I would like to share some of my thoughts about difficulties with ‘international’ studies in arts, especially in dance and performance. Growing political and social crises in life always radicalize inequalities and the ways in which somebody is (and can become) an international student. Much of this became maybe more explicit in the current pandemic crisis, but that does not mean that they didn’t exist already before. We go to study and teach in other environments to exchange and share experiences, to learn from each other and dwell in the environment to which we temporary belong. At the same time, especially in art programs, international studies are not only an exchange of knowledge, but also an intensive, continuous and non-innocent proximity and sharing of bodies, lives and relations, which deeply influence how we breathe in the environment that we are in. These processes are vulnerable, unpredictable and extremely precarious, and even if there is a common interest in research and experimentation, in the imaginative and speculative potential of art, these processes are influencing lives and bodies in very different ways. How is it possible to study and recognize the asymmetrical, often unequal and differently that mark our situations of coming together? Do we need other ways of reciprocity, support and also institutional structures, which would take these precarious processes into account? What kind of atmosphere and environments do we need to care for various bodily situations and experiences to engage in the reciprocity of breathing together?
Prof. Dr. Bojana Kunst is a philosopher, dramaturg and performance theoretician. She works as a professor at the Institute for Applied Theater Studies in Justus Liebig University Giessen, where she is leading an international master program Choreography and Performance. She is a member of the editorial board of Maska Magazine, Amfiteater and Performance Research. Her last book is Artist at Work, Proximity of Art and Capitalism, Zero Books, Winchester, London, 2015. See: https://kunstbody.wordpress.com/
Curated by Sandra Noeth (HZT Berlin – MA SODA).
With: Bojana Kunst