21:21 / Petra Hrašćanec and Ksenija Zec

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Artist statement

Who is performing?

The friction created when the body on stage producing in line with the techniques derived from other media, such as sound, acting, photography, text or film offers a broad range of possible questions and answers mainly for the spectator. Conventions of the body as an instrument and mere mechanism for the production within the theatrical and social context function as the central drive for 21:21 new investigations and works.

The body as an instrument of creation and expression is opposed to the position of a performer-interpreter who delivers, transmits or shows. Throughout the pedagogical and performative work, 21:21 has been investigating the transmission/translation of the initial idea through the performer where the main idea is that the added value to the artist /interpreter is not the one which shows but rather the one which becomes work itself. Thus, the performer exhibits and confronts her own working techniques with the concepts created by other authors.

Creation eluding the possibility of its own interpretation opens space for affirmation and examination of working techniques at the same time attributing to distillation of specific interest within a creative process. In case of 21:21, choreography and stage movement applies broadly to various forms of art, i.e. dance, drama theatre, musical theatre, opera, multimedia, and film. Joint interest in all those projects still remains the performer’s individual skill, a sophisticated use of the body as an instrument with the objective to create a specific kind of vocabulary as well as a compositional procedure. In the end, those various forms are attributed with extremely physical character of the performance. Collaboration as a concept is the central point explored in the framework of the multimedia project titled IS_LAND with the use of non-hierarchical creation and decision-making models. Thus, the question “who is performing?“ gets complimented with the question “who is creating?”

Artistic work implies taking responsibility for the role of the performer and author on stage and outside of it. Porous structure of the very act and elusiveness of dance is not only the matter of theoretical discourse in the performing arts; it raises the question of self- sustainability and presence of that media inside of stable structures of art production. 21:21 builds on their pedagogical, choreographic and performing activities with its involvement in a number of platforms for creation, reception and distribution of dance art. 21:21 offers financing and production opportunities to young authors and was one of the founders of the MONOPLAY contemporary dance festival in Zadar presenting solo forms by renowned European artists as well as creations by unknown young artists. At the same time, the festival offers the distribution of their works during the current year. Important issues, such as performing, performer/audience relationship, production technologies and procedures and collaborative models of creation can all be expressed in a single thought:

„Who is performing?“, „Who is creating?“ and „How does someone perform and create?“

Some of 21:21 works have been shown at: Arsenic in Lussane, Gesneralle u Zurich, ImpulsTanz in  Vienna, Tanz Platform in Munich, Tanz platz in Novi Sad, Opera Estate u Bassano de Grappa, Atos de fala – Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Ljubljana, Maribor, Gorizia, Nova Goriza, Barri.

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