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andrea geyer

Infinite Repetition of Revolt. 2010. (collaboration with Josiah McEhleny) Sculpture, performance.

"In...(this county), however, the...(movement) must make up by its own efforts an entire historic period. It must lead the (disenfranchised) from their present "atomized" condition, which prolongs the automatic regime, to an…organization that would help them to become aware of their historic objectives and prepare them to struggle to achieve those objectives." —Rosa Luxemburg

A sculpture, reminiscent of a double-sided blackboard, is situated in an exhibition space. It is freestanding, nothing else close by. Either side of the sculpture presents on its shiny black glass surface words and sketched diagrams mapping different forms of organization of ideas, actions and people. Midway through the duration of the exhibition, the sculpture becomes the site of an event: A social event and an event of words addressed to an audience. Ideas are formed, delivered, and retraced. It is an event of knowledge and of poetic utterance. Then it ends. What remains is a trace in a sculpture that now conceals itself in quite presence. It merely looks back at its observers, resonating the memories of ideas passed on.

The Infinite Repetition of Revolt hopes to rehearse, and remember a moment in the history of revolt, when the question was not whether revolt was possible but with its necessity apparent: how should it be organized. It is there that the crux of the matter appears (and the violence): Should we be "organized" by a small group of our betters? Or should we look to spreading the word and follow a leadership built on consensus? This question can be represented by two people and two events: the failed revolutions in Russia in 1905 and in Germany in 1923 or 19th century French revolutionary Auguste Blanqui and 20th century Rosa Luxemburg. In 1919 Rosa was murdered by the "Blanquists" because she questioned Blanqui's model that a small cadre of the elite should lead the revolt. Here again, the artists present this repeated argument, this repeated violence, these forgotten arguments, to resonate them in a contemporary encounter with an audience.

performance documentation "Push and Pull," TATE Modern, London March 2011(performer: Maggie McBrian)