If I Can't Dance I Don't Want To Be…

If I Can't Dance, I Don't Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution: 'Feminist Legacies and Potentials in Contemporary Art Practice'

de Appel, Nieuwe Spiegelstraat 10, Amsterdam

‘If I Can't Dance, I Don't Want to Be Part of Your Revolution’
Edition II: ‘Feminist Legacies and Potentials in Contemporary Practice’

16 November 2006 - 14 January 2007

As an agile and experimental curatorial platform, 'If I Can't Dance...' departs from a spirit of open questioning and enquiry with artists. This year it looks specifically at the legacies and potentials of feminism in relation to art today. Beginning with the quote of Emma Goldman: 'If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution', the project explores the critical and celebratory implications of this statement.

‘If I Can't Dance...’ is not trying to sum up a contemporary feminist art or to collate an aesthetic for feminism, but rather to explore how feminist thinking on all levels (social, artistic, political, theoretical, ideological or structural) may be important in our cultural life. There is currently a rich artistic discourse, which taps into this legacy and manifests itself in the materiality and language of visual art, but also interrogates how artists choose to perform themselves and their work within the dominant visual economy. The project aims to explore these tendencies as inquisitively and openly as possible.

Developing 'If I Cant Dance...' with De Appel makes it possible to articulate a historical context for this legacy very precisely. Established in 1975, this art centre has a rich history of showing experimental art for over thirty years and a revived interest in its programming now. Archival documentation exploring this legacy from the late 70's and early 80's will be presented. These practices provide an interesting comparison to the vernacular used by artists to think through ideas of agency, singularity and political empowerment today.

'If I Can't Dance...' doesn't offer a determined survey in the form of a single exhibition, it works repeatedly with an expanding group of over thirty artists in a series of public platforms. To this end, in Amsterdam 'If I Can't Dance...' manifests itself as an exhibition and a series of performances at De Appel, a symposium at De Balie, an 'insert' by the Otolith Group into the exhibition 'Just in Time' at the Stedelijk Museum CS and with two evening events at Club 11.

De Appel 17:00-20:00/'t Zonnehuis 20:00-24:00
November 16, 2006
With: 'Act'

De Appel
November 17, 2006 - January 7, 2007
With: Alexandra Bachzetsis & Lies Vanborm, Bless, Kate Davis, Pascale Gatzen & Myrza de Mynck, Karl Holmqvist, Jutta Koether, Claudia & Julia Müller, Isabel Nolan, Paulina Olowska, Falke Pisano, Stefanie Seibold, Lucy Skaer, Frances Stark, Lily van der Stokker, Sue Tompkins, Haegue Yang and a selection from the archive of de Appel.

Performance Weekend

Saturday, January 13:

Will Holder
"Recital of Gertrude Stein's 'The Making of the Americans'"
Continuously from 13:00-19:00

Haegue Yang
"Storage Piece"
with: Sara Vanhee, Art-Jan de Vries

Maria Pask and Esther de Vlam
"The Birds and the Bees"
with: Vela Arbutina, Melanie Bonajo, Carolin Reichert, Tania Theodorou, Marianne Vierø
percussion: Simon de Swaaf

Sunday, January 14:

Will Holder
"Recital of Gertrude Stein's 'The Making of the Americans'"
Continuously from 13:00-19:00

Sarah Pierce/The Metropolitan Complex
"Readings from 'The Meaning of Greatness'"

Haegue Yang
with: Sara Vanhee, Art-Jan de Vries
"Storage Piece"

Judith Hopf
"'What do you look like'? Acrypto Demonic Mystery"

"Inside me outside you"

Performances start sharp; the performance by Will Holder can be attended any time between 13:00 and 19:00 hrs. All performances are in English except for the performance of Haegue Yang which is in Dutch. Unfortunately the performances of Susan Ciancolo and Sue Tompkins have been cancelled due to illness.

Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 January

The Shadow Cabinet
The formative years of de Appel under the Directorship of Wies Smals (1975-1983) focussed on performance practice. Performance as the outstanding medium for articulating notions of agency and empowerment, was in these years actively explored by women artists from the perspective of its potential to generate ideas and longings related to feminism. In the 'Shadow Cabinet' a selection of archival material from this period of de Appel's history is on show, compiled by Frederique Bergholtz, Nell Donkers (archivist of de Appel) and Stefanie Seibold. This selection is presented in the context of an installation by the latter, including documentation of performances by a.o. Martha Wilson, VALIE EXPORT, Gina Pane and Carolee Schneeman.
Continously, 13:00-19:00

Series of clothes
During the last two months Pascale Gatzen, together with a.o. Myrza de Mynck, Alexandra Bachzetsis, Jonas Olsson and Marc Nagtzaam, has been developing a new series of clothes. This series departs, not from a fixed concept 'from above' (culminating in a grand 'finale'), but wants to originate 'from within', by means of a collective creative exploration which encourages playfullnes and endaevor in relation to both the act of making and the sensibility towards materials, and is deliberately aiming for 'open endedness'. Motivation is developing clothes that don¹t use women as representational devices for the concept of the designer(s), but can be truely inhabited by its wearers, and consequently, loaded with their singular meaning and expression. The collection is due to be presented on January the 20th at the reopening of W139 in Amsterdam. The studio at the attic of de Appel is during the performance weekend accessible for the audience.
Continuously, 17:00-19:00

Third year students from the Graphic Design Department of the Rietveld Academy have, under guidance of Julia Born, developed publicity campaigns for "Act" by Alexandra Bachzetsis, Lies Vanborm and Tina Bleuler which was performed on November 16 in Amsterdam-Noord on the occasion of the opening of 'Feminist Legacies and Potentials in Contemporary Art Practice'. This performance, that explored the genre of the striptease, played with the features of the secret, unannounced gig. The students were asked to develop ideas for starting a buzz.
Continuously, 13:00-19:00

Symposium I: 'Feminist Legacies and Potentials in Contemporary Art Practice'
De Balie
November 18, 2006
With (a.o.): Iris van der Tuin, Helena Reckitt, Daria Martin, Aneta Szylak, Karl Holmqvist and Sue Tompkins.

Symposium II: 'Curating and Feminism Today'
Stedelijk Museum CS at Club 11
December 7, 2006
With (a.o.): Mirjam Westen, Heike Munder (tbc) and Bettina Steinbruegge.

Insert in 'Just in Time'
Stedelijk Museum CS
December 1, 2006 - March 11, 2007
With: The Otolith Group (Anjalika Sagar & Kodwo Eshun) and a selection from the archive of the Stedelijk Museum CS.

Film- and Performance programme
Stedelijk Museum CS at Club 11
December 21, 2006.
On the occasion of the launch of the 4th issue of GLU magazine. With: Susanne Winterling (curator of the film programme 'The Fantasy of Failed Utopias and a Girl's Daydream' with contributions by Emily Roysdon, Marriage, E.E. Cassidy, Erika Vogt, Kat Ross, Kaucyila Brooke, Margo Victor, Lynn Chan, and Eve Fowler) and Djuna Barnes (DJ afterparty).

'If I Can't Dance...' is curated by Frederique Bergholtz and Annie Fletcher

Edition II of ' If I Can't Dance...' has four phases at: Huis & Festival a/d Werf, Utrecht, March & May 2006 | de Appel, Amsterdam, November, 2006 - January, 2007 | Huis & Festival a/d Werf, Utrecht, May 2007 | MuHKA, Antwerp, September - November, 2007

Financial Support
Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst, British Council, The Netherlands Fund for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture, Municipality of Amsterdam, Ministry of OC&W, Mondriaan Foundation, Stichting Cultuurfonds van de Bank Nederlandse Gemeenten.

For updated information on the programme and addresses of the venues, times, entrance fees and opening times check: www.ificantdance.org

Poster If I can't dance 2006/2007

affiche, 2006

Stefanie Seibold – A reader If I Can't Dance I Don't Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution – Feminist Legacies And Potentials In Contemporary Art Practice

affiche, 2006

Stefanie Seibold – A reader If I Can't Dance I Don't Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution – Feminist Legacies And Potentials In Contemporary Art Practice

affiche, 2006

Stefanie Seibold – A reader If I Can't Dance I Don't Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution – Feminist Legacies And Potentials In Contemporary Art Practice

affiche, 2006