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ABOUT ALYTUS BIENNIAL ACTIVITY Print
Written by Redas Diržys   

  

Consider the whole of your life, what you already do, all your doings. Now please exclude everything which is naturally physiologically necessary (or harmful), such as breathing and sleeping (or breaking an arm). For what remains, exclude everything which is for the satisfaction of a social demand, a very large area which includes foremost your job, but also care of children, being polite, voting, your haircut, and much else. From what remains, exclude everything which is an agency, a "means" -- another very large area which overlaps with others to be excluded. From what remains, exclude everything which involves competition. In what remains, concentrate on everything done entirely because you just like it as you do it. (Henry Flynt „Against „Participation“: Total Critique of Culture“)

 

Alytus [Art Strike] Biennial of 2013 is yielding a ground for counter-eurocentrist manifestation, denouncing the structural core of racist issues in White culture of biennalization, rising the decolonization of mind including Black Power experience and subversion of "normalization" processes into abnorlamization fiest. We aim at new possibility of human relationship practices without capitalist specialization and bourgeois culture resulted alienation. The event is planned for August 19-25th , 2013 in Alytus. Discussions on decolonization and particularly on its visual and linguistic issues are planned on September 21-23, 2012 in Alytus.


Prehistory
 

Alytus Biennial is a logic continuation of numerous international experimental art festivals and events held in southern Lithuanian town Alytus since 1993. So far the essential element for the town is an absence of any artistic infrastructure (no galleries, art museums, nor even some exhibition hall in the city hosting 70 000 inhabitants – sic! - and even no any promises from the municipal authorities) the events were held directly in the streets and other urbanist common places. The essential element for any of those activities was political-artistic behavior and problematic.

 

First events overtaking the streets of Alytus for 24 hours were held in 1993-1996 and beared name “Straight. Section”.

  

In 1998 the event was intended to held performances directly in the river Nemunas which violently crosses the city. The event was titled “River & Communication”. Unfortunately there happen an accident during the mounting of the piece from the bridge – one of the assistants fell down from the bridge. That was one of the mostly scandalous events during the decade in Lithuania. The access to the strategic constructions and public places was restricted for a period of few years as a result.

 

 

As a clearly defined event under the name of Alytus Biennial the event appeared in 2005. The basic idea for it was to continue experimental art tradition directly in the urban spaces of the town. So far it took the title “Beware!Politics!” it really stood somewhere in-between of arts and politics. The biennial also clamed for debienalization of arts and society so to respond to increasing number of various biennials appeared as art-value in itself. The communal approach of the artists community was taken as a highest value of the event to continue the development further.

 

 

The biennial of 2007 was given to youth with a task simply to demystify it’s importance an so to trap the sacred name of it. So far they did not succeed to destroy the biennial as the symbol of “serious culture” – next step was Art Strike Biennial.: to cease any artistic activity related to mimicking of Vilnius European Cultural Capital and/or any establishment in Lithuania in 2009. Establishment got pierced and Biennial turned into an activity to not produce arts every second the year.

 


Alytus [Art Strike] Biennial of 2011 yieldied a ground for the Congress of DAta Miners and Travailleurs Psychique (DAMTP). That happen on August 22-28th in Alytus. It aimed at gathering of world wide radical antiautoritaric post-neoist-out of Dadaists, surrealists or offsprings of fluxus and situationists, post artists (those who ceased their participation in capitalist spectacle), prophets, sages and seers, cultural, political and social workers, dead and alive, made-up and non-existant, reproductive workers and lovers – everybody who are active in the field of space, time and meaning under the umbrella of DAta Miners and Travailleurs Psychique to discuss, share and spread around our experiences and good will to destroy bourgeois culture and outlive capitalist specializations. So far we found art strike biennial very relevant form to abolish imperialist format of cultural biennial format, also to liberate some funds from them on that occasion and that was very pleasant form to outlive the death of art (and serious culture) in a place were it never was settled (yet).

So,

-          there were  invited everybody who ceased playing the role of artists, or are planning to do it soon – and we expect for not doing arts during the festival, but sharing your artistic experience and fantasies in more useful activities we’ll decide right at place

-         there were  invited theoreticians not to give the lectures and clever advices, neither addressing big names, but rather to look for latent possibilities not hidden under the shiny professionalism

-          there were  invited activists who instead of addressing global capitalist problems would face the misery of everyday life what is actual cause for it.

-          there were  invited everybody to set up the radical consequences of global capitalist cultural colonialism and to look forward for common acts in all levels of space, time and meaning.

The format of the congress:

The DAMTP congress openly adopted art strike format - to generate discussion and to repeat and develop collective practises.

The DAMTP congress collective practices consisted of:

-          Déjà vu day and night public preemptive anti-capitalist and counter-bourgeois-cultural pickets/demonstrations - dead workers of all nations and times were included;

-          writing of the multil-trans-non-asemic-angual slogans not keeping respect to common decissions while discussing it theoreticaly and covering some of them with paint with the task to improve what doesn't happen properly;

-          Déjà vu psychogeographic 3-sided football match in the public park;

-          Déjà vu developed and empowered total DIY music jam;

-          Déjà vu cloudbusting – the extraction of cosmic sexual energy extracted by 2 cloud engineering busters (according to invention by Wilhelm Reich)… and sharing will all people of good will around.

-          Déjà vu playing the game of war according Guy Debord's

-          getting to Déjà vu sunset of european civilization after day-long psycho-bus traveling


There was planned an impact/coallition with surrealists' communities, but instead [classical] surrealism got charges on psychic colonization from the side of black and coloured psychic workers. Besides the surrealist issues were discussed also the subverssions of jazz and rock'n'roll into the whities culture. The well phrased activities and dreams of white surrealists were redecided into the collective experiences prior to linguistication:

”Spontaneous festival of poetry made by all… to assist in the destruction of all repressive myths and ideologies and to assist in the creating the situation whereby all become poets” (Franklin Rosemont)

“Where life and death, the real and the imaginary, past and future, the communicable and the incommunicable, the high and the low, cease to be perceived as contradictions”. (Andre Breton) 

“Everyday life of the Pygmies in the African rainforest includes the custom of allowing anyone at any moment on any occasion to break spontaneously into dance. Whenever a member of his marvelous community feels like it he or she may simply begin to dance and others may join as the please....” (Debra Taub)

…and we’ll have “a great deal of company, - curious tourists from abroad, artistic people, and socialists…” (Arthur Sumner)... accompanied with an army of local elder teenagers.


And traditionally: no individual show-ups, no organized [visual] documentation ...and trying to avoid any... 

 

At the moment the Biennial joins the general strike of 2012 accomplishing it with creative experience and psychic liberation of humanity.  Biennial chooses various formats of fight against biennalization: biennial-to-biennial, individual-to-biennial, kamikaze-biennial, invisible-made-up-non-existant biennial and others. Also supports whatsoever attempt to destroy any biennial event by demotivation of it's workers and discreditation of their exploiters, also any cultural capital celebration and also we aim to support general art strike as black powered periferies of eurocentrism. 

 

 

 

Burn, Baby, Burn!

 

 

 

 

“If the end is the taking of power by the people themselves then the means must be the revolutionary organs of the people – worker councils, community councils, communes etc.

If the end is the freeing of man culturally as well socially and economically then the means exist in the destruction of “culture”.

If the end is the liberation of natural man then the means must be sexual as well as social.

If the end is the “totality” then the means must be “total” – all or nothing.”

Ben Morea. Black Mask No. 7, August/September 1967.