For some years now, designers are increasingly re/activating performance as a means of questioning the design discipline, the contexts it operates in as well as the realities it produces. The work through the own body thereby reveals how discriminatory (gender) norms and exploitative structures are re/produced through the design and use of things. The Dis/Assembly of Performative Things therefore focuses on performance as a strategy in design from an intersectional-feminist perspective. This also brings to light questions about the ethical responsibility of design in the context of today’s pressing societal challenges. Design permeates our lives, from the products we consume, to the technologies we use, to the infrastructures in which we navigate. But how do objects and their use “design” our behaviours and identities? How can the body itself become the site of a critical interrogation of design from a intersectional-feminist perspective, and what can designers learn from the performing arts? These questions are at the centre of the Dis/Assembly. With an open online platform and a performance- and lecture program, the symposium offers practitioners and theorists a stage and space for exchange. In search of connecting lines to performance art, the symposium aims at contributing to a transdisciplinary and intersectional herstory of performance production.
The Dis/Assembly of Performative Things will take place from October 26th to 27th 2022 at the VIKA e.V. art space in Halle (Saale), Germany. The event is associated with the exhibition Juicy Things (11.10. to 06.11.2022), which is organised by the gender equality project FEM Power and will be held at the Burg Galerie im Volkspark of the Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle. The symposium here forms part of the accompanying program.
Die zwei Kapitel
Choreographies of Labour & Production
Ein Fokus des Symposiums liegt auf Performance im Kontext spätkapitalistischer Pro- duktionsketten und Arbeitsformen. Dabei findet eine kritische Befragung der Position der Designer*in seit den Anfängen der Disziplin in der Industrialisierung statt. Wir wollen der Frage nachgehen, inwiefern Performatives Design* politisch agiert, indem es die asymmetrischen Machtstrukturen hinterfragt, die sich in der Produktion und Distribution von Waren manifestieren oder durch den Gebrauch von Objekten reproduzieren.
One focal point will be on performance in the context of late capitalist production chains and forms of labour. Thereby, a critical questioning of the position of the designer since the beginnings of the discipline during the industrial revolution will take place. It will be discussed how Performative Design always already acts politically, when it questions the asymmetrical power structures that manifest themselves in the production and distribution of goods or reproduce themselves through the use of objects.
Performative Objects, Designed Identities
Wie wird Identität durch Design konstituiert? Diese Frage bildet den zweiten Fokuspunkt des Symposiums. Indem der Körper als Produkt politischer und gesellschaftlicher Prozesse begriffen wird, wollen wir ethische Fragen aufwerfen und über Alternativen spekulieren.
The Dis/Assembly deals with the questions around the constitution of identity through design. By understanding the body as a product of political and social systems, we want to raise ethical questions and speculate about alternatives.