of  the  artist  that  experiences  transitively  one  thing  after   another.    A  provisional  summary  here  would  be  that  site  specificity  has  transformed  from   grounded  –location  fixed  to  ungrounded-­‐discursive  vector.    We  ‘ve  schematized  here  3   paradigms  of  site  specificity:  phenomenological,  social/institutional  and  discursive.   Those  definitions  overlap  and  simultaneously  are  found  in  various  cultural  practices   even  in  the  work  of  a  single  artist.    In  addition  to  the  discussed  site  oriented  art  which   readily  take  the  social  issues,  more  and  more  artists  engage  with  the  collaborative   participation  of  audience  groups  as  means  to  strengthen  the  possibility  of  art  to   penetrate  actual  sociopolitical  happenstances  and  bring  a  greater  meaning  through   physical  contact  with  people,  rendering  even  social  groups  and  making  ‘the  conceptual  


76 leap  of  the  public  role  of  the  art  and  the  artist’.  The  more  site  specific  and  site  oriented   practices  are  becoming  more  and  more  ‘unhinged’  by  their  location  and  emerges  in   variety  of  complex  issues  related  to  that:  What  is  the  originality  and  the  uniqueness  of   the  work?  What  are  the  artist  authorship  conditions  and  how  he  problematizes  that/or   does  not  with  reader-­‐viewers  and  collaborators?  What  is  the  commodity  status  of  the   anti-­‐commodity,  immaterial,  performance  collaborative  work?  What  site  specificity  once   defied  as  commodification  by  insisting  on  immobility  today  it  uses  nomadism  and  for  the   same  purposes  that  site  specificity  was  bound  to  in  the  first  place:  nontransferable,   resisting  the  movement  of  capitalistic  goods.  In  this  new  view  the  nomadic  has  become  a   fluid  way  to  resist  capital,  power  and  unhinge  site  of  resistance  to  the  ideological   establishment  of  the  capitulation  of  power  and  capitalist  expansion.  Photographic   documentation,  drawings  and  sketches  of  site  specific  works  have  become  the  main  way   to  transport  and  exhibit  the  work  within  the  standard  exhibition  staple  of  the  art   market.  Many  site  specific  works  are  relocated  and  refabricated  because  of  costs  of   transportation,  because  they  were  too  fragile  to  be  moved,  or  because  their  locational   character  required  a  re-­‐siting  of  the  work  on  site.  Relating  back  to  Serra’s  saying  that   there  are  works  that  cannot  be  moved  and  to  move  the  work  is  to  destroy  it  more  and   more  artists  practices  seek  the  possibilities  in  transferability  and  mobilization.  By  the   very  process  of  institutionalization  many  overturn  the  place-­‐  boundeness  principle   through  which  site  specificity  developed  their  critique  of  ahistorical  autonomy  of  the   object.  Site-­‐bound  works  make  transferability  and  mobilization  new  norms  for  site   specific  practices.  Site  specific  has  become  to  mean  ‘  to  be  moved  under  certain   circumstances’.  Decontextualisation  in  the  guise  of  historical  and  re-­‐contextualization’s   are  series  of  normalizing  reversals  in  which  once  again  the  specificity  of  the  site  is   rendered  irrelevant  making  it  easier  for  autonomy  to  be  smuggled  back  into  the  work   and  allows  it  to  gain  back  the  primary  source  of  the  works  meaning.  The  work  is  re-­‐ described  as  a  personal  choice  rather  than  structural  reorganization  of  aesthetic   experience.  The  artist  is  self-­‐serving  the  ambivalence  of  cultural  legitimization.  This   problematizes  the  authorship  of  the  artist  and  its  presence  at  the  point  of  re-­‐production   of  the  work  :  weather  through  his  presence  or  through  an  instruction  or  itinerary   certified  by  the  artist  for  those  that  will  re-­‐install  it  in  its  new  site  specificity  as  ordered   by  the  artist.[Continue  specific  discussions  on  authorship,  presence  and  nomadic  site   specificity]   ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In and Through Space: the situation constructed between two bodies talking Encounters as  sites,  encounters  as  lived  spaces       Today’s  “performance  ”  art  offer  to  “site-­‐specific”  and  has  developed  an   understanding  of  site  beyond  its  location  as  the  place  of  the  work  in  relation  to   spatial  and  ethnographic  practices  and  theories.  The  argument  that  performed   space  can  reside  within  an  ethnographic  perspective  that  includes  the   research  processes  of  fieldwork  as  well  as  the  artist  bringing  ethnographic   material  into  the  artistic  world.  These  understandings  do  not  present  the  sites   in  terms  of  sole  spatiality  but  in  relation  to  the  cultural  and  performative  


77 practices  that  produce  extensions  of  the  physical  space.    Practically,  that  those   sites  happen  when  I  meet  people  on  the  way  while  walking,  or  else,  that  they   happen  in  the  specific  site  location  of  the  conversation  in  question.  I  did  not   approach  the  conversations  as  documentation  for  relational  art-­‐I  did  not  tell   my  self-­‐go  out  walk  and  talk  with  strangers,  come  back  and  record.  Prior  to   assuming  that  a  conversation  is  a  site  I  was  trying  to  incorporate  interactive   strategy  into  my  walks  and  around  the  Island.  Instead  of  trying  to  invite   people  to  come  at  that  specific  location  around  the  Island  I  realized  that  the   interactive  element  is  already  happening  while  I  am  on  the  move,  in  the   elevator,  on  the  street  in  the  water,  in  the  store…   The  reason  for  not  recording  those  with  sound  was  because  I  do  not  encounter   the  conversation  as  a  work  before  a  conversation  occurs.  I  am  not  aware  of   documentation  so  that  I  can  completely  experience  the  site  as  it  happens  in  its   spontaneity  and  doing  it  was  far  more  important.  I  would  record  it  afterwards   with  a  text  story  remnant  of  the  lived  situation.  This  allows  me  re-­‐create  the   encounter  in  a  new  space  and  the  significant  moments  in  relation  to  this   investigation,  as  well  as,  allows  for  the  possibility  that  the  stranger  can  add  to   the  reinvention  of  that  conversation.  Instead  of  having  on  our  hands  a   recording  of  our  conversation,  a  re-­‐writing  of  it  stresses  the  inventive  element   and  care  to  how  we  tell  stories  and  what  kinds  of  stories  we  re-­‐tell.  Such  texts   allow  for  the  re-­‐visit  the  site  of  the  story,  forging  and  adding  post  reflective   thoughts  to  their  broader  context  of  the  complex  cultural  conditions  that   produce  the  sociopolitical  conditions  of  the  locations  in  question.     So,  we  have  the  first,  the  site  of  walking,  the  second  site  –  the  moment  of   encounter,  the  third  site-­‐  the  moment  of  exchange,  the  forth  site  the  textual   recording  of  the  lived  story  and  the  possible  5th  site  -­‐  the  adding  to  and  the  re-­‐ writing  of  that  artist’s  text  by  the  stranger.  Raising  the  stakes  of  the  moment-­‐   of  encounter  and  not  the  text.  What  are  the  needs  for  performance   (experience)  in  question,  taking  into  consideration  the  function/state  and  the   possibilities  consequential  to  participation…   What  do  we  want  it  to  do?    Would  this  be  a  deeper  understanding  of  the   histories  forming  the  changes  of  the  location  in  question,  would  this  be  the   consciousness  that  a  deeper  understanding  has  the  potential  to  participate  in   social  space  created?  The  answer  of  this  cannot  be  answered  solely  by  the   artist  but  one  becomes  a  co-­‐creator  within  the  field  of  the  questions  that  arise   as  important  to  address  at  that  moment  within  the  specific  cultural  conditions   and  personal  reflections  of  the  storyteller  and  the  storytelling.     We  could  have  the  aim  to  ‘reach’  a  state  (site)  as  a  result  of  an  activity.  This   draws  again  to  the  experiential  site  but  a  question  more  to:  the  activity  shared   as  a  site  has  the  potential  to  create  a  community  of  conversations-­‐  these   stories  disrupt  the  alienation  consequential  to  social  isolation  due  to   immigration  and  economic  crisis  forced  displacement.     The  here  site  work  is  not  always  sited  within  the  walking  line  but  it  is  the   displacement  of  the  body  and  the  duration  spent  in  that  displacement.  That  is  -­‐ when  the  site  of  the  work  is  within  the  segments  of  the  body  –  the  experience   of  the  work  becomes  contingent  upon  encounter  with  the  duration  measured   by  the  awareness  of  the  walker’s/writer’s/speaker’s  r  own  duration  and   participation102.103  

                                                                                                              102

where  the  pedestrian  is  in  the  constant  process  of  being  aware  of    


78   However,  self-­‐contradictory,  this  journey  is  important  for  the  unknown  tracks   being  taken.  It  is  not  so  much  important  to  be  explained,  however,  the  more   textualized  the  more  drifting  occurs-­‐  the  more  unstable  and  the  more  loose  its   context  and  relationships  become.  (same  drifting  can  occur  when  thinking).     Paddling  and  walking  for  example  do  that  drifting  as  well  text  does,  however   the  difference  is  that  while  in  action  the  brain  and  the  body  have  a  completely   different  experience  of  drifting  and  multiple  spaces  constituted  of  varied  ideas.   In  that,  while  paddling  what  the  mind  creates  is  drifting  that  re-­‐tells  the  pieces   scattered  over  the  borderlands  and  re-­‐tells  the  same  story  again  in  completely   different  manner.  In  that,  new  relationships  and  new  ways  to  invent  on   drifting  are  created.  There  appears  to  be  a  profound  synchronicity  and   concentration  between  though  and  bodily  parts  and  consciousness  of  the   physical  movement.  

A conclusion that is not a conclusion: […..]  

104

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        her  performance  in  the  city     103  “The  Non-­‐Site’s  ‘mapping’  emerges,  finally,  in  the  restlessness  of  this  relationship;  in  the   possibility  of  the  Non-­‐Site’s  convergence  with  the  ‘Site’,  in  the  implication  of  one  in  the  other,  and  so   in  the  Here,  ‘the  site  is  a  place  where  the  work  should  be  but  isn’t’  (Bear  and  Sharp  1996:  249–50):   the  site  appears  in  the  promise  of  its  occupation  by  the  Non-­‐Site,  where  a  recognition  of  the  site   assumes  the  absence  of  the  work,  yet  the  work  is  a  necessary  index  to  the  site.  Indeed,  the  Non-­‐ Site’s  site-­‐specificity  is  an  effect  of  this  contradiction,  in  which  the  work  and  the  site  threaten  to   occupy,  and  be  defined  in,  the  same  precise  place.”    from  Kaye,  Nick  2000.  Site  Specific  Art:   performance,  place  and  documentation.Routhlege:London  and  N/Y     104     the  means  by  which  city  planning  forces  our  movement  in  a  particular  trajectory,     by  attempting  to  traverse  buildings  vertically.  At  once  a  futile  gesture  and  a  grasping  for  freedom,  it   reveals  the  restrictions  that  are  placed  on  our  freedom  of  movement  by   the  built  environment  and  the  regulation  of  city  planning.          


79 Â

a rabbit hole in Outlandia Â


80    

The City

I  lived  in  rural  Bulgaria,  in  between  a  tiny  village  of  300  people,  and  a  bigger   city,  a  smaller  one,  and  the  capital.  I  lived  there  in  between  long  enough   when  I  came  to  Athens.  When  I  go  back  there  I  see  many  things  as  a   stranger.  When  I  came  to  Athens  I  was  a  stranger  to  the  big  city  lights  but   they  were  a  great  fascination.  The  megalithic  was  making  the  feel  of  the   small  but  at  times  bigger  and  as  if  I  am  flying,  especially  when  I  am  in  a  fast   moving  vehicle  watching  the  lights.  I  would  walk  out  in  the  night  in  Athens,   and  would  just  wonder  on  foot  to  understand  the  neighborhood  and   possibly  to  meet  someone  new.  105    

Back here I  now  have  those  multiple  webs  creating  tiny  maps  of  the  streets  of  those   cities.  The  buildings  look  older,  others  renewed,  some  things  look  very   different  creating  entirely  new  sense  of  the  spaces.  Only  at  certain  spaces  I   can  go  and  feel  somewhat  similar  to  how  I  felt  then.  The  difference  is  that   now  I  give  attention  to  the  public  monuments  created  during  Communism,   as  before  they  were  something  else  to  me.        

Over there Sound.  Sounds.  Athens  is  the  city  of  sounds.  Motorbikes,  buses,  cars,   movement,  people,  lights,  way  to  many  cars  and  lights,  and  ...the  sea.  The   tiny  streets  around  the  center  near  Plaka  offer  exuberant  amount  of  tiny   passageways,  stones,  tiny  bars,  street  musicians  and  hidden  galleries   passages,  all  sorts  of  places  to  eat  and  sit  on  the  street.  One  and  very   distinctive  observation  I  made  is  the  ways  in  which  public  squares  are  built.                                                                                                                           105

‘Cities  have  always  offered  anonymity,  variety,  and  conjunction,  qualities  best  basked  in  by   walking:  one  does  not  have  to  go  into  the  bakery  or  the  fortuneteller'  s,  only  to  know  that  one   might.  A  city  always  contains  more  than  any  inhabitant  can  know,  and  a  great  city  always  makes  the   unknown  and  the  possible  spurs  to  the  imagination.’  Solnit,  Stroller,  572      


81 More  specific  Questions106  

?107        

Sometimes Over here in nowhere The  misconceived  prison  for  the  refugee:  Why  I  will  leave  Greece  but  I   want  to  stay?   By  Rosina  Ivanova  and  other  voices,  ‘translating  myself  by  quoting  all   others’108  and  traveling  tales    

What do  you  think  of  migrants?  Should  they  go  back  ‘home’?  What  do  you  think  about  the  immigrants  and   immigration  in  Greece?  Can  migrants  navigate  through  it?  How  do  you  understand  that  someone  is  not  Greek  if   he  is  not  talking?  How  do  you  separate  the  tourists  from  the  immigrants  so  as  not  to  exercise  ruthless  rudeness   of  explicit  recommendations  about  going  back  to  that  terrible  place  ‘home’.  

Migration  issues  misconceived:  non  people  in  non  space   Their  Outlandia  is  my  outlandia.  I  am  like  a  tourist  and  often  like  a

tourists. When  I  am  here  I  am  not  from  here,  when  I  go  back  there  I   am  not  from  there.  I  am  from  somewhere-­‐someplace  else-­‐  from  here  there   and  an  elsewhere.  For  people  who  have  been  disposed  and  ‘have  been   forced  to  leave  for  uncertain  circumstances’  they  return  to  the  no  land  of   here  called  Xeniland  or  in  its  Greatness  -­‐  Outlandia.  The  roads  of  the   solitary  walker,  a  traveler,  a  xenos,  a  non  tourist,  a  practitioner.  The   process  through  which  people  are  mutilated  by  the  shifting  event  and  are   expelled  from  home  they  learn  to  live  in  insolation,  if  not,  in  multilayers   without  navigation.  Why  is  direction  finding  and  orienteering  so  important?   Refugeeism109  for  example  is  made  by  political  and  economic  conditions   impossible  to  stay  permanent.  That  is  to  make  distinction  between  being                                                                                                                   106

Performance  as  space  and  vice  versa   What  can  geographical  theosries  of  space  performance  theories,  site  specific  and  public  art  add  to   lived  performance?  Specifically  performance  as  lived  space  and  lived  space  of  performance   How  is  space  performed?  How  do  we  perform  and  document  performance  as  lived  space?  How  can   we  investigate  spaces  as  lived  spaces  and  lived  spaces  as  stories?  How  is  walking  a  lived  space?  How   can  we  perform  a  mundane  performance  (lived  performance)  and  keep  its  creative  side?  When  does   performance  becomes  a  relational  work?   When  does  performance  becomes  a  mundane  work  situated  in  life?   how  do  we  perform  a  mundane  work  as  art  and  still  keep  its  creative  inventiveness?     108  Trinh  T.Minh-­‐ha       109  (ibid)  


82 forced  in  this  transitory  state  and  willingly  to  engage  in  it.  Staying   permanent  in  what  kinds  of  dwellings?  The  need  to  ‘settle  down’  is  like   proving  that  one  is  not  needles  homeless  xsenos.  Intensely  connected  to   the  history  and  the  politics  that  have  erupted  to  displace  them  are  further   connected  with  the  local  conditions  of  the  provisional  here  shaped  by  the   brutality,  the  ‘routing’  and  the  ‘direction  plotting’  of  the  nation  state   translated  in  the  vertices  practiced  every  day  in  the  prejudices  of  people.   Almost  Everywhere.  In  the  bus,  in  the  metro,  at  the  market  in  the   supermarket,  at  the  beach,  next  to  the  περιπτερο110,  at  the  bus   stop…Realtimerudnessapproachestechniques.  Migrants  are  burden  to  a   community  centers  to  the  community  of  nothingness.  Who  is  really  the   burden  of  community?    That  is  how  they  inhabit  nonspaces  like  Omonia  or   other  city  squares  not  populated  by  locals  where  you  don’t  have  to  pay.   When  I  say  non  spaces  I  don’t  refer  to  the  expensive  airports  and  train   stations  (like  Auge  did)  where  public  sleeping  is  strictly  prohibited  no   matter  that  your  body  needs  to  sleep  until  the  next  flight.  You  need  to  buy   another  coupon  or  a  room  and  this  way  forced  to  use  the  services  ‘offered’.   If  a  migrant  is  at  the  airport  he  or  she  is  very  different  and  you  can   understand  that  from….     They  are  almost  invisible.  Their  bodies  are  visible  but  their  doings  and   lifestyles  are  rarely  reported,  if  not,  in  the  report  they  are  the  ruthless  once   coming  from  the  outside  taking  up  the  space  and  the  jobs,  creating  dubious   zones  where  the  rules  of  locals  are  replaced  with  something  dirty  or  out  of   the  law.  The  media  represents  them  as  ‘coming  from  the  outside’  taking  up   the  space  and  doing  something  very  scary  to  the  locals.  Those  ‘outsider’  are   all  one  and  they  all  have  those  characteristics  and  do  one  and  the  same   ting-­‐  they  hurt  the  elderly,  the  local,  they,  violate,  they,  ‘break  in’.  They  are   like  different  color  stickers  that  never  stick,  walking  almost  invisible,  only   their  faces  and  their  clothes  separates  them  from  the  rest  of  the  fabric  but   their  lives  becomes  and  stays  at  rest  –  a  mystery  of  walking  practices  from   one  place  to  another  unknown  place.  The  only  creatures  that  walk  long   inter-­‐city  distances  here  are  the  migrants.     Those  who  fail  to  secure  happiness  in  the  adopted  land  also  fail  to   appreciated,  have  no  connection  with  it,  they  are  always  from  some  place   else,  and  they  are  disengaged  and  their  imagined  connection  with  home  is   more  of  an  engaged  business,  or  else  tied  to  a  bank  account  number  that   sends  money  back  home  (golden  eggs111).  The  migrant  is  tempted  to   naturalize  himself  even  if  is  through  an  imagined  better  sometime   imagined  in  the  future  of  here.  The  ksenos  is  named  as  a  separate  category   and  this  a  kind  of  inclusion  happens  because  ‘to  be  classified  makes  you                                                                                                                    

110

[periptero]  from  Greek,  kiosk  

111

performance  for  the  Athens  Photo  Festival,  ‘Kindergarden  Golden  Dawn  (insert  photo  essay   documentation  supporting  materials)  


83 part  of  that  classification’  and  then  is  the  feeling  of  fitting  into  a  non  fitting   category.  ‘Foreigness  is  accepted  when  I  don’t  draw  a  visible  line  between   the  Other  and  myself’.  When  I  go  back  ‘home’  I  feel  estrangement.  There  I   can  draw  a  very  thick  line  of  otherness  and  stumble  upon  it,  almost  unable   to  speak  my  mother  tongue  and  estranging  people  further  when  I  slip  in   English  talking  practices.  I  am  a  stranger  to  this  language,  to  the  Bulgarian   language,  to  Greek  language  also,  but  often  a  sibling  to  all.  112  

                                                                                                               

112

Thrin  T.Min-­‐ha  


84

The Statue of Liberty the ensima in the Azax and Scavengereeism I was  aware  that  this  was  a  dream  but  it  didn’t  make  the  rest  of  the  dream   less  real...  I  was  at  an  interview  for  a  job  and  i  had  to  explain  to  her  why   was  it  that  i  was  working  all  these  years  ILLEGALLY-­‐  because  there  was  no   other  job  available  for  me  and  those  that  were  didn’t  want  to  pay  the   “extra”.  She  was  really  trying  to  understand  me  but  somehow  she  couldn’t.  


85 It  is  a  common  practice  in  Greece  that  immigrants  don’t  get  health   insurance  let  alone  ENSIMA  (payments  from  your  employer  that  cover  your   health  ins.  and  pension)-­‐  they  are  underpaid  that  is  why  they  make  it  to  the   position,  let  alone  is  very  difficult  to  find  a  person  who  cleans  floor  or   washes  plates  and  that  this  person  is  Greek;  is  a  common  practice  that  an   Albanian,  Bulgarian,  Romanian  would  wipe  shit  (not  a  bad  job).  Then  i   watch  public  speakers,  and  even  creative  people  (supposedly  those  have   grown  conceptually  not  to  be  racist)  at  TED  that  say  jokes  ab  how  the   Albanians  take  OUR  jobs  (their  not  ours).  What  jobs  -­‐  i  haven't  seen  a  Greek   person  to  want  to  work  the  job  of  any  immigrant.  Migrants  are  like  the   scavengers...do  the  work  that  nobody  else  wants  to  do;  and  why  is  it  that   those  are  your  jobs,  because  they  happen  on  this  geo  area?  The  problem  is   that  when  you  get  fired  or  let  go  you  don’t  have  any  right  to  pension,   experience  or  unemployment  benefits.  Even  those  that  pay  some  find   other  doors:    Like  my  pregnant  American  friend,  who  when  got  pregnant   was  'let  go'  from  work  so  that  they  don't  pay  maternal  time,  like  my  friend   who  acquired  and  MFA  and  was  let  go  so  that  someone  new  without  and   MFA  would  come  so  that  they  don't  pay  the  extra...its  a  whole  miracle-­‐  a   vehicle  for  doing  things.  I’ve  always  been  sure  that  there  are  some   companies  around  that  protect  their  employees,  but  my  illegal  experience   of  serving,  making  cocktails,  washing  windows  and  taking  care  of    people   'under  the  table'  could  create  expected  questions  because  there  was  no   over  the  table…My  mother  and  myself,  we  would  pay  the  insurance  and   the  ensima  alone  from  the  salary(turn  the  table  upside  down)  but  now  this   is  gone…I  am  performing  this  on  the  stage  and  I  see  the  dissatisfaction  of   the  audience  they  are  about  to  explode  arguing  and  I  know  that  there  are   so  many  other  things  I  want  to  say  on  the  subject  but  somehow  my  mouth   becomes  mute  and  I  cant  talk,  I  cant  explain  to  defend  the  subject  and  I   know  that  this  is  very  important,  I  cant  explain  because  I  get  carried  away   fro  the  hurtful  fallings  that  people  see  this  as  racial  (imagined)  issue  and   not  as  contemporary  problem.  It  reminds  of  the  situation  when  I  was  in  the   bus  someone  stole  my  wallet  and  i  called  the  police  to  check  the  bus  and   the  only  thing  the  people  inside  the  bus  were  interested  in  is  to  scream  for   the  bus  to  start  taking  them  home  and  get  what  they  were  entitled   to….they  started  screaming,  swearing  malaka,  calling  me  Xeni  (from   another  world)  that  cannot  do  this  on  their  land  in  their  THEIR  bus  on   THEIR  land  and  what  am  i  doing  there….so  they  started  the  conversation   among  each  other  in  the  bus  how  we  (the  xeni,  and  I  am  the  representative   of  the  ‘we’  take  their  jobs  and  this  WHY  their  country  is  experiencing   economic  crisis!,  because  we-­‐  the  xeni  took  their  jobs!  and  I  was  the   problem  of  the  entire  country  and  the  reason  for  the  economic  Crisis  once   again  sitting  there,  knowing  that  my  passport/  id  is  in  the  lost  wallet  –  my   ticket  out  )  i  asked  them  what  would  they  do  if  this  happens  to  them:  the   wallet  not  the  immigrant  position…xeni  xenos,  xeni;  Can  this  speak  to  


86 you?113  ;  when  I  stay  at  queues    I  start  hearing  the  word  whispered  around   my  ears  and  eyes  checking  out  my  shoes,  outfit  as  of  i  am  an  alien-­‐  other   kind  (this  cannot  be  proven  easily  disproven  as  some  paranoid  state  on  my   part),so  i  have  to  work  with  "facts",  show  pictures,  document,  buses,   tickets,  bruses  (I  cannot  works  with    feelings  bec  feelings  are  ONLY  self   imposed  feelings  of  my  paranoiac  states  of  non  becoming,  fear,   irrationality,  delusional,  false  accusations  and  phobia  of   ksenophobia);    when  I  call  services  to  fix  something  I  played  for  they  ask  me   where  I  am  from  and  start  explaining  me  not  to  tell  them  how  to  do  their   job  because  I  am  xeni  and  so  I  know  less  and  I  cant  orient  my  self,  I  am  lost   in  my  knowledge  of  how  things  are  done  here  -­‐  not  in  a  Xeni  way  (again  I   am  delusional  and  somehow  disoriented).  (this  hypothesis  is  always   explained  very  well,  thorough  almost  as  art  history  thesis  laid  out  with  no   room  for  comment  on  my  part-­‐  explaining  me  that  I  don’t  have  a  saying  in   the  conversation  becomes  more  important  than  selling  their  product  on  the   phone!;  this  is  the  first  conversation  we  are  having  ‘where  I  am  from’,  when   I  get  a  phone  advertisement  and  I  ask  them  politely  not  to  call  back  again   the  conversation  ab  ‘where  I  am  from’,  explaining  to  me  that  I  don’t  know   the  laws  of  this  country  I  am  xeni  and  that  I  cant  ask  them  not  to   …advertise  at  23:00  in  the  night…when  I  go  to  cut  my  hair…everyone  is   talking  with  everyone,  I  am  xeni,  only  few  start  a  conversation  with  me,  and   the  others  observe  with  disparagement,  these  are  feelings  in  the   atmosphere,  they  are  triggered  by  specific  word  xeni,  something  like  a   stray  dog,  something  that  is  not  in  its  right  place  (I  agree)  and  something   that  is  somehow  less  than  what  they  are,  I  try  not  to  even  give  them  any   attention,  lately  this  has  stopped  to  be  annoying  because  is  kind  of  like  part   of  the  weather,  but  I  ve  notices  that  I  accumulate  around  7  of  those  Xeni   Xenos  Xeni  Xena  experiences  (within  a  week)   I  blow  up  in  the  face  of  the  8th  start  talking  about  human  rights,  politeness,   understanding  and  fare  treatment….talking  to  the  weather,  about  the   weather,  talking  to  the  currents  of  the  climate  all  around  me…a  social  fabric   of  some  sort  and  the  machine  that  was  making  it,  had  some  major   computer  error  and  turned  the  people  to  grow  Xeni  to  themselves,  their   closest  to  human  feeling  of  understanding  was  deteriorated  taken  over  a   virus  and  eaten  down  to  its  very  roots,  and  humans  grew  now  without  that   feeling  of  empathy  for  other  humans.     A  guy  in  front  of  the  bank  (showing  I  know  my  location)  once  told  me:  ‘Why   are  you  so  passionate  about  it.  Calm  down,  siga,  (I  was  calm).  No  matter   what  you  tell  me  and  if  you  meet  me  in  3  months  from  now  I  will  still  be   that  impolite  guy  that  tells  you  these  terrible  things.  You  cannot  do   anything  to  change  my  mind  and  I  can  do  what  ever  is  that  I  want  to  do  and   tell  you!’  Within  the  brushstrokes  of  the  canvas  of  a  setting  for  optimism   and  making  my  personal  practice  as  an  artist  based  and  for  people….for   contact  with  strangers  ...a  motivational  setting  …of  some  sort  for  longing                                                                                                                    

113

Jennifer  Nelson  question  from  her  text  Giving  Birth  in  Crisis.    


87 for  the  Other.     The  Scavengers  knew  that  this  part  of  the  game  they  are  participating  and   they  don’t  really  talk  about  it  because  it  doesn’t  take  them  anywhere,   could  only  create  problem  and  put  some  fire  and  more  pressure  in  the   weather.  How  do  we  scavengereeisms  xeni,  xenos,  xena,  could  talk  about   how  is  this  affecting  us,  or  do  we  continue  to  pretend  that  it  doesn’t   exist,  Et  si  tu  n'existais  pas   J'essaierais  d'inventer  l'amour     Lately  with  the  falling  down  of  an  overall  feeling  of  nationalism  and  pride   those  instances  are  less-­‐  maybe  I  ve  grown  to  be  more  and  more  at  the   “right  places”  on  less  Xeniland;  now  we  are  not  so  much  ‘from  the  outside’   as  much  as  ‘taking  their  jobs’.       This  is  a  general  weather  I  wouldn’t  say  I  am  Xeni  to.  Is  something  I  know   well,  I  feel  and  I  wish  I  could  become  xeni  to  this  feeling……and  I  have   grown  to  do  so.  I  take  and  I  put  forks  on  my  head,  plates,  Azax,  Ariel,  and   other  towels,  clothes  pegs,  water,  nylons  so  that  I  cant  see  what  is   happening  around  me.  I  don’t  want  to  hear  it  see  it  let  alone  experience,  I   will  continue  to  put  forks  on  my  head.       Eat  some  Xeni  Fafla,  waffle,  falafel  and  fly  to  the  Caribbean  or  the   AMERICA-­‐  the  dream  of  the  xenos,  like  I  had  a  dream  to  come  Grekoland   because  for  some  reason  I  was  convinced  is  better-­‐  it  is  way  better   economically  than  Bulgaria  so  all  these  other  things  look  like  tiny  bugs  and   bugs  are  parts  of  biting  you.  It  is  like  doing  a  performance  about  staying  in   a  place  where  kounoupia  bite  you  as  a  performance.  You  start  taking  them   seriously  on  the  6th  bite,  but  who  the  heck  is  actually  going  to  a  place  and   sitting  on  a  chair  and  having  them  bite  her  for  entire  2  hours  without  any   resistance,  let  alone  10  years  of  no  resistance  and  lots  of  forks  on  the  head!   I  am  the  statue  of  Forks  Liberty,  completely  deteriorated  and  blind  to  all   that  bec  i  (the  embodied  problem  WE  xeni,  they!  RIDICULOUS  )  dont   really    have  time  to  look  around..   the  more  the  Azax  the  cleaner  it  becomes,  we(who  is  we)  need  some  other   kind  of  Azax  to  clean  up  all  the  shit,  WHAT  SHIT?      


88

The Rabbitness in the Outlandia

Outlandia is like living on an island, being a rabbit and having all sorts of unknown holes to hop in. When you get in the hole you start falling Down Down Down Down114. In that very moment of falling what the rabbit does is something similar to Alice. The rabbit doesn’t. The rabbit thinks about the possibility of the hole, the potential of falling, the duration of falling and the possibility to get in and imagine all these Other holes around and their relation. It is the archiving of each hole and making its relative connections and possibilities in relation to the other holes. It is the cartography of holes. Here getting out of the hole is not a solution. Getting out is not thought of for a moment. Getting in deeper and deeper and deeper is what counts the rabbitness in the hole. The deeper the jump the more of rabbitness the rabbit possesses. The darker the hole the more of rabbitness the rabbit can experiment with. At times rabbitness is so strong that rabbit jumps in the hole and the jump is the only documentation of this act (and this sentence).     Rabbit  hole  115    

                                                                                                             

114

115

Conversation  with  Jean-­‐Marie  


89

Iceberg in the middle of the sea(project report)

  What looks like an iceberg in the middle of a Aegean sea or maybe a mirage, or a photoshoped reality, is actually an ‘open space’ on the tip of the Rafti Island and beyond (35 kilometers southeast of Athens and on the Aegean Sea side of Attica) I tuned into a site for experimentation and wanderings. The space in question is the island’s skin, the atmosphere, the aquatic life arounding. The island together with and The Elephant Rock, The Love Cave Beach and a hill on top of the beach has a Garden. make up Outlandia. Outlandia is visited by a person who decided that will find all important artistic questions and transformational decisions for experimentation with people in art, and with the self. There. Where? In Outlandia. No people live there (with the exception of two inhabitants on the Lova Cave beach and a few around it which is what makes it even more of a challenge in solitary loitering be tuned into interactive approaches in performance and in life. Ownership There are many reason fro why I went to Outlandia and what I do there with who. But those reasons are not logical and are not subject to principles of validity. They are related to complex histories of pasts, of intention, non intention, spontaneity, of ephemeralities and migration practices… About x, y, z meters beneath in time, it can take up to x, y, z ideas in the air and examine both how I invent performative spaces there (some imagined), want is the nature of these transient spaces and who else does the rabbit become? There are many political edges for I do this. I started collaborating with my adviser Jean Marie in August 2013 and the 1st ‘lead’ we had was that I intend to move a bed and sleep at the beach which turned into concern of how to explore the space. The intention to move the bed was because of the need to… The 2nd important concern was how to re-create the site and think in terms of interactive space but also be my private space, my escape vehicle, my 9 moths planning on escapism and isolation and the possibly upcoming of 1 month of isolation. On my way to the island I found all other obstacles and intriguing paths to take most of which had no destination. Bordering somewhere between private actions complemented through public appearances, involving demonstrations of my manifestos and invisible actions of inter-city walking; I would be pulled back to discussions about Outlandia and more canoedeling. These out in the gallery inter city walks and actions in Outlandia are taken as and reefed to in this text as ‘invisible works’ and ‘moving through


90 spaces’ ‘walks to nowhere’ whose audience is passers by, police, guards, strangers, and my private visitors (people I invite to Outlandia). However, I would not like to keep this division of audience and maker. These ‘invisibilitas’ (are recorded when possible with ‘walking stories’) hoping that I will have more time and energy to involve this audience in the making of the work and incorporating not just their bodies in photography but also their physical input. In a way their conceptual input is what directs directly (or else does not direct because of the amount) the decisions for my work- that is, that, I do not know what will happen even if I want to and that the heart of all that marching’ and streaming’s energy is driven by the creative nature found everywhere in peoples suggestions about directionality and non directionality. This often puts in question the negotiation that occurs between the Self and Other, ‘the idea of getting lost’ ‘going nowhere’, open space under construction’, the problem with legitimization of ‘invisible art’; its negotiation with ‘lived life’ and the very transitions from the work being in constant process of its making to what it means to do a finalizing a piece.

It was important to me ‘not to direct the people’ (which is a kind of direction) into a specific project that is about xyz – i.e. ‘putting the hearer into a certain frame of mind’. So I decided to undergo through that state myself. That is, by talking to people about what is the islands, what could be, what happens, what can happen, why a canoe etc. , I am re-directed constantly because the combination of people’s suggestions and visions of it (including my interpretations) cannot be predetermined in advance, nor there is time to record them. Whatever the narrative created by unknown acquaintances on the road or the visions of the interpreters of this experiment everything is brought into question and multiple relationships are re-discovered. However, there thinking is not to be understood as waiting or not moving. Thought is one of the most flexible materials and is constantly making connections. Whatever the interpretations of the interpreters I always see a political in the canoe, the political in the line, the political in making a hut from plants and the freedom of will, the right to m body, the right to walking, and the right to spontaneity. That is apart from the physical actions, Outlanida is a small spot on the hill on top of the beach looking towards the island and the air above the sea level. With that air I make sculptures. [was moved to spaces, places and sites chapter] These concerns are at the very heart of postmodern heterotypologies of disorientation ‒ the inability of oneself to map the self in the world of transitional capitalism. Unwillingly one is put into disorientation. Now ‒here- so many things were mentioned ‒ and gaps are left openexactly because of that un-mapping. The challenge here is to distinguish between the variations of transitionality, ephemerality and instability and the variations of un-mapping. That is, how the first can be practiced as freedom of will and the other is a political instability and a political problem. In that


91 every citizen is required to perform the stability of legitimization with identification cards and income and the other is . I am walking through or am I moved through the architecture of space ‒ the physical structure (unused) ? And are people-device oriented and reduced to few experiential walks in front of the computer; Can we see this another way? Or is it again about inducing irresistibility of the goods of God116 Capitalism and God bank account and God car and God travel outside. Whereas my 1st year living life was limited to living and writing in a house of 75 square meters in Athens and inviting few visitors to talk with on my couch, in 2013 I moved to a 40 square meters house at the city of Porto Rafti. However, in the latter the square meters of the house are not important anymore because the action, the experimentations are towards the space in between the island and the coast. Those actions are my scams on how to get there, canoeing there and of course my occasional straying to long inter-city walking journeys without destinations (as much as possible whereas many times I was sitting many days in the 40 square meters room and writing about it). In this second year my living life is widened to more continuous writing and the stream writing stories (immobile states) walking, canoeing to the island and living with another human being that supposedly would join me in the inhabiting of the island, or support this endeavor, which is negotiable. His invitation and intention for interaction is what inspired me in the first place. These continuations could change easily and be transformed into something else: into another medium, another focuses, another 7 hours of walking. I did not have the rule go to the island every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. The method was more fluid than that however I did have the rule ‘invite people every Monday’ and... Because of unsettled practical need to connect the two sites (border house and Outlandia) and find ways to invite people to the new site, I undertook a 43 km walking performance (signaling the site and my devotion to get there), inviting people to follow me all the way to the island (absurd way to involve people but exploring the limits of my body, exhaustion and the devotion to do it was at that moment extremely necessary…). This was preceded by 2 weeks of everyday 6 hours intercity walks, and after that continued with walking explorations on the island alone and walking intercity to nowhere. That sentence is the only documentation of those walks but people are welcome to come and walk with me including you. You just need to get down on the Athens Airport, Greece and signal me somehow….start walking towards Porto Rafti and watch out for the cars. It took me troumendous amount of energy to explain to my beloved once (especially after I was detained by the police during the 43 km walk for walking to nowhere) that walking to nowhere in the night is meaninngfull                                                                                                                 116

inspired  by  Toby  Short  from  his  statement  on  mageia  


92 for its meaninglessness and the possibilities it presents and that I have the right to walk in those unknown spaces during the night or at whatever time In the meantime, I had the occasional public performances in collaboration with my self and a group called the Guerrilla Optimists where I had the opportunity to collaborate with people not for a project that was initiated by me but by all of us. […]

Inviting people to Porto Rafti (another intention) would happen in a site of a hill near by the island and the view straight forward of the sole island, a distinctive rock formation and a beach under the hill where I park my canoe vehicle, a space known by the people as Love Cave beach. Within this setting the challenge was to excite people strong enough about the idea of going to the island (intention), or at least share with them my anticipations and reasons for this need as well as the nature of my experimentations so that we could at least start a conversation about artistic practice with people who thought or visited very little art sites ever. This would be done in an everyday setting in which visitors are invited to lunch or dinner with me and my new partner Ivan whose invitation to go to live and recreate my habitus there as an artistic act was what brought me there in the first place. An extreme amount of energy was celebrated to inviting them, to preparing food and spaces for those conversations. Ideally my longings for living and getting to the island would bring a energizing conversations with those with whom I discuss the possibilities of the site and would invigorate imagination, consciousness of the island and the space around it. I had to attend the creative proposals from people on how to bring more celebration into our everyday lives and during our dinner parties, beach walks and would eventually have the potential to develop into getting to the island: physically or conceptually, or would at least start a sceming conversation about such a possibilitie. (another intention) Thought moving and being in transit either from Outlandia to anywhere, or from the coast to the island, or immobile writing….. there was one element that was reoccurring and that I found important to revisit at times. This was the idea of the alien, the stranger, the immigrant, the walker, the illegal crossing, the wanderer and the site. (another intention) In physical setting this would be a reoccurring chain of flowers on my neck , a bell, my two feet and my intentions for interaction. Re-occuring conversations with strangers I met during my walks… As the project progresses the canoe trips to the island became more and more often. (another intention) How is this helping me re-think what kinds of documentation is created for the interactive occasions?


93

Materials- imamterial My entire two years of practicing are entirely made with ideas and interpretations contributed to me by people in a conversation, the objects they give me including all the food I eat and materials I find during my walks. For example, I did not intend to use a canoe but the canoe was a suggestion and lend to me by a person I met on my way. The same for the rabbit ears, the lazarka costume and the shoes and the oranges. They involved a specific exchange. For example I proposed my free help to care for and cut the orange trees. I would carry a basket with me to the island, carry a basket with oranges and bring them to The Guerrilla Optimists group, and invite a group of people to come and harvest some oranges. An ‘oranges party’ followed a walk in the garden, to the top of The Elephant Rock and conversations about the Island. Another example is the lazarka costume lend to me by the Sliven Military club in exchange for a picture of me performing with it.

 

   


94

 

Why am I not leaving Greece From: anonymous   Edited  by  Alexandros  Georgiou,  March  16,  2014   Written  March  15     Why  am  I  not  leaving  Greece:   From:  anonymous     I  am  staying  here  (abroad-­‐  Athens)  and  not  going  anywhere   else  because  I  want  to  avoid  going  through  any  kind  of   immigration  services  again.  In  the  past  (circa  2006)   immigrants  would  go  to  Dimotiki  Astinomia  (police  station)   of  the  area  where  you  have  applied  for  a  temporary  address   and  this  is  where  you  will  submit  your  application  for   immigration  (written  in  Greek).  That  time  I  signed  many   documents  written  in  Greek  –  I  had  no  idea  what  they  were   saying,  nor  what  the  immigration  clerks  were  telling  me.  The   thing  is  that  even  asking  for  an  empty  form  was  made  to   make  you  feel  ‘guilty’  you  are  asking  for  it.   Latter  on  the  process  changed  and  you  would  do  these   applications  straight  in  the  local  police  quarters  of  your   district.  But  when  you  go  to  the  police  they  tell  you  ‘  you  are   not  to  come  here’,  go  to  the  Dimitiki  Astinomia.  When  you   go  to  the  Dimotiki  Astinomia  they  tell  you  ‘you  are  not  to  be   here’  you  must  go  to  the  Police  Building.  So  you  are  to  go   nowhere.  There  was  another  confusion  that  in  order  to   apply  for  a  permit  you  need  to  have  an  address.  In  order  to   have  an  address  you  need  to  have  a  job.  To  have  a  job  you   need  to  have  a  permit-­‐  circular  impossibility.  The  other   confusion  is  bigger-­‐  refugees  coming  without  papers  cannot   stay  (for  they  are  illegal)  and  cannot  leave  (for  they  don’t   have  papers).  Some  of  them  stay  for  6  years  in  this  prison  of   nowhere  without  the  right  to  their  body  and  the  city  (to  


95 walk  in  the  city)  without  a  right  to  employment.  They  are   nowhere  to  go,  nothing  to  do.     In  the  last  years  it  has  been  a  common  practice  that  you  go   to  the  new  center  for  immigration  at  Petrou  Rali.  Petrou  Rali   building  is  one  of  the  ugliest  and  most  scary  institutions  I   have  been  to.  It  has  back  and  front  entrances.  On  the  back   where  is  an  off  road  street  there  is  a  great  wall  made  of   metal  bars  and  chicken  wires.  Someone  from  inside  comes   close  to  the  door  and  screams  something  in  Greek  in  a  very   bad  mood  of  the  day  and  says:  Today  only  40  will  enter.  This   mean  that  when  they  open  the  door  only  40  will  go  in  and   then  from  those  40  there  will  be  the  possibility  to  apply  for   becoming  an  immigrant.  From  this  follows  that  there  is  a   specific  amount  of  bodies-­‐fly  papers  that  are  allowed  per   day.     The  rest  of  the  people,  the  long  cues  of  human  bodies  are   waiting  there  for  days.  Some  of  them  live  in  the  near  by   park,  of  course  police  hikes  constantly  breaks  them  away.   The  ridiculous  thing  is  that  there  are  so  many  real  stories   online  from  those  people,  footage  from  actual  attacks  and   documentaries  of  this  needless  violence  but  the  situation   doesn’t  change.       Every  time  I  was  there,  I  am  in  the  state  of  mind  I  see  only   Pertou  Rali  surrounded  by  police  carrying  machine  guns.  I   hated  that.  Every  time  I  go  there  and  I  see  the  look  on  their   face  I  always  think-­‐  What  is  stopping  this  person  from  just   freaking  out  and  taking  my  life  away  –  just  like  that-­‐  in  a   splash  of  a  second.  Every  time  I  am  to  enter  –  I  need  to   explain  to  them  why  as  if  they  are  protecting  something   against  me  and  the  feeling  is  that  I  am  "breaking  in".  What   are  they  protecting  there  anyways?  The  public  servants?   Why  so  many  guns  and  so  many  police?  Why  all  these   machine  guns  in  and  around  the  immigrations  building  in  the   middle  of  the  city?  When  they  ask  me  things  they  come   close  to  me  with  their  guns,  I  feel  they  emphasize  that  they   are  carrying  this  metal  monster.  I  wonder  do  they  have  a   safety  button  –  I  can’t  think  about  anything  else  but  their   guns.  I  get  dizzy.  I  can’t  explain.  This  makes  me  look  even   more  suspicious  than  they  already  have  assumed.       I  don’t  want  to  go  through  similar  immigration  practices   with  metal  walls  and  people  carrying  guns  right  at  my  face.   No  immigrating  offices  again  please.  No  more  ‘guilty  until   proven  innocent’.    


96

           

However,  not  leaving  is  mainly  about  fear  and  lack  of  energy   (very  optimistic),  but  staying  or  coming  back  would  be  for   the  nature  and  the  feeling  of  the  sunlight  and  the  sea.  Also   staying  in  Greece  would  be  better  because  back  home  in   Bulgaria  there  is  more  corruption  and  more  violence  in  the   streets;  surely  here  I  don't  feel  that  at  any  moment  I  may  be   the  victim  of  a  local  gang,  that  they  can  just  grab  me  and  use   me  as  their  puppet  for  the  night,  which  is  worse  that   machine  guns  as  landscape  view.  And  there  is  surely  less   drugs  here  as  well.     Staying  here  means  being  reminded  at  least  6  times  a  week   that  I  don’t  belong  here  and  I  have  to  go  back  “from  where  I   came”,  that  we  (the  scavengers-­‐  how  I  call  people  working   low  played  -­‐no  ENSIMA  jobs)  take  “their”  jobs  ….   I  stay  here  and  want  to  stay  here,  because  on  my  bumpy   road  I  met  many  local  people  that  helped  me  in  many  ways   and  enjoy  the  spirit  in  the  air  during  the  summer  and  that  air   on  top  of  the  sea  level.  With  that  air  I  can  make  sculptures.          

                                                                                                              i

Miwon Kwon ‘relational specificity’ and Doreen Massey ‘relational spatiality’.

Whereas Miwon Kwon writes: “[ ] addressing the uneven conditions of adjacencies and distances between one thing, one person, one place [space], one thought, one fragment next to another, rather than invoking equivalences via one thing[space] after another (Kwon 1997, p.166) “ This Miwon Kwon writes is a kind of ‘relational specificity’ I trace to Massey’s relational spatiality’ that she names as ‘relational politics’. For Massey space is made through its relations. ‘Space becomes, therefore, the very ground of the political because to think spatially is to engage with its processes of coexistence. In this sense it creates a type of relational spatialities (politics) based on ‘the negotiation of relations, configurations’. So if one follows Kwon the interconnectedness of the possible reconfigurations of one ting [space] next to the other [space] will open up the negotiation of interrelations of spaces (sites) but according to Massey they will also ever discontinue and re-organizes their relatedness through the adding of the new arrivals. The interconnectedness of the possible reconfigurations of one thing[space/site/text] next to the other[space] ever discontinues and re-organizes their relatedness. Temporality is a prerequisite for spatiality or else temporality is taming spatiality and so relationality is an instance and a capture taking instantaneous fixed points of positionality providing provisional instances to unhinge that positionality and perform it as constellation of meanings as openings, entrances to other spaces.

ii

Lefabvre proposed analysis of lived spaces and discusses our ‘right to the city’ within the context that the organization of space is a materialized product within modes of production and labor but is our right to transform the city through our movement in it.as the Marxists followed his line of thought and saw the structure of mobility as producing money, generating a model of production and the labor process. The Frankfurt School and that the consciousness of that reveal the possibilities that synthesis of transformation of space and time.

iii


97                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Caron, Emmanuel and Richaud, Lisa 2014, ‘Behaviour in Open Public Spaces. A Tentative Combination of Spatial Analysis and Interactionism.’ [ONLINE] Available at: < http://www.interdisciplinary.net/critical-issues/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/richaudsppaper.pdf. > [Accessed 15 February 2014].

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In their essay ‘Behavior in Open Public Spaces. A Tentative Combination of Spatial Analysis and Interactionism.’ Emmanuel Caron and Lisa Richaud discuss the ‘understanding of social norms underpinning behaviors in open spaces’. Using the in situ ethnographic research they ‘try to demonstrate how “observing details” can be a relevant method to understand how public space is being constructed and performed .“open public space”, we refer to portions of the built environment which are physically open to anyone and which are not explicitly and/or immediately perceivably devoted to a particular type of activity. They create a revisitation of the site and observe it in terms of people’s movement and changes of their positions at the times of the days to explore how these different definitions of the situation are performed and coexist with one another. The two engage with public spaces and how to study those .’[O]bserving details’ are relevant to how space is being constructed. Though public places and through a spatial analysis they draw patters and discover behavioral and public norms. They discuss notions on public spaces, in situ ethnographic research, and how those evolve. The conceptual construction of place may be too tied to its mono historic image. One can ‘incorporate the culture into the definition of situation’ making evident how the same space can be caught in different social occasions (time). Multiple social realities occur in the same place which makes it impossible to grasp place as a single event. Sitting at a square then as a performative work would be a question of how do we form, think, experience, predefine and re-define the concept of social spaces? For more on spatial theorists, writers on space in social theory see Lefabvre, ‘right to the city’, David Harvey and Edward Soja who worked on the idea that space is the production of the social relationships Harvey connects our right to the city with individual rights and collective power that is inactively neglected and thus we neglect our human rights.

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Solnit, Rebeca 2006. A Field Guide to Getting Lost. Reprint Edition. Penguin Books: London / NY. This book by Rebecca Solnit draws on intimate moments from her journey. It explores inventive ways of thinking and writing about the unknown through the practice of walking, wandering and getting lost in one’s thought. Often, her stream like thought explorations fuse with internal questions, practices of other artists and ways of seeing. She uses long illustrative sentences falling apart as she continuously takes the reader to a new point and looses connection with what was previously talked about. This way of writing about distance and walking makes connections with both physical and conceptual aspects of the physicality surrounding her, giving the reader a journey through her observations. Her book is constant weaving through unknown ways into her mind. Her very distinctive way of writing creates connections between concepts and elements seemingly dispersed and in a first stage of their shaping. Her writing appears unfinished or in process though her book is carefully structured and elaborated. In her book we can capture moments with performance and essays, with sculptures, yet at the same moment permitting a creative human mind at all times to make connections and traveling. I see her work as an allusion being made between creative existence and the inherent inventiveness of wandering/walking minds; as metaphor for duration in art practice and the durability of the artistic mind to question conceptions as the artist-writer breaths and walks into the unknown.

‘The Hymn To Freedom’ action, involved the bringing together of a group of immigrants in an artist studio in the center of Athes from including myself to work with a piano musician on weekly bases -to study and learn the Greek anthem. The idea was that we will learn the Greek anthem and we will sing it in front of the Supreme Court in Athens. For me this act was both finding an attachment to each other and a peculiar protest concerning our belonging to this country in the minds of others but mainly the interaction with the other participants created a sense of community. Jennifer (the initiator of this work) had planned a way to show this at the Kafeneion pop up urbanexhibition space (an alternative gallery space organized by Paul Zografakis which was perfect for this kind of experimentation because it was a real apartment for rent on the level of the side walk he obtained for free and was more of a ‘walk- in&drink a coffee with us’ space). The idea was that walk in and drink coffee would create a space to meet with the local passer by. For the night of the final performance, which was quite peculiar, we (all the participants) shared a very tiny room (almost a box space, somewhere on the back of this place where no one from the people that were in the main exhibition room to see the whole program could not see us) and so we were very close to each other, compressed in this back space for nearly two hours. When I say very close it means that we were all

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98                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           rubbing onto each other and speaking in each others faces and this made us closer than ever before. After staying in this tiny room (at the back in the hidden room of Kafeneion where the rest of the people at Kafeneon cant see us) after the 2 hours we would walk through the main exhibition space where others were performing that night and out to the street facing the Supreme Court. On that sidewalk there we would sing the practiced anthem together- all lined up. My role in this project was as an assistant to Jennifer (this was 7 years ago) and for me it was not so much about the piano or the statement as much it was a blessing because of the tiny community of people from all over the world that formed during the weekly singing. My contribution to the project was very demanding in that I had to communicate with people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Africa and other places to take their statements on why they are here, how they feel here and what is the nature of their belonging here- in Athens. Of course the challenge of that was to initiate a conversation in a language (since we rarely shared one and could not understand what the other is saying as well as the tension that I had to record that and the responsibility that their statements are passing though me and be aware of my biases in this type of communication and not to put something in their statement they didn’t mean) I did not know any of their mother tongues nor they knew English or Greek of Bulgarian but still we could speak. Here are some statements that were produced as a result of these conversations and were then slipped into peoples hands at Kafeneon, to those who were not part of the making of this experiment but saw us singing in the lined up hymn to freedom anthem. I think that the printed statements on the slips were making more sense to their original authors for having and seeing that their voices are present, out in the open and that they count and reveal something that we all kept inside for a very long time because no on ever asked…

Anythinglandia  
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