Künstlerhaus Vienna, Factory
August 11th to 27th, 2023
Curated by BLACK FERK STUDIO
ME/CFS is the name of a monster: one that many people and their loved ones fight in Austria and around the world. A severe and not rare multi system illness, for which there is no causal or accessible treatment up to date. Due to the Covid pandemic and the millions of people affected by Post (Long) Covid, this often unrecognised and trivialised illness is getting a little more public attention.
“To even try to realise this exhibition despite this terror is complete madness” — this was one of the thoughts that were on the mind of Judith Schoßböck and Matthias Mollner in autumn 2021, when they decided to translate their personal stroke of fate into art — as a way of processing their experience and intimate insight into a silent and invisible world, in which millions of people missing from society (the #millionsmissing) are mobilising their little energy for daily survival and recognition; of an illness that diametrically opposes the common orientation on motivation and performance, as any activity or exertion is punished with a worsening of symptoms.
In this exhibition Mollner, Schoßböck (alias BLACK FERK STUDIO) and other artists and creatives reflect on the reality of living with ME/CFS. To create art in this context becomes a special and risky activity, as for sufferers of the disease it is related to physical consequences. Sensual and other hypersensitivities are further challenges to any artistic endeavour or participation in a community.
Displayed are various artistic perspectives together with further information on the illness in different contexts: from the personal view of people affected to the standpoint of society, from helplessness to activism, from the isolation of the individual to the collective view, from the emotional experience of perpetual crisis to scientific facts. The exhibition tells stories from the “nightside of life” (a term Susan Sontag used for illness), gives insights into coping strategies, and seeks to utilise openness and dark-but-colourful humor against suffering and neglect.
Project partner and support:
Austrian ME/CFS society
“Can anybody hear me?”
Group Show in the ip. forum
U4 Center, Stiege B, 2. Upper floor
Schönbrunner Straße 218–220
Opening: Thursday, Oktober 13th, 2022
Exhibition duration: Until mid-December 2022
Curators: PJ Maguire und Gabriele Baumgartner
In recent years, we’ve all had to abandon or adapt our social habits and interactions, creating a domino effect in our present and future interaction habits.
Artists have also had to adapt in order to be heard or seen and to be able to communicate to the viewers. Art is usually a mouthpiece to communicate issues that move a person in some way. In this exhibition, we ask about the ways artists have created to be „heard“ and how others have taken the path of communication in their artistic work to date.
“Congress of the Knowing”
September 9th and 10th, 2022
Public space under the Lentos Art Museum
„A burning stone. Why you need to know about ME/CFS“
The Black Ferk Studio is pleased to be present with two installations and a lecture performance at the “Congress of the Knowing” in Linz. All interested people can take part in the congress. Admission is free, registration is requested: https://kdw.institute
On September 9th and 10th, the “Congress of the Knowing” will take place in Linz under the Lentos Art Museum. Knowledgeable people from all over Europe will come together at this magical place to exchange and share secret, special and unique knowledge. Events, debates and performances are open to the public and will take place on both days. The open space under the Lentos hence becomes a form of “democratic knowledge zone” in a public space. People will meet there to exchange knowledge with expertise and experience valuable to others: scientists, artists, performers, researchers and experts in other, special areas: such as people affected by poverty, people with experience of discrimination, socially disadvantaged people, or people whose special knowledge has little public reach. The lectures and audience discussions address current discourses. There is also the opportunity to gain access to complex content in a playful way through workshops and interactive formats.