No-mad. Rooted in becoming, Thun

International Video Art Festival
Rooted in becoming
curated by Alessandro Rolandi

Konzepthaus Laboratorium
Berntorgasse 16, Thun, CH

Vernissage 12.08.2022
Ab 18:00 Uhr

Adel Andalibi, Torsten Z. Burns, Umberto Cavenago, Ambra Corinti, Monika Czyzyk, Deng Dafei, Martin Derbyshire, Jose Drummond, Peter Friess, Michael C. Eddy, GeoCinema, Frank Gerlitzki, Nan Hao, Matt Hope, Kristiina Koskentola, Doug Lewis, Monika Lin, Lulu Li (lixin lu), Ma Yongfeng 马永峰, Andrea Nacciarriti, Giancarlo Norese, Serge Onnen, Qiao Xin Yue, Ren Bo, Silvano Repetto, Megumi Shimizu, Ani Schulze, Miriam Simun, Arden Surdam, Xiaoshang & Xiong Yunhao, Zhao Tianji


This exhibition is a proposal to re-imagine and re-contextualize the notion of a decentralized, independent and imaginative nomadic state.
A nomadic attitude beyond the perverted version shaped by the dynamics of advanced neoliberal capitalism and its imposition on global scale of precarity, exploitation and fragmentation of human relationships.
A nomadic stance also beyond the return of authoritarian reactionary forces attempting to re-habilitate the dark narratives of hegemony, imperialism and conflicts about nations, borders and civilizations.

The artists involved, through their lives and practice, distance themselves from the romanticized idea of the flaneur and from that of the neo-colonial tourist-collector of exotic experiences to re-propose as cultural appropriation.
With a conscious ethical stance and a spontaneous shift, they suggest to re-think the nomadic state primarily as a state of becoming, a ‘molecular level’ of immanence, a nomadic-becoming-mode, not anthropocentric, not homogeneous and not exclusive.
In their praxis, technical and theoretical knowledge, life-experience, intuition and sensibility organically converge as vehicles to trigger a resonance between trans-cultural subjectivities constantly interacting between themselves in a mutually transformative process.
Their different approaches to the time-based medium of video and photography and their engagement and areas of inquiries, re-affirm the unquestionable necessity to foster a constant proliferation of differences.

What kind of nomadism can we think in a world which presents everyday thousands of migrants running away from wars and poverty….precarious labor forces constantly displaced around the globe as a result of the caprices of global financial powers and of the consequent degradation of the environment because of induced climate change?

Many artists, as critical witnesses, for years, have been raising attention, asking uncomfortable questions and advocating the impelling necessity of change.
Some have tried to push their own individual worlds and visions, while others have come up with a different stance: they do not see themselves as actors who engage in interactive relationships with the purpose of enforce tonly heir individual will.
Instead, they recognize themselves as the expression of a variety of meaningful relations which apply equally to the human and non-human and extend across the complexity of cultures, identities and socio-political systems.

Belonging to different generations and backgrounds, having been raised between cultures and countries, and/or having spent a consistent amount of time in different environments from the ones they were born in, these artists-researchers have consciously chosen to not submit their practices and their journey to rigid paradigms and binary logics, letting this inherent dislocation to re-shape their perceptions and experience of the world.

Understanding their quest and their own lives as states of nomadic-becoming, they explore and sustain these connections in an open, empirical and experimental way, where forms and praxis are both collective and individual.
The nature of the single works, articulated in a non-hierarchic interaction can show to what extent a nomadic-in-becoming socio-political order can emerge as a democratical process, through the self-organized coordination of multiplicity.
Echoing recent anthropological and archeological discoveries about the degree of flexibility and invention of pre-historic societies (like those recorded and explained in D. Graeber and D. Wengrow’s book “A new history of humanity” ) they convey a highly relevant message for our current situation: no imposed shared values or leading culture are necessary, as a new social-imagination can develop through the cooperation of highly diverse actors, mutate when the interaction dissolve and being re-invented in the next one.

Following a path traced by Spinoza’s monism and further re-elaborated through recent critical theoretical frames including post-humanism, new materialism, affect, identity and post-colonial theory and eco-politics these artists-researchers, working in an interdisciplinary and transcultural mode, tackle the current disturbances and contradictions of life and culture in a fluctuant relational interaction, as heterogeneous elements of a mutual necessary nourishment to activate anti-hegemonic and de-territorializing processes and dynamics.

The primarily instinctive and then strategically and tactically elaborated challenge is to undermine and destabilize the dogmatic power structures and infra-structures through the contagious organic energy of their nomadic-in-becoming interventions, actions, inquiries, and storytelling.
To underline the curatorial stance of defining a constellation of autonomous possibilities, all the different works displayed are introduced through the words and statements of the artists themselves.

Alessandro Rolandi,
Bern 2022