KATRIN HORNEK testing grounds.

Mapping Operation Crossroads Nuclear Battlefield 73 years later, USS Saratoga, Bikini Atoll, University of Delaware, 2019, photo: Dr. Art Trembanis

Mar 8 2024 to Jun 9 2024
Friedrichstraße 12
Vienna 1010
Phone: +4315875307
Tuesday - Sunday:
12 / FREE every 1st Wed. of the Month
Friday, March 8, 2024 to Sunday, June 9, 2024
Add to Calendar

Co-produced by Secession with Vienna Science and Technology Fund (WWTF)
In collaboration with Tanzquartier Wien

With her artistic oeuvre and curatorial practice, Katrin Hornek playfully engages with the strange paradoxes of living in the age of the Anthropocene, that is, the new geologic epoch where the effects of capitalism, colonialism, and extractivism are written into the body of the earth. She asserts a more complex understanding of the entwinement of so-called nature and culture that recognizes that our bodies and cultures are substantially and spiritually connected with other creatures and the elements that make up our world. As an artistic strategy, Hornek follows the stories and traces of the material world into their countless networks to create narratives.

testing grounds is a new, immersive live installation conceived by Katrin Hornek and developed in a collaborative, body-based process involving artists as well as researchers and scientists from different fields. The collaboration with performer and choreographer Karin Pauer lays a foundation for the work, which addresses a sensitive urgent matter: At stake is the measurable evidence of radioactive radiation around the world as a result of the testing and use of nuclear weapons in hundreds of above-ground tests since 1945. A local soil sample in which radioactivity was measured as its starting point, testing grounds follows the permanent imprints left by the so-called nuclear fallout in our bodies, in plants and earth archives.

Embedded in an installation that evokes images of decaying landscapes, twice a week three dancers perform a score choreographed by Pauer. Texts created by Sabina Holzer and Katrin Hornek provide multi-layered narratives on the subject matter, which enter a subtle, intimate dialogue with specially composed soundscapes by Zosia Hołubowska, while with their movements, the dancers delve into the depths of body archives. Together, the elements of the live installation create a sensual, immersive experience, a test set-up of the embodiment of the unspeakable.

The exhibition is accompanied by a publication with essays by Anne Faucheret and Brian Holmes and contributions by the participating artists.

Karin Pauer (*1983, Austria) is a performer and choreographer. The exploration of relations, in-betweens, empathy, and togetherness informs all her works. She negotiates these notions combining embodied choreographic practices with language, visual arts, and live music. Her works have been shown in various Viennese institutions as well as at local and international festivals.

Sabina Holzer is a performance artist, writer, and movement-facilitator. Her work explores ecologies of human and more-than-human bodies with particular attention to movement and somatic practices.

Zosia Hołubowska (1988, Poland) is a sound artist, queer music activist, researcher, and producer. With performances, sound installations, radio works and soundscapes, they work on topics of queering archives, healing practices, and interspecies intimacy.

Performance: Martina De Dominicis, Cat Jimenez, Mani Obeya, Karin Pauer
Concept, Artistic direction: Katrin Hornek
Choreography: Karin Pauer
Text: Sabina Holzer, Katrin Hornek
Sound: Zosia Hołubowska
Performance: Martina De Dominicis, Cat Jimenez, Mani Obeya, Karin Pauer
Architectural study: Julia Hohenwarter