Performance Series
May 30 to June 19, 2024

Beyond a moralizing logic of pain as punishment, what are the critical merits of wounds?

Today, sexual and racial violence remains a constitutive element of this necropolitical age; for too many, experiences of trauma and pain are ubiquitous. According to Catherine Malabou, mass traumatization has become “the natural disaster of contemporary politics”. Manifesting as an experience of the “the absence of meaning”, the formal indistinguishability of trauma makes it increasingly difficult to discern its “political meaning” (Malabou 2012). This inevitably troubles the status of notions such as healing and cure, as they reinforce a normative horizon of health and individual sovereignty that may omit or obscure the experiences of meaninglessness, incomprehensibility, and hopelessness that violence regularly entails. Inside Wounds brings together recent artistic proposals that register and testify to wounds and trauma as sites of deferral, resistance, and failure to heal. This includes a critique of the progressive order of healing, in which the linear accumulation of time is assumed to have intrinsically restorative effects. The performance series emphasizes artistic forms that embrace the destitutive effects of violence in a way that interrupts its representation on a formal level and its premature mobilization on a political level.

This series is hosted by the Kunstraum and the DFG Research Training Group Cultures of Critique and is curated and organized by Raphael Daibert and Christopher Weickenmeier. With additional support by Nina Bartnitzek, Jana Paim Costa, Sophie McCuen-Koytek, Artur-Aleksandr Sabelfeld and Mika Steffen.