Performance - 2014
A coffee table setting is placed in front of a tree. The performer starts to explain to the tree how to call the different dishes in german, shows the tree how to use them and asks the tree to repeat her actions. As the tree is not able to do it on itself the performer supports the tree by speaking slowlier, repeating actions more often and feeding it.
For sure the first impression from the distance is reminiscent of a 19th century romantic painting, peacefully, innocent and calm. Is there a relationship between the performer and the tree? Closing up you see the performer is doing actions which can be done endlessly and may become more and more rude.Different than Peter Weibel's peformance Synthesis in 1972, in which he is competing with a technical object, Bernadette is competing with nature. Who is giving up first? Who is stronger?
As the performer is living next to Gezi Park during the workshop she is wondering about how many trees have to be replaced for human ideas or will grow as a part of „civilizist“ human culture. But as she is working in a Turkish forest, showing a tree the Austrian coffee culture, she is also thinking about the impossibility of insisting on western culture without appreciating other ones even though it is not meant in a bad way.
Developed during the Workshop of Nezaket Ekici
Invited by IPA in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Istanbul and Tarabya Cultural Academy
Material: coffee dishes, table, chair, tree
Duration: 1 hour
Photo: Jürgen Fritz, Andreas Dammertz