Part of FUTURE N.O.W. Festival
Photo © Andreas Simopoulos
This world no longer exists. A nightclub is all that remains. On the Onassis Stegi Main Stage, in Neos Kosmos (the “new world”), in a city once called Athens. Here, what’s left of planet Earth’s biodiversity is renewing itself. Here, a new world order is coming into being, where microorganisms, bacteria, plants, animals, humans, and abiotic beings are evolving on an equal footing to establish a singular biopolitical environment. Eva Giannakopoulou, an artist with an intensely performative output, is the being behind everything that transpires inside “Club Cosmogony”. Come – the doors are always open.
Concept & Artistic Direction
Assistant to Costumes & Props Construction
Make-up Assistant & Live Streaming Camera Operator
Spyros Karamitsos (drums),
Solis Barki (didgeridoo)
Sam Albatros, Argyris Marinis
Katerina Kalentzi, Markella Ksilogiannopoulou, Eliana Otta, Michael Edwards, Atossa (Paraskevi Damaskou), Tania Varveri, Eleni Karakou, Argyris Marinis, Orfeas-Kyriakos Makaris-Kapetanakis, Christos Fousekis
Vanessa Veneti, Giorgos Samantas, Atossa (Paraskevi Damaskou)
Commissioned & Produced by
From Sunday 18 April until Sunday 09 May, 2021
Future N.O.W. Festival; Onassis Channel - YouTube
Suitable for audiences aged 18+
Colorful neon lighting, flashing lights and bubbles, rave music, Australian didgeridoos, and drums. An amorphous composted mass gradually pushes forth diverse organisms that give themselves over to choreography that is erotic and intense. Non-gendered half-naked humanoids, hybrid objects, beings and bacteria of indeterminate form are all readying for the emergence of a new species. A creature that gives birth to performers who surrender themselves nervily to absurd actions, and two poets that hover over the proceedings as religious ministers, expounding interpretations of the new species coming into being. A rapper repeats the words of the poets, creating a music medley that serves as the work’s climax.
The theories of Donna Ηaraway are a source of inspiration for the performance “Kin Baby”. In the words of Haraway herself, taken from a commentary that appeared in the journal “Environmental Humanities”: “The Chthulucene needs at least one slogan (of course, more than one); still shouting ‘Cyborgs for Earthly Survival,’ ‘Run Fast, Bite Hard,’ and ‘Shut Up and Train,’ I propose ‘Make Kin Not Babies!’ Making kin is perhaps the hardest and most urgent part. Feminists of our time have been leaders in unraveling the supposed natural necessity of ties between sex and gender, race and sex, race and nation, class and race, gender and morphology, sex and reproduction, and reproduction and composing persons (our debts here are due especially to Melanesians, in alliance with Marilyn Strathern and her ethnographer kin). If there is to be multispecies ecojustice, which can also embrace diverse human people, it is high time that feminists exercise leadership in imagination, theory, and action to unravel the ties of both genealogy and kin, and kin and species.”
This is not the first time Eva Giannakopoulou has addressed these issues. Her work explores the multiplicity of feminist and parenthood representations. Her “at the Beach” trilogy (“The Same River Twice”, 2019, The New Museum, NEW YORK – DESTE Foundation), explores issues of “alternative” and LGBTQI+ parenthood. The video work “at the Beach 2”, filmed during her summer holidays in Athens and on Crete, springs from questions of how and where LGBTQI+ parents spend their holidays with their children, which give rise to further questions and answers relating to prevailing conceptualizations of motherhood and fatherhood, societal mechanisms of exclusion and inclusion, and familial structures – biological or otherwise – in their social and legal contexts. By adopting a dialectic on tourism as a normative factor of summer holidays, Eva Giannakopoulou creates a space for rethinking roles and identities, where they are revealed as subjects whose negotiation is open and constant.
The documentary “at the Beach 3”, filmed in the main at the beach, is the final part in the trilogy of the same name. Set in a place where limits are blurred and bodies prevail, the work politicizes parenthood, emotions, and desire, turning its gaze upon a campsite and a holiday home inhabited by witches, Calibans, and a black dog.
The participatory project “gynaikopoaida” (TWIXTlab, 2018) is a first attempt at the performative documentation of an archive, one that attempts to map out works and impressions that relate to “alternative” forms of parenthood. Talks, interventions, performative actions, film and video screenings, paintings and sculptures, photographs and literature all constituted a meeting place where moms, dads, daughters, sons, cousins, brothers, aunts and other “relatives” could discuss gender identities, childbirth, medicalization, and the maternal performativity of the female, feminized, or effeminate body.
Last but not least, in “The Brides of Maltepe” (“The Equilibrists”, 2016, The New Museum, NEW YORK – DESTE Foundation) Giannakopoulou works with another visual artist, her friend Persefoni Myrtsou, to speak about their sons and the stories of four families living between Greece and Turkey.