NEON + MAI are partnering to present As One in Athens which will consist of the Abramović Method, newly commissioned performance pieces by Greek artists, and an extensive public program of lectures, workshops, discussions and other public participatory events. The largest and most ambitious project dedicated to performance art in Greece to date, As One will place this contemporary art form in the spotlight in order to engage and inspire the Greek public. With this collaboration, NEON and MAI aim to provide a platform and help foster a new generation of Greek performance artists. A number of emerging Greek artists have been selected by Abramović to train and perform, and have been commissioned to develop and present new works for the project.
“We live in a world of constant distraction, where taking the time to connect to ourselves is becoming more and more difficult. I have designed this experience to give the public the opportunity to be free from these distractions and to be connected with themselves, with each other, and with the present moment. Never has this been more relevant, than in Greece in these trying times.”
“We are all working around the clock to produce an amazing experience for the audience.the whole building at the Benaki Museum will be transformed into a vivid performance space where people examine human boundaries, strength and possibly trust. Our aim with NEON is to bring contemporary culture closer to the general public, not only the connoisseurs, and support and present the potential of Greek creativity.”
Elina Kountouri – NEON’s director
The Abramović Method is a public participatory experience that utilizes exercises designed by Abramovic to engage the public in individual and communal connection to the present moment. The Method draws upon a huge reservoir of the artist’s experiences, performances and practice over the last 40 years that is gradually being distilled into a series of exercises that explore boundaries of body and mind. The Method is founded upon individual and collective participation, and forms an experiential approach to immaterial art. The exercises from the Method draw on the artist’s desire to provide a simple way for the public to reconnect with themselves and with the present moment. This opportunity to free oneself from distraction, Abramović maintains, ‘has never been more relevant, than in Greece in these trying times.’ Since this process is being continually explored and reshaped by its creator, the specific form of the Method to be presented in Athens will be a unique evolution of comparable works presented by the artist across the world over the years.
Develop in collaboration between Marina Abramovic Institute, Suzanne Dikker, Matthias Oostrik, Peter Burr, Diederik Schoorl, and Matthew Patterson Curry, the Mutual Wave Machine is an interactive neurofeedback installation that embodies the elusive notion of ‘being on the same wavelength’ with another person through brainwave synchronization. Enclosed by an intimate capsule and immersed in an audiovisual environment that responds and reflects their shared brain activity, two visitors can directly experience and manipulate their internal efforts to approach each other, or distance themselves from each other.
The As One project includes a parallel programme of talks that aim to educate the public about the history and development of performance art, highlighting interconnected practices such as theatre and dance. A series of workshops with participating and invited artists will help the public better understand the structures and mechanisms employed by performative works digging deep into the ways artists develop their work. The talks and workshops are supplemented by a daily programme of screenings, with short films and features on the work of Marina Abramović, the pieces that influenced her practice, films by our invited speakers, and other materials drawn from the Greek Film Archive.
March 10: Opening Day – Welcome speech Marina Abramović & Dimitris Daskalopoulos
March 11 & 22: Workshop led by Marina Abramovic with 8 Greek performance artists. The workshop will consist of demonstration and discussion of works in progress. The general public is invited to attend.
March 12: Silent Movement Workshop with Marianna Kavallieratos, Dance Artist
March 19: Lecture – Marina Abramovic on “The History of Durational Work”
March 23: Lecture – Marina Abramovic “Terra Comunal”