press release

Index – The Swedish Contemporary Art Foundation is pleased to announce screenings and performance works by the German artist Stephan Dillemuth, in collaboration with the Department of Art Theory and the History of Ideas at Stockholm’s Royal Institute of Art.

Dillemuth investigates recent changes in the globalized, localized, and fragmented modern public sphere, as well as how self-organization is established in the framework of our ‘society of control’. He analyses historical movements, such as the Life Reform movements and alternative attempts at social renewal in the 1970s, through experimental installations, theatrical performances, videos, lectures and publications whose methods question the role of artistic research.

Against the backdrop of the German ‘Lebensreform’ (Life Reform) movements at the turn of the 20th century, the video-performance Lichtmenschem im Sumpf der Sonne (Light People in The Swamp of The Sun, 2002, dur. 50 mins) investigates the impact of 'lifestyle' as a new ideology of self-fulfillment and liberation. At this time a number of part-utopian communities formed under the term of 'Lebensreform' (Life Reform). Their revolutionary, reactionary and reformist approaches attempted to break free from the nationalistic, capitalistic and monolithic Wilhelminian Reich. In Dillemuth’s view, these groups were predecessors of today's ‘escapist’ constructions of identity, formed via lifestyle conceptions. However, some of these approaches lent a sense of ‘metaphysical depth’ to the arising National Socialism. Other groups were, on the contrary, persecuted by the society of the Third Reich and incorporated or forced into line, which again produced yet another monolithic homogeneity.

The video The hard way to enlightenment (2010) presents a conversation between an artist and a prisoner, a dialogue about research, knowledge economy and the responsibility of artists within commodified cultural contexts. Keywords: academy and the corporate public, research, problem, Bologna, Bertelsmann, credit points, ECTS, University Council, Unirat, student fees, tuition, university, history, institutional/pubescent/bohemian research, sponsorship, branding, corporate social responsibility (csr), LLL, life long learning, WTO, GATT, GATS, privatisation, knowledge, knowledge society, knowledge capitalism, public access, copy-left, communisation, fight.

Stephan Dillemuth was born in Büdingen (Germany) and lives and works in Munich. He has exhibited widely internationally: recent exhibitions include Wiener Secession, Vienna (2012, solo); Kunstbunker - Forum für zeitgenössische Kunst, Nuremberg (2011, solo); 1st Tbilisi Triennial (2012); Captain Pamphile - Ein Bildroman in Stücken, Deichtorhallen, Hamburg (2011), Situation as Object (framed), Gallery D.O.R., Brussels (2011); Manifesta 8, Murcia (2010); Das Potosí-Prinzip, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (2010); You Have Been Misinformed (in collaboration with Nils Norman), Reena Spaulings Fine Arts, New York (2008); How to cook a Wolf, Kunsthalle Zürich (2007); Make Your Own Life: Artists In and Out of Cologne, Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Miami, The Power Plant, Toronto, ICA Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2006-07).

only in german

Stephan Dillemuth
screening and performance / double feature
12.03.2013, 18:00 - 21:00