Project Space Festival: Videoart at Midnight @ Xanadu Berlin

As part of the 2022 Project Space Festival – The City of Project Spaces, XANADU invites selected Berlin initiatives to present moving image programs (artists’ films and videos) that represent their own distinctive approach to the challenges and possibilities of presenting this medium outside the usual institutionalized contexts.

Monday, August 1st, 2022, from 18:00 past midnight
XANADU, Altenbraker Str. 18, 12053 Berlin-Neukölln
Eintritt frei | admission free 

Alongside 6×6 Project, ANORAK and XANADU themselves, Videoart at Midnight will show a program of recent works by Katarina Zdjelar, Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnonc and Pauline Boudry / Renate Lorenz:

Katarina Zdjelar – Reading “Europe Where Have You Displaced Love?”
single channel video, 29:26 min, 2019

Katarina Zdjelar often employs the rehearsal as a working method to explore the voice as a subject and substance. For this film she brought together four musicians for an improvisational inter- pretation of a text written by poet Athena Farrokhzad, Europe, Where Have You Misplaced Love?. The aim of the improvisation is not so much to arrive at a final performance, but rather to keep the range of possibilities open. One by one the musicians take control and then let it go again just before arriving at a common melody, at which point doubts or another voice steer the process in a different direction. It becomes a continuous search in which a multiplicity of interrelating voices coexists.

Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnenc – Limbé
16mm film transferred to 2K, 10:00 min, silent, 2021

The film Limbé takes its inspiration and its title from a poem by the Guyanese poet Léon Gontran-Damas, creator with of the négritude movement with Aimée Césaire, Léopold Sedard-Senghor and Paulette and Jeanne Nardal. This Creole expression, which is a way of activating the limbos through language, evokes a great sadness, a deep melancholy. Continuing his collaboration with the dancer and choreographer Betty Tchomanga, Abonnenc attempts to give form to this state, while echoing the reflections of the Guyanese poet Wilson Harris, for whom the Limbo dance would be a way of evoking, through its contortions, the gestures that the slaves had to invent to survive the crossing of the Atlantic from the bottom of the slaveship.

« Limbo was born, it is said, on the slaves ships of the Middle Passage. There was so little space that the slaves contorted themselves into human spiders. »

Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz – (No) Time
HD video (Installation with 3 blinds), 20:00 min, 2020
Choreography/Performance: Julie Cunningham, Werner Hirsch, Joy Alpuerto Ritter, Aaliyah Thanisha.

Can movements simultaneously connect to utopian aspiration and political despair? At a moment when we are increasingly confronted with right-wing conservatism, it seems urgent to disrupt progressive conceptions of time and create a stage for something beyond: what will a minoritarian mode of temporality look like? Four performers seem to be rehearsing for a queer time: extreme slowness, being out of synch, changes of rhythms, stillness and breaks are working on escape routes, refusing the deadening beats of labor and the state-sponsored hopeless acts of being. The performers employ and often deliberately mix a range of dance elements inspired by hip-hop, dancehall, (post)modern dance and drag performance. Even though they noticeably differ in their styles, they connect through sudden similarities, haunting movements, and body memories, producing and shifting their points of contact. While the film’s end is also its beginning, the sequence of scenes offers an unpredictable experience of time, not least by raising doubt about how far slowness and ruptures are carried out by the performing bodies or by digital means.

Returning for its sixth edition under the name The City of Project Spaces, the 2022 Project Space Festival will host 31 project spaces and initiatives across Berlin over the 31 days of August.  

Xanadu is a new screening space initiated for the presentation of artists’ moving image work. With a special focus on working with BIPOC, FLINT*, Queer artists and curators the space draw on the history and approaches of microcinemas, which fore ground idiosyncratic, varied curatorial approaches and flexible, responsive programming.