RAMON GUIMARÃES + JOHANNA SPEIDEL
performance + screening + discussion
As a run up to International Women’s Day on March 8, we’re programming two artists whose work centres on identity, body, women, poetry and collective memory. We present Pila de plats, a ritual performance by Ramon Guimarães to remind us of the abuse still suffered by many women, followed by the screening of a selection of videographic works by Johanna Speidel, reflecting her lengthy trajectory, with particular emphasis on projects featuring exchanges with her friends, or those stemming from La Ternura Cultural Association.
Barcelona, 1968. Visual artist and performer, he defines his work as a work in progress of continuous creation with which he expresses and exposes himself using body, voice and movement. Feelings, emotions and personal experiences are the raw materials used in this physical, psychological and emotional self-exploration. By stylising or exaggerating reality, he brings our attention to and questions false, heteronormative truths, moving from the personal to the universal. Identity, gender matters, as well as physical and emotional interaction with the spectator have been consistent themes in his work since he began performing in 1989.
With a Fine Arts degree and a Masters in Audiovisual Communication from Barcelona University, he has carried out more than 100 one-off performances and created more than 80 audiovisual works in various formats: interactive installations, multi-screen and mono-channel. He was recently awarded the UNZIP 2021 grant for teaching for his Capil·laritats, quatre accions de canvi i pertinença project, where he experiments with the transformation potential of performance with a group of women from El Prat de Llobregat.
screening + discussion
Reutlingen, Baden-Wurttemberg (Germany), 1961. Johanna Speidel is a multimedia artist who has been living in Madrid since 1987. She holds a degree in Fine Arts from Karlsruhe Academy of Fine Arts and another in German Language from Karlsruhe University.
She has been exhibiting multimedia installations, digital photography and videoart internationally since 1990. From time to time she also presents performances, and since 2016 she has been expressing her interest in art in nature.
She is a member of MAV – Mujeres en las Artes Visuales (Women in Visual Arts). As an arts manager (La Ternura Cultural Association) she conceives and coordinates projects between artists.
“I want to transcend borders boldly, open up intimate spaces transparently and transcendentally. These are places where emotions capture gestures that go through mirrors, reviewing anticuated concepts and ideas in fragmented compositions.”
Pila de plats
Inspired by Antoni Tàpies’ 1970 work of the same name, Ramon Guimarães moves and manipulates a pile of plates to produce a sensitive action on a subject that some would rather keep hidden, in order to create a participatory space for the creation of a collective memory constructed from each of the ritual and symbolic actions of the performer and the audience members, with the aim of promoting a change in our society where women continue to suffer abuse.
The action takes place within the framework of a personal transformation process towards a new masculinity, centred on the construction of a collective memory, with the intention of being a voice shouting ‘enough’ to symbolically shatter the abuses and inequalities suffered by more than half the humans on the planet merely for being born women, being aware of what they are or simply for showing evidence of their gender.
In sign language, a woman (Nube Schulte) tells us a love story. Her gestures express her world. She’s alone by a lake and communicates with her inner voices.
The staircase at the Vatican as a symbol of eternal transition.
Music: Ebba Rohweder
Poem: Antonio Santamaría Solís
A fleeting encounter between heaven and earth, the feminine and the masculine, man, woman.
Do it yourself IV: Videomessages / La escalera
At the invitation of La Ternura cultural association (Johanna Speidel), five video artists (Paula Noya, Daniel Chauquero, Ana Matey, Ebba Rohweder and Johanna Speidel) exchange visual messages in the manner of social network structures, with return addresses and replies. This visual experiment, with no spoken words, increases the perception of image, sound, colour and physical expression.
The world as a mirror. The river Minho, close to Portuguese village Vila Nova de Cerveira, first reflects the eyes of its living inhabitants and then, on the opposite bank, shows the eyes of the dead. The river symbolising the bringing and the taking away of life.
Signos y Significados (2018-19)
I asked 22 artists I knew personally to interpret either by performance, text or poetry the Tarot’s Major Arcana cards reimagined by myself in digital photographs.
- Joan Casellas gives action to The Wheel of Fortune card with a performance at the ABM Confecciones auditorium (Madrid).
- Yolanda Pérez Herreras interprets the Temperance card with a participatory performance at Theredoom Gallery (Madrid).
Entre las cortinas: La margarita
This is a poetic proposal defending the visibility of women artists. Behind a curtain, the artist removes the petals from a daisy, as lovers do: “I want to be seen”, “I don’t want to be seen”, “I want to be paid for my work as an artist”, “I don’t want to be paid for my work as an artist”, etc., with the final conclusion being yes, and this is my own decision, I want to be seen and I want to be paid for my work as an artist.
Entre las cortinas: La loba
Entre las cortinas tackles our hopes and fears in times of covid: the powerful she-wolf is capable of shredding net curtains.
Ventana: Creadoras en las nubes (Trailer)
Conversations with women creators from Madrid in front of their favourite window, with the leitmotiv of clouds in the sky, a paradigm of shifting emotions. An intimate reflection on the situation lived by women artists, their lives, thoughts and concerns when creating. How do these artists feel today, on one side and the other of that small separation that is their window? Intimate interviews, where their personal living spaces are as important as the influence those real and mental spaces have on their way of being, their lives and their artistic production. Virginia Woolf said that women creators need a room of their own and sufficient funds to dedicate time to their work. Those needs are the same today.
FLUX CLUB celebrates its 13th season at the Antic Teatre and the 22nd anniversary of its creation in 2000.
This is a fortnightly video programme that reflects the vitality of video creation in Barcelona. It hosts all kinds of sessions with screenings, video performances, and debates offering direct contact between audiences and video creators. The sessions focus on a range of subjects, from monographics of well-known directors to specific themes such as video dance and video poetry, or collective sessions dedicated to emerging authors.
The programme is open to everything currently going on in the field of video in Barcelona, complementing the FLUX Video Auteur Festival with its content and extending its sphere of influence beyond the dates of the festival, which takes place in December.
HABITUAL VIDEO TEAM is a non-profit association that has as its main objective the promotion of activities related to the visual arts, specifically, video art: www.habitualvideoteam.org.
A fundamental area of their work is the organisation of festivals, cycles and video shows, such as the FLUX Video Auteur Festival: www.fluxfestival.org, and the INFLUX Audiovisual Performing Arts Festival: www.influxfestival.org.
Another area of Habitual Video Team’s activity is video documentation of cultural events mainly related to experimental music and poetry performances. In 2012 they launched the SUMMA project in order to convert this audiovisual heritage (more than 1000 recordings) into a non-profit online video archive: www.summa-hvt.org.