the Octopus

the Octopus

University of Applied Arts Vienna

June 1, 2022
the Octopus
June 1–17, 2022
Angewandte Interdisciplinary Lab
Georg-Coch-Platz 2
Ehemalige Postsparkasse
1010 Vienna
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The Octopus Programme concludes with the Octopus exhibition as the most comprehensive iteration of the experimental curatorial and educational path the Octopus Programme has pursued. The Octopus Programme is a guided research-based educational programme that encourages artistic research and production-based collaborations in different geographical regions. The exhibition presents an accumulation of research and process-based works by its participants, associated actors, and its curated archive. the Octopus also features prominent examples from certain guest lecturers who have influenced the programme.

After a long-term extensive ideation process by Barbara Putz-Plecko, Başak Şenova, and Lina Lazaar, the Octopus Programme was initiated in 2019 by University of Applied Arts Vienna and the Kamel Lazaar Foundation with a pilot phase linking Vienna and Tunis. In 2020, the programme launched its main phase as a joint project by University of Applied Arts Vienna; Kamel Lazaar Foundation, Tunis; Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts, and Design, Index, Stockholm; The University of Pretoria; The Centre for The Less Good Idea, Johannesburg; Birzeit University, the Palestinian Museum, Birzeit; Khalil Sakakini Cultural Centre, Ramallah; SAHA Association, Istanbul; Publics and Saastamoinen Foundation, Helsinki. were selected by Five interconnected evaluation committees selected participants from Austria, Finland, Tunisia, Palestine, South Africa, Sweden, and Turkey.

The Octopus Programme was designed as a three-credit course, “Spectral Encounters” per semester, centralised at the University of Applied Arts Vienna as the backbone of the programme. The study included peer-to-peer educational sessions, online and class discussions, research field trips, exchange programmes, tutorials, workgroups, collaborative production-based workshops, and lectures. Led by Başak Şenova in Vienna, the programme received contribution from Karim Sultan in Tunis; Maria Lantz, Magnus Bärtås, Anne Klontz and Marti Manen in Stockholm; William Kentridge, Phala Ookeditse Phala, and Bronwyn Lace in Johannesburg; Johan Thom in Pretoria; Tina Sherwell in Birzeit; Renad Shqeirat in Ramallah; Çelenk Bafra in Istanbul; Paul O’Neill and Marja Karttunen in Helsinki.

The programme developed new critical perspectives to process artistic research and practices while bridging and acknowledging the diversity of socio-political realities; academic and non-academic intellectual models; accessed and distributed resources and facilities; and diverse knowledge production models. By merging the viewpoints of academic entities and contemporary art institutions, the programme has developed a generative research methodology by creating an autonomous network.

the Octopus (June 2–17, 2022, Angewandte Interdisciplinary Lab), curated by Basak Senova, presents Alina Rentsch (Germany/Sweden), Bengü Karaduman (Turkey), Bochra Taboubi (Tunisia), Conny Zenk (Austria), Els Van Houtert (Netherlands/Austria), Eser Epözdemir (Turkey), Férielle Doulain (France/Tunisia), Julia Stern (Austria), Kim M. Reynolds (US/South Africa), Maarit Mustonen (Finland), Nondumiso Lwazi Msimanga (South Africa), Noor Abed (Palestine), Sofia Priftis (Sweden), Sophia Bellouhassi (Germany/Austria), Verena Miedl-Faißt (Germany/Austria), Younes Ben Slimane (Tunisia/France) with special guests: Bronwyn Lace (South Africa/Austria), Ebru Kurbak (Turkey/Austria), Egle Oddo (Italy/Finland), Johan Thom (South Africa), Jyoti Mystry (South Africa/Sweden), Hristina Ivanoska (Macedonia/Germany), Larissa Sansour (Palestine/UK), Lisl Ponger (Austria), Marcus Neustetter (South Africa/Austria), Publics (Finland), William Kentridge (South Africa), Yane Calovski (Macedonia/Germany), The Zone, and associated actors: Cristiana De Marchi (Italy/Lebanon/United Arab Emirates), Cazlynne Peffer (South Africa), Dylan Graham (South Africa), Indalo Bennet (South Africa), Nirual Kenabru (Austria), Nisrine Boukhari (Syria/Austria), Teboho Lebakeng (South Africa), Zhou Yuqi (China), opening performance by Gischt & Conny Zenk (Austria) and Misonica (Germany/Austria) also guided tours by Barbara Putz-Plecko (Austria); by Anderwald+Grond (Austria) and by Johannes Jäger (Switzerland/Austria).

the Octopus is accompanied by a three-day public programme—June 2–3 and June 5—at Tonkino Saalbau (Flachgasse 25, 1150 Vienna) by the exhibition’s artists and other contributors including Barbara Holub (Germany/Austria), Isa Rosenberger (Austria), Larissa Sansour (Palestine), Lisl Ponger (Austria), Mohamad Bazzi (Lebanon/Sweden), Nikolaus Gansterer (Austria), Paul Krimmer (Austria), Ramesh Daha (Austria), Renad Shqeirat (Palestine), Renger Van Den Heuvel (The Netherlands/Austria), Yasser Jridi (Tunisia), and Zeyneb Raissi (Tunisia).

This webpage communicates all the activities of the programme. A book will be published as part of University of Applied Art Vienna, Edition Angewandte / De Gruyter Verlag in 2023.

Its sister project, A Research of Doing, initiated by the University of Pretoria and University of Applied Arts Vienna in collaboration with the Centre for the Less Good Idea, funded by OeAD Africa-UniNet and BMBWF has provided further input to The Octopus Programme.

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University of Applied Arts Vienna
June 1, 2022

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