Performance: Michail Michailov
Curator: Irina Batkova
Sound: Harald Stoyan
Co-Production/Costumes: Hannes Andrele
Commissioner of the national participation: Iara Boubnova
Organizers: Ilyana Krapova, Francesca Giubilei, Venice Art Factory
The performance Self-brainwashing is part of the project "There you are" represented at the Bulgarian Pavilion at the 59th Venice Biennale. It is related to the idea of hiding and obliterating the existing world around us, including the figure of the artist, and transforming it all into something else, which is yet to provoke us into words to name it. The figure of the artist dressed in a white protective suit and the surrounding space are gradually immersed in the ethereal and perishable white foam in the midst of a special sound background. This action focuses our attention on the main thesis of posthumanism in Cecilia Alemani's conception, which draws our attention to the destructive potential of an anthropocentric culture in which man is the measure of all things. The children's book Milk of Dreams by the Mexican writer and artist Leonora Carrington, which inspired the curator of the 59th Venice Biennale, seems surreal at first glance, but is in fact an act of utopian imagination that makes the world free and full of unexpected possibilities. The book's characters have no strict identity and are ready for any metamorphosis. It is the question of metamorphoses in the world and metamorphoses in our perceptions that is at the heart of Self brainwashing. The foam in the performance, disappearing relatively quickly, under which the landscape begins to reveal itself again, is at the heart of the question of the stability of perceptions, of their connection to individual experience and knowledge, finding it difficult to cope with the increasingly tangible rapid passage of time that changes views and perspectives. This performance demonstrates to the audience how a newly created artistic language - in this case, the content of the site specific installation "There you are" for the Bulgarian pavilion at the Biennale - can work outside of the architecture for which it was created in the much larger framework that constructs this most prestigious contemporary art event. It develops not only in the Arsenale, the Giardini and the pavilions of the individual countries, but also in the whole of Venice, which for a time becomes a stage for sharing concepts and artistic observations that enrich our ideas about the world.
Description: A sound produced live simulates a soundscape of our synapses in the brain! During the performance, different sequences are played.
Approximately 30 white jumpsuits and 30 custom-made white headpieces were provided for audience members who volunteer to participate. It was planned that 30 students will participate in the performance.
Visitors were asked to stay in a designated area. In this area, an ever-increasing amount of white foam is brought by machine, gradually covering the participants in the event. In this way, the individuals merge with the white mass, lose their individuality and transform into a living sculpture.