background

Background

It all started during Corona when in our group meetings with #purplenoise we realized that it became harder and harder to focus on our readings, to discuss technofeminist theory related to our work, instead discussing our personal situation, exchanging about how we are doing, what effects the isolation and the fear of contagion had on our physical and mental well-being, took more and more time. We were happy that we had each other to talk to, over long distances, over national borders, and it was useful to see how similar problems occurred in different countries. At one point, we gave up to work through our reading list, and instead started to think what we could do in order to support each other, while continuing our work. We also wanted to shift our focus from the theoretical, the technical and artistic issues we were dealing with, to our bodies. This was quite a leap, because we had carefully avoided, so far, making our own bodies the subject, as e.g. feminist art in the 70s did so radically. It was a new terrain, full of uncertainties; taking down the cognitive protection field allowed for vulnerabilities to appear.

First of all, we shared what kind of techniques each of us uses in their daily lives to keep herself healthy. What most shared and could somehow relate to was yoga. At the same time, all the alarm bells went off. How about cultural appropriation? It is one thing to take yoga classes or do some exercises at home, or to make a project that somehow involved yoga as a practice of self-care. We have decided not to put our foot in our mouth, so no yoga associated with six white queer European women.

Until, I remembered that the most fascinating parts in my yoga classes were the early morning breathing sessions. Breathing is a universal phenomenon uniting all living beings. And so is the knowledge about breathing as a form of physical therapy and spiritual activity. The decision was made to dedicate our work on the exploration of breathing and breathing practices, that we would study and learn and practice and work together. And we even managed to transform it in two beautiful small projects, we could later present at the Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg as part of the show Empowerment, on global feminisms. One of them was the Breathing Choir, a performance, and the other, #shareyourair, a space installation for the visitors to experiment with breathing and to get a better understanding of its social and environmental complexities.

After these projects it felt, as if I had just started to get involved with the fascinating topic of breathing and decided to dive deeper into it when I got the opportunity to develop an artistic research project. That is how Breathing Data was born.

  • background.txt
  • Last modified: 2024/06/06 14:57
  • by coco