A Possibility of An Abstraction: Square Dance

Germaine Kruip

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Closely connected to the culture of Sufism, whirling dervishes perform a ritual, circular dance in order to try and reach a state of transcendence. The Dutch artist Germaine Kruip, who since 2011 has been creating installations and performances examining the various meanings attached to geometrical shapes, presents a performance with whirling dervishes in the Stedelijk Museum, entitled A Possibility of An Abstraction: Square Dance. She has asked the dervishes to break through their circular dance patterns and introduce square patterns into their ritual, thereby shifting the dancer’s focus and alluding to the tradition of abstract geometrical art. The performance will be performed continually during opening hours.

Biography

Germaine Kruip (1970, Castricum, the Netherlands) lives and works in Amsterdam and Brussels. Since moving from theatre to the art world in the early 2000s, Kruip has been pursuing several lines of thought and work: her interest in ephemerality and where it condenses briefly into a physical or visual moment; in scenography of uncontrollable or ungraspable phenomena, such as the ever-changing daylight and the passage of time; in ritual and performance as abstracted moments of everyday life; in historical and art historical examples of attempts to reach abstraction by means of geometry – and finally in the desires, theories and ideologies that underlie these attempts.

The language of simple geometrical forms, such as circles or squares has deep roots in the histories of ideas, science, religion and art. Kruip employs these shapes in order to explore the relationship between art and ritual in repetitive gestures, which aim to subtly alter perception. By emphasising the gestural and physical origins of abstractions, she questions whether an absolute abstraction could ever be possible at all. Germaine Kruip received the Charlotte Köhler Prize in 2001 and the Prix de Rome (2nd prize) in the category theatre/autonomous art. 

 

Recent Solo Exhibitions include; Geometric Exercises, Parra & Romero, Madrid, Spain (2013); A possibility of an abstraction, The Approach, London, UK (2013); Eye Trap/Metropole Orkest/IFFR, one-day performance 3rd February, Rotterdam (2012); A Room, 24 Hours II, Pilar Parra and Romero, Madrid, Spain and the Approach, London (2010); Only the title remains, Museum De Paviljoens, Almere, The Netherlands (2009-2010); Aesthetics as a way of survival, Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Germany (2009).

Recent Group Shows: Love Illumination, Upstream Gallery, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2013); Things from before beside things from after around things of the moment, Para & Romero, Ibiza, Spain (2013); Geestverwanten-de ideeen van 24 Kunstenaars, Rabo Art Zone, Utrecht, The Netherlands (2013); Cimetière d'Ixelles, An Art in General New Commission, curated by Lisa Oppenheim & Lisa Tan, New York, USA (2013); The Peacock, Grazer Kunstverein, Graz, Austria (2013); Chambres des Canaux: The Tolerant Home - 400 Years of Liberal Culture in Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2013) Man in the Holocene, List Visual Arts Center at MIT, Boston, USA (2012); about: blank, Kunsthalle Münster, Germany (2012); IN THE BELLY OF THE WHALE (ACT III), The Centro Cultural Montehermoso, Spain (2012); SPECIFIC COLLISIONS, curated by Melissa Gordon, COSAR HMT, Düsseldorf, Germany (2011); Haus/House, The Altona Museum, Germany (2011); Quantos Queres, MARZ Galeria, Lisbon, Portugal (2010); SILENCE (A composition), Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan (2009); Faux Jumeaux, Curated by Michel François, SMAK, Gent, Belgium (2008-2009).

Credits

concept
Germaine Kruip
dance
including Muaviye Kara, Huseyin Kara
production
Stedelijk Museum
thanks to
Mondriaan Fonds

‘The abstraction of the repetitive circular movement mirrors nicely the sense of ritualized ecstasy of the art world.’

Art Agenda about Circle Dance

This performance was made possible with support by