press release


Friday, January 18, 5–8pm

Opening event in the series of SEX Discussions
Featuring presentations by Eva Laquièze-Waniek and Elisabeth von Samsonow and a performance by Liad Hussein Kantorowicz


SEX DISCUSSIONS is a series of events to be presented at the TAXISPALAIS as outgrowths of the exhibition SEX over the course of the year. The questions to be addressed relate to:

SEX & ONTOLOGY: Sex is not only the longed-for place of an intimacy that provides the subject with the promised experience of ecstasy; it is also the vertically constructed axis around which everything revolves – the ego and the non-ego. Sex is therefore not about being, but rather in being, which it expresses completely, namely in contradiction. The contradiction that is inherent in sex between knowledge (as sublimation?) and sex itself also points to their relationship of similarity. What is unique about speech/knowledge when it refers to another unique quality, namely that of sex? Sex appears as the central dispositive of power in our pharmacopornographic century. How should a joker be played in the game of molecular dynamics? What conspiracy of post-natural contaminations permits us to conquer a subversive practice of pleasure?

SEX & ECONOMICS: The question of energy leads directly to the economics of sex. Who has how much energy, and for what is it expended? Is our world post-orgiastic or indeed even anti-orgiastic? What remains of nature in sex would be its embedding in a “transpersonal” fluid that expresses itself in the desire to discharge. Does the fact that sex can be work mean that the paradox of sex involves not only the I-you problem and the idea of subject and object, but also gives rise to a third agent – a third agent that establishes a relationship between singularity, duality and plurality? How do revolutionary gestures of autonomy relate as collective political practices to sex? What contradiction does sex work force us to consider? How do sexual economies relate to the figure of colonialism?

ORGASM & AFFECT: Sex links all of the possibilities for sensual experience between distance and distancelessness, or fusion. The primacy of the eye, the visual paradigm, is overcome by our senses of smell, touch, taste and hearing. The secondary senses triumph. The orgasm-capable whole appears to regenerate itself at the zero point of the “organless body.” Is the ability to experience orgasm in itself a factor that keeps a being that is capable of orgasm in a lustful state of being? How are we to understand the relationship between affect and orgasm? Are they mutually dependent, are they similar or do they function differently? What mechanisms of discharge characterize them, and what kinds of discharge belong to the category of orgasms?

Conceived by Elisabeth von Samsonow and Nina Tabassomi in collaboration with Andreas Oberprantacher and Kordula Schnegg from the University of Innsbruck

THE OPENING EVENT, Friday, January 18, 5–8pm

Lecture by the philosopher EVA LAQUIÈZE-WANIEK
Das Sexuale: Zwischen Lust, Verlust und Sublimierung (in German)
Starting from the question of whether sex is a function of the subject or vice-versa, our attention will be focused (in accordance with Lacan and Freud) on the structural preconditions of sexualization. This should help us to expose the connection between pleasure and loss of the subject in relation to the other and to society, and enable us not least of all to visualize the possibilities for sublimation.

Lecture by the philosopher and artist ELISABETH VON SAMSONOW
Das Ende der Spaltung? Sex als Erkenntnisform (in German)
In a broad survey of cultural history, the speaker explores the question of the extent to which sex can become a source of spiritual knowledge. Based on Zsuzsanna Budapest’s Convent of Witches founded in the 1970s and her study of sex with reference to the divinity of the female body, Elisabeth von Samsonow seeks to identify a form of the radical abolition of separation, alienation and passivation that can be transported from this action into the present.

Performance by the performance artist and activist LIAD HUSSEIN KANTOROWICZ - Pussy
(in English)
This performance is not just about pussy. But it’s all about pussy.
Can we use our pussies as a tool to defy the current world order? It’s 2019, and pussy is still a central site of discrimination against women. This performance asks whether we should centralize our pussies and utilize them to form a resistance? Or should we perhaps de-centralize our pussies in resistance, in the hope that this de-centralization will decrease the level through which we’re essentialized as women? Inspired by Carolee Schneemann’s “Interior Scroll” and by Thai ping pong shows, the presentation mashes up lecture-performance-style texts with a very naked body, choreography, lipstick, live music, serving in drag, and of course – pussy. During the performance, Liad Hussein Kantorowicz will be premiering two new songs in Austria on which she worked with her musical partner Hanno Stecher aka Kalpour.

The next scheduled events:

Friday, January 25, 5pm: artist talk and lecture Ashley Hans Scheirl and Em Schwarzwald

Tuesday, February 12, 6.30pm: lecture Marie-Luise Angerer



October 5, 2018–January 27, 2019

Performance: October 9, 7pm, Mastur Bar with Fabiana Faleiros
Artist talk: November 9, 5pm, Sarah Decristoforo in conversation with Nina Tabassomi

Sarah Decristoforo, Fabiana Faleiros, Alex Martinis Roe, Elisabeth von Samsonow, Ashley Hans Scheirl

Sex coincides with our being. The sex act is regarded as intimate, but causes the public sphere to culminate in personal space at the same time—as a singular expression and actualization of politics, as communication, as an arena of pleasure and fantasy, reproduction and violence.

Just like sex, art is also paradoxical; both act within contradictions, in in-between-zones and opposites. They are accomplices of knowledge and at once producers of a sensual surplus that is resistant to the categories of knowledge.

Does the alliance of art and sex allow us to re-weave the customary infrastructures of excitement, withdrawal, pleasure and its discharge? Can we fantasize a grammar of future sex in which the aggression of pleasure does not serve to consolidate power relationships?

The works by Sarah Decristoforo, Fabiana Faleiros, Alex Martinis Roe, Elisabeth von Samsonow and Ashley Hans Scheirl, most of which were realized specifically for this exhibition, generate non-normative experiments of sex in drawing, sculpture, video, sound and installation. What kind of visualizations, embodiments, apparatuses, settings, texts and tutorials permit us to anticipate a sexual economy that is based on excessive exchange and radical solidarity? How could we effectively edit the scripts of our sexual identities? What roles are played by prosthetic devices and hormones, citations and yoga, over-expenditure and waste, the clitoris and digital interfaces in this process?

Curated by Nina Tabassomi