ordinary freaks: The Principle of Coolness in Pop Culture, Theatre and Museum

September 28 – November 20, 2014

The Künstlerhaus KM–, Halle für Kunst & Medien is very pleased to present “ordinary freaks – The Principle of Coolness in Pop Culture, Theatre and Museum” in co-production with the steirische herbst festival. The exhibition takes up this year’s leitmotif of “I prefer not to ... share” and applies it to the individual genre fields of pop, theatre, and art with their boundaries that seem infinitely expandable. It takes these words literally in the sense of the coquettish attempt at “anti-crossover”, while also presenting a related experimental assembly.

When it comes to the unabated boom of pop-cultural references, the impression often prevails within the gamut of artistic genres that one must attempt to mirror and high-culturally embed the sentiments of nightlife, concerts, and the social milieus otherwise inaccessible to the broad public—the so-called “streets”—in especially “wild” art formats. The exhibition “ordinary freaks – The Principle of Coolness in Pop Culture, Theatre and Museum” cultivates and explores constructive doubts about such assumptions. In collaboration with the German theatre director Schorsch Kamerun, Künstlerhaus curator Christian Egger sets out to emphasise forms of artistic practice situated at junctions of the performative and Pop. Here, the exhibition format and the related stances of expectation are, in turn, illuminated through multifarious and topical questions. In the main Künstlerhaus KM– rooms, for example, the projection of an actor's reflection on the exhibition situation, documented even before the show was set up, accompanies the artworks collected there. With her acting she thus irritates all subsequent future exhibition visitors by heightening the stereotypical, socially determined emotional level felt by the visitors as recipients at the very moment of their perception. The actor exerts influence on the visitors’ experience of the show and strengthens self-perception and conception related to the way in which the audience moves through exhibitions of this kind.

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