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[Interview] Dr Rhea Thönges & Martin Schmitz > Documenta 14 Kassel Germany > 10.09.2017.

 

 

About the relation between Lucius Burckhardt an Joseph Beuys. Documenta 14 Kassel Germany 10.09.2017.

 

the Milena principle made an interview about the relation between Joseph Beuys and Lucius Burckhardt. We had the chance to have a long talk with two icons: Dr Rhea Thönges (a dear friend of Joseph Beuys (1921-1986) and working partner) and Martin Schmitz (*1956, student of Lucius Burckhardt [1925-2003]). They both are publishing books about Spaziergangwissenschaft and joseph Beuys. Photo's by Annemie Mestdagh. Video and photo's by Stefaan van Biesen / the Milena principle.

 

Dr. Rhea Thönges-Stringaris [*1934] studied art history and archeology in Bonn and Munich. Until 1974, museum activities in the State Art Collections in Kassel. Since 1972, friendship and cooperation with Joseph Beuys. 1977 Establishment of the FIU - Branch office in Kassel. 1979 Founding Member of the 'Green'. 1980-1987 Member of the Documenta's Supervisory Board. 1982 Participation in Action: '7000 Oaks'. 1989 Establishment of the FIU-research firm. Lives in Kassel Germany and Athens Greece. Numerous lectures and publications on Joseph Beuys.

 

 

Martin Schmitz [*1956] was born in Hamm, Westphalia. After graduation in 1976 to study at the Department followed architecture, urban planning and landscape planning at the University of Kassel with Lucius Burckhardt, from which he graduated with a thesis on the outpatient food in town and in 1983 as a book (with Birgit Knop) Currywurst with chips - About Culture of the snack bar. In the 1980s, he was a correspondent for the magazine 'Werk, Bauen + Wohnen' and wrote beside numerous articles in various magazines for the German Bauzeitung a special issue about the Swiss architect Christian Hunziker. In parallel, he followed in Berlin the work of Wolfgang Müller and The Deadly Doris from among the genius dilettantes and in 1987 was curator of the film program at Documenta 8 d Super-8, which was based on the artistic work with the amateur film format.

 

 

In 1989 he founded the Martin Schmitz Verlag in Kassel together with a gallery. With the move to Berlin, the exhibition was discontinued in 1999. There were projects 'mit Kunst am/im Bau', an invitation as curator of the conference 'Dilettantismus', which was held in Görlitz in 1995, teaching in Saarbruecken, Weimar, Kassel and Dresden. With the exhibition Die Tödliche Doris - Kunst, the work began in 1999 in Berlin, which followed the project 'Die Tödliche Doris - Kino' in 2003 and was shown internationally. After the death of Lucius Burckhardt in 2003, he began by compiling his entire bibliography [2006-2007]. He started to teach walk science at the university in Kassel. Curator of the third symposium documenta urbana Art plans to planning in 2007 in Kassel, the meeting 'Die Spaziergangswissenschaft: Sehen, erkennen und planen 2008' in Frankfurt am Main and the first Lucius Burckhardt Convention 2014 in Kassel 2008.

 

 

 

 

 

After an amazing trajectory through three seasons with young artists, students, researchers, residents in media labs, workshops, seminars, performances, public talks, exhibition and above all many shared walks and surprising inspiring meetings with people and places... Thank you all for your fine engagement and continuous dedication for this not always easy and complex project aiming for the fragile and subtle. Especially thank you, Helene Black and Yiannis Colakides and NeMe for your generous involvement!

 

 

 

[Table Of Meetings] Beveren Belgium > 26.11.2016.

 

 

On Saturday 26.11.2016 we had a ‘Table of Meeting’ (in a fine ‘English hotellounge’ setting at Armonea Beveren). Several upcoming European projects (indeed a very promising and full agenda for 2017-2019) were discussed (Limmasol, Delphi, Edinburgh, La Romieu, Athens, Limassol, Nicosia, New York…). This table conversation is a dear and old tradition of the core group of the Milena principle and also a gathering of old friends. A talk about upcoming projects, education, art, social aspects, evaluating of past projects and planning the new. For a moment everyone was in Belgium. So this was another very intense and interesting conversation where the lines were plotted for the future.


Photo (Annemie Mestdagh): Geert Vermeire, Filip Van de Velde, Bregt Smeets and Stefaan van Biesen.

 

 

Tres (3) [ Spain ] † october 2016 .

'Silence is a necessary angel'. 3 (TRES).

 

The unfortunate news came that 3 (TRES), esteemed Spanish artist and performer dedicating his long career to silence, has passed away after a heavy disease. His 60th birthday was last 3d of September 2016.

Silence is a long lasting guide in my personal creative voyage and lies at the deep core of the artistic actions of the Milena principle what brought us together in Greece, Belgium and in Spain, only three times -at the same time almost symbolically, but our paths crossed continuously in our mutual quest for the inaudible, stillness and their human qualities.

We loose more then a companion in "silent activism", but a soulmate, who against all odds, without any compromise, believed strongly in the loudness of silence and the force of minimal gestures, away from the manipulative, on a way that his life and his art merged completely, sometimes loud, sometimes sensual, sometimes dramatic, but as well often tender and disarmingly simple, in his never ending dream of silence.

 

Unique artist and dear colleague in an artistic quest to (no) silence in our contemporary society. One of the rare Don Quiijotes of our time. Tres died in october 2016 from an aggressive disease, just some months after his last silence performance, Blackout, silencing the Bilbao Municipal Art Center.

 

 

Tres is an interdisciplinary artist known for his work on silence; a practice of enquiry and experimentation which has been his sole focus for over two decades. His investigation began in 1986 by collecting information about this extensive phenomenon. In 1998 he organized MUTED – a factory of silences – at the Center of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona, an installation that evolved into a bi-edition festival on Silence. From then onwards, Tres has relentlessly produced many different events that he has called Silent Actions: Silent Cocktails, Silent Concerts, Blackouts or public “turn-offs” of noisy spots and lights, performances, video pieces, exhibitions and various kinds of ceremonies. These all have a common denominator; experimenting with alternative ways in which the individual usually relates to himself and to others. His silent actions and performances have been presented in many of the main cultural institutions of Spain as well as in other countries like Finland, Germany, France, UK, Italy, China or the USA. Often mistaken for an apologist of silence and conscious of the creative limitations he has undertaken in order to produce his work with the coherence and rigour that a concept such as ‘Silence’ demands, in 2008 he presented a radically new piece. The performance, which took place at Galeria Antonio de Barnola in Barcelona, involved shooting at close range a blank gun against a white wall forty-seven times. Damned Silence, as the action was titled, intended to point at and metaphorically destroy the negative aspects of silence with the power of the most deafening, yet unamplified, sound he could find. This new action meant a change of direction in his work which has since become more concept-driven. No More Silence, his current work in progress project has two main purposes: to free his creativity from all self-limitation and to point at and denounce silence as a prime strategy for domination.

www.elsilencio.com

 

 

the Milena principle at ART-ATHINA 2014 - 2015- 2016. Patforms Project Athens Greece.

 

 

Art-Athina 2016. Faliro Pavilion (TaeKwonDo Stadium) Athens.

 

Curator Artemis Potamianou and the selection committee of Art Athina Platforms project [2014-2015 & 2016] selected the Milena principle as one of the 40 representative art platforms worldwide to showcase their work and collaborations in Lisbon and Athens.

the Milena principle presents together with befriended collectives and organisations in Lisbon and Athens a collaborative sound-and visual installation, demonstrating the effect towards other cities, through a network of artistic interventions with remote users from other cities. The juxtaposition of artistic interventions and experiences of different urban environments suggesting the acknowledgement of coherence emphasized in the practices of everyday life-urban rituals, rather than the contrast implied by the geographical and cultural differences.

 

 

Platforms project. 49 of the most important independent art platforms from all over the world, distinguishing themselves by working on unconventional ways and by establishing unexpected and influential debates on art, were selected by the Athens Art Fair. Based on the “unity is strength” principle, the platforms have secured their own place on the international art arena without antagonizing the environment they are called upon to serve.

 

At Platform Project @ Art-Athina 2016 by Artemis Potamianou (curator MOMA NY & Tate London).

 

 

the Milena principle focuses on the ongoing travelling project "the Dürer connection" [2003 -], developing itself as an European nomadic network , initiating collaborative encounters between public, experts and artists, referring to the Flemish renaissance, when artists, philosophers and scientists traveled unceasingly, connecting with people and places. Exchange of ideas and continuous journeys created a network of solidarity and affinity. The projects refer to this utopian and human dimension, with traveling as an artistic instrument, with events and exhibitions realized in Germany, Holland, Portugal, Poland, Spain, Italy, Czech Republic, Romania, Austria, Serbia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Greece, Crete, parallel events in Latin America, as well bringing artists and people from many European countries to Belgium.

 

 

 

Workshop / Sensing Silence EMST National Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens Greece.

 

 

Workshop - Sensing silence A workshop about silence and the body in the empty EMST National Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens by Andromachi Vrakatseli (sound) and Geert Vermeire (performance) together with Stefaan van Biesen (visual artist) and Chistos Kakalis (architect).

Departing from sound and walking. as research method and artistic practice we explore the relation between movement, the body and sound in the silent spaces of an empty museum, using recording technology, drawing and writing as tools to capture trajectories through silent spaces. A sketchbook is designed for this purpose and will be distributed to participants to use it as a kind of a diary of their experience.

 

The workshop will be divided in following parts.

1) Introduction about Urban Emptiness and Silence.

2) Sensing spaces. Performance "the Diogenes variations" by Stefaan van Biesen en Geert Vermeire as catalyst for a silent walk through the empty museum.

3) Approaching silence. Division in smaller groups, going out to make recordings, to draw and to write the body and its movement in the emptiness, accompanied by workshop leaders.

24th of May, 11.00 h EMST, Kallirois Ave.& Amvr. Franzti Street, Athens Duration: 3 hours.

 

Recordings of this workshop will be source materials for a second (separate) workshop Placing sounds, exploring the composition of 3D soundscapes by movement of the body in space and by walking, using the SonicPlanet Geocomposer en Geoplayer, on Saturday 28th of May 2016 in Elaionas.

An action within the Urban Emptiness Network - http://urbanemptiness.org/ Real and imaginary embodied landscapes, Athens - Brussels [24-28 May - 7-9 June 2016]. A network of workshop-symposiums about Urban Emptiness and Silence, in Edinburgh, in Athens and in Brussels with an interdisciplinary approach, exploring the contribution of performative and immersive techniques and technologies and new media to the experiential understanding of the spaces/places and its documentation/mapping.

 

 

 

 

[Ritualizing Friendship] the Milena principle Table of meetings ⋈ Ghent Belgium 29.02.2016.

Drawing by Stefaan van Biesen: registration of a bike performance 'Curator><artist><curator><artist>

 

Ritualizing Friendship. An ongoing project (2001 - never ending) of the Milena principle. Geert Vermeire, Filip Van de Velde, Stefaan van Biesen [drawing on writing paper], Annemie Mestdagh. Table of Meetings: Ghent, 29th of February 2016.

 

the Milena principle focuses on the ongoing travelling project "the Dürer connection" [2001 - ], developing itself as an European nomadic network , initiating collaborative encounters between public, experts and artists, referring to the Flemish renaissance, when artists, philosophers and scientists traveled unceasingly, connecting with people and places. Exchange of ideas and continuous journeys created a network of solidarity and affinity. The projects refer to this utopian and human dimension, with traveling as an artistic instrument, with events and exhibitions realized in Germany, Holland, Portugal, Poland, Spain, Italy, Czech Republic, Romania, Austria, Serbia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Greece, Crete, parallel events in Latin America, as well bringing artists and people from many European countries to Belgium.

 

 

Invisible places Viseu, Portugal 2014.

 


Sound, Urbanism and Sense of Place. 18–20 July 2014, Viseu, Portugal
Presentation project Passeio Branco 

 

A research of the walk in the works of Saramago and Stefaan van Biesen in Lisbon: in a theoretical approach, a research emphasizing on representations of the city in a promenadological discovery and in a practical approach, where this urban discovery is concretized in a space of artistic and social transformation. As an urban intervention project it investigates, documents and enhances the aural heritage of the city through participation of residents, materialized in the composition of a soundwalk, building a locative  media instrument  based on the noTours platform, referring to the Spaziergangwissenschaft (the science of walking) implying the community, in a kinetic esthetics, in the planification of their own city through minimal interventions and by going on foot, in this project elaborated as a public artistic laboratory in the space of Lisbon as a reconstruction of the urban space harmonizing its own sensoriality out of literary texts and artistic works.

 

http://invisibleplaces.org/ 

Invisible Places [text lecture by Simona Vermeire & Geert Vermeire Viseu Portugal 20.07.2014 [see pdf file]

 

 

 

A scientific study about the Milena principle Lynn Louise Pauwels Belgium.

 

 

The Flemish Lynn Pauwels, student master of Arts in Art Science and Archaeology at the VUB in Brussels. Some people may call her a dreamer, others a philosopher, but she is actually a scientist, who does not only researches phenomena’s around her, but also never forgets to marvel in the first place. She says that to wonder means to be in the moment. And that is why, she claims, to be interested in the Milena principle, because to wonder is a rare talent, but the Milena principle creates moments and time and space to really be in these moment and so to wonder. At the same time the Milena principle seems to work like the effect of a mirror. The initiatives from the Milena principle reflect, confront and interact with the spectators. Are you ready to take a look in that mirror with Lynn? She is writing a thesis as a student for the VUB, where she will guide you through the Milena principle as through a living museum.

 

 

Meeting Gilberto Zorio at Serralves Porto Portugal 2010.

The members of the Milena principle, (Bregt Smeets, Shaomin Mhin, Stefaan van Biesen and Filip Van de Velde), are having a conversation with Gilberto Zorio, (the great Italian Arte Povera artist), at the Serralves Foundation during the lunch.

 

© private foundation van biesen-mestdagh 16.09.2017