Kakania III - the videos

The third installment of Kakania was held in the legendary avant-garde hub the Horse Hospital right in the heart of Bloomsbury London. It featured some of the most interesting live artists from across the continent, including Joerg Zemmler, Caroline Bergvall, Martin Bakero and Damir Sodan. You can watch the videos from the performances here www.theenemiesproject.com/kakaniaevents

 

Kakania IV at the Austrian Cultural Forum – March Thursday 26th 2015

The Kakania project closes its program for now with a grand event at the Austrian Cultural Forum, just off Hyde Park, in London. Four new commissions, and four new iterations of previous commissions blend poetry, avant-garde music, performance art and video art, all from contemporary artists and poets each responding in their own unique way to a figure of Habsburg Vienna around one century ago.

George Szirtes reads poems on Arthur Schnitzler
Ben Morris offers experimental music on Ernst Krenek
Joshua Alexander screens his video art on Paul Wittgenstein
Emily Berry reads poems on Sigmund Freud
Colin Herd reads poems on Oskar Kokoschka
Fabian Faltlin performs in response to Otto Wagner
Stephen Emmerson shares things in response to Rainer Maria Rilke
eff Hilson reads poems on Ludwig Wittgenstein

The event is completely free, but please do use this link to book your place
http://acflondon.org/literature-and-books/kakania-iv/

Both Kakania publications, the Kakania anthology with over 40 contributors, and Oberwildling: On the Life of Oskar Kokoschka by Colin Herd & I, will be available to buy at the event.

Once this phase of Kakania is complete, the remaining copies of the books will be available online and the anthology will have a special reading launch in June at the Hardy Tree gallery in Kings Cross, London.

Also in situe at Kakania IV will be books from the imitable Pushkin Press, who have generously supported the Kakania project and who publish some of the finest authors of the era we are emploring. http://pushkinpress.com/kakania/

Thanks too to Theodora Danek, Elisabeth Kögler and the team at the Austrian Cultural Forum and all those who’ve helped make the project so special. www.kakania.co.uk

Kakania at the Horse Hospital - February 19th

Another extraordinary lineup of contemporary artists presenting new works responding to figures of Habsburg Vienna one century ago marks our third Kakania event, this time taking place at the iconic Horse Hospital in Bloomsbury, London. A host of artists I am very proud to present, coming from Vienna, Paris, Zagreb & elsewhere just for Kakania. Doors 7pm, for a 7.30 start.
 
Caroline Bergvall on Gustav Klimt
Martin Bakero on Arnold Schoenberg
Colin Herd on Oskar Kokoschka
Marcus Slease on Max Kurzweil
Damir Sodan on Gustav Mahler
Joerg Zemmler on Karl Kraus
Stephen Emmerson on Rainer Maria Rilke

 
Tickets, at £8, on the door, with info available here: http://www.thehorsehospital.com/now/kakania-iii/

More news soon on the launches of the Kakania anthology and Oberwilding: on the life of Oskar Kokoschka, both original publications made for the project, now in print and presented for the first time at the Freud Museum. As well as our last event on March 26th at the Austrian Cultural Forum, who must be thanked for their generous support of this project. www.kakania.co.uk / www.acflondon.org
 
I would also like to draw your attention to the awful news that the Horse Hospital, an endlessly innovative and generous home for avant garde artwork in London, for 20 years now, is in the process of being sold off. There is a campaign against this http://www.thehorsehospital.com/horse-hospital-to-be-sold/ Please support the HH in anyway you can.

Kakania - the opening event

One of my happiest nights as a curator. One of the most gratifying, in having the extraordinary support of the Austrian Cultural Forum, I finally possessed the platform to bring together seven of my favourites artists across sound, visual art, poetry and the academy, all creating new work toward a notion I am excited by, Habsburg Vienna, in a beautiful, sprawling venue with amazing support. It was an amazing night, at times moving, challenging, profound and intense. & very much on point of evoking the dying Habsburg milieu eye to eye, rather than in sepia tones.

We began by laying out a beautiful array of Pushkin press books which had been generously made available for the evening, to root the audience into the space, with the literature of the Habsburg era, and I piped in Webern and Schoenberg over the speakers as people milled. Over a three figure attendance on a dark dank tuesday November night was pleasing.

Sharon Gal, resplendent on stage in an amazing headpiece and backed by morphing video art, took the work of Anton Webern, worked upon it, reworking it into an ethereal piece of sound and then adding her singular voice live, managed to create a moving and powerful song, both a technical and aesthetic achievement. Her absolute command of her medium and her great charisma gave the event its grand beginning.

Marcus Slease followed with some typically brilliant and idiosyncratic poetry that reflected in narrative sweep his experience of the London sunset against the artworks of Max Kurzweil, blending expressionist and existentialist syntax with a unique poetic vernacular.

Then Diane Silverthorne & Ariade Radi Cor collaborated to evoke the milieu of Alma Mahler, Diane excerpted Alma's diary while reflecting on the vivacity and wry innocence of this Habsburg exemplar while Ariadne wrote live calligraphy which both accentuated and evidenced Diane's beautiful words, before propping those artworks up for exhibition.

Dylan Nyoukis was immense in his loyalty to the energy and intensity of Raoul Hausmann, using pure sound poetry alongside feedback tape loops to beast the audience into place, to remind them the breaking of artistic ground is not always cushioning, and that bourgeois platitude has a janus face.

Stephen Emmerson brought his conceptual exactitude and wit to bear with a thrice translations of Rilke. The first, a pill. The second, a seedball, from which Rainer flowers would sprout, And finally, a Rilke cake, baked in poems to translate the great Habsburg poet into human faeces.



& finally the astounding Maja Jantar, with the countenance of of a countess and the force of a cannon finished the night on the highest of notes, a moving, deeply felt rendition of the lives and loves of Lou Andreas Salome in sound.

It made me feel quite proud to be part of this project, to have begun this endeavour with such an exciting group of artists and performances which left me assured that this was a powerful time, this moment now, in London, that reflected upon another from the past. This was always the idea, no nostalgia, little history, no lectures - just vibrant artworks and brilliant artists.

Sharon Gal on Anton Webern https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6agxQkIffE
Marcus Slease on Max Kurzweil https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SbgvuJxV_Q
Diane Silverthorne & Ariadne Radi Cor on Alma Mahler Kakania - Diane Silverthorne & Ariadne Radi Cor on Alma Mahler
Dylan Nyoukis on Raoul Hausmann https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFvV3WAb2WM
Stephen Emmerson on Rainer Maria Rilke https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0SHAWPzENE
Maja Jantar on Lou Andreas Salome https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKXjFQ-LFvo

announcing Kakania! a brand new project begins Nov 25th

Thanks to the Austrian Cultural Forum, I’m delighted to announce a new project that celebrates the culture of Habsburg Vienna a century ago, with commissions of contemporary artists from 21st century London. Kakania - over 4 events, each in different venues, 4 original publications and an array of contemporary artists working in poetry, visual art, sound & conceptual art - aims to not just to evoke the Habsburg era, but to envelope it, to transpose it, to avoid nostalgia and in its stead bring the intensity and innovation that marked the last days of the Habsburg era. www.kakania.co.uk

Each artist is creating new work based on one specific figure from that time. The website features an artists section where you can see the full list of commissions, which include Emily Berry on Sigmund Freud, Colin Herd on Oskar Kokoschka, Caroline Bergvall on Gustav Klimt, & George Szirtes on Arthur Schnitzler, amongst many others, including, in time, works on Stefan Zweig, Robert Musil, Egon Schiele, Gustav Mahler, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Alma Mahler, Joseph Roth & many others.

The first event takes place in just over two weeks and is completely free to attend.

Kakania
November Tuesday 25th – 7.30pm
the Rich Mix Arts Centre – Main space – Free Entry
Featuring brand new commissions from:
Sharon Gal on Anton Webern
Jeff Hilson on Ludwig Wittgenstein
Ariadne Radi Cor & Diane Silverthorne on Alma Mahler
Dylan Nyoukis on Raoul Hausmann
Stephen Emmerson on Rainer Maria Rilke
Maja Jantar on Lou Andreas-Salome
The following three events will take place on:
January thurs 22nd at the Freud Museum
http://www.freud.org.uk/events/75773/kakania/
Featuring brand new commissions from:
Emily Berry on Sigmund Freud
Damir Sodan on Gustav Mahler
Jeff Hilson on Ludwig Wittgenstein
& many more

February thurs 19th at TBC
Featuring brand new commissions from:
Caroline Bergvall on Gustav Klimt
Stephen Emmerson on Rainer Maria Rilke
Tom Jenks on Otto Gross
Colin Herd on Oskar Kokoschka
Martin Bakero on TBC
Morten Sondergaard on TBC

March thurs 26th at the Austrian Cultural Forum

Featuring brand new commissions from:
George Szirtes on Arthur Schnitzler
Joshua Alexander on Paul Wittgenstein
Jeff Hilson on Ludwig Wittgenstein
Emily Berry on Sigmund Freud
Marcus Slease on Max Kurzweil
Stephen Emmerson on Rainer Maria Rilke

Kakania is an ambitious project which explores the legacy of the Habsburg past through decidedly contemporary, original works of text and art, which will attempt to be as complex and genre testing as the works, and the people, they are responsive to. Please come out to support the endeavour.


Kakania is also partnered by Pushkin Press, who will have books to sell at the events & who publish vital Habsburg figures like Stefan Zweig http://pushkinpress.com/ & the website is ever growing with new works of art and poetry published online, as well as information on the project and its commissions, so please check back regularly www.kakania.co.uk All thanks go to the Austrian Cultural Forum http://www.acflondon.org/