NOR DADA: Performance & Disruption

by Anna K. Gargarian

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As a neo-dadaist project, including a performative element was essential to the concept development of NOR DADA. Recalling the notorious performances of the Cabaret Voltaire, dadaism’s mission to disrupt spread further than the visual boundaries of the page or the readymade object, and into the personal space of the body through public actions and provocative performance. Dada experimented with sound and movement in order to engage (and sometimes assault) its audience in a directly physical way, and challenge the metaphoric and literal line of the stage separating reality from fiction.

Exploring this liminal space is not only a key interest of NOR DADA, but also echoes our pop up philosophy which aims to propose alternative spaces for experiencing art. It comes to no surprise that when thinking of how to incorporate performance into our program, we contacted Aram Atamian, our go-to performance artist.

Aram has devised a performance for NOR DADA called “By(r)0n1k”, a performance lecture that deconstructs a sonnet by 19th century poet Lord Byron in order to explore the relationship between sound, meaning, and technology. The performance will be on Friday, May 19 at Palazzo Rossini as part of the conference “Remembering the Future” organized by Rikke Jorgensen of Arts and Globalization. You can find the event on facebook here.

This will be Aram's (and HAYP Pop Up Gallery’s) second performance in Italy. On May 9 at 19:30 at the Tethys Gallery in Florence, Aram paired up with Gayane (our NOR-DADA visual artist) for an improvisational performance. The performance featured live typographic wall painting by Gayane while Aram intermittently recited a live translation of historical Armenian poet, Charents’ recently discovered homo-erotic poems. The event attracted a quaint but diverse audience of artists, gallerists, tourists and passersby. Wine was provided courtesy of OTTO Arte & Design.

We are so thankful for the full support we received from the Florentine community, our generous and laidback event co-organizers and hosts at the Tethys Gallery were a joy to work with, and we are so grateful for this opportunity.

See below for images from the event, photo credits go to Guido Cozzi of Tethys Gallery.