#BlackoutBasel: Curator's Memoir

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CURATOR'S MEMOIR

BY SHAZEB ARIF S.



THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015: SWISS EDITION

SUPPORTED BY

ASIAN AND SOUTH AMERICAN ARTISTS TRAVEL SUPPORTED BY

FRIENDS OF THE PROJECT


PROGRAM BACKGROUND PRO HELVETIA - SWISS ARTS COUNCIL, THE CULTURAL AGENCY OF SWITZERLAND; AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL, AN ARTS SPACE FUNDED BY THE CITY OF BASEL AND RUN BY SWISS ARTISTS; ATELIER MONDIAL, ONE OF THE PRIME RESIDENCY STUDIOS IN BASEL HAVE JOINED FORCES IN A 4-YEAR (2013-16) PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM TO INVITE ONE FOREIGN CURATOR FROM CHINA (2013), POLAND (2014), INDIA (2015) AND SOUTH AFRICA (2016) TO EXPOSE THEM TO SWISS ARTS AND CULTURE AND PRODUCE A NEW PROJECT IN RESIDENCY. SHAZEB ARIF S., WAS SELECTED AS THE INDIAN CURATOR IN THIS PROGRAM FOR A 5-MONTH RESIDENCY IN BASEL (MAY - SEPT 2015). HIS ARTISTIC PROPOSAL WAS TO PRODUCE THE SWISS EDITION OF THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL, AN ANNUAL EXPERIMENTAL URBAN CELEBRATION THAT HE STARTED IN BOMBAY, INDIA ON DOOMSDAY DATE: 21-12-2012. FOR THE HISTORY OF THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL

www.blackout-festival.com


PROJECT PROPOSAL - #BLACKOUTBASEL A SECRET CELEBRATION THAT REFLECTS THE CITY OF BASEL BY RESEARCHING ITS SUB-CULTURAL FABRIC AND PRESENTING IT AS EXPERIMENTAL EXHIBITIONS AND EXPERIENCES BACK TO THE CITY. WITH AN UNCONVENTIONAL FORMAT OF AN URBAN FESTIVAL WITHIN A MORPHING EXHIBITION, WE AIM TO DEVELOP AN INTERNATIONAL MEETING POINT FOR SOME OF THE FINEST CUTTING-EDGE GLOBAL ARTISTS AND PROJECTS ACROSS DISCIPLINES TO ESTABLISH A UNIQUE, EXPERIENTIAL AND EDUCATIONAL FREEFOR-ALL PUBLIC FESTIVAL FOR BASEL, SWITZERLAND. #BLACKOUTBASEL IS ENVISIONED AS AN EXPERIENTIAL ATMOSPHERE, A LIVE LAB, ENGINEERED BY ARTISTS AND CURATORS TO BUILD A BRIDGE TO THE AUDIENCE LIKE NEVER BEFORE TO CREATE NEW FRIENDSHIPS, GENUINE SHARING AND TRUE INSPIRATION FOR ONE AND ALL. WITH NO BOUNDARIES WHETHER WITH ARTISTIC PRACTICES, SUBJECTS OR CONTEXTS, BLACKOUTBASEL IS A SIMULATION OF LIFE, A COMMON PLACE, A COMMONWEALTH FOR HUMAN EXPERIENCES THAT WE WILL NEVER FORGET.


THE INSIGHT ART IS IN GALLERIES. CULTURE IS IN THE STREETS.

THE INQUIRY WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU SWAP ART AND CULTURE IN THESE SPACES?

THE INTERVENTION AN INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL AT THE INTERSECTION OF CUTTING-EDGE EXPRESSION AND ACTIVE SUB-CULTURE ERASING THE LINE BETWEEN THE GALLERY AND THE PUBLIC SPACE, THE ARTIST AND THE AUDIENCE.


THE CURATORIAL VISION TO BUILD AN INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY OF EXPERIMENTAL ARTISTS AND APPRECIATORS WHO WILL CONTINUE TO ENGAGE, SHARE AND COLLABORATE INTIMATELY WITH EACH OTHER EXPANDING THE ORIGINAL NETWORK, OVER THE YEARS IN BASEL. THE BLACKOUT WILL FUNCTION AS A WHOLESOME CULTURE MACHINE, FUSING EVERYTHING URBAN IN UNCONVENTIONAL FORMATS TO INVENT AND DEVELOP ORIGINAL IDEAS AND UNIQUE EXPERIENCES TO BREAK THE LINE BETWEEN THE ARTIST AND THE AUDIENCE. NEW ON-GOING PROJECTS WILL BE DEVELOPED IN COLLABORATION WITH SWISS ARTISTS, STUDENTS, INSTITUTIONS AND BUSINESSES THAT CAN BE PRESENTED AT #BLACKOUTBASEL.


THE ROADMAP MAY – AUGUST 2015 – BUILD GLOBAL EXPERIMENTAL COMMUNITY IN BASEL RESEARCH SUB-CULTURE IN SWISS SOCIETY WITH BASEL AS THE MUSE OF THE PROJECT. DEVELOP MONTHLY EXPERIMENTAL ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL (BASEL) TO ENGAGE WITH ARTISTS AND AN AUDIENCE TO BUILD CONTEXT AND CONTENT FOR THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL. NETWORK WITH ARTISTS IN EUROPE TO CURATE EXHIBITS AND INSTALLATIONS, PRODUCE PERFORMANCES, CREATE EXPERIMENTS ACROSS DISCIPLINES FOR THE FESTIVAL. BUILD CULTURAL EXCHANGE BY SHOWCASING EXPERIMENTAL INDIAN AND INTERNATIONAL WORKS AND PROJECTS ACROSS ARTISTIC PRACTICES EVERY MONTH. 05 SEPTEMBER 2015 – OPENING OF PUBLIC EXHIBITION OF EXPERIMENTAL WORKS THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION 11,12, 13 SEPTEMBER 2015 – PRIVATE & EXCLUSIVE SECRET CELEBRATION THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015: SWISS EDITION 20 SEPTEMBER 2015 – CLOSING OF THE PUBLIC EXHIBITION POSH AUCTION TURNS FLEA MARKET


#BLACKOUTBASEL: PROJECT FRAMEWORK CONNECTION WITH THE CITY (BASEL) THE CITY OF BASEL AND ITS PEOPLE WILL BE THE MUSE AND THE HOSTS OF THE PROJECT. BLACKOUT WILL COLLABORATE WITH LOCAL PROJECTS TO BUILD RELEVANCE WITH THE CITY. LOCAL ARTISTS, STUDENTS, CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS AND BUSINESSES WILL BE INVOLVED IN BUILDING THE FINAL PROJECT. FOREIGN ARTISTS FROM EUROPE AND THE REST OF THE WORLD WILL BE INVITED THROUGH THE PROJECT TO INFLUENCE AND EXPAND THE CULTURAL CANVAS AND EXCHANGE IN BASEL. THE FINAL PROJECT WILL BE SPREAD ACROSS MULTIPLE VENUES IN THE CITY.


#BLACKOUTBASEL CURATOR’S MEMOIR A PERSONAL ACCOUNT OF THE SERIES OF E V E N T S A N D E X P E R I E N C E S T H AT C U L M I N AT E D I N T H E U N E X P E C T E D #BLACKOUTBASEL EXHIBITION AND FESTIVAL INVOLVING 100+ CROSS-DISCIPLINARY ARTISTS FROM 6 CONTINENTS.


THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 THE CITY / THE SPACE / THE STUDIO


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CITY - BASEL THE BASEL REGION, CULTURALLY EXTENDS INTO GERMAN BADEN-WÜRTTEMBERG AND FRENCH ALSACE, REFLECTS THE HERITAGE OF ITS THREE STATES. BASEL IS AMONG THE MOST IMPORTANT CULTURAL CENTRES OF SWITZERLAND. THE CITY COMPRISES A LARGE NUMBER OF THEATRES AND MANY MUSEUMS, INCLUDING THE MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS, THE WORLD'S OLDEST ART COLLECTION ACCESSIBLE TO THE PUBLIC. BASEL IS ALSO HOME TO THE WORLD’S BIGGEST ART FAIR - ART BASEL, HTTPS://EN.WIKIPEDIA.ORG/WIKI/BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CITY - BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CITY - BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CITY - BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT SPACE

AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL IS AN EXHIBITION SPACE, WHICH PROVIDES A PLATFORM FOR ARTISTS LIVING AND WORKING IN BASEL. WE PRESENT, DISCUSS AND PROMOTE THEIR ARTISTIC PRACTICE BRINGING IT TO PUBLIC ATTENTION. WE CONSIDER THE EXHIBITION SPACE TO BE A MEETING PLACE BETWEEN CONTEMPORARY ART AND THE PUBLIC. THE AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM ALSO APPLIES ITS EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH TO ITS IMPORTANT ROLE WITHIN THE VARIOUS CITYWIDE EXHIBITION PROJECTS SUCH AS MUSEUM NIGHT AND REGIONALE. AN IMPORTANT FEATURE OF THE AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM IS THE PROMOTION OF YOUNG TALENT. THE AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL DISCOVERS AND PRESENTS INNOVATIVE ARTISTIC WORK AND PROVIDES OPPORTUNITIES FOR CURATORS TO DEVELOP IDEAS WITHIN A PROFESSIONAL FRAMEWORK. HOWEVER, WE ARE ALSO KEEN TO PROMOTE AND PRESENT IMPORTANT POSITIONS FROM OLDER GENERATIONS OF ARTISTS. THE AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL WAS FIRST ESTABLISHED BY AN ARTIST INITIATIVE IN 1974 WITHIN THE KASERNE AREA. SINCE THEN IT HAS BEEN RUN BY A CHANGING COALITION OF ARTISTS AND ART MEDIATORS SUCH AS ART-HISTORIANS AND CURATORS. WWW.AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM.CH/ WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM.KLINGENTAL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT SPACE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT SPACE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT SPACE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT SPACE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROJECT HOSTS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE RESIDENCY STUDIO

AT THE END OF 2014, THE INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE PROGRAM IAAB MOVES INTO THE DREISPITZAREAL, A NEW AND EMERGING AREA NEAR THE SBB RAILWAY STATION, WHERE THE ACADEMY OF ART AND DESIGN BASEL, GALLERIES OSLO 8 AND OSLO 10, RADIO X AND THE PROJECT "HELSINKI DREISPITZ" BY ARCHITECTS HERZOG & DE MEURON ARE ALREADY BASED – JOINING FORCES TO CREATE THE ARTS CAMPUS: ON THE FIRST FLOOR OF FREILAGER-PLATZ 10, JUST ABOVE THE HOUSE OF ELECTRONIC ARTS BASEL (HEK), THE NEW AND FULLY EQUIPPED STUDIOS OF ATELIER MONDIAL ARE OPEN FOR IT’S GUEST ARTISTS COMING FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD. NEW LOCATION, NEW NEIGHBOURHOOD, NEW CONTENT (THE PROGRAMME WILL NOW BE OPEN TO VARIOUS ART FORMS SUCH AS VISUAL ARTS, DIGITAL ARTS, DANCE AND LITERATURE FOR THE FIRST TIME) – AND A NEW COLLABORATION AND SPONSORSHIP COMMITMENT FROM THE TRIREGIO AREA WHICH CONSISTS OF ALSACE, SOUTH BADEN, BASELSTADT AND BASELLAND: WITH ALL OF THESE INNOVATIONS WE HAVE BEEN PROMPTED TO PRESENT OUR NEW PROGRAM ON THE DREISPITZ WITH A DIFFERENT NAME AND UNDER A DIFFERENT GUISE. FROM NOVEMBER 2014, WE ARE PLEASED TO PRESENT OURSELVES AS THE URBANE AND INTERNATIONALLY ACCESSIBLE ATELIER MONDIAL – INTERNATIONAL ARTS EXCHANGE PROGRAM BASEL MULHOUSE FREIBURG WWW.AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM.CH/ WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM.KLINGENTAL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE RESIDENCY STUDIO


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE RESIDENCY STUDIO


THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 EVENTS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 1: CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER 12 MAY 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL (BASEL) THE PROJECT BEGAN WITH A CURATOR’S NETWORKING DINNER ORGANISED AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL. OVER 80 ESTEEMED GUESTS FROM THE SWISS CULTURAL FIELD (DIRECTORS, CURATORS AND ARTISTS) WERE IN ATTENDANCE. THE EVENING STARTED WITH INTRODUCTIONS TO THE GUESTS WHO WERE WELCOMED WITH A ‘SHARP INDIAN COCKTAIL’ THAT I MADE. THE OUTER YARD OF THE ARTS SPACE WAS DECORATED WITH INDIAN SARIS AND AN INNOVATIVE STARTER DISH OF SWISS CHEESE CUBES WITH INDIAN LENTILS AT ITS CORE SET THE MOOD FOR THE EVENING. MY PRESENTATION OF PAST WORK AND THE PROPOSED PROJECT IN BASEL, A PERFORMANCE BY SOUTH AFRICAN EXCHANGE ARTIST, THAMI MAJELA AND AN ELABORATE INDO-SWISS DINNER MADE THIS A MELTING POT OF CONVERSATIONS AND THE BEGINNING OF A NEW NETWORK.



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 1: CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 1: CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 1: CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 1: CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE 28-31 MAY 2015, ROME THE FIRST PROMOTION OF #BLACKOUTBASEL OUTSIDE SWITZERLAND WITH A LIVE CINEMA PERFORMANCE, BY INDIA'S LIVE VISUAL BAND, GODGAMUT AT THE PREMIERE MEETING POINT FOR LIVE VIDEO ARTISTS IN THE WORLD - THE 16TH EDITION OF LPM 2015 (LIVE PERFORMERS MEETING), ROME. IN THE PERFORMANCE, GODGAMUT PRODUCED A LIVE FILM TITLED “MELT”, TO THE BACKGROUND SCORE OF BONERINGING BY INDIAN EXPERIMENTAL AUDIO ARTIST, JAMBLU (INDIA). I ALSO PRESENTED THE MUMBAI LANDMARK PROJECT, AN URBAN SPACE REACTIVATION PROJECT AT LPM 2015.



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 02: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE

melt


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 03: THRILLR 1 JUNE 2015, ATELIERHAUS KLINGENTAL AFTER 2 LONG MEETINGS WITH ALL PARTNERS AND SIGNING THE CONTRACT FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL, AN UNWINDING AFTER PARTY WAS UNLEASHED WITH A DANCE KARAOKE EVENT SET TO THE CRAZIEST BOLLYWOOD DANCE MOVES. THE SWISS ON THE FLOOR TO THE BOLLYWOOD 4 X 4!



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 03: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE 1 JUNE 2015, ATELIERHAUS KLINGENTAL AFTER 2 LONG MEETINGS WITH ALL PARTNERS FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL, AN UNWINDING AFTER PARTY WAS UNLEASHED WITH A DANCE KARAOKE EVENING SET TO THE CRAZIEST BOLLYWOOD DANCE MOVES. THE SWISS ON THE FLOOR TO THE BOLLYWOOD 4 X 4!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 03: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE 1 JUNE 2015, ATELIERHAUS KLINGENTAL AFTER 2 LONG MEETINGS WITH ALL PARTNERS FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL, AN UNWINDING AFTER PARTY WAS UNLEASHED WITH A DANCE KARAOKE EVENING SET TO THE CRAZIEST BOLLYWOOD DANCE MOVES. THE SWISS ON THE FLOOR TO THE BOLLYWOOD 4 X 4!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 03: #BLACKOUTBASEL WITH GODGAMUT LIVE


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 04: XPRMNTL INDIA 11 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL SCREENING OF INDIA'S PRIME EXPERIMENTAL FESTIVAL (THE CARNIVAL OF E-CREATIVITY PRESENTED BY THE ACADEMY OF ELECTRONIC ARTS) SCREENING: IDENTITY SONGS OF WAR BY ASHHAR FAROOQUI (INDIA) SCREENING: DUDRO BY DHANYA PILO AND PARIMAL PHADKE (INDIA) AND MUSIC BY LIONEL DENTAN (CH) LIVE DEMONSTRATION OF VIDEO FEEDBACK BY SACHIN PILLAI (INDIA)


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 04: XPRMNTL INDIA


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 04: XPRMNTL INDIA


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 04: XPRMNTL INDIA


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 05: SUNDAY SIESTA SLACK 14 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL AN EASY-GOING GATHERING / GET TOGETHER TO SHARE EVERYTHING THAT IS INDULGENT FROM SUNNY COCKTAILS, YOUR OWN YOUTUBE PLAYLISTS, ORIGINAL BOARD GAMES AND INDIE MUSIC VIDEOS FROM INDIA. ALONGSIDE, TO RELIEVE YOU FROM ALL THE INDULGENCE, WE ALSO HAD THERAPY WITH EXPERIMENTAL RELAXATION TECHNIQUES, BINAURAL BEATS (SOUND THERAPY) AND GROUP MASSAGES!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 05: SUNDAY SIESTA SLACK



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 05: SUNDAY SIESTA SLACK


CURATOR’S MEMOIR ART BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR OUR EVENTS DURING ART BASEL 2015 OUR FLYER FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL JUNE EVENTS - 3 DURING ART BASEL AS OFF SPACE EVENTS. OUR EVENTS MENTIONED IN THE OFFICIAL ART BASEL 2015 GUIDES, AN AD IN THE LISTE 2015 CATALOG, AND PERSONAL INVITES FOR ART BASEL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR ART BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR ART BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR ART BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR INVITES TO ART BASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 06: CURATOR’S OPEN STUDIO 18 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL IMAGINATIONS OF A NEW EXPERIMENTAL COMMUNITY THAT WILL BUILD AN URBAN EXPERIENTIAL FESTIVAL IN SEPTEMBER 2015. AT THE #BLACKOUTBASEL OPEN STUDIO, YOU COULD ACCESS THE VISION, PLANS AND POSSIBILITIES OF THE FESTIVAL AND ADD TO IT AS AN ARTIST, CURATOR OR EVEN AN APPRECIATOR. EXHIBITS INCLUDED A COMPUTER THAT USES HUMANS AS ITS INSTRUMENTS (A PERFORMATIVE INSTALLATION), A PIECE F R O M T H E G L O B A L LY T R AV E L I N G EXHIBITION IN BRIEFCASES - THE SHOW MUST GOES ON, AND SO ON!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 06: CURATOR’S OPEN STUDIO


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 06: CURATOR’S OPEN STUDIO


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 06: CURATOR’S OPEN STUDIO


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 07: INDIAN XPRMNTL FILM PREMIERES 19 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL THE INDIAN FILM INDUSTRY IS WELL KNOWN GLOBALLY AS ONE OF THE BIGGEST PRODUCERS AND MARKETS OF F E AT U R E F I L M S . B U T H O W A R E INDEPENDENT FILM MAKERS APPROACHING MAKING FEATURE LENGTH FILMS AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO REMAIN IN CONTROL OF YOUR EXPRESSION WITHOUT ANY BIG STUDIO AT YOUR BACK. SWITZERLAND PREMIERES OF TWO AWA R D - W I N N I N G I N D I A N F E AT U R E LENGTH FILMS - KSHAY BY KARAN GOUR AND CHITRASUTRAM (THE IMAGE THREADS) BY VIPIN VIJAY.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 07: INDIAN XPRMNTL FILM PREMIERES


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 07: INDIAN XPRMNTL FILM PREMIERES


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 08: #BLACKOUTBASEL V/S REAL NETWORKS 20 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL FIRST CHAPTER OF AN UNIQUE INDOSWISS ARTS COLLECTIVE - REAL NETWORKS. LIVE CONCERT WITH EXPERIMENTAL SOUND, DANCE AND LIVE CINEMA ENSEMBLE FEATURING DA SAZ, POL, MAHADEV COMETO (FROM THE LEGENDARY FRENCH ROCK BAND FROM THE 80S - THE YOUNG GODS), MARGARITA KENNEDY AND SHAZEB ARIF S. AND A SPECIAL DINNER MENU FOR ALL OUR GUESTS!



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 08: #BLACKOUTBASEL V/S REAL NETWORKS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 08: #BLACKOUTBASEL V/S REAL NETWORKS



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 08: #BLACKOUTBASEL V/S REAL NETWORKS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 08: #BLACKOUTBASEL V/S REAL NETWORKS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 09: XPRMNTL PROJECTS AND RESIDENCIES (INDIA) 27 JUNE 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL INDIA IS BRIMMING WITH NEW FESTIVALS, PROJECTS AND CREATIVE COMMUNITY EVENTS WITH MANY POSSIBILITIES FOR ARTISTS, CURATORS AND ENTHUSIASTS. HERE IS YOUR CHANCE TO KNOW ABOUT SOME OF THESE PROJECTS AND MAYBE BECOME A PART OF THEM IN INDIA!

KYTA An experimental residency program in the Himalayas


CURATOR’S MEMOIR INTERVENTION A - PATRIOTIC DADAIST POETRY AND SIGNALS (LIVE FROM NEW DELHI, INDIA) 12 JULY 2015, AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL A HIDDEN LIVE SOUND INSTALLATION STREAMING AUDIO (LOOKING INTO THE RHINE) FROM A PERFORMANCE BY HEMANT SREEKUMAR AND BHAGWATI PRASAD FROM LIVE ROOM, AN ONLINE CONCERT SERIES, PRODUCED BY VINNY BHAGAT FROM SHIVNAKAUN STUDIOS IN NEW DELHI, INDIA.



CURATOR’S MEMOIR INTERVENTION A - PATRIOTIC DADAIST POETRY AND SIGNALS (LIVE FROM NEW DELHI, INDIA)


CURATOR’S MEMOIR INTERVENTION A - PATRIOTIC DADAIST POETRY AND SIGNALS (LIVE FROM NEW DELHI, INDIA)


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX



CURATOR’S MEMOIR EVENT 10: BLACKOUT V/S BLACKBOXX


THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 FLASHBACKS


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS MAY - JULY 2015 IN THE FIRST 3 MONTHS OF THE RESIDENCY, #BLACKOUTBASEL FOUND A LOT OF VISIBILITY AND VITALITY IN SWITZERLAND, INDIA AND PARTS OF EUROPE WITH OVER 150 LIVE CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN ARTISTS AND THE CURATOR FOR THE FINAL PROJECT IN SEPTEMBER 2015. THE FOREMOST REASON, WE MADE A FORMIDABLE NETWORK IN BASEL WAS BECAUSE OF STEPHANIE, MY HOST AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL. SHE WENT OUT OF HER WAY, MORE AS A FRIEND THAN A PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATE, MAKING ME MEET THE MOST WONDERFUL FOLKS AND PROJECTS IN THE CITY. I ATTRIBUTE A LOT OF THESE FLASHBACKS TO HER GENEROSITY AND FRIENDSHIP. IN PARALLEL, I CONTINUED TO RESEARCH SWISS SUB-CULTURE AND I TRAVELLED MORE THAN I HAVE EVER IN MY LIFE, ACROSS SWITZERLAND AND EUROPE, MEETING A LOT OF NEW PEOPLE AND CREATING NEW POSSIBILITIES FOR THE PROJECT.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS A GAME MUCH LIKE WHAT IS PLAYED IN RURAL INDIA WITH GLASS MARBLES, EXCEPT HERE IN SWITZERLAND, THEY PLAY WITH METAL BALLS. INTERESTINGLY, IT’S PLAYED HERE USUALLY BY ELDER MEN.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS LIVING IN THE JEWISH GHETTO IN VENICE.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING THE PREVIEW OF THE VENICE BIENALLE 2015 ON INVITATION FROM NATHALIE SHIN, CHIEF CURATOR, TOTAL MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART (SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA).


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS SCHWINGFEST - A NATIONAL COMPETITION OF SWISS WRESTLING. USUALLY PLAYED BY SWISS FARMERS, EVERY YEAR, THE WINNER RECEIVES A BULL. SIMILAR TO INDIAN WRESTLING - KUSHTI.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING THE OPENING OF ARC RESIDENCY IN ROMAINMOTIER - A 1000 YEAR OLD MONASTERY SITUATED A FEW MILES FROM LAUSSANE.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS MEETING GOSIE VERVLOESSEM (DOMESTIC SCIENCE CLUB) AT THE ARC RESIDENCY (ROMANMOTIER), WHOM I INVITED TO PRODUCE AN EXPERIMENTAL B A C T E R I A / F E R M E N TAT I O N L U N C H AT #BLACKOUTBASEL


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING MY FIRST EVER SQUAT PROJECT OPENING IN BASEL - ATOPIE! SPREAD OVER 2 WEEKS, THE PROJECT BROKE INTO VARIOUS CLOSED SPACES TO EXHIBIT ART AND PERFORMANCES.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING MY FIRST EVER SQUAT PROJECT OPENING IN BASEL - ATOPIE! SPREAD OVER 2 WEEKS, THE PROJECT BROKE INTO VARIOUS CLOSED SPACES TO EXHIBIT ART AND PERFORMANCES.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS THE PRIVILEGE OF BEING INVITED BY LES REINES PROCHAINES, THE LEGENDARY AND REVOLUTIONARY SWISS WOMAN BAND. I WAS INVITED TO LUNCH WITH STEPHANIE AT THEIR STUDIO / RESIDENCE WHERE ALL THE BAND MEMBERS LIVE AND WORK TOGETHER. THEY PERFORMED A COUPLE OF SONGS FOR ME IN THEIR STUDIO, SHOWED ME AROUND THEIR HOME AND OFFERED US A DELICIOUS LUNCH!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS WORK IN PROGRESS BY MIRJAM SPOOLDER AT SALON MONDIAL (EXHIBITION SPACE) ON MY STUDIO FLOOR. SHE WAS IN INDIA AS AN EXCHANGE ARTIST AND THIS PIECE OF FASHION OBJECTS WAS INSPIRED FROM HER INDIAN EXPERIENCES.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS “BLACK MARKET FOR USEFUL AND NON-USEFUL KNOWLEDGE”, AN EVENT AS PART OF WILDERWUCHS FESTIVAL AT KASERNE, BASEL. IN THIS EVENT, WE COULD BUY TOPICS TO DISCUSS WITH THE DIFFERENTLYABLED EXPERTS WHILE THE AUDIENCE COULD TUNE INTO ANY OF THE CONVERSATIONS ON THEIR HEADSET.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS OPENING OF “FUTURE PRESENT” AT SCHAULAGER MUSEUM IN BASEL. ONE OF THE BIGGEST CONTEMPORARY COLLECTIONS I’VE SEEN. SCHAULAGER IS OPEN 6 MONTHS A YEAR AND REFRESHES ITS COLLECTION WITH EVERY OPENING.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS STEPHANIE TURNS 50! HER BIRTHDAY PARTY IN ONE OF HER FAVOURITE CAFES BY THE RAILWAY TRACKS. I COOKED INDIAN TEA (CHAI) FOR 30 GUESTS!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS PERSONAL INVITE TO LISTE FROM PETER BLAUER, DIRECTOR OF LISTE, THE EMERGING ARTISTS FAIR AT ART BASEL. WE FIRST MET AT THE CURATOR’S NETWORK DINNER, WHEN I ARRIVED IN BASEL. VISITING MY FRIEND, SOUTH AFRICAN ARTIST, KHANYISILE MBONGWA AT LISTE 2015.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING THE PREVIEW OF THE “UNLIMITED” SECTION AT ART BASEL 2015 - THE BIGGEST ART FAIR IN THE WORLD!


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS ONE OF MY FAVOURITE EXHIBITIONS “DISARM (MECHANIZED II)” BY PEDRO REYES, IN THE “UNLIMITED SECTION” OF ART BASEL 2015.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS VISITING THE “UNLIMITED” SECTION OF ART BASEL 2015 WITH MY FRIEND AND SWISS DANCE ARTIST, MARGARITA KENNEDY.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS PERFORMING LIVE WITH THE “VISUAL CUBE” ON ANMARI METSA YABI WILI’S BOAT STUDIO IN BASEL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR FLASHBACKS LIVING AS A GUEST AT VILLA ARSON, ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT ART SCHOOLS IN FRANCE ON INVITATION OF SONIA PASTOR. HERE TO MEET HER, JEAN-PIERRE SIMON (DIRECTOR, VILLA ARSON) AND ERIC MANGION (DIRECTOR, CENTER OF CONTEMPORARY ART, VILLA ARSON) TO DISCUSS FUTURE POSSIBILITIES.


THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 THE PREPARATIONS BEGIN


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PREPARATIONS BEGIN AUGUST 2015 A MONTH BEFORE THE FINAL PROJECT, THE POSTERS AND FLIERS WERE OUT. AS CONVERSATIONS WITH POTENTIAL ARTISTS AND PROJECTS WERE STILL DEVELOPING, THE PLANNING AND EXECUTION TOOK OFF SLOWLY TRANSFORMING AN AMBITION INTO REALITY - IT WAS NEVER GOING TO BE EASY. WE WERE LOOKING AT INVITING CLOSE TO 50 ARTISTS TO BE IN ATTENDANCE AND MANY MORE VIA ARTWORKS. AT THIS POINT, WE DID NOT HAVE THE MEANS TO SUPPORT OUR AMBITION. BEING A FREEFOR-ALL FESTIVAL, WE COULD NOT DEPEND ON TICKET SALES. AN EXHIBITION OF EXPERIMENTAL ARTWORKS AND 3 DAYS AND NIGHTS FULL OF LIVE ARTISTIC PROGRAMMING WAS WHAT WE NEEDED TO ACHIEVE. DAYS TO GO: 35 TOTAL PRODUCTION BUDGET: 11,700 CHF PRESSING NEEDS: ARTIST TRAVEL, ACCOMMODATION, FOOD, AND PROJECT BUDGETS.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PLAN OF ACTION SUPPORT ALL INCOMING ARTISTS’ TRAVEL - FOCUS ON BRINGING EXPERIMENTAL INDIAN ARTISTS AND A FEW HANDPICKED FROM OUTSIDE EUROPE. THE MAJORITY OF THE ARTISTS IN ATTENDANCE WOULD BE FROM EUROPE INCLUDING LOCAL SWISS ARTISTS. SUPPORT 1-2 HIGH-IMPACT PROCESS-DRIVEN ARTWORKS TO BE PRODUCED ON SITE WITH A MINIMAL BUDGET. ARTIST-BNB PROJECT INVITING THE PEOPLE OF BASEL TO HOST ARTISTS IN THEIR HOMES TO SUPPORT ACCOMMODATION AND TRUE CULTURAL EXCHANGE.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PLAN OF ACTION PARTNER WITH THE LOCAL FOOD SHARING PROJECT TO SET UP AN ARTIST KITCHEN IN THE BACKYARD OF AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL TO SUPPORT THE FOOD NEEDS. B E G , B O R R O W, S T E A L F O R A U D I O - V I S U A L REQUIREMENTS THAT ARE NOT AVAILABLE AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL. COLLABORATE WITH LOCAL ARTISTS, PROJECTS, BUSINESSES AND INSTITUTIONS TO SHAPE THE EXHIBITION AND FESTIVAL PROGRAMMING, AS NOCOST PARTNERSHIPS.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PLAN OF ACTION GO GUERRILLA TO PROMOTE THE FESTIVAL TARGETING BASEL CITY AND ITS PEOPLE. POSTER-BOMB SOME NON-SWISS CITIES FOR NO PARTICULAR REASON. DON’T CARE ABOUT ONLINE MEDIA. THIS IS ABOUT REAL PEOPLE IN REAL PLACES. BELIEVE IN WORD-OF-MOUTH AND PRAY FOR GOOD WEATHER.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PLAN OF ACTION - PROMOTIONS PROJECTION BOMBING AT KASERNE, BASEL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PLAN OF ACTION - PROMOTIONS POSTER BOMBING IN IBIZA, SPAIN.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PROJECT MOTTO LET’S EAT AND DRINK WELL. AND ALL THE REST WILL BE JUST FINE.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PREPARATIONS BEGIN STRATEGISING THE FINAL PROJECT INTO 5 PHASES SPREAD OVER 2 WEEKS INCLUDING THE MORPHING EXHIBITION OF THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION AND THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE FIRST LIVE ARTWORK - OCCUPIED OBJECTS THE FIRST LIVE ARTWORK FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL GOES UNDER PRODUCTION WITH ARTIST NADINE BALDOW (GERMANY) ARRIVING IN BASEL. HERE SHE IS PICKING THE BASES (A REFRIGERATOR AND A WASHING MACHINE) FOR HER ARTWORKS FROM BASEL’S RECYCLING PLANT, REYMONDIS.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE FIRST LIVE ARTWORK - OCCUPIED OBJECTS NADINE BALDOW STARTS PRODUCTION OF HER ARTWORK AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE FIRST LIVE ARTWORK - OCCUPIED OBJECTS NADINE BALDOW STARTS PRODUCTION OF HER ARTWORK AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CO-CURATOR CO-CURATOR, HAUKE ZIESSLER ARRIVES. HERE WE SEE HIM WITH KITCHEN EQUIPMENT WE BORROWED FROM THE ART BASEL KITCHEN FOR THE #BLACKOUTBASEL BACKSTAGE.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR ARTIST VISITS MY NEIGHBOURS AT ATELIER MONDIAL, THEO KONING (AUSTRALIA), GIL & MOTI (NETHERLANDS), SHELBY STUART (USA) ARRIVE AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR INCOMING ARTWORK THE SPY CALENDAR FROM PHOTOGRAPHER, NOH SUNTAG, COURTESY - NATHALIE SHIN, HEAD CURATOR AT THE TOTAL MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, SEOUL (SOUTH KOREA)


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EXHIBITION SETUP MEETINGS AND PLANNING WITH THE ARTISTS AND THE TEAM FOR THE EXHIBITION AND THE FESTIVAL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR SPREADING THE WORD THE #BLACKOUTBASEL POSTER AT WARTECK.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR PROJECT OUTREACH MEETING BRAZILIAN ARTISTS, FERNANDO VISOCKIS AND ANDRE VICENTINI, IN HELSINKI, FINLAND TO FINISH A WEB PROJECT TOGETHER AND PLAN THEIR PROJECTS FOR #BLACKOUTBASEL.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR EXHIBITION SETUP CO-CURATOR, HAUKE ZIESSLER, AND BLACKOUT CORE MEMBER, OLE ZIESSLER, KEEP THE PLANNING GOING AT AUSSTELLUNGSRAUM KLINGENTAL.


THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 #BLACKOUTBASEL OPENS


#BLACKOUTBASEL: PROPOSED PROJECT FRAMEWORK EXPERIMENTAL EXHIBITIONS AND EXPERIENCES MODELLED AS A HYBRID OF AN EXPERIMENTAL EXHIBITION AND AN URBAN FESTIVAL OF LIVE EXPERIENCES, THE FINAL PROJECT WILL BEGIN WITH THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION - AN INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION OF EXPERIMENTAL ARTWORKS SPANNING VARIOUS DISCIPLINES. THE EXHIBITION WILL CONTINUE TO MORPH OVER 2 WEEKS WITH PROGRESSIVE ARTWORKS TO SUSTAIN A LIVE LAB ENVIRONMENT WITHIN THE EXHIBITION SPACE. THE EXHIBITION SPACE SHOWING THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION WILL BECOME THE MAIN VENUE OF THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015, ALONG WITH MULTIPLE VENUES IN THE CITY OF BASEL. THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015 WILL BE A COLLECTION OF LIVE EXPERIENCES AND INSTALLATIONS RUNNING NON-STOP OVER 3 DAYS AND NIGHTS WITH MULTIPLE VENUES ACROSS BASEL. NEW ARTWORKS WILL BE ADDED DURING THE 3 DAYS AND NIGHTS OF THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL CONTINUING TO CHANGE THE EXHIBITION SPACE AND ITS COMPOSITION OF ARTWORKS. THE CLOSING OF THE PVT BLACKOUT COLLECTION WILL SYMBOLISE THE COMPLETION OF THE EXHIBITION AND OUR COLLECTIVE EXPERIENCES LINKED TO IT.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR BLACKOUTBASEL OPENS A 3-DAY-NIGHT SUB-CULTURE FESTIVAL OF EXPERIMENTAL EXHIBITIONS AND EXPERIENCES ACROSS CULTURAL I N T E R S E C T I O N S O F L I V E A R T, P E R F O R M A N C E , F O O D , FA S H I O N , SCIENCE, RITUALS, FILMS, MUSIC, HUMAN BEHAVIOUR, DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY HOSTED WITHIN A 2-WEEK LONG EXHIBITION CHANGING IN ITS APPEARANCE THROUGH ITS DURATION WITH NEW IMPULSES AND STIMULI. FREE FOR THE AUDIENCE. THIS PROJECT, I ADMIT, BUT ALSO BY ITS VERY DESIGN, COULD HAVE NEVER BE P L A N N E D I N E N T I R E T Y T O R E TA I N POSSIBILITIES OF THE UNEXPECTED AND NURTURE SPONTANEOUS CREATION AND COLLABORATION.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR BLACKOUTBASEL OPENS YOU CAN EXPERIENCE THE EXHIBITION AND THE FESTIVAL IN DETAIL WITH A COLLECTION OF VIDEOS AND A CATALOG ON WWW.BLACKOUT-FESTIVAL.COM THAT ITSELF ARE POST-ARTWORKS OF THE PROJECT WITH CONTRIBUTIONS OF IMAGES AND VIDEOS FROM 10 PARTICIPANTS. IN THE NEXT FEW PAGES, I HAVE MEMORISED SOME OF THE HIGHLIGHTS AND MEMORIES FROM THE FINAL PROJECT.


“REALIZATION”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE OPENING PERFORMANCE: LET’S BURN THE PIANO

“REALIZATION” A LOCAL ARTIST’S DREAM EXPLODES INTO FLAMES IN THE CITY CENTRE TO OPEN THE THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION (EXHIBITION) #BLACKOUTBASEL OPENED WITH “DIE MORBIDE STRECKE”, A 70-MINUTE THEATRICAL MUSIC PERFORMANCE DESIGNED 15 YEARS AGO ON A BROKEN PIANO BY SWISS EXPERIMENTAL ARTIST, ANMARI METSA YABI WILI. THEN, 2 DAYS BEFORE THE PERFORMANCE, THE BASEL THEATRE REVOKED HER PERMISSION TO BURN THE BROKEN PIANO AT THE END OF THE PIECE. FOR 15 YEARS, THE ARTIST SALVAGED THE BROKEN PIANO WAITING FOR THE RIGHT TIME TO PERFORM THIS PIECE WITH WHICH WE OPENED #BLACKOUTBASEL. PERFORMED WITH BASEL THEATRE STALWARTS, TATJANA GAZDIK (SOPRANO), EUNGKWANG LEE (BARITONE), THE ILLUSTRIOUS PIANIST, JURG HENNEBERGER (BROKEN PIANO) AND SWISS ARTIST, ANMARI METSA YABI WILI (DIRECTION AND PERFORMANCE), “DIE MORBIDE STRECKE” WAS THE REALIZATION OF AN EMOTIONAL STORY BETWEEN AN AGING PIANO AND A LOCAL ARTIST’S DREAM LOST IN TIME, BOTH OF WHICH FINALLY FOUND THEIR RESTING FLAMES IN THE CITY CENTRE OF BASEL - KASERNE. REMAINS OF THE BURNT PIANO WERE EXHIBITED WITH A VIDEO OF THE PERFORMANCE AT THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION.


“manifestation”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PVT. BLACKOUT COLLECTION

“MANIFESTATION” 29 ARTWORKS FROM 6 CONTINENTS IN AN OPEN-LAYOUT EXHIBITION FREE OF PRACTICES AND THEMES THE EXHIBITION WAS A MELTING POT OF ARTWORKS BY ARTISTS FROM 6 CONTINENTS WITH SOME PIECES REPRESENTING THE ARTISTS WHO COULD NOT BE PRESENT, WHILE THE REST BEING A MIX OF WORKS MADE TO BE SITE-SPECIFIC, MADE IN THE CITY, OR DEVELOPED LIVE DURING THE EXHIBITION AND FESTIVAL DAYS. WITH NO FIXED THEMES, THE ARTWORKS RANGED FROM A SPY CALENDAR TO A BURNT PIANO, A URANIUM NECKLACE, A TREE WITH MECHANICAL BRANCHES, A MULTIMEDIA INSTALLATION TRACING AUSTRALIAN ANCESTRY BACK TO TICINO IN SWITZERLAND. A SERIES OF FASHION OBJECTS, A PUBLIC SPACE MURAL MADE IN A STREET ART JAM IN A SKATER PARK AND MANY MORE. SOME OF THE LIVE ARTWORKS INCLUDED A FASHION DESIGN - STREET ART COLLABORATION BETWEEN MIRJAM SPOOLDER (NETHERLANDS) AND BENUZ (MEXICO) THAT PRODUCED 7 FASHION OBJECTS DISPLAYED IN THE EXHIBITION, AFTER THEIR LIVE PUBLIC SPACE PERFORMANCE “ORDER - DIS - ORDER” AT THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL.


“symbolism”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE PROPITIATOR

“SYMBOLISM” AN AUSPICIOUS CEREMONY TO INAUGURATE THE FESTIVAL, NOT WITH GUESTS OF HONOURs BUT WITH THE HOPES AND DREAMS OF THE LARGER WORLD IN MY OPENING PRESENTATION, I’D PROPOSED AN URBAN LANDMARK IN BASEL AS ONE OF THE SUB-PROJECTS WITH A CONNECTION TO THE CITY. I TRIED BUT IT DIDN’T HAPPEN IN THE FIRST 4 MONTHS OF MY RESIDENCY. THERE WERE SEVERAL IDEAS BUT PERMISSIONS, COSTS, LOGISTICS WERE JUST NOT WORKING OUT UNTIL MY CONVERSATION WITH J.J. HASTINGS BROKE THROUGH. I’D MET J.J. EARLIER IN 2015 IN GOA, INDIA WHERE I CO-CURATED, THE STORY OF LIGHT FESTIVAL, AS INDIA’S CONTRIBUTION TO THE INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF LIGHT. J.J. HAD SET THE WORLD RECORD THEN FOR THE LARGEST CYANOTYPE DEVELOPED WITH THE PARTICIPANTS OF THE FESTIVAL. WE WERE IN CONVERSATION FOR A FEW MONTHS DELVING ON HOW WE COULD WORK WITH CYANOTYPES CREATED WITH THE PEOPLE OF BASEL. AT THE OPENING, J.J. LAUNCHED “THE PROPITIATOR” INVITING #EPRAYERS ONLINE, AND FROM EXHIBITION VISITORS THAT SHE WOULD DEVELOP AS CYANOTYPE PRAYER FLAGS, LIVE OVER THE FIRST FEW DAYS IN THE EXHIBITION SPACE. SHE WOULD THEN INSTALL A “SHRINE” OF THE PRAYER FLAGS AS A CLANDESTINE LANDMARK IN THE HILLS OF BASEL TO OPEN THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL AT THE BREAK OF DAWN OF IT’S 1ST DAY.


“participation”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE GUESTS

“PARTICIPATION” THE STAMP OF ALL THOSE WHO WERE PRESENT IN THE PROJECT AS ARTISTS OR THE AUDIENCE, BOTH LEFT A COMMON MARK. “#BLACKOUTBASEL IS ENVISIONED AS AN EXPERIENTIAL ATMOSPHERE, A LIVE LAB, ENGINEERED BY ARTISTS AND CURATORS TO BUILD A BRIDGE TO THE AUDIENCE LIKE NEVER BEFORE TO CREATE NEW FRIENDSHIPS, GENUINE SHARING AND TRUE INSPIRATION FOR ONE AND ALL. WITH NO BOUNDARIES WHETHER WITH ARTISTIC PRACTICES, SUBJECTS OR CONTEXTS, BLACKOUTBASEL IS A SIMULATION OF LIFE, A COMMON PLACE, A COMMONWEALTH FOR HUMAN EXPERIENCES THAT WE WILL NEVER FORGET.” MOST OF THE EVENTS DURING THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL WERE PLANNED IN A PARTICIPATORY SETTING WHETHER AT A LARGER SCALE WITH THE CITY IN THE EVENT CALLED SAUCY THAT CHALLENGED LOCAL RESTAURANTS AND CAFES TO SEND IN THEIR BEST SAUCE OR AN INTIMATE COMMUNITY FEAST SUCH AS THE CONTACT IMPRINT DINNER PERFORMANCE. THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL WAS FREE FOR ALL ACROSS ALL VENUES.


“COMMUNITY”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL 2015: SWISS EDITION

“COMMUNITY” 63 ARTISTS IN ATTENDANCE FROM 6 CONTINENTS AND A TOTAL OF 118 MEMBERS DURING THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL WITH 24 LIVE ART EXPERIENCES SPREAD ACROSS 72 HOURS AND 4 VENUES IN THE CITY, THE FESTIVAL WAS A CELEBRATION OF LIFE AND URBAN SOCIETY WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF EXPERIMENTAL SUB-CULTURE.


“CONNECTIONS”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR LIVE ARTWORKS

“CONNECTIONS” EXPERIENCES OF THE FESTIVAL CRISS-CROSSED WITH THE ARTWORKS IN THE EXHIBITION TO MAKE A live SYNERGISTIC LOOP. THERE WERE SEVERAL LIVE CONNECTIONS BETWEEN THE ARTWORKS OF THE EXHIBITION THAT BECAME THE MAIN VENUE OF THE EXPERIENCES PROGRAMMED IN THE BLACKOUT FESTIVAL. THE EXHIBITION SPACE FUNCTIONED AS A LIVE LAB WHERE NEW WORKS WERE BEING DEVELOPED, IN JUXTAPOSITION WITH THE DISPLAYED ARTWORKS. OVER ITS 2-WEEKS, THE EXHIBITION SAW MULTIPLE CHANGES IN ITS COMPOSITION WITH THE ENTRY OF NEW WORKS AND THE DEPARTURE OF SOME OF THE PRIOR WORKS. HOJUN SONG DISPLAYED THE PIECE “DON’T COMPRESS ME (FULL BODY COMPETITION) IN THE EXHIBITION FROM A PRIOR WORK AS AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT HE WAS TO CREATE LIVE DURING THE FESTIVAL. HE CONDUCTED THE WORKSHOP / CONTEST “DON’T COMPRESS ME (HEAD ONLY), AS A PROGRESSION OF HIS RESEARCH AND PRODUCTION PROJECT THAT IS IN SEARCH OF ANTI-COMPRESSION MOVEMENTS. THE RESULTS OF THE COMPETITION WERE THEN DISPLAYED AS A NEW VIDEO WORK IN THE EXHIBITION, AFTER THE FESTIVAL DAYS. SASKIA EDENS AND JEROME KARSENTI BUILT AND PREPARED A NEW ARTWORK IN THE FORM OF A WOODEN TABLE COATED IN CLAY, OVER THE FIRST FEW DAYS OF THE EXHIBITION. DURING THE FESTIVAL, THEY STAGED A LIVE PERFORMANCE PIECE AROUND THE CLAY TABLE WITH PARTICIPATION FROM THE AUDIENCE TO ‘COMPLETE’ THE ARTWORK BY ETCHING MEMORIES OF A DINNER THEY SHARED AROUND IT. THE TABLE WAS RETAINED IN THE EXHIBITION AFTER THE FESTIVAL DAYS.


“RICH EXCHANGE”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR GLOBAL MEETING POINT

“RICH EXCHANGE” THE COMING TOGETHER OF CULTURAL EXCHANGE IN MYRIAD FORMS OUR SUPER-PLANNED SWISS PARTNERS EXPERIENCED THE SUPERCHAOTIC INDIAN ART OF ORGANIZATION WITH THE BLACKOUT CORE TEAM ACROSS PLANNING, BAR AND KITCHEN, SCHEDULING, ACCOUNTS, ACCOMMODATION, TRAVEL, EXHIBITION SET UP AND PACK UP AND FESTIVAL MANAGEMENT ACROSS 4 VENUES IN THE CITY. THE PEOPLE OF BASEL TASTED SOME REAL CULTURAL EXCHANGE BY HOSTING OUR 40+ FOREIGN ARTISTS IN THEIR HOMES AS PART OF OUR ARTIST BNB PROJECT. SEVERAL SPONTANEOUS COLLABORATIONS WERE REALIZED BETWEEN ARTISTS FROM DIFFERENT CULTURES SUCH AS THE FOOD FOR SASKIA EDEN’S AND JEROME KARSENTI’S CONTACT IMPRINT DINNER PERFORMANCE WAS PREPARED BY INDIAN MUSICIAN TRITHA SINHA - A LAVISH SPREAD OF AUTHENTIC BENGALI FOOD THAT WAS OPEN FOR ALL THE ARTISTS AND GUESTS TO SHARE. SEVERAL STYLES OF DOCUMENTATION BLENDED TOGETHER IN THE EXTENSIVE COVERAGE OF THE FESTIVAL AS 32 VIDEOS AND A CATALOG. WORKING WITH CO-CURATOR, HAUKE ZIESSLER (GERMANY) WHO TURNED UP IN FULL FORCE WITH HIS GERMAN FRIENDS AND FAMILY, MADE THE CORE TEAM AN INDO-SWISS-GERMAN UNIT.


“LOCALITIES”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR CONNECTION WITH THE CITY

“LOCALITIES” PERFORMANCES THAT HAVE LEFT BEHIND THEIR TRACES IN THE PUBLIC SPACE THERE WERE 4 PERFORMANCES IN THE PUBLIC SPACE IN BASEL INCLUDING A STREET FASHION SERIES ON A RAINY SATURDAY NIGHT AND THE BURNING OF THE PIANO IN THE KASERNE URBAN YARD. PARVEZ IMAM PRESENTED A SITE-SPECIFIC INSTALLATION OF A VIDEO HE RECORDED AT A FAIR WITH AMUSEMENT RIDES IN KASERNE A YEAR EARLIER. HE PROJECTED THE PIECE, “SOUNDS OF JOY” IN THE SAME PLACE WHERE THE AMUSEMENT RIDE STOOD. A TREE WITH MECHANICALLY-CONTROLLED BRANCHES GREETED PASSERBYS ON THE WALK UP TO THE RHINE BEHIND THE ARTS SPACE.


“made for basel”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR CONNECTION WITH THE CITY

“MADE FOR BASEL” THE CITY AND ITS PEOPLE WERE THE MUSE AND HOSTS OF THE PROJECT VERY FEW RESIDENTS OF THE CITY KNOW ABOUT THE ATTIC IN ATELIERHAUS KLINGENTAL - LOCATED IN KASERNE, IN THE CITY CENTRE, IT IS A HERITAGE ARCHITECTURAL SHOWPIECE, THE DESIGN OF WHICH COULD NOT BE REPEATED. ONLY 7 PEOPLE ARE ALLOWED AT A TIME, IF THEY HAPPEN TO HAVE SOME OFFICIAL WORK IN THIS SPACE THE SIZE OF A LARGE BALLROOM. ONE OF THE ARTWORKS OF THE EXHIBITION WAS SECRETLY INSTALLED HERE ALLOWING ONLY 2 PEOPLE AT A TIME TO EXPERIENCE THIS CLASSIC ATTIC IN THE CITY, THE SOLITARY ARTWORK THAT WAS INSTALLED HERE WAS HOJUN SONG’S “URANIUM NECKLACE” TO HAUNT THE VISITORS WITH THE ECHOING SOUND SAMPLE THAT SAID “DIE”. 3 OF BASEL’S FOREMOST ART VENUES IN THE CITY CENTRE HOSTED SOME OF OUR EVENTS INCLUDING WARTECK - THE VENUE OF LISTE, ART BASEL’S EMERGING ARTIST’S FAIR. THE BLACKOUT CORE TEAM FROM INDIA WAS ALSO GRANTED A SUBSIDISED ACCOMMODATION IN THE LODGE AT WARTECK. THE RESTAURANTS AND CAFES IN THE CITY WERE SENT A CHALLENGE TO TURN IN THEIR BEST SAUCE - WE RECEIVED ENOUGH SAUCES TO LAST A WHOLE DAY OF THE FESTIVAL. WE COLLABORATED WITH LOCAL ARTISTS, STUDENTS, PROJECTS, INSTITUTIONS AND BUSINESSES.


“COMPLETION”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE CLOSING

“COMPLETION” THE CIRCLE OF LIFE AND BLACKOUT COMPLETED ON THE LAST DAY OF THE PROJECT THE PVT BLACKOUT COLLECTION WOULD BE COMPLETE ON ITS LAST DAY AND OVER SEVERAL CHANGES IN THE COMPOSITION OF THE ARTWORKS AND THE SPACE OVER ITS 2 WEEKS, IT WAS TIME TO CLOSE IT DOWN. THE CLOSING OF THE PROJECT BROUGHT THE ARTISTS AND THE AUDIENCE TOGETHER ONE LAST TIME FOR AN INTIMATE WALKTHROUGH OF THE ARTWORKS IN THE CLOSING EVENT - POSH AUCTION TURNS FLEA MARKET SOME OF THE ARTISTS PERSONALLY AUCTIONED THEIR WORKS WHILE SOME OF THE PIECES WERE SOLD IN THE FLEA MARKET - THE LAST STATEMENT OF THE FESTIVAL ALLOWING THE PEOPLE TO MAKE A CHOICE, BASED ON WHAT THEY LOVED AND CONNECTED WITH RATHER THAN BEING INFLUENCED BY ART MARKETS.


“CONTINUITY”


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE FUTURE

“CONTINUITY” BECAUSE THE SHOW MUST GO ON AND ON AND ON… THE BLACKOUT CORE MEMBERS WENT ON A ROAD TRIP INTO ITALY, VISITING THE VENICE BIENNIAL AND OTHER HISTORIC SITES, WHILE CONTINUING TO EXPLORE WHAT IT MEANS TO LIVE, WORK, SHARE, DREAM INTO THE FUTURE, TOGETHER. ALONG THE WAY, PROJECTION BOMBINGS WERE UNLEASHED ON CHURCHES AND OTHER SITES IN ITALY AS TAKING BACK THE FESTIVAL FROM BASEL AND KEEPING IT ALIVE. THE BLACKOUT CORE’S UNEXPECTED TRYST WITH SWITZERLAND ENDED WITH ITS MOST POWERFUL SYMBOL OF BEAUTY - THE ALPS - THROUGH WHICH WE DROVE INTO SWITZERLAND FROM THE ALPINE PASS ON A SUNKISSED MORNING.


CURATOR’S MEMOIR THE LAST WORD CURATOR’S CLOSING NOTE BY SHAZEB ARIF S. A SUMMARY OF THIS MEMOIR IS AVAILABLE IN MY CLOSING NOTE AUTHORED FOR THE #BLACKOUTBASEL CATALOG.




ERASING THE LINE BETWEEN THE ARTIST AND THE AUDIENCE THE GALLERY AND THE PUBLIC SPACE WWW.BLACKOUT-FESTIVAL.COM