CONTEXT 003: Realistically or fictionally about Lea Kukovičič
Lea Kukovičič (1994) is a theatre artist who began her artistic career at the Ljubljana Academy of Theatre, Radio, Film and Television, Department of Dramaturgy and Performing Arts. She continued her studies at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (DAMU), where she completed her Master’s degree in Directing of Devised and Object Theatre. After completing her studies, she returned to Slovenia, where she has been working closely with the Bunker Institute to bring fresh new practices, forms and content to the Slovenian theatre scene. In her work FORSALE – Performance Auction House (2021), she proposes to use the political practices that characterise visual art in capitalist modernity – she creates an auction house where she sells the performance Ich Kann nichts Anders by Beton ltd. She also plays with the boundaries between fiction and reality in contemporary capitalist society in her trilogy When Men Cry (2023), and her final act includes the performance The Last Hamlet (2023), in which she explores how to dismantle patriarchy by addressing male emotionality, symbolised by men’s tears. The understanding of her recent works can be linked to the understanding of the theatre work as an event, a happening.
If the main task of Context, a research and exhibition in one, is to broaden the understanding of the selected artist’s works, Lea Kukovičič is a hard nut to crack. There are plenty of performances created abroad that Slovenian audiences have never seen, and at the same time, Lea Kukovičič’s work often extends into the field of fine art (for example, What Would Happen If We Found Them, 2020), and she often creates complex hybrids. It is therefore difficult and unfair to pigeonhole this young artist with such a variety of expressions. This year’s Context therefore avoids a clear definition of the artist’s practice. Instead, it focuses primarily on the artist’s communities and collectives, temporary and fixed, based in Prague and in Ljubljana, intimate and professional, using her companions and fellow artists to try to reveal who Lea Kukovičič really is.
Concept and execution: Ivana Vogrinc Vidali in collaboration with Ana Lorger
Producer: Špela Kopitar
Design: Tanja Radež
CONTEXT is a support programme of the Bunker Institute in development, which tries to emphasize the importance of the Old Power Station space and map the archives of the creators who traverse this space. It is about treating artists with a wide-angle lens: finding and emphasizing the connections between time, biography and the previous work of an artist, which results in a kind of extracted installation, and tries to better root the author and offer a basis for reading the new work in the context of time and their past oeuvre.
The main goals of the Context are the understanding of and research into the author’s work as a continuous artistic practice, thus establishing an understanding of the works of art as part of a longer journey, which is not just a series of unrelated points (performances).