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schwarz superkurz
schwarz lang
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the chosen ones

“think before you speak” is usually good advice. we therefore book in for a preparatory session with our personal communication and interview trainer in weimar, who initiates us into the dark art of over-the-phone interviews, makes us masters of the subtle cattle prod of vocal modulation and teaches us survival techniques for our open-plan telephone laboratory environment. we then pack our bags full of active listening and invisible smiles, and head for dieschönestadt in the beautyful halle an der saale. though our call centre takes shape in record time, the invisible technology it feeds off proves to be a mercurial and merciless force for the duration of the project. a number of saviours and heroes are called into urgent action as early as the set-up phase, with all patron-like behaviour carefully recorded. despite the challenges faced, the internet connection is just about stable, the headset levels adjusted and solutions to the pitfalls of the art market internalized as the lines open. going against the recommendations of our trainer, we elect to face the grey reality of our office mornings with freshly filled thermos flasks rather than gurgling and neck-relaxation exercises.

only the quiet clearing of throats and the gentle rustle of note paper are to be heard as the voice-over-ip client calls the first numbers of the day. shortly thereafter, however, our voices are woven into an indistinguishable mesh of polite introductions, appointment arranging and enthusiastic questionnaire dramatics. The reaction to our calls is surprisingly positive: the majority of the “people whose sphere of work is linked to the promotion of the arts” contacted express real interest and are keen to give constructive responses to our relatively open questions. the fingers of busy telephonists speed across sheets of paper and keyboards, with some typing techniques leading to tremors across the entire table.

as the called strive to put their thoughts into a useful form or, caught cold by a new question, tread water as they search to find their position, the thoughts they voice flow out of our headphones and often make their way into our sketchbooks. handwritten notes, cryptic symbols and a few spidery doodles not only aid us in the filling out of interview forms, but also create something akin to a lab diary for each quarter of the table. at 5 p.m. on the fifth day, we solemnly, almost reluctantly and, for the first time, punctually bring our telephone ritual to a close. all that remains is circular coffee stains on the white table, pink post-it notes clinging to the cross-shaped workspace partition and a statistical assessment of the three-hundred and twenty numbers called. it is now a question of whether we wish to mould the responses gathered into sober diagrams and bar charts, or whether we should be inspired to create paintings and send them to the called in little pieces, theirs to cherish at a one-off, never-to-be-repeated price of XX.XX.

 

messegelände :: the chosen ones

08.04. bis 30.04.2011 :: exhibition
11.04. bis 15.04.2011 :: performance

dieschönestadt
am steintor 19
06112 halle an der saale

talkin' 'bout an institution

ifat – institute for artificial transformation
institut für wahre kunst
a.o.

28.04.2011 :: 20 uhr
dieschönestadt

 

the chosen ones

a performance as part of the >messegelände< exhibition

:: anna gänßler :: saskia göldner ::
:: elke jänicke  :: lysann németh :: 

it is by no means detrimental for a lady artist to engage in a spot of good, honest moonlighting – particularly as it drags both her and her work back towards reality! living off the smallest crumbs at the lowest edge of the breadline encourages artists to show even more creativity or, to put it another way: emergencies call for invention! anyone who fails to make a living from their art by the age of 35 should probably look for another line of work! an artist with neither marketing talent nor managerial flair has no chance of making it whatsoever – and they deserve it! cut. four artists, at least twice as many life concepts, a never-ending fountain of ideas and no money.

we’re taking our heads out of the sandpit of self-victimization and putting our noses to the grindstone of hard graft. we want to know what the ladies and gents of the patronizing set think about the challenges artists face. altruism is all well and good, but in the stark, not-so-enchanted forest of everyday life it doesn’t really do us much good. dear art lovers, venerable anonymous donors, please pick up the phone and answer at least one question: what do you actually understand a patron to be?

the illusion continues to exist that real artists live on air and love alone. and of course it goes without saying that gold-leafed genius grows on trees. paintings seem to remain the most carefully fostered of artistic creations, but who is picking up telephone art and clasping it to their warm, supportive bosom? we’ve dreamed enough already, and are ready to pick apart this delusion and look for the needle in the haystack.

messegelände :: the chosen ones

08.04. bis 30.04.2011 :: exhibition
11.04. bis 15.04.2011 :: performance

dieschönestadt
am steintor 19
06112 halle an der saale