Working Title, Working Clothes (Adore)

 

Working Title, Working Clothes (Adore), 2015

latex, thermocromic silkscreen ink and lamifix on 12 white long sleeves in unique sizes; 

modified clothing rack

 

see also Belive, Ha Ho or If We All Cut Off Our Ears Who is Left To Hear? at Studio 47

 

During the process of reading and more reading, a parallel plane to my research inflated itself around me: While chewing the rather dry pieces of critical t h e o r y  about the “artistic subjectivity of precarization in neoliberalism blah”, various at first obscure ideas and seemingly unrelated material associations emerged out of the digital nowhere, watering my metaphorical mouth. These were moods, figures and textures that had another syntax to “thinking  t h e o r y, yet seemed to be interlacing my fragmented picture of identity production, radical responsiveness and corporeality.

 

Deflation, collision, self-ingestion, digestion and surrogate shame. Unrhythmic dancing, stuttering, scatting, repetitive motion, OCDs and misspelled inspirational tattoos.

 

Performative fabrics, impermeable second skins, enhanced enhancement. Bodies in clothes. Clothes on bones are never not corporeal. We are styling our precarity.

 

This is  s t u f f  talking back to me.

 

It’s a space that doesn’t rely on reason and as such, s t u f f  operates very differently to  t h e o r y . It moves upstream, and you didn’t know you needed it until it shows up, uninvited, on your doorstep/desktop. Compared to the politics of dating,  t h e o r y  is the well-planned date with a 80%+ match on OkCupid (right shoes, ok job, interesting interests, good smile), while  s t u f f  is like dropping a pack of butter in the supermarket and locking eyes with the handsome stranger who is kneeling down on the polished supermarket floor to pick it up for and before you (and mind you, butter wasn’t even on the shopping list). 

 

It must have been a bleak and windy evening in autumn 2014, when I was looking deep into the eyes of the stretched eight-letter word mark of Hardcore, a logo associated with the Dutch hardcore techno scene. Self-exhaustion as an art form, I started to hear the strange sound of self-inflicted, extreme bodily performance, echoing between a ’90s amphetamenic dance floor and the work floor of the 21st century cultural producer.

 

 

(photography: Johannes Schwartz)

 
 
with Timo Hinze, Julian Irlinger, Hanne Lippard, Falke Pisano
curated by A.R. practice | Ann Richter and Agnieszka Roguski
 

www.on-view.eu, 21 June – 12 July 2015
Kunstverein Leipzig, 27 June – 4 July 2015

 

Rebecca Stephany articulates the human body as social model for branding its own identity, repurposing “Holland Hardcore”, the trademark of the Dutch hardcore techno scene, into working clothes for cultural producers – thus transcribing a kind of self-inflicted extreme bodily performance from the dancefloor to the workfloor, its attribute of style included. In her shirt collection, elements like latex and thermocromic ink make the clothes responsive to the body's movements and temperature. Fashion is set in parallel to the performed image online on one hand and its levels of stress on the other: A second skin encodes the self.

 

Yet Working Title, Working Clothes (2015) does just not serve as a further showcase for a profile performance among the stylized economy of exhaustion, self-exploitation and constant chase for deadlines. It rather speeds up the fragmentary script of a highly subjectivized logic of production, which claims realms like aura and authenticity while never being able to inhabit them. (Agnieszka Roguski)

 

(photography: Daniele Ansidei)