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17.05. - 26.05.19

Ayla Pierrot Arendt, Hadas Auerbach , Barabba, Stefan Cantante, Sebastian Conrad, John Flindt, Sopo Kashakashvili , Maria Toumazou & Antonis Magoulas, Shaun Motsi, Ivan Murzin, Max Negrelli, Tra My Nguyen, Alfa Omegi, Nadia Perlov, Kristin Reiman, Sham Saifuddin and Alexander Sova
Curated by
Sarah Crowe and Alke Heykes

On the 23rd of April IN ACTU. transformed the corridors of the Städelschule into a performed interpretation of the runway. Artists each conceived a series of new works that enrobed the moving body. Individual bodies and their personalities served as nuanced sites of action. Through (often painstaking) process driven practices, artists explored non-traditional mediums on an overwhelmingly non-neutral canvas. The body itself was rendered a living, breathing thinking medium to which works were inextricably bonded. Thus, IN ACTU. was an evanescent experiment into the physical body as dynamic medium in excess of corporeal representation and fixed forms of art and fashion.

Here and now, IN POTENTIA. sheds the body and motion. A selection of works from and inspired by IN ACTU. is presented in an exhibition context. Once ephemerally shown in relation to the moving body, the works form a populous scene much like the culmination of IN ACTU. in the Lichthalle of the Städelschule- sans bodies. The transition to the body-less format sees the exhibition traverses both the immaterial realm of the body and that of the material object. Static material comparison unveils the enrobed absent body in all its imagined potential.

The body, clothing, and handcraft all simultaneously function as both a medium and a process. Absolving fashion, textiles, and clothing from the periphery in art emancipates a medium with a singular ability to reflect on the means of its own production as well as the context of its creation. By its very nature, the time and intricacy required in hand-production for a body by a body moves focus away from the end result to a process laced with significance for the human in art.

IN ACTU. IN POTENTIA. is a playful but pointed re-territorialisation of art and making processes by way of the body in motion and the subsequent relinquishing thereof. In reciprocal dissolution, it catalyses the deterritorialisation of dressing and robeing that art so aptly services, and vice versa. The joining seam of IN ACTU. and IN POTENTIA. is the body as a unique site of transitory yet human artistic process: embodied by the ephemerality of the runway spectacle and the exhibition’s ensuing disembodiment.

Generously supported by Städelschule Portikus e.V. 

Photography © Eike Walkenhorst