Mehr Öffentlichkeit für weniger Feminismus. Ein kommentiertes Gespräch mit Andrea Saemann und Katrin Grögel über das Projekt Performance Saga und die Verweigerung eines politischen Bekenntnisses

  • Barbara Preisig


Barbara Preisig

More Publicity for Less Feminism

Why has feminism become so popular in the arts in the last few years? How can recent references to early feminist positions of the 1960s and 1970s, which have been updated and restored from a contemporary point of view through exhibition projects and events, be interpreted?

“Performance Saga – Encounters with Pioneers of Performance Art” is an example of the renewed approval of gender-related topics in the arts. In their eight-DVD collection, Katrin Grögel and Andrea Saemann assemble interviews with Valie Export, Martha Rosler, Joan Jonas, and Carolee Schneemann, among others. In so doing, they contribute to feminist art history of the twentieth century.

Talking to the editors of “Performance Saga”, I was particularly interested in the reasons for the big media coverage of the project and in their marketing and self-marketing strategies. We will discuss their seemingly paradoxical decision to deny feminist concerns in the media and the public in order to avoid the negative connotations of the term feminism and hence to gain more publicity. Is this the expression of a post-feminist approach or rather the concealment of a political statement?

The text will discuss complexities and antagonisms occurring in connection with gender related projects in the art context.