Artistic
Research
Week 2021

Book Launch

“Love With Obstacles” Dora García

Presentation of the book
“Love with Obstacles (Amor Rojo)”

Love with Obstacles (Amor Rojo)
Dora García (ed.)
Published by K. Verlag
(https://k-verlag.org/)

Love with Obstacles (Amor Rojo) brings together Spanish artist Dora García’s collaborative research on the life and legacy of Alexandra Kollontai (1872–1952)—a revolutionary, socialist, feminist, activist, and intellectual. From 1922 to 1945, Kollontai was a Soviet ambassador in various countries, including Mexico. She was a key agitator for the sexual and social emancipation of women; as the only female member of the first Soviet government, she also managed to implement many measures women continue to fight for today, including the legalization of abortion and the protection of women’s rights. Already at the end of the 1920s, Kollontai’s texts had been translated into many languages, finding a special resonance in Spanish-speaking countries; her influence is still felt in contemporary Latin American feminist struggles.

The book includes Alexandra Kollontai’s essay “On the ‘Dragon’ and the ‘White Bird,’” translated into English here for the first time. It is followed by a selection of poems by Anna Akhmatova, one of the most significant Russian poets of the twentieth century. In keeping with Amor Rojo’s focus on Kollontai’s legacy in Mexico and her connection to contemporary feminist movements, the book also features a rare collection of images that document women’s struggles from the Archive of the Feminist Movement (1964 to 1990), created by the editor, activist, and photographer Ana Victoria Jiménez, and the Historical Archive of the Lesbian Feminist Movement in Mexico (1976–present), founded by the lesbian feminist activist Yan María Yaoyólotl.

The design of the book borrows its form from a case of radical clandestine publishing. In 1977, Swedish publisher Bo Cavefors hid especially controversial political writings in romantic novel entitled Kärlek med förhinder [Love With Obstacles]. Beneath the subterfuge of bourgeois romantic love, the actual content appeared: raf: texte (the German militant organization known as the Rote Armee Fraktion, or RAF, did not use capital letters). By disguising the explosive political writings of the RAF as a popular romance, Cavefors was able to smuggle copies into Western Europe for distribution. For García, this design gesture is a preliminary provocation to think about the tension between subversive feminist content and conventional assumptions about “female sensitivity” and “romantic love.”

With contributions by Alexandra Kollontai, Anna Akhmatova, Ruth Estévez, Paloma Contreras Lomas, Maria Lind, Dora García, Carla Lamoyi, Rina Ortiz, Álvaro Ruiz Rodilla, and Ana Sofía Rodríguez Everaert; Spanish-English translation by Christopher Winks; Russian-English translation by Joan Brooks; and design by Alex Gifreu.

English
284 pages

15 × 21 cm
B/w & full-color images
Softcover, Swiss-bound with dust jacket
ISBN print edition 978-3-947858-12-5

Listen to Alexandra Kollontai at K. Voices
https://soundcloud.com/user-651742369-770075499/sets/love-with-obstacles-amor-rojo
Press Release
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1k4n2oEuzykzGFKLZLEPArGHutalCgfHU/view

Love with Obstacles (Amor Rojo) is #5 in García’s series Mad Marginal (published since 2010). The volume appears on the occasion of her solo exhibition Love with Obstaclesat the Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts, 13 Feb to 17 May 2020.

This book project has been realised thanks to the generous support of Fundación Arte y Mecenazgo, KHiO Oslo Norway (KUF grant), Kulturrådet (Arts Council) Norway, and Rose Art Museum.

Work Group

Objective Enactive
This online lecture-demonstration unfolds the term ´Poetic Materiality´ within the context of designing and choreographing with Somatic Costumes. Through critiquing and applying the somatic practice of Skinner Releasing Technique, the poetics of philosopher Gaston Bachelard and the materiality of anthropologist Tim Ingold, this talk begins to map poetic and material agencies between bodies-costumes within the design-performance encounter.

Artist Talk

Objective Enactive

This talk will focus on the first outcome of Glitsch(ening) Ci(rculari)ty, a tripartite site-specific, where I am pursuing a speculative exploration of the ecology of the city, between the urban and the biological, unfolding its layers and materiality of time. The talk will end in a conversation between fellow researchers and artists in the collaborative project Urban Ecologies, where Glitsch(ening) Ci(rculari)ty, is generated from.

Presentation

Polyvocal Tongue
The presentation will focus on relational ethics and polyvocality in performative text. It will also explore the use of plural languages in a play, looking at how a polylingual praxis can open up new aesthetic potential in playwrighting and in artistic research in general.

Conversation

TRANSPOSITIONS— JAR, Mette Edvardsen and modular diaries

At the start, the idea for an artistic research conversation with Mette Edvardsen did not spring out of the topics shortlisted for the conference—hospitality, vulnerability and care—but a book that she had co-edited, and dropped in my shelf.

Panel Discussion

The Ethics of Vulnerability and Artistic Research

Any ethical framework must take account of the vulnerability of the human condition. This is significant in all creative endeavours – especially in artistic practice and the teaching of it – since the very act of creating something and putting it out into the world is an expression of vulnerability.