The Vision Forum workshop in Zürich took place in the end of November 2008. Like all Vision Forum projects, the project pushed the boundaries of artistic genres. Artists, curators and other cultural practitioners from Stockholm, Paris, Rome and Amsterdam joined forces and engaged in a form of speed-curating where video work was projected and shown in other forms in the most unexpected places in the public space.
Lillian Fellmann (Director Kunshalle Luzern - http://www.kunsthalleluzern.ch/), Andrea Jordi, Siri Peyer, Susanne Sauter (Curators/Organisers White Space - http://www.whitespace.ch/) and Christoph Lang (Artist/curator Value - http://www.value-konzepte.ch/) conceived and hosted the project.
Day 1: In order to become familiar with the city of Zürich the participants in the workshop were taken to a wide range locations. Most were related to contemporary culture. But once the speed-curation got underway the work was mostly shown in non-art venues. Some work was shown in Kurdish bars while others were danced in shopping malls. Here, Christoph Lang is talking calmy about the different independent art spaces in Zürich and getting preparing the group for curatorial madness.
Manuela Schlumpf, curator at Perla Moda talks about the activities at this independent art space in the heart of Zürich’s red light district. It was one of the many art spaces we visited during the first evening of the workshop.
In the gallery space at Perla Mode the visitors was met by collaborative work that also remained in constant change – what could be a better exhibition for a Vision Forum workshop?
Two real visionaries in Zürich, Sabina Hagman and Georgette Maag talk with great enthusiasm about their project. They are informing the group about their "hijacked" house. The modernist building in central Zürich was abandoned a few years ago, they are planning to take over and transform into a home for culture, art space and studios with the name Kunsthaus Aussersihl. They showed the group a book full with art projects they have carried out to convince the city that the art house is a good idea. Sabina and Georgette’s warmth and their splendid ideas kept us warm in the cold Swiss night.
Susanne Sauter, curator at Whitespace, and one of the hosts for the workshop presenting the space and their activities, program and how they envisage the future for art and their space.
Day 2: All the participants were divided into groups of 3 or 4. Each group went through the videos that had been collected from all over Europe to create the foundation for the video walk and/or speed-curation performance(???!!!). Here we see Natasha Rosling and Juan Pedro Fabra preparing for the days events.
Antonio Venti, Sachi Miyachi and Per Hüttner are planning their own video performance where showed video work to the public in a performative fashion in shopping malls, train stations and in the streets of Zürich. Once that was done, they presented a risqué and wonderful video documentation from the performance to the group.
Jean Pedro Fabra feared the Swiss winter and had brought his 2in1 jacket. It is a really warm and cosy jacket but proved to be excellent as a projection screen for Lotje van Lieshout’s video were the artist is dressed up as a sailor. The work was screened in a busy cinema bar Aussersihl. When the sailor took off her top the cinema loving customers in the bar’s attention peeked.
Adrienne Drake from 1:1 Projects in Rome enjoys a walk on the broken glass that formed the installation at AC_Kupper modern, a gallery and neighbour of White Space. The gallery’s director gave a much appreciated introduction to the work and the installation.
Day 3: Sunday brunch at the Perla-Mode. Reflecting on the workshop and discussing yesterday's video walk. The dialogue focused on the role of art, curation and subversive activities. The difference in language, approach and philosophy between artists and curators has never been clearer. Again, Vision Forum proved that friction and failure can be the key to more profound knowledge of the world.