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23 Jun 2013

Yael Bartana 'Two Minutes of Standstill', Cologne, 28 June, 11 AM / Impulse Theater Biennial 2013

Filmstill 'Trembling Time' (2001) by Yael Bartana, courtesy of the artist

Yael Bartana 'Two Minutes of Standstill'
Impulse Theater Biennial 2013, June 27 - July 6


Cologne, 28 June, 11 AM


+49 (0) 202 698 27 207

Impulse Theater Biennial 2013
Friedrich-Engels-Allee 85
42285 Wuppertal

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A city comes to a standstill. People get up, fall silent. Lessons are interrupted in schools and universities, the shop owner stops selling, assembly lines in factories come to a halt. Standstill.
Inspired by the Israeli memorial day Yom HaShoah, the holiday to commemorate the victims and resistance fighters of the Holocaust, Yael Bartana calls for a symbolic pause of everyday life: 'Two Minutes of Standstill' is a political act, a social sculpture, and a collective performance in the city of Cologne.

„I strongly feel that Germany needs to create alternative moments of commemoration which, for example, also include newcomers – a ritual that refers to the present day and future and not only to the history. We have to deal with our history together. So rather than talking about guilt, it is more about being aware of what is happening around us. We ought to commemorate the past but to recognize the present. By this we can recognize the chain of effects caused by the Second World War in the Middle East as well as in Europe up till today. In this regard the performance seeks to make the act of commemoration available to other cultures. It also wants to give thought and respect to the tragedies still taking place today. This is how we can give the past meaning in the present.'

Two Minutes of Standstill
is a proposal for a wide reaching debate in Cologne and beyond, about how we can actively commemorate the past today.

(Yael Bartana in conversation:

For more information and participation please visit:

'Two Minutes of Standstill' is a central artistic project for the Impulse Theater Biennial 2013. Using the title 'Under the Influence,' the festival examines the meaning of cultural identities, poses the question of the properties specific to theater in the German-speaking world, and reassess the idea of a national culture.
From June 27 to July 6, Impulse Theater Biennial presents outstanding independent theatre-, dance- and performance-works created in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
This year Impulse is presenting a total of 14 productions by artists including andcompany&Co., Cecilie Ullerup Schmidt / Matthias Meppelink, Christian Garcia, Theater HORA / Jérôme Bel, deufert&plischke, Showcase Beat Le Mot, Gesine Danckwart, Hofmann&Lindholm, Theater im Bahnhof, Tamer Yiğit / Branka Prlić, Bernadette La Hengst, Damian Rebgetz, She She Pop.

'Two Minutes of Standstill' is a project by Impulse Theater Biennial 2013, funded by the Academy of The Arts of the World, Cologne.

Impulse Theater Biennial 2013 is curated by Florian Malzacher (artistic director) and Stefanie Wenner (dramaturg).

Impulse Theater Biennial 2013 is organized by the NRW KULTURsekretariat in collaboration with the cities of Bochum, Düsseldorf, Cologne and Mülheim an der Ruhr and funded by Kunststiftung NRW, Sparkasse KölnBonn, Kulturministerium NRW, the Academy of The Arts oft the World, Cologne and the Goethe-Institut.