Peggy Sylopp The iD of Arts
To call an art festival “iD festival”, especially in Gorzów Wielkopolski located in the neighborhood of the German/Polish border area, could have a special meaning, as already since prehistoric times the national identity of its inhabitants is oscillating between Slavic and Germanic. But this festival doesn’t emphasize this circumstance, international artists are taking part in it transforming the notion of “identity”, as the artists see themselves as cosmopolitan individuals, beyond the conventional notions of nations, culture and politics. This idea of artists as unique individuals is e.g. driven by strictly subjective perspectives and methods of working in freely chosen fields between science, crafts, experiment and autodidactic approaches. So cultural iD cannot play the main role, because this method of experimental work is in contradiction with the identification with cultural tradition. So artists tend to be cosmopolitan, as they question the implicitness. Its the role of art to show society there exists no matter of course, the deconstruction of “normality”, such as for example the identification of a home country. This in German would be called “Heimat” (1), which media philosopher Vilem Flusser unmasked as “Kitsch“, in the meaning of that people speaking about „Heimat“ mean codified manners, behaviors, rituals that only people grown up in a specified region can decode, but indeed this codes are not making sense. An artist creates ones own “Heimat”, which is an intellectual one, and is characterized by scrutinizing the normality.
The curator of iD-festival, Bartosz Nowak took the occasion to use the building of a former orphanage: as this is a memorial archive of the “Heimat” of the orphans, the art within this orphanage would change this archive. In this orphanage archive contented a memory with implicit information, to be found in the aura of the rooms, the traces of use, look of the wallpapers, etc. Like Vilém Flusser says, we artists manipulate the memory by the re-combinations of given information, in the case of the iD festival this process was realized by implementing the artworks within the orphanage. Every art work did this manipulation in its own manner.
Dr. nexus experimented with the animation of space in his work Opus 1. Machines were cycling and making noise, light and wind. The mechanical movements combined with the siren sounds creates an atmosphere of frightening insecurity. Out of different realities, that one of the further orphanage and that of the multi-sensoric installation attempts at the connection of the inconnectable.
Bartosz Nowak’s Antimachine, a sculpture of layered black-painted television, is even meant as a collection of disinformation and therefore is completely free.
Peggy Sylopp created an invariant of information by reducing it into minimal projection of steady light and sound, the perception of position of the recipients in a space that affected his/her mood.
Sharon McCarthy created a paint-scape, working with the materiality of color pigment and the painting process, creating a large paint pour that runs the length of a room. The paint looses its original purpose, as it was used as material and not for conventional painting. Daniel Weiss gave old electronic crap a second life. He created an interactive, light manipulated sound installation, whereby the crap depending on its origin generated different shapes and colors of noise.
All of this artistic methods question the conventional modes of expression, provoke innovative ways perception, manipulate given information by transforming it. In this way the iD Festival expands the iD beyond its usual notion, a cosmopolitan approach which can enrich not only places like Gorzów Wielkopolski.
By Peggy Sylopp
(1) Vilém Flusser, “Heimat und Heimatlosigkeit”, Hörbuch1999, CD Abschnitt “Heimat und Heimatlosigkeit” (Weiler/Allgäu, August 1985)