What is VOILÀ?
VOILÀ is a new exhibition project for the showcase of the design studio MM, M in Saarbrücken. Its goal is to create a model project for accessibility in (contemporary) art under fair working conditions within a real framework. The project was conceptualized by designer Martha Bayer (MM, M) and supported by the curators Katharina Ritter (M.A., head of the Stadtgalerie Saarbrücken) and Leo Scheidt.
The artist collective ZEFAK from Bremen has been invited by VOILÀ to work in Saarbrücken from November 29 until December 15, 2021, to develop their work Where the river resides on site. The public window showcase and several events offer visitors the opportunity to witness the artistic process for themselves and to exchange with one another.
As a collective, Aria Farajnezhad, Elard Lukaczik, and Zainab Haidary focus their work on their environment and surroundings, the water in the river, and the Sisyphean task of the water pumps in the old mining tunnels. They are constantly working these transformations, filtering processes, and steered movements into their artistic process. They focus on resource extrapolation and the resulting displacement at various levels: of water and organic life, of history, and of the future.
An important component of the process is the discussion with local actors from all walks of life. The interdisciplinary discourse allows for discussions and cooperations to take place that flow into their work in and audio-visual manner.
In order to ask the most pertinent questions of our time, art mediation also touches upon other topics and themes. It analyses, supplements, and allows something new to emerge. Mediation mostly occurs retrospectively. What happens when it directly accompanies dynamic processes? The challenge is to accompany the project as it takes form and to react in a way that dynamizes static art mediation.
The project is funded by the Stiftung Kunstfond (NEUSTART KULTUR, project funding for art-mediating actors) and the Stadtgalerie Saarbrücken.
Since its founding in October 2015, the design studio MM, M has worked with clients from various sectors, especially cultural and artistic sectors. For Martha Bayer, Muriel Serf, and Manuel Wesley, design must be something that can be experienced and that is interesting to experience. The design studio compares the process to that of translating: During the design process, a complex project is divided up into smaller components and rearranged in order to create a new translation that is accessible to the target audience.
Since 2016, the design studio has organised the exhibition series da-da-da, a gallery concept for artists and designers that will be reopened with the new format from VOILÀ after the long break due to the Corona pandemic.
The Stadtgalerie Saarbrücken is a place of renown. Here, international artists come together with the general public as well as with people from different scenes and areas of expertise. Together, strategies are developed for a desirable future. The urgencies of our time require people with different competences to connect with one another. The Stadtgalerie opens the mind, shares in change, and participates in necessary discussions during the process.
Emanating from the centre of the city, artistic projects are implemented all across town. Even outside of the city, the Stadtgalerie helps to facilitate new forms of cooperation and multidisciplinary projects.
In addition to their own projects, Aria Farajnezhad, Elard Lukaczik, and Zainab Haidary have been working together as the collective ZEFAK since 2018.
With Future Archives, the collective collected future-oriented drawings and simultaneously contextualised against each other to use them as the foundation for further works. The result is multi-dimensional examinations that arise from dialogues with networks, laboratories, and research centres (from fields such as climate activism, art, and nature conservation). Their open working method has led to diverse events in addition to the creation of the archive.
Future Archives offers and tests a discursive platform in order discuss the possibility of emancipating the present from dominating future scenarios. This means working on another future. This work takes shape in a variety of ways and has developed with an unsuspected dynamic.