How it was made – dance film “Extreme routine”

We have created 20 minutes of music and choreography and filmed a short dance film “Extreme routine” for seeking funds to develop full evening contemporary dance work.

Extreme Routine is a work-in-progress contemporary dance performance piece with currently 4 performers and in the final work planned with live string quartet, featuring the choreography of Vesna Mackovic (Croatia). and music by Denise Mei Yan Hofmann (Switzerland, Hong Kong).

Participants of work-in-progress:
Choreography: Vesna Mačković
Music composer: Denise Mei Yan Hofmann
Performers: Luka Barešić, Irena Boćkai, Ida Fučić, Michał Gostyński
Light design: Andrija Šantro
Camera: Noah Pintarić, Ivona Kraljević
Photography: Ivan Marinković

The visual concept of this piece is based on the physical movements of everyday life, highlighted and interrupted by a string quartet, living on the tonal extremes of instrumental ranges. Routine-like actions of contemplative musings to drinking coffee will be carried out by Vesna Mackovic and a group of performers who live out life in real time for us, highlighting the simultaneous struggle and beauty of our domesticity.

The sound world of Extreme Routine is made up of the contrast between silence, string quartet and amplified sounds derived from performers’ movements and everyday objects. Fueled by an additional layer of emotional narrative, the strings play a traditional role as soundtrack. The physicality of performers’ hand-movements is also integrated into the lines of the piece – as a result, every detail of this production is to be integrated into performance.

‘Who is faster?’ – theatre show for the end of the world

Tko je brži?
Kazališna predstava za smak svijeta

Who is faster?
Theater show for the end of the world

Video najava #3: https://youtu.be/TVV-oBIxysI
Video najava #2: https://youtu.be/8kHDAvSN9qY
Video najava #1: https://youtu.be/8YGR5TZHeNM

premijera izvedba: 31.5.2018., 20h, Pogon Jedinstvo, Trnjanski nasip bb (pored kluba Močvara), Zagreb

Autorski tim
Autorica: Vesna Mačković
Izvođači: Luka Barešić, Lana Bitenc, Ida Fučić, Vesna Mačković, Filip Sučić
Glazba: Filip Sučić (električna gitara), Vesna Mačković (glas)
Fotografija: Ivan Marinković
Grafičko oblikovanje: Antonio Dolić
Video dokumentiranje: Dina Karadžić, Dora Bodakoš, Nives Milješić
Kostimografija: Vesna Mačković
Rekviziterka: Marija Despotović i obitelj Mačković

‘Who is faster?’ – Trailer # 3 – theatre show for the end of the world

Tko je brži?
Kazališna predstava za smak svijeta

premijera: 31.5.2018., 20h, Pogon Jedinstvo, Trnjanski nasip bb (pored kluba Močvara), Zagreb

Autorica: Vesna Mačković

Izvođači: Luka Barešić, Lana Bitenc, Ida Fučić, Vesna Mačković

Foto i video dokumentiranje: Ivan Marinković
Video: Vesna Mačković
Kostimografija i scenografija: Vesna Mačković
Rekviziterka: Marija Despotović i obitelj Mačković

Ostvareno uz podršku: Pogon Jedinstvo, Gradski odbor za kulturu Grada Zagreba, Udruga za audio-vizualnu kulturu ‘Kamera’

OPIS
———————-
Vozilo. Trokolica. Ili romobil. Ili invalidska kolica. Ili kolica iz supermarketa.
Vozači. Vozači vozila. Vozači vremena. Vozači svemirskih prostranstava.
Putuju zajedno. Ili se utrkuju.
Pitanje je tko je brži? Onaj koji je ispred ili onaj koji je iza?
Iza čega? Iza drugog? Iza vremena? Iza povijesti?
I što bilo koji od njih može uopće učiniti po pitanju svoje brzine?
Mogu li putovati kroz vrijeme? Ili su zaglavili u jednostavnoj matematičkoj formuli koja uključuje gravitaciju i trenje?
Koja je njihova putna prtljaga?
Plastične boce njihova su vrijednost. Puna su ih vozila. Bježe im po sceni.
Boce su žive. Plešu. Mašu im iz prošlosti. Mašu im i iz budućnosti.
Jesu li dovoljno brzi ovi vozači? Ili su prebrzi?

‘Who is faster?’ – Trailer # 2 – theatre show for the end of the world

Tko je brži?
Kazališna predstava za smak svijeta

premijera: 31.5.2018., 20h, Pogon Jedinstvo, Trnjanski nasip bb (pored kluba Močvara), Zagreb

Autorica: Vesna Mačković

Izvođači: Luka Barešić, Lana Bitenc, Ida Fučić, Vesna Mačković

Foto i video dokumentiranje: Ivan Marinković
Video: Vesna Mačković
Kostimografija i scenografija: Vesna Mačković
Rekviziterka: Marija Despotović i obitelj Mačković

Ostvareno uz podršku: Pogon Jedinstvo, Gradski odbor za kulturu Grada Zagreba, Udruga za audio-vizualnu kulturu ‘Kamera’

OPIS
———————-
Vozilo. Trokolica. Ili romobil. Ili invalidska kolica. Ili kolica iz supermarketa.
Vozači. Vozači vozila. Vozači vremena. Vozači svemirskih prostranstava.
Putuju zajedno. Ili se utrkuju.
Pitanje je tko je brži? Onaj koji je ispred ili onaj koji je iza?
Iza čega? Iza drugog? Iza vremena? Iza povijesti?
I što bilo koji od njih može uopće učiniti po pitanju svoje brzine?
Mogu li putovati kroz vrijeme? Ili su zaglavili u jednostavnoj matematičkoj formuli koja uključuje gravitaciju i trenje?
Koja je njihova putna prtljaga?
Plastične boce njihova su vrijednost. Puna su ih vozila. Bježe im po sceni.
Boce su žive. Plešu. Mašu im iz prošlosti. Mašu im i iz budućnosti.
Jesu li dovoljno brzi ovi vozači? Ili su prebrzi?

‘Who is faster?’ – Trailer # 1 – theatre show for the end of a world

Tko je brži?
Kazališna predstava za smak svijeta

premijera: 31.5.2018., 20h, Pogon Jedinstvo, Trnjanski nasip bb (pored kluba Močvara), Zagreb

Autorica: Vesna Mačković

Izvođači: Luka Barešić, Lana Bitenc, Ida Fučić, Vesna Mačković

Foto i video dokumentiranje: Ivan Marinković
Video: Dora Bodakos
Kostimografija i scenografija: Vesna Mačković
Rekviziterka: Marija Despotović i obitelj Mačković

Ostvareno uz podršku: Pogon Jedinstvo, Gradski odbor za kulturu Grada Zagreba, Udruga za audio-vizualnu kulturu ‘Kamera’

OPIS
———————-
Vozilo. Trokolica. Ili romobil. Ili invalidska kolica. Ili kolica iz supermarketa.
Vozači. Vozači vozila. Vozači vremena. Vozači svemirskih prostranstava.
Putuju zajedno. Ili se utrkuju.
Pitanje je tko je brži? Onaj koji je ispred ili onaj koji je iza?
Iza čega? Iza drugog? Iza vremena? Iza povijesti?
I što bilo koji od njih može uopće učiniti po pitanju svoje brzine?
Mogu li putovati kroz vrijeme? Ili su zaglavili u jednostavnoj matematičkoj formuli koja uključuje gravitaciju i trenje?
Koja je njihova putna prtljaga?
Plastične boce njihova su vrijednost. Puna su ih vozila. Bježe im po sceni.
Boce su žive. Plešu. Mašu im iz prošlosti. Mašu im i iz budućnosti.
Jesu li dovoljno brzi ovi vozači? Ili su prebrzi?

‘Krleža, stand in line!’ – trailer

Premiere: 5. 4. 2018, 20 h
Reprise: 6. 4. 2018, 20 h
Pogon Jedinstvo, Zagreb, Croatia

Performers: Tonka Kovačić, Vesna Mačković​, Vilim Matula​, Ida Fučić, Roko Nakić, Vilim Ostović

Production: Association for Audio-Visual Culture ‘Camera’
Author: Vesna Mačković
Performers: Tonka Kovačić, Vesna Mačković, Vilim Matula, Ida Fučić, Roko Nakić, Vilim Ostović
Costume and props design: Vesna Mačković
Technical solution for props and costumes: Ines Kolenko
Photography: Edita Sentić
Video: Dora Bodakoš
Video selfies: friends around the world and Pero Kvesić
Light and sound technician: Tomislav Maglečić

‘Krleža, stand in line!’ is a multimedia contemporary theater play, in which the theme revolves around the invisibility of artists today. This stage work originated from the same name radio-drama premiered in the show “Ars acustica” of Croatian Radio in October 2017.

Author Vesna Mačković is using performers voices and live effects on iPad looper and then produces experiments of voice, sound and text emphasizing subject’s invisibility, earshot or inaudibility. The performers use the text that the author has imposed on them, but they twist and replicate them as they wish. In spite of everything, and despite the disobedience of the performers, the author manipulates their voices live, and these sounds, that reality, go to the public – the world hears what she decides. And the performers themselves are not sure what will happen when they open their mouth and let their voice out. Where is the artist in all of this? He was invited, he came on time, but nobody notices him. Krleža, stand in line! Snack is served. We have also prepared a fun-music program. And maybe we can talk about your new book. Come on, Krleža! Harry up! Hurry, Krležaaaa!

Kazahstan, Almaty – excerpts from concert ‘Whisper to me, I wanna yell!’

Improvisational sound and voice lab
public performance
‘Whisper to me, I wanna yell!’
ШЕПНИ МНЕ, Я ХОЧУ КРИЧАТЬ! Фестиваль «Откровение»

Feb 5th, 2018.
Kazahstan, Almaty, Festival “Revelation”

author/conductor: Vesna Mačković

performers:

Elias Duisen
Tokzhan Karatai
Vesna Mačković
Zhanel Sergazina
Meruyert Tulenova

Flying by sound, melting the words – Museum of contemporary arts, Zagreb

Letjeti zvukom, topiti riječi
Eksperiment improvizirane glazbe, zvuka i teksta
autori i izvođači:

Mia Zabelka (električna violina, Austrija),
Roman Stolyar (klavijature, frula, Rusija),
Vesna Mačković (glas, tekst).

Premijera: 30.9.2017., subota, 19:30h
Repriza: 1.10.2017., nedjelja, 19:30h
Muzej suvremene umjetnosti, Zagreb

Nakon Zagreba Vesna Mačković i Roman Stolyar duet verziju premijerno izvode u Rusiji:

Moskva 14.10.2017.: Elektroteatr Stanioslavsky
Petrograd 15.10.2017.: Aleksandrinsky teatr
Moskva 20.10.2017.: Ground

Često govor promatramo kao nešto što egzistira odvojeno od drugih zvukova. Često zvukove doživljavamo kao nešto strano što postoji u prostoru. Često mislimo da prostor, kao složeno i beskonačno biće, teško može biti opisan govorom. Istraživanje jedinstva govora, zvuka i prostora zahtijeva potpunu pažnju i dubinu od onih koji žele istraživati. Način na koji istražujemo prostor, govor i zvuk je ujedinjenje spontanosti, sinestezije i sinteze.

Kada je nepoznata riječ izgovorena, ona postaje strani zvuk. Kada je stvoren zvuk određene glasnoće, visine, dinamike – možemo ga promatrati kao riječ, iako nepoznatu. Što se događa u našim umovima kada čujemo nešto – možemo li to prepoznati kao riječ ili samo kao zvuk? Koji trud moramo uložiti da bismo instantno zvuk pretvorili u riječ? Tijekom izvedbe, hrvatska umjetnica Vesna Mačković, ruski glazbenik Roman Stolyar i austrijska električna violonistica Mia Zabelka istražuju krhke granice između zvuka i riječi, vidljive i nevidljive, čujne i nečujne.

O UMJETNICIMA
————————-
Mia Zabelka – www.miazabelka.com
Umjetnica zvuka, kompozitorica i fantastična eksperimentalna violinistica iz Beča. Od ranih dana educirana u klasičnoj glazbi nastavlja istraživati granice zvuka i glazbe u svom vlastitom glazbenom jeziku (de)konstruirajući zvučne mogućnosti violine te šireći raspon ovog instrumenta koisteći elektroničke uređaje, strane objekte među žicama i inovativne izvedbene tehnike.
Mia je trostruka dobitnica nagrade Prix Ars Electronica i Fulbright Commission u New York. Trenutno je umjetnička direktorica Festivala Phonofemme u Beču.

Roman Stolyar – http://rstmusic.narod.ru/
Sibirski improvizator Roman Stolyar školovani je jazz pijanist i suvremeni kompozitor. Autor je prve ruske knjige o učenju slobodne improvizacije – “Moderna improvizacija: Praktičan vodič za klavir”. Osnivač je JZ Improvising Orchestra, prvog velikog kolektiva slobodne improvizacije u Kini. Član je savjetodavnog odbora Međunarodnog društva za improviziranu glazbu (International Society for Improvised Music) kao i Ruske unije kompozitora.
Roman Stolyar stapa razne stilove i žanrove u svojoj izvedbi – od drevnih polifonija do modernih kontrapunktova i klastera. On je jedna od ključnih figura ruske improvizirane glazbe. Roman Stolyar postao je 2000. godine glazbenim ravnateljem Novosibirsk Academic Theater GLOBE.

Vesna Mačković – www.vesnamackovic.com
Autorica, izvođačica, producentica u predstavama suvremenog plesa, inkluzivnog plesa, multimedijalnog eksperimentalnog kazališta. Također se izražava kroz umjetnost performansa i videa te eksperimente glasa i zvuka. Surađivala s: Montažstrojem, Bacačima sjenki, Alenom i Nenadom Sinkauzom, Vedranom Hlebom, Anom Horvat, Ivanom Lušičićem Liikom, alternativnim bendom Radost!.
Tijekom ljeta 2017. stvara u rezidenciji Roberta Wilsona u New Yorku gdje nastupa na Summer Gala 2 puta pred ukupno 2500 posjetitelja. Dobitnica 3. nagrade za suvremenu umjetnost – THT @ MSU na godišnjoj izložbi suvremene umjetnosti u MSU, Zagreb za video performans ‘Pozdrav’.

Trailer – ‘Golden medal’

Premiere:
18.6.2017, Festival Perforacije, Zagreb Dance Center

Reprise: 26.5.2018., Theater 21, Sisak

Author and Performer: Vesna Mačković
Music: Group Radost! (Branko Hlap Bogunović – guitar, vocal, Dimitrij Petrovic – drum, percussion, Dino Sylence Kraljet – bass guitar, Goran Bogunović – Biber – guitar, background vocal)
Scenography and props design: Vesna Mačković
Technical solution of props: Ines Kolenko (Elizabeth Grom)
Photography: Silvija Dogan, Ana Opalić
Video survey: Mladen Ergić filming, Vesna Mačković editing
Video content and music video: Ana Opalić

In the performance of the body “Golden medal” Vesna Mačković, with the technical and coaching support of the carefully selected team,  challenges several existential questions.

The evaluation of “games” in the concept of “bread and games” comes into question when games become superimposed, over-games and non-games. When games become a competition, idolatry and suicide. When games are no longer a game, they are no more than games. They become less and less games until in time they completely disappear from their own definition, and the word “games” takes on the most different meanings.

‘Flying with sound, melting the words’ (Zagreb, MSU)

Letjeti zvukom, topiti riječi
Eksperiment improvizirane glazbe, zvuka i teksta

autori i izvođači:
Mia Zabelka (električna violina, Austrija),
Roman Stolyar (klavijature, frula, Rusija),
Vesna Mačković (glas, tekst).

Premijera: 30.9.2017., subota, 19:30h
Repriza: 1.10.2017., nedjelja, 19:30h
Muzej suvremene umjetnosti, Zagreb

Nakon Zagreba Vesna Mačković i Roman Stolyar duet verziju premijerno izvode u Rusiji:

Moskva 14.10.2017.: Elektroteatr Stanioslavsky
Petrograd 15.10.2017.: Aleksandrinsky teatr
Moskva 20.10.2017.: Ground

Često govor promatramo kao nešto što egzistira odvojeno od drugih zvukova. Često zvukove doživljavamo kao nešto strano što postoji u prostoru. Često mislimo da prostor, kao složeno i beskonačno biće, teško može biti opisan govorom. Istraživanje jedinstva govora, zvuka i prostora zahtijeva potpunu pažnju i dubinu od onih koji žele istraživati. Način na koji istražujemo prostor, govor i zvuk je ujedinjenje spontanosti, sinestezije i sinteze.

Kada je nepoznata riječ izgovorena, ona postaje strani zvuk. Kada je stvoren zvuk određene glasnoće, visine, dinamike – možemo ga promatrati kao riječ, iako nepoznatu. Što se događa u našim umovima kada čujemo nešto – možemo li to prepoznati kao riječ ili samo kao zvuk? Koji trud moramo uložiti da bismo instantno zvuk pretvorili u riječ? Tijekom izvedbe, hrvatska umjetnica Vesna Mačković, ruski glazbenik Roman Stolyar i austrijska električna violonistica Mia Zabelka istražuju krhke granice između zvuka i riječi, vidljive i nevidljive, čujne i nečujne.

O UMJETNICIMA
————————-
Mia Zabelka – www.miazabelka.com
Umjetnica zvuka, kompozitorica i fantastična eksperimentalna violinistica iz Beča. Od ranih dana educirana u klasičnoj glazbi nastavlja istraživati granice zvuka i glazbe u svom vlastitom glazbenom jeziku (de)konstruirajući zvučne mogućnosti violine te šireći raspon ovog instrumenta koisteći elektroničke uređaje, strane objekte među žicama i inovativne izvedbene tehnike.
Mia je trostruka dobitnica nagrade Prix Ars Electronica i Fulbright Commission u New York. Trenutno je umjetnička direktorica Festivala Phonofemme u Beču.

Roman Stolyar – http://rstmusic.narod.ru/
Sibirski improvizator Roman Stolyar školovani je jazz pijanist i suvremeni kompozitor. Autor je prve ruske knjige o učenju slobodne improvizacije – “Moderna improvizacija: Praktičan vodič za klavir”. Osnivač je JZ Improvising Orchestra, prvog velikog kolektiva slobodne improvizacije u Kini. Član je savjetodavnog odbora Međunarodnog društva za improviziranu glazbu (International Society for Improvised Music) kao i Ruske unije kompozitora.
Roman Stolyar stapa razne stilove i žanrove u svojoj izvedbi – od drevnih polifonija do modernih kontrapunktova i klastera. On je jedna od ključnih figura ruske improvizirane glazbe. Roman Stolyar postao je 2000. godine glazbenim ravnateljem Novosibirsk Academic Theater GLOBE.

Vesna Mačković – www.vesnamackovic.com
Autorica, izvođačica, producentica u predstavama suvremenog plesa, inkluzivnog plesa, multimedijalnog eksperimentalnog kazališta. Također se izražava kroz umjetnost performansa i videa te eksperimente glasa i zvuka. Surađivala s: Montažstrojem, Bacačima sjenki, Alenom i Nenadom Sinkauzom, Vedranom Hlebom, Anom Horvat, Ivanom Lušičićem Liikom, alternativnim bendom Radost!.
Tijekom ljeta 2017. stvara u rezidenciji Roberta Wilsona u New Yorku gdje nastupa na Summer Gala 2 puta pred ukupno 2500 posjetitelja. Dobitnica 3. nagrade za suvremenu umjetnost – THT @ MSU na godišnjoj izložbi suvremene umjetnosti u MSU, Zagreb za video performans ‘Pozdrav’.

Trailer ‘It takes two to tango’

Premiere: 13.9., 19:30h
Reprise: 14. i 15.9., 19:30h
Pogon Jedinstvo, Zagreb, Croatia
Duration: 40 min

Author: Vesna Mačković
Choreography: Sven Copony
Text: Vesna Mačković
Sound design and mix: Sven Copony
Photography: Ana Opalić

Concept
In this contemporary dance performance, performers Vesna Mačković and Sven Copony are exploring a range of emotions, from rejection of closeness over the restraint to the rapprochement and complete intimacy. They will dance in It takes two to tango, evocating emotions just like in life: from fear to courage and from loneliness to the passion and connection.

Who am I?
Whose am I?
The world has changed.
Love is new.
I live in a fear of complete surrender.
Like I’m going to lose (a part of) myself
the moment I start dancing life
with my steps along with your’s.
I live in a fear that I will not know  how to distinguish
your steps from mine.
And for the tango it still takes two.
Who am I?
Whose am I?

—————–

Production: Association for Audio-Visual Culture ‘Camera’ with support of City of Zagreb Committee for Culture and Pogon Jedinstvo.

—————–
Music:

Hungry Ghosts: I don t think about you anymore
John Powell: Assassin Tango
Justin Broadrick: Dub awacking
Max Richter: Sarajevo
Clint Mansell: Stay with me
Louis Armstrong: It takes two to tango

‘Quotes of dissent: A dialogue’ – announcing performance, New York, Elaine Angelopoulos and Vesna Mačković

Quotes of Dissent: A Dialogue Performance between Elaine Angelopoulos and Vesna Mačković is scheduled for Sunday, August 20th, 2017, at Bowling Green Park, in New York City; from noon until 3pm (rain or shine).

Quotes of Dissent is a collection of 80 quotes from historically respected American (and some English) social leaders (activists, historians, journalists, presidents, and theorists; persons of varied genders, ethnicities, and color) with different and possibly conflicting viewpoints regarding the act of dissent. In 2004, Angelopoulos collected these quotes from various sources and assembled into a form of a scroll, durable to sustain various environmental conditions for outdoor performances. As the performer recites the text on each page, the scroll is turned and slowly unravels to the ground to be read by onlookers.

In this current rendition of Quotes of Dissent: A Dialogue, Angelopoulos will perform the reading with the accompaniment of Vesna Mackovic, who will translate and recite the quotes in the Croatian language. Thereafter, Angelopoulos together with the audience will listen to Vesna exclaim quotes on freedom in the Croatian language and in the cultural context of Croatia today.

—— ABOUT THE ARTISTS

—— Elaine Angelopoulos lives and works in New York City. She is an artist with an interdisciplinary approach that bridges her studio practice with audience participation, with select installations and performances. Her work has been exhibited in New York, the United States, and in Europe. Angelopoulos received a Franklin Furnace Fund/Jerome Fellowship in 2014/15. Recently, her work was included in the summer group exhibition, “Art on the Front Lines” at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts in New York City.

——- Vesna Mačković lives and works in Zagreb, Croatia, She’s and author, performer and producer in contemporary dance and multimedial experimental theatre shows, and is co-founder of educational program PAP (Performing Arts Program) based in Zagreb. Mackovic has been awarded the 3rd prize at THT@MSU 2016, at exhibition of contemporary arts for video performance ‘Salute’. This video performance had it’s revival at Robert Wilson Watermill residency Summer Gala in July 2017.

Music video – Vesna Mačković and Radost! – ‘Kikiriki’ (Peanuts) – the fans anthem

Video: Ana Opalić (www.anaopalic.com)

Music: Radost!
Text: Radost! and Vesna Mačković

Vesna Mačković – vocal

Radost!:
Dimitrij Petrović – def, djembe, ukulele, synth
Branko Bogunović -vocal
Goran Bogunović – ukulele
Dino Kraljeta – gusle, programming

Mix, mastering and producing Studio Radost! for Radost!

Make-up and hairstyle for video: Vanja Kordić Dević

The song announces the theatrical performance ‘Golden Medal’

Prime Minister: 18.6., Sunday, 20h
Perforacije Festival, Zagreb Dance Center

2017-08-01 FOX News Watermill – The importance of stillness – An artist s reflections on a residency at The Watermill Center

 

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/08/02/importance-stillness-artists-reflections-on-residency-at-watermill-center.html

An artist’s reflections on a residency at The Watermill Center

by Vesna Mačković

Editor’s note: Founded by avant-garde visionary Robert Wilson in 1992, The Watermill Center is an interdisciplinary laboratory for the arts supporting young and emerging artists through its year-round Artist Residency Program, International Summer Program (which has gathered more than 80 artists from 30 countries this year), as well as Education Programs, and open rehearsals. The Center also presents exhibitions, public programing, and offers tours of its 20,000-square-foot building, eight-and-a-half acres of grounds and sculpture gardens throughout the year. The following essay is contributed by a 2017 Watermill Center resident. 

The stillness of my body not having to rush anywhere. Silence of the regular world with sole loudness and noise coming from birds and bamboo leaves. All that mundane emptiness that creates fullness – that is how my Watermill residency started.

After breakfast we start our day with what’s known as “morning meeting,” during which more than 75 people take five minutes of stillness.

This may be my favorite ritual in the daily routine. Bob knows it. Bob knows stillness, he knows silence.

I always believed that stillness is the most important thing to understand in order to excel in the performing arts, either as author or performer.

You have to know how to stop and stay that way for as long as it takes. And it’s you, the artist, the author and performer, who decides how long it takes.

And then, people from different continents arrive. Many people. More than 70.

They’re my people – artists – a whole new extended family for the coming weeks. Immediately a rush of ideas, creativity, poetry, visuals, music, sketches and rubber gums and some more sketches. Followed by fabrics, wires, materials, cardboards, color cans, plaster, glitter and some bananas.

Finally and mostly; sweat, back pain, too much sun, or cold  rain and wind, scratches, ticks, painkillers and working into the night. All too soon followed by sunrise, work, sweat and back pains… you got it. All of that mixed with conversations and laughs in a myriad of different languages.

That is how we, the residents at The Watermill Center, spend our days in this green oasis while the day of the Annual Summer Benefit gala approaches.

My journey to The Watermill Center from my hometown Zagreb, Croatia took a total of 24 hours.

As I switched from two airplanes and two trains to get here, I never anticipated how intense and different it would be compared to my usual artistic experiences.

My performance, Salute, for FLY INTO THE SUN is an adaptation of a 10-minute video performance I filmed in a devastated iron factory in my hometown of Sisak, Croatia. The difference now is that the 2 hour performance will be done in a live setting instead of video. Try to imagine the thoughts racing through my mind – is this what I’ve flown 24 hours for!

A team of Summer Program Participants were assembled to replicate the walls from this factory. They put up plaster that will be torn down during the performance, as easily and as exhaustingly as the communism went down, and as dusty, dirty and chokingly as capitalism and fake democracy came to our everyday lives.

As I perform, I destroy these fake stubborn plaster chunks to shreds with my hammer hoping to destroy all unpleasant histories and present-day devastations and corruptions. All the while I remain out of breath. I fight for my breath.

Do I get out of it? Or do I crash down similar to the plaster under my continuous and willful hammering?

Finally the silence happens. The stillness arrives.

Two hours later.

Thank you to The Watermill Center. Thank you, Bob. Thank you, artistic family of the world.

My flight back will last more than 24 hours. I’m sure of it.

 

2017-10 Start magazine – NEW YORK Croatian artist in creative impulse at the area of Long Island as a resident of great Robert Wilson

http://www.startnews.hr/art/new-york-stvaranje-um-jetnosti/

NEW YORK Hrvatica u kreativnom umjetničkom zanosu nasred Long Islanda i u društvu velikana Roberta Wilsona

Vesna Mačković, multimedijalna umjetnica, autorica i suvremena plesačica, boravila je ovoga ljeta na Long Islandu, u umjetničkoj rezidenciji velikoga kazališnog redatelja Roberta Wilsona.
Ovo je njena priča…

Laku šetnju uz pristanište brodica na zapadnome Manhattanu i upijanje nježnih zraka njujorškoga sunca s kraja kolovoza stavila sam u scenarij moga zadnjeg od sedam tjedana boravka u državi New York. No, svaka redateljica zna kako su scenariji tu da bi izmakli kontroli i autorici i izvođačima, a na svekoliko zadovoljstvo publike. Samo što sam u ovoj predstavi ja bila i autorica i izvođačica i publika.
-Dobar dan, gospođice!
-Dobar dan!
-Imate li minutu?
Sunce je krenulo prema zalasku i u prelakoj odjeći žudjela sam za vestom koju nisam ponijela. Ali…
Imam minutu.
-Yes, I have a minute.

U New Yorku uvijek je dobro imati minutu, onako pri ruci, negdje držati jednu rezervnu minutu u džepu, rukavu. Čuda se dogode u minuti.
-I would like to sing you a song!
Nikad nisam vjerovala nepoznatim ljudima. Kamoli onima koji mi ulijeću pred lice usred nepoznatog grada. Kamoli onima koji me oslovljavaju s ‘miss’. Ali na Manhattanu vjeruješ upravo takvim ljudima. Višestruko potvrđeno. Pa bez puno oklijevanja odgovorim.
-OK, otpjevajte mi pjesmu!
Tamnokosi tamnooki sredovječni osobenjak zauzeo je pozu kao za solo u brodvejskom mjuziklu i mašući rukama prema nebu, drveću i suncu otpjevao nešto što je riječima govorilo o lijepom danu, suncu i trenutku koji ne možemo ne voljeti. I u finalnoj strofi potvrdio i zaključio stihovima kako je ovaj dan lijep i baš lijep i usprkos svemu lijep i eto svaka riječ je suvišna jer – je lijep.
-What do you say, miss? Do you agree?
Kako da se ne složim.
-Da, tako je lijep ovaj dan! Hvala na pjesmi!
I onda ono što se ondje zove “small talk” iliti čavrljanje. Priča mi da je umjetnik i da je za potrebe umjetničkog projekta o beskućnicima na tri mjeseca namjerno odlučio biti beskućnikom na Manhattanu. Maše mi i odlazi svom beskućničkom društvu u parkiću pored pristaništa. Ispraćam ga pogledom dok mi u glavi zvoni riječ “beskućnik” i neki smiraj me ipak obuzme jer vidim da ima dvije veste. Pa žurim svojoj bruklinskoj kući maštajući o toplijoj odjeći, a sjetivši se u nekoj ludoj struji svijesti prekooceanskog leta i informacije na avionskom digitalnom ekranu o temperaturi -52 °C na visini 11 km iznad tla.

Hrvatska umjetnica u bajci

Gladna sam. Hrana u New Yorku je bezobrazno skupa za plitki hrvatski džep. Bila je nemoguća misija pronaći štrucu kruha ispod 25 kuna. Pa sam mjesec dana preživljavala s jednim šupljim kruhom za tost i bademovim mlijekom koje je tri puta jeftinije od kruha. Dobro došli u New York.
Ta oskudica bila je drugi dio mog putovanja, prva dva tjedna nisam potrošila ni dolar, jer boravila sam u umjetničkoj rezidenciji velikog kazališnog redatelja Roberta Wilsona na sjeveru njujorškog Dugog otoka (Long Island). U konkurenciji 700 kandidata iz cijelog svijeta izabrana sam u tih 70 sretnika koji su pozvani doći u Wilsonov Watermill center kako bismo tu stvarali umjetnost i nastupali na događaju Summer Gala Benefit. Spavalo se u kućama, manjim vilama, usred bambusove šumice, a budilo uz cvrčke i ptičice. Cestom se ondje u rano jutro šetaju obitelji srna. U Centru nas u kuhinji dočekuje kuhar s Jakarte, koji je u svojoj zemlji princ i živi devet sati daleko od prvoga grada. Ni više ni manje. Hranimo se fino i zdravo prije nego se 70 rezidenata baci na zahtjevne fizičke poslove. Grade se pozornice, pili se i brusi 12 sati dnevno, slažu se scenografije, uređuju vrtovi i sadi cvijeće. Sve za ljetnu gala večer gdje nas 25 biva odabrano da nastupa s vlastitim autorskim radom. Njujorški mecene i podržavatelji umjetnosti, milijunaši i kustosi, rokeri i producenti, plaćaju ulaznice od 500 do 5000 $ da bi vidjeli kakve je nove radove i umjetnike iz cijelog svijeta Bob Wilson ovo ljeto okupio. Zatvaram program rezidenata i imam najveću pozornicu. Bajka hrvatske umjetnice u ostvarenju. Za moj nastup sagrađena je replika devastirane tvorničke hale Željezare Sisak kako bih dva sata izvodila performans inspiriran videom “Pozdrav”, nagrađenim u Hrvatskoj nagradom za suvremenu umjetnost THT @ MSU za 2015. godinu. Nabijam lažnim čekićem, žbuka otpada, u svojim mislima rušim i komunizam i kapitalizam i korupciju i činim to dva sata bez predaha. Sveopće oduševljenje. Slijedi poziv Boba Wilsona da za dva tjedna dođem natrag reprizirati svoj nastup na Discover Watermill danu, kada se većina radova rezidenata predstavlja lokalnoj publici, ovaj put besplatno. Socijalna osviještenost Boba Wilsona nakon kulture dijeljenja bogatstva u elitnim milijunaškim krugovima nešto je nažalost nezamislivo u Hrvatskoj. Nemamo mi takve milijunaše koji bi znali izgovoriti termin “dijeljenje bogatstva”.
Summer Gala posjetilo je 1400 osoba i, što kroz ulaznice što kroz aukciju umjetnina, oko dva milijuna dolara za idućih godinu dana rezidentnog centra i sljedećih 70 rezidenata koji će biti odabrani na javnom natječaju. Dva tjedna kasnije Discover Watermill dan posjetilo je 1300 osoba i besplatno uživalo u trosatnom programu i nastupima rezidenata. Krug je zatvoren. Svi sretni.

New York, kužimo se!

Nakon umjetničke rezidencije mjesec dana boravim u Brooklynu i gotovo svakodnevno obilazim Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Governor’s island, Roseevelt’s island. Snimam kadrove za dokumentarni film. Izvodim performanse ispred Trumpova nebodera, Muzeja američkih Indijanaca, Njujorške burze… Ispred Muzeja voštanih figura Madam Tussaud izvodim performans “Voštana figura hrvatske umjetnice u New Yorku” i privlačim više selfie-turista nego voštanom glavom i bradom slavni komičar Robin Williams, pokoj mu u duši. Umara mi se um opkoljen vašarom svjetlosnih reklama Times Squarea gdje na jednom ekranu klizi vijest o Sjevernoj Koreji i ispaljenim nuklearnim raketama dok se tisuću ljudi slika sa Supermanima i Batmanima ispod istih tih ekrana. Šetam Central Parkom, smijem se vjevericama i pitam se je li taj park samo izlog za nebodere ili ga se s njegovom savršeno pokošenom travom ipak može nazvati prirodom koja se prostire kroz čak 110 njujorških ulica. Stavljam u primozak ideju ako mi se s umjetnošću omakne u životu da dođem ovdje voziti turiste u trokolici, za 20 kuna po minuti po osobi. Zaljubljujem se u smrdljive podzemne postaje dok na šestoj razini ispod grada gledam prijelaz s platforme u vagon, širok jedva pet centimetara. Invalidska pristupačnost o kojoj bi zagrebački ZET mogao štošta naučiti. Provodim sate u muzejima, ciljano u dane kad je cijena ulaznica “plati koliko želiš” i držim čvrsto u ruci te ulaznice misleći na inicijativu “Umjetnost dostupna svima”, koju već nekoliko godina primjenjujem na svojim predstavama u Hrvatskoj, a prema kojoj ulaznice imaju prazno polje cijene da bi posjetitelji mojih predstava pri izlasku uzeli olovku i samostalno, već prema svome životnom standardu i zadovoljstvu predstavom, upisali cijenu koju žele i mogu platiti.
Zbogom, New York! Dobro se razumijemo. Vidimo se iduće ljeto.

 

 

 

2017-08-01 ARTNews – Coal Miner’s Coughs and Cocoons of Cotton Candy: A Night at the Watermill Center Benefit (journalist Andy Battaglia)

Coal Miner’s Coughs and Cocoons of Cotton Candy: A Night at the Watermill Center Benefit

On Saturday evening at the Watermill Center, a dreamy home for performance art in the midst of lulling Hamptons luxury on Long Island, New York, Vesna Mačković—a Croatian artist participating in the center’s intensive summer residency program—was seething and heaving beneath a yellow coal miner’s helmet in a pair of bright red overalls. The setting was a spartan concrete box, with no roof or much to note structurally aside from some folding chairs arranged for the occasion. Robert Wilson, Watermill’s mastermind and no stranger to arresting presences, sat rapt in the front row, watching with a kind of attention that makes whatever might be happening in front of him seem like the only thing happening in the world.

It wasn’t. There was, to begin with, a carnival of excess and extravagance just outside, with torches burning and top-shelf cocktails and security with machine guns. But inside the concrete bunker, all eyes were on Mačković as she leered out at her audience and slowly prowled around, in a sort of disquieting ballet. Her breathing was labored and punctuated by coughs, all amplified by microphones. Her steps when she walked—with feet in boots dragged to amplify the noise—sounded like scratchy poundings of a death knell. At one point, after much protracted ambling, she had made her way to the back wall and, with a hammer she carried along, began smashing bits of it from the surface.

It was confounding, eerie, and deeply affecting—and not the kind of art to be expected at a gala where tickets for the early part of the evening start at $650 and seats for the dinner after go for $1,500–$5,000. One thing that can be more dependably expected: fancy finger food. (In this case, highlights included a delectable hors d’oeuvre of grilled bread with ricotta and nectarine.) And then there was the glitzy crowd of the kind that tends to make Watermill’s annual benefit one of the premier events of the Hamptons summer season.

But even more dependable than all that, despite (or because of) its inverse relationship to reason and rationality: a spate of big and ambitious installations and performance works that turn Watermill’s 8.5-acre campus into a sort of surreal art wonderland. To reach it, the crowd for the night ascended a path, with margaritas in hand, through long swaying grasses. Up above, Miles Greenberg had arranged for naked bodies to lie splayed out between wooden poles on sheets of transparent plastic, in corpse-like repose. Then guests walked through the “Knee,” a part of Watermill’s main building that Wilson designed to be disarming, disorienting—to literally put a visitor off-balance and on the proverbial wrong foot. The floor is filled with rounded river stones that require time and strategy to traverse, and it was a sight to see women in gala-night heels teeter their way through. Inside the “Knee” were figures in bedazzled costumes in a piece by Raúl de Nieves and Erik Zajaceskowski, dancing like inhabitants of a distant country on another planet.

Past that, the grounds of the grand campus opened up and artworks were stationed along a snaking trail that went out into the woods and back again. A giant 90-foot wall was a centerpiece, with a message from Jenny Holzer in big block letters on one side reading SHE OUTWITS HIM / SHE OUTLIVES HIM. On the other side was graffiti that accumulated over the course of the night with spray paint and other writing utensils made available, in an installation attributed to Jokubas Nosovas, Nikitas Broukakis, and Sam Khoshbin. Among the messages there: “I’ll beat your ass,” “I never got laid thanks to art so I turned to politics,” and, curiously, “piss so crooked I pee on my own dick.” (Later in the night, another appeared: “Fuck you & your Hampton house.”)

The beginning of the trail was outfitted with a stage for dance performances as well as a line of would-be guards standing sentry with animal heads on sticks (Rachel Frank’s Deep Time Rewilding) and an arresting piece by Nile Harris, A Monkey on His Back (Love Laboratory), for which the artist assumed a position inside a mass of bananas with a noose around his neck. Nearby, another man in a lab coat slowly ate pieces of the fruit and methodically placed their peels in individual Ziploc bags.

Down from that was Stephen Shanabrook, in a seat in front of an industrial fan that blew freshly made cotton candy into a sort of grotesque cocoon that encased him. When he finally got up out of his chair later, after two hours of sitting there in sickly sweetness, he was in high spirits. “It wasn’t bad, actually,” the artist said. “It’s hot—it’s melted sugar when it comes out—but once you get a coating you don’t feel it anymore.” The outdoor setting made it more appealing than in a gallery, in any case: “I could see the sun through it,” he said, “and it was gorgeous.”

Cocktails were sipped in the center of the grounds around stores of art being auctioned for the benefit of Watermill, to help fund its residency programs for artists from around the world. (Artists from 26 nations took part in the night, as Wilson proudly pointed out.) But the triumphal vibe took a hit, at least for those of certain political persuasions, upon the arrival of a signal-scrambling guest: Rudy Giuliani. He looked bemused but also, in his baby blue blazer and yellow tie, in no small part pleased with the pageantry surrounding him. One couldn’t help but wonder how so much politically pointed and rhetorically noxious awfulness in recent years could emit from behind what seemed at least fleetingly like a perfectly affable mien. What he was doing there, in any case, would remain unknown, perhaps for the best.

At the dinner later under a big tent, guests were greeted on the way to their tables by a looped soundtrack playing “I’m Set Free” by Lou Reed, who was the subject of tribute for the night and the source of the event’s theme: “Fly into the Sun.” Laurie Anderson was there to celebrate her departed husband, and she took the stage hesitantly at the beginning of auction proceedings while attendees started working their way through dinner. “Are we still looking for money?” she asked at the very start.

At one point, trying to drum up funds for more artist residencies, Robert Downey Jr. jumped up on the stage and implored guests to give. “I will demand one hand from each table,” he said, “or I’m going to start getting really nutty.” Some extra gifts of $5,000 came in before Wilson himself stepped up again and said, “Be a headlight for what is right.”

Between courses, Claude Grunitzky—the newly appointed president of the Byrd Hoffman Water Mill Foundation, which oversees the Watermill Center—said he was happy with what he had seen over the night. “I see more diversity and intergenerational discussion, which are important to me,” he said. “I want to bring more diversity. I get bothered by the segregation of the Hamptons, where the very wealthy elite live on one side and underserved communities on another. I want to bring more inclusion through education. It’s a mission that is more crucial than ever, and not just for those who can afford it.”

Raúl de Nieves, who was attending the benefit for his first time, said the experience made him feel tapped into a storied lineage—the Watermill Center was founded in 1992—that he had not known so extensively before. “My performance practice is about conjuring a good time with my friends,” he said, “and it’s amazing to be a part of something that has been cultivated for 25 years. There’s so much that can happen here.”