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27 Nov 2009

Mobile Academy presents: On the Scene of Intimacy. A Phantasmagoria

Videostill from '20 Silhouettes on the Shade'

On the Scene of Intimacy. A Phantasmagoria


Thu. 3rd – Sat. 5th of December 2009
From 7 pm – 11 pm, continuous entry
HAU 1, Stresemannstr. 29, Berlin


c/o Hebbel am Ufer HAU1
Stresemanstr. 29
D-10963 Berlin

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Mobile Academy presents:

On the Scene of Intimacy. A Phantasmagoria

With a silhouette film, a parlamonium, in the carousel of shadows: the Excellence Cluster 'Languages of Emotion' of the Free University Berlin, charismatic counseling: 'Cooling Down Passion' and several oxytocinists.

Thu. 3rd – Sat. 5th of December 2009

From 7 pm – 11 pm, continuous entry
HAU 1, Stresemannstr. 29, Berlin

There are no adequate words for most feelings. Or vice versa: one always has only those feelings for which one has words, which one defines or interprets. We are thereby constrained to speak in jargon, in the language available to us. Ultimately, then, what is felt seems to correspond to what is formulated. Thus, narrative templates create feelings, assisted by a burgeoning market of consultation and counseling with its therapeutic language terrorism that penetrates into every public and private sphere.

The new installation of the Mobile Academy presents current scientific and poetic attempts to formulate excitement, affect, and feeling in dialog.
Speech and counter-speech and phantasmagoric word added value at a fair populated by 100 silhouettes!

Cooling Down Passion (or: the end of self-improvement)

The new language that Freud invented to describe and steer the mind very soon became part of popular culture. The psychoanalytic and therapeutic style is one of the greatest success stories of cultural encoding in the 20th century. Today, everyone potentially possesses cultural techniques to standardize and manage his or her private self and intimate relationships, so that a progressive, daily work of improving our feelings is ensured. The psycho-slang with which we describe ourselves and others is a language of control and optimization fed into a gigantic self-improvement industry.

In individual sessions on all three days, 11 auguring advisors & 1 advisor to the advisors offer mantic ideas on 'Cooling Down Passion'. Presented here is the type of charismatic counseling that relies on the presence of the counselor, his suggestive (un)certainty, and his lack of interest in pragmatic suggestions, recommendations, and instructions.
Turn symptoms into diagnoses and diagnoses into prognoses!

The Israeli cultural sociologist Eva Illouz broadcasts instructions to immunize oneself against self-observation's promises of salvation:

It's time to stop wanting to improve yourselves!
Controlling oneself means controlling others!
Feel less!

A Shadow Carousel with Scholarly Showpeople

For two years, the research association 'Languages of Emotion' has been plumbing the connections between emotions and signaling practices, bundling scientific competences from more than 20 disciplines in the humanities and natural sciences, each with its own traditions of thinking about emotions. For the last 20 years, research on emotions has mostly ignored the role of language, while research on language has ignored the role of emotions. The cluster's multidisciplinary structure aims to change this from both sides.
40 scientists present their themes and research at the 'Showplace of Intimacy' in discussion with specialized colleagues, interested parties, and clients:

Admiration. Aging. Alexithymia. Anxiety. Beauty. Brooding. Chainsaw. Coolness. Curiosity. Dementia. Disgust. Fake Feelings. Fans and Fandom. Fascination. Forgiveness. Hymn-like Veneration. Melodrama. Mimesis. National Pride. Pride. Rural Life. Shame. The Hague. Obsession. Uncanny Places. Vexation. Zebra Finches.

Twenty Silhouettes on the Shade

A remake of Schnitzler's 'Reigen' (La Ronde).

Ten years ago, the actress and later gay icon from Jena met the queen of 'tea room' sex and later stepfather of her children in Los Angeles and they fell in love, beginning this Berlin rondo. All 20 characters are tied together through their scholarly work, art production, and sex in various overlapping constellations. In the shadow film, they meet in pairs for short dialogs that touch upon many topics (that were in the air on the day of the shoot); in chats and gossip, what could be called the intimacy of friendship is formulated. Friendship follows an economy of time that differs from that of the affair. It develops only under long-term conditions; a friend is not immediately there and is not immediately recognized; he needs elbow room. Friendship is always in becoming and develops slowly. It is a promise, and its presence is only a rehearsal, this evening as a shadow and love play. The protagonists are recognizable only as silhouettes, a cheap abstraction that nonetheless makes it possible to give voice to feelings beyond the identificatory-psychologizing determination of subjects.

Encountering each other in the one-hour shadow film are:
the double-divorcée from Jena; the Professor for Theory, Practice, and Mediation; the Pole; The Tea Room Queen from New York; the underground filmmaker from Cologne; the autodidact from Oregon; the reluctant pornographer; the mother of twins; the artist from Paris; the New York Theorist of promiscuity; the friend; the fancy lady from Düsseldorf; the retarded whore; the publisher from Kreuzberg; the gossip theorist from the Free University Berlin; the French diva; the female artist; the black-and-white filmmaker from Winnipeg; the film curator on Potsdamer Platz; the dandy from the precariat; the American dialectician of intimacy; the twin brother; and… Salome passes by.

The Mobile Academy designs simulation spaces for knowledge transfer and hallucinatory adult education on various topics. The best-known model is the 'Black Market for Useful Knowledge and Non-Knowledge'. Issue No. 12 took place in September with 1000 visitors in Jaffa-Tel Aviv. The Mobile Academy is a project by Hannah Hurtzig with changing partners, stationed at the HAU theatre.

Concept & Space: Mobile Acadamy/Hannah Hurtzig
Installation Design: raumlaborberlin/Benjamin Foerster-Baldenius, Florian Stirnemann
Project Director Excellence Cluster: Prof. Dr. Irene Albers, Dr. Markus Edler

Team: Carena Brenner (Research), Ina Driemel (Film Assistance), Susanne Görres (Technical Management), Novina Göhlsdorf (Interviews), Karin Harrasser (Scientific Consultation), Philipp Hochleichter (Stage Manager), Jörg Johow (Camera Silhoutte Film), Ulrich Kalliske/Mathias Kirschke/Florian Fischer (Sound Silhouette Film), Babette Kemnitz-Hille/Annette Kemnitz-Zimmermann (Palentypists), Tito Knapp (Sound), Merle Kröger (Cut Silhouette Film), Frauke Luther (Production Management), Hila Peleg (Curatorial Consultation),Thomas Schmidt (Technical Production Management), Daniela Schöler (Archivist), Pit Schultz (Sound Design), Fridjof Vareschi (Production Assistance)

A project of Mobile Academy at HAU and the Excellence Cluster 'Languages of Emotion', Freie Universität Berlin
Supported by Hauptstadtkulturfonds and Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft