February 27 | 16.00
Golden Gate questions our normative perceptions of loss and mourning. What is queer grief and in what way can it become a collective movement of melancholy and resistance? Drawing from vanitas, baroque aesthetics around transience and death, the work attempts to make space for gestures, voices and the erotics of mourning needed in today´s pandemic reality. For a long time now, collective mourning and its rituals have been disappearing from public space, making loss a private experience of each individual. In addition, as history, eg. the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s, has shown us, some deaths are more worthy of grief than others. Given the lack of representation of death in epidemics, pandemics and suicide, Golden Gate attempts to create space for assisting loss in a queer utopia. If in earlier genres, such as Ars Moriendi, the function of art was to educate about death, what rituals can we imagine today to collectively process the experience of grief? The performers Ania Nowak and Frédéric Gies create a queer representation of companionship through losing and letting go. They rehearse each other’s deaths and use this morbid play not only to confront systems of injury aimed at queer and other minorities in the past and today, but mainly to develop new tactics of care and repair.
Ania Nowak’s expanded choreographic practice approaches vulnerability and desire as ways towards reimagining what bodies and language can do. She develops formats such as live and video performance, performative exhibition and text. Nowak’s overall inquiry is into the political dimension of body material and its immaterial aspects -affects, feelings and intuition- to think of new, embodied practices of care and companionship. She is especially interested in the latter when taking into account the unstable, transnational character of our lives and work in the Western world today; experiences of sexuality and sickness, as well as, ethics of pleasure in times of climate and political urgency. Nowak’s works have been presented at HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Berlinische Galerie and Sophiensaele in Berlin; Nowy Teatr, Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art in Warsaw; La Casa Encendida in Madrid, BWA Wrocław, the Baltic Triennial at CAC Vilnius and M HKA Antwerp a.o. In 2021 she is Artist-in Residence at Ankara Queer Art in Turkey and Q21 MuseumsQuartier in Vienna. Nowak lives and works in Berlin. www.anianowakanianowak.com
IDEA, TEXT, CHOREOGRAPHY, PERFORMANCE Ania Nowak CHOREOGRAPHY, PERFORMANCE Frédéric Gies SCULPTURES Pakui Hardware PRODUCTION OF SCULPTURES Atelier Gamil SOUND DESIGN Justyna Stasiowska LIGHT DESIGN Aleksandr Prowaliński COSTUMES Grzegorz Matląg/Wsiura PRODUCTION Micaela Kühn Jara, Magda Garlinska DRAMATURGY Siegmar Zacharias VIDEO Janne Ebel
A production by Ania Nowak in co-production with SOPHIENSÆLE. Funded by Hauptstadtkulturfonds, with the support of Q21 MuseumsQuartier, Contemporary Art Centre Vilnius and Milvus Artistic Research Center.