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Salon für Ästhetische Experimente #4

"The School of Public Life" - Fred Dewey

 Introduced and with a performance by Jeremiah Day

„Der einzige Weg zur Wiedergeburt ist die Schule des öffentlichen Lebens selbst, uneingeschränkteste breiteste Demokratie, öffentliche Meinung.“ Rosa Luxemburg

While the German-American political thinker Hannah Arendt is known for major insights into the modern world like ‘the banality of evil,’ the general public is largely unaware of the affirmative political argument that is the core of her late work – the valorisation of council-democracy Arendt suggested could form “a new concept of the state.”

Fred Dewey has taken up this line of Arendt’s thought not as a theoretical matter, but as something to be enacted, in practice. In a new talk developed for this evening, Dewey will link Arendt’s council principle and cultural practice, not as conceptual or academic speculation, but through thinking some of our current pressing realities.

Jeremiah Day will present a new improvisational performance in response to Dewey’s talk with musical accompaniment by Bart de Kroon.

As supplement and preliminary to the evening’s performances and discussion, Fred Dewey will lead a free, open and public working group, Monday, from 14-17hr, in the Volksbuhne’s Gruner Salon, on Hannah Arendt’s writings on council democracy, drawn from the book On Revolution. Working Group is open to the public and requires no prior knowledge of Arendt; participants will be asked to read the text aloud, around a table, engaging its content and each other. Copies of the texts will be provided.

Fred Dewey is a writer, teacher, editor, and artist working in Los Angeles, Berlin, and around Europe. He serves on the graduate faculty of ArtCenter in Pasadena, California, and ran Beyond Baroque, a public space for poetry, culture, publishing, and contemporary issues, in Los Angeles, from 1996 to 2010. He has led Hannah Arendt Working Groups in Berlin since 2012 at General Public, Berlin’s Free University, Vierte Welt, ZK/U, and recently at London’s The Field. His performances and works have shown in spaces around Berlin, in London at the ICA and The Showroom, Ludlow38 in New York, Santa Monica Museum of Art, Stockholm’s Index and The Weld, Amsterdam’s Goleb and New Conditions, and in ‘zines, newspapers, magazines, and anthologies internationally for three decades. The School of Public Life (errant bodies/doormats, 2014), on public space, culture, and co-founding neighborhood councils in Los Angeles, is his first book. He has collaborated with Jeremiah Day in numerous ways, including performance work with Simone Forti.

Jeremiah Day – Recent exhibitions include “The Frank Church – River of No Return Wilderness” at Arratia Beer and the Thessaloniki Biennial and performances hosted by Links Hall, Chicago and The Emily Harvey Foundation, New York. Since 2009 Day, Dewey and Forti have presented their work together in shifting configuration in such venues at the ICA London, Ludlow 38 in New York and the Santa Monica Museum.  From 2015-16 Day is a fellow of the Berlin University of Art’s Graduiertenschule and this evening’s presentation is part of his UDK Project.

The Salon für Ästhetische Experimente is co-funded by the Einstein Foundation Berlin.

13th June 2016
free admission

Reading Group:
2pm: Hannah Arendt Working Group – led by Fred Dewey (open for everybody; no preparation or advanced knowledge necessary)

7pm: Talk by Fred Dewey
8pm: Performance by Jeremiah Day
8.30pm: Discussion and Drinks

Grüner Salon in der Volksbühne
Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz 2
10178 Berlin