Do Nothing, Feel Everything
Curators Laura Amann, Aziza Harmel
Artists: Laila Bachtiar • Sophie Carapetian and Jakob Jakobsen • Tony Cokes • Henry Joseph Darger • Patricia Domínguez • Rahima Gambo • Yesmine Ben Khelil • Stanislava Kovalcikova • Niklas Lichti • Opoku Mensah • Shana Moulton • Tom Seidmann-Freud
The title of this group exhibition is originally borrowed from a commercial for tampons, except that the original slogan read: “Do Everything. Feel Nothing.” This promise of numbness is more than symptomatic of our times, but the attempt is, through the inversion of the slogan, to express—apart from demanding a different pace of life—a need for a different kind of space and time framework, in which it might be possible both to feel intensely and to process the emotional impact of what we all witness around us, following the temporality of the “never-ending end of the world”.
Currently, every crisis, every catastrophe, every threat is instantly overridden by another. This state of constant emergency, often translated into apathy and exhaustion, makes passing through coherent stages of emotion impossible and makes us realize that our physical and mental well-being is not an individual matter anymore but that we were sharing a state of insanity before we even knew we were insane.
The works in this exhibition examine and present a wide range of affects, ambitions, and risks. Do Nothing, Feel Everything thus looks into art practices that understand insanity as a common condition and as a dynamic form of knowledge with something crucial at stake—art practices that, through careful bruising, find ways to soothe and to bear.