Friday Island

Written by Thomas Büsch on . Posted in Détournement, Events, Seen Beyond

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The Assassination of Guy Debord

On May 12th Friday Island will present The Assassination of Guy Debord by Bill Balaskas at European Convention Center Luxembourg (ECCL), Luxembourg. Through his new multi-part work Bill Balaskas will reflect on the current status of Europe, by presenting a participatory installation and a performance at the European Convention Center – the site that hosts the meetings of the Council of the European Union for three months every year.

European citizens feel today less politically empowered than ever in recent times. Confidence in democracy and its institutions has been undermined, and this context of demerit constitutes a growing danger for the character of European societies. As developments like ‘Brexit’ are putting under question the collective future of Europe, fighting against the uncritical spectacularization of the public sphere appears as a matter of urgency.

However, 50 years after the publication of Guy Debord’s seminal work ‘The Society of the Spectacle’ (1967), European politics seem to be dominated by the image and its manipulation. Debord’s radical beliefs, his role in the student protests of 1968 and his suicide in 1994 made him, for a long time, a rather contentious figure within European political intelligentsia. Yet, as we are experiencing the rapid rise of a post-truth world dominated by spectacle, it has become increasingly hard to contest Debord’s pioneering thought.

Bill Balaskas’s staging of ‘The Assassination of Guy Debord’ at the European Convention Center will highlight those conditions of crisis. The artist’s performance will function as a reminder of Debord’s assertions through 73 readings from ‘The Society of the Spectacle’, which will take place from the 73 front-row seats that are regularly occupied by Europe’s leaders. At the same time, the installation in the middle of the conference room will invite the members of the audience to literally devour the EU flag, thus questioning the notion of civic participation and the role of demos in the construction and dismantling of Europe.

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Friday Island is a series of events committed to create a space and occasions for meetings that generates exchange between artists as well as a public dialogue around a given topic. Open to artists of all disciplines and working with different media, Friday Island offers a platform for experimentation beyond creative processes bound to production and marketing logics.

The artistic contributions are encouraged to be experimental and critical. They are challenged to question the theme and to suggest out-of-the-box perspectives. The aim is to promote alternative points of view and interpretations of a certain reality, to initiate a debate and an exchange of opinions. Indeed, each theme allows different approaches and readings that are socially and philosophically stimulating.

The Assassination of Guy Debord
Friday 12 May, 2017

Participatory Installation & Performance: 6 – 8:30 pm

FRIDAY ISLAND – ‘Power’
European Convention Center Luxembourg (ECCL)
Place de l’ Europe, 4
2311, City of Luxembourg
Luxembourg

 

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