The anti angelic host*

*The title of the show is borrowed from The Anti-Angelic host – On Virginia Woolf and the politics of hosting by Jan Verwoert

A project by Danai Giannoglou, Ersi Varveri, Paky Vlassopoulou, Gijs Waterschoot
@The Pink House, Antwerp

The hostess as a hostage
I am in an empty house which is full of people, I do not know what to do with my hands nor my mouth. When I wake up I pretend to sleep for a little longer and every time I need to use the bathroom I do the same thing.
I feel like a mother who thought she wanted children, because she thought they were something else than what they actually are. I feel like a mother who doesn’t like her kids.
This summer I woke up from a terrible nightmare. The nightmare was that the people living in my guest house had drunk water from the tap which I forgot to tell them that wasn’t potable.
In French the same noun is used to describe the host and the guest. This noun is masculine. When the noun is used in feminine it only evokes the hostess.
My mother used to say to my father «what would you like to do for your birthday honey?» and she would go on «just do not tell me you want to invite people over»
I wonder if we spend all of our lives being either hosts or guests. What do you do better?
Yesterday night I googled: Ideas on how to be a good hostess when at the same time you feel like a stranger.
A hot host held a hostess hostage, the hostage hostess shot the host, it was hot.

a text by Danai Giannoglou

Hello Mrs Ramsay (Things Don’t Change That Fast), 2017
30 min.
@The Living Room XL, AIR Antwerpen, curated by Alan Quireyns
Special thanks to Frederiek Weda and Kim Snauwaert

Stemming from the distance between the person who is serving and the person who is being served, this work touches upon the woman’s role as a caretaker and questions social work regardless gender.

Two performers, a professional performer and the exhibition coordinator, are taking on the role of the hosts and serve the audience wine and sea snails. However, the utensils are deformed. The ceramic carafe used to serve the wine is 80cm long and the platter’s handle is almost one meter long. Attached to their shoes they have bricks and they wear neck ruffs highlighting the role of the servant. The title of the work is referencing the protagonist of Virginia’s Woolf “To the Lighthouse”, Mrs Ramsay, a role model for wife, woman and hostess.

(c) 2017 by Alena Schmick

If Future a Dead Loss, 2017
Werft 5 – Raum für Kunst, Cologne, Germany
installation, performance

2 hours approx.
Opening night. The waitresses stop serving drinks at a certain point of the night for no apparent reason. The visitors of the exhibition get involved in a particular frustrated transaction because of not being informed in advance.

Flip books
10 cm x 5 cm
Available for public to take away.
David Bowie, Muhammad Ali, Mark Fisher

«What happens if the young are no longer capable of producing surprises?»*
Conceived as a sculptural gesture, If Future a Dead Loss plays with the notion of a tribute to personal and collective expectations of western cultural production.

The central piece of this exhibition is 33,478 (2014-18), a sculpture comprised of a large wooden table that showcases books spines. The surface of the table alternates from glass blocks to wooden finish. I started by tearing pages of books, mostly encyclopedias, history books and dictionaries, only to keep the book spines, in order to question the manual labor behind the intellectual one. The work is using scenography, something between a staged funeral and a fashion defile, in order to unveil the void I face in contemporary cultural production.
At the opening night, 3 performers were taking orders and serving the audience but gradually failing purposefully to deliver. My ultimate goal was to infuse a feeling of temporary frustration in order to highlight the sentiment of reward over anticipation. Most of the audience left earlier due to bad service.
Lastly, the exhibition included 3 take away flipbooks with David Bowie, Muhammad Ali και Mark Fisher, who all died in the same year. The flipbooks bring the characters into motion through quick hand movements that bring back the gesture of manual labour.

*Mark Fisher, Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative?, John Hunt Publishing, 2009

Flip Book with David Bowie’s «Heroes» album cover, released in 1977

Cause love is such an old fashioned word (Δουρειος Ίππος), 2016
@Enterprise Projects
Installation, fanzines
A text commenting on the installation written by the artist Kosmas Nikolaou was displayed close to the benches. Πεζοτράγουδα για την Καλλιόπη (ή διαφορετικά το πένθος ταιριάζει στη Ηλέκτρα)

The relocation of  Kalabsha temple in Egypt  and its relation to story of the Trojan horse inspires the exhibition. The show is dealing with the idea of the monument, the ruins, the landmark, the performance of destruction and the ever shifting of the above definitions.
The exhibition space becomes a pseudo-historical space, a pseudo-memorial site where the audience is invited to consume. This work was constructed from materials that were either accidentally found at the exhibition area (studio of other artist) or moved from my studio mainly as repurposed elements of earlier works. The white acrylic paint along with a fanzine and a wall text by artist Kosmas Nikolaou, written especially for the exhibition, were the only new elements of the show.
The word “Welcome” written on the “Horse” indicates the intermediate moment that occurs in every encounter.

δελτίο τύπου / press release

photos: Stathis Mamalakis

Be quiet, 2016
Wood venner, plastic bags, marbles, prints, screwdriver, staryfoam, wheels, plastic bottles
NEVAN CONTEMPO, Prague/ Czech Republic
curated by Edith Jeřábková

Taking as a starting point two images, one from my studio and one from my home, depicting moments of inaction,the exhibition “Be Quiet” functions as a spatial experience with references to (collective) movement and personal routes. The gallery space was filled with a large floor sculpture, a collage of wooden veneer limiting the space, referencing aerial photography. Nailed on the walls, there were plastic sachets with marble chips in them.
I brought the marble from Athens myself in an act of mimicking the way valuable items are being transported. In the second room, the two images were installed together with a sculpture made of Styrofoam and plastic bottles filled with water. The synthesis, balanced on wheels, created an alternative elevated view of the landscape.

«I imagine a performer whispering “be quiet” in the ears of visitors, I imagine a male figure screaming at his desk, a psychotherapist with his client, a group of people in danger, a mother and child, and an artist in an empty room. All of these incarnations are stereotypical, since they live in us like archetypes from the past, though their irruption creates an uncertain tension. Fear of the historical means enslavement in the present. Controlled repetition has the ability to affect other recognition receptors. This exhibition should be both a particular and a universal starting point for individual considerations.»
part of the curatorial text by Edith Jeřábková, read the full text/CZ_EN

images by Peter Fabo

Aquaggaswack, 2015
steel, wood, rope, camping lights

The sculpture design is based on musical instrument shapes and the title is borrowed from one specific percussion instrument made in 1996. Having some specific musical instruments in mind, I worked on each sculpture thinking
of a physical element (air, light, fire) together with additional references to the circus, basic geometric shapes or summer idleness. My desire was to create a space between a playground and a sculpture park.

This project was produced in the framework of the exhibition “Fireworks Out of season-Riviera“, curated by Galini Notti,and took place at the open-air cinema Riviera in Exarcheia neighborhood of Athens on a winter weekend.

Aquaggaswack(d). 2015 @Mariza Nikolaou11_DSC2293 ga113_DSC1856ga2Aquaggaswack. 2015 @Mariza Nikolaou6_DSC2342 copy
photos by Mariza Nikolaou