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OPEN CALL : Performance Biennial / 23 JUNE – 4 JULY 2016 ATHENS & CYTHERA ISLAND

Performance Biennial, first edition: No Future”
23 June to 4 July 2016 Athens & Cythera Island
A Self-Organised Biennial on Performance, Art and Politics. 

The first edition of the Performance Biennial will take place on 23 June to 4 July in Greece. Emerging from DIY self-organised cultural practices, that appeared during these years in Athens, in a present without a future, this event seeks to critically interrogate the role of performance, historically and in the present, in relation to political and social imaginaries. Playfully subverting the term ‘biennial’ into a self-organised practice, the event tests self-instituted forms of culture and politics in the current neoliberal landscape. Under the title No Future” this guerrilla biennial will bring together forms of artistic, political and theoretical discourse questioning the potential of a collective refusal to a referred futurity. The Performance Biennial in its first iteration will begin in the occupied cultural space of Green Park, Athens, open out to embrace the park of Pedion tou Areos (transl. to Field of Mars - one of two central parks in Athens), and then depart via boat from Piraeus to the island of Cythera that geographically belongs to the Prefecture of Athens. Seeking to problematise the role of performance in the neoliberal narrative we will collectively engage in ongoing disruptions between the institution and the self-instituted, between buildings and parks, between the centre and the periphery, between urban and rural. The event will bring together both conventional and non-conventional investigations including: performances, talks, lecture-performances, workshops, discussions, interventions, city walks, community works, simple acts and screenings.


The notion and the myth of the future appears central in the 20th century, rooted in the normative regulatory culture and the capitalist imaginary that embraces ongoing expansion and development often mixed with ideas of utopia. The operation of “debt” also implies a bet in the future as Lazzarato argues by training the governed to promise” (to honour their debt) capitalism exercises control over future" ... possessing the future in advance by objectifying it’ (2012: 46). What happens to political and cultural practice when it loses faith on the future”? When the relation to the future appears fugitive? When continuity of the canonical is disrupted and the promised futurity cannot be yet imagined? Can this ruptured futurity offer us new possibilities to engage with present and produce new relations with time? A series of paradigm shift in the modes of practicing, and of taking part in the political and cultural will be examined in order to critically interrogate the potential for radical experiments in cultural production within the current landscapes of neoliberal institutional dominance.

Building on DIY practices of cultural production such as the reactivation of Embros theatre and Green Park in Athens, this inaugural Performance Biennial will operate through a practice of self-curating” as assembling. Resisting hierarchies and categorisations the programme consists of timezones of conflictual fields” and practices that will be co-curated with the participants in a changing here and now. We invite proposals for performances, talks, interventions, workshops, walks, media performances, discussions, social events to take place in the occupied space, in the city, in the park, on the boat, on the island. We are open to short statements (10 mins) as well as durational works; to draft projects, in process as well as complete outcome/works. 

Please send as a proposal (300 words max) until 23 May 2016 at performancebiennial@gmail.com

This is a self-organised event and has zero budget. We regret to say that we will be unable to provide any fees or cover expenses. However, we will provide accommodation if needed through a network of friends houses and technical support.

All activities of the event will be open and free of charge to the public. 

More information: www.performancebiennial.org

This event is initiated by Gigi Argyropoulou, Vassilis Noulas, Kostas Tzimoulis
and organized in collaboration with Hypatia Vourloumis, Sofia Dona, Eleni Kalara, Emi Kitsali, Elina Mandidi, Elisaveth Xanthopoulou, Myrto Xanthopoulou and an evolving collective of friends.