MONUMENTAL ISSUES
Lecture Performance
PAO@Kulturnatt, 16th September 2016

A lecture performance about the rise of the individual and the rise of the seas in the age of the globalised attention economy. Switching between personal anecdote and a guided tour of public monuments and public artworks at Oslo's elite Aker Brygge development, Kirsty Kross discussed a recent performance in which she swam in Croatia with an iceberg made from unwanted trash belonging to Ai Wei Wei (that had been collected from refugee camps in Greece), the rapid increase of housing costs in Oslo in relation to the socially minded ideals of post-war property developer Jens Olav Walaas Selvaag as well as the personal difficulties of being an artist with roots in both Norway and Australia. The performance ended in an underground carpark with Kirsty Kross dressed as her coral trout persona dancing a silent circle around Fredrik Raddum's public art work "One Foot in the Grave".

The performance used public monuments and artworks as stages and thereby discussed the potential of performance art and public monuments and artworks. Often ignored, but deeply emblematic of power structures, public monuments and artworks are permanent and fixed, whereas performance is temporal and corporeal. By performing at such sites, performance can act as a kind of counter-monument or counter-gesture which can critique existing structures or imbue these works with new meanings which can, in turn, enable the re-materialisation and public engagment of an otherwise static art form.

Photos:Siavash Afsharian