While I get ready, the world is burning.

While I get ready the world is burning.

Durative Performative Installation
4 hours
Salon Des Amateurs
Düsseldorf, Germany

This durative performance is inspired by the Romanian saying, “While the country is burning, the old lady brushes her hair”. A saying to express the fact that we are not interested in the circumstances and situations around us so much and we’d rather take care of things that are not so important, sometimes only to not think about important matters. Yet this performance is also portraying the feeling of never being ready and never being good enough or prepared enough to take action and to be involved.


The performer is in the middle of a club (Salon des Amateurs). In front of her is a mirror and a TV. Behind her, a stool and a pile of clothes. On the TV, a loop is playing terrifying scenes news events happeing at the time of the performance, like for example a driver running his car into demonstrators in Charlottesville USA. These images alternates with popular YouTube challenges the time, like for example putting a condom in one’s nose, snorting it and pulling it out of the mouth. As the loop plays and the crowd in the club gets their drinks, the performer picks different outfits from the pile of clothes and try to fit in them without success because they are a few numbers too small. Some of the clothes break and cannot be used anymore. She repeats this action, and change her clothes constantly. In between outfits she stops and watches the TV.  After four hours she stops. She picks up everything and the crowd in the club starts partying. 


What is important when you do not know how to understand anything anymore –
Alas, there are simpler things out there that you can easily do. I don’t know what side I should take, and I cannot talk about it.
I watch passively, when I can find some free time…
Yet sometimes, the information is so far away.
There are easier things to do.
Lightly –
Lovely decoration. The decoration has always something nice to say.
How about this colour for your dress?
How about this colour for your dress?
This evil happening outside, does not have any clear enemies.
I can do easier things.
How about this colour for your dress?
While I get ready, the world is burning.

The performance serves as well as a social experiment: while the performance was happening and the images on the TV were starring back at the people that were present, the audience had a completely different attitude compared to right after the performance when the seen was out of sight and out of mind.  

A shift of attention from something socially worrying like natural calamities or even personal problems often happens when we decide to swipe these under the carpet and instead attend to other social matters.

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