Corporation of people's situations – COPS

June 17 — July 23, 2017

How is it possible to do justice to the plethora of voices reflecting myriad different standpoints and opinions and yet share the same living space? How can divergence be organised without engendering exclusion and homogenisation? How do abstract concepts, such as global economy, property, ownership, international agreements, real estate speculation and privatisation influence the concrete scope for joint action and the realisation of visions for a future society? Using a language of form characterised by the provisional, functionality and future promise, the Corporation of people’s situations (COPS) has installed a spatial situation at the Kunstverein Harburger Bahnhof comprising materials and elements taken from construction sites, as well as equipment and components from the world of sport and leisure activities. Scaffolding, sheets of foil, belts and mats are deployed and adapted for different use in gymnastic exercises, as meeting places and as infrastructure for an open archive. In the sense of a mobile, modular multipurpose toolbox, which can be shifted around and reconfigured into various different parkours, the installation becomes the framework and starting point for several COPS-initiated situations. In conjunction with invited artists and guests, COPS uses talks, workshops, screenings and physical exercises to provoke approaches to the question of communal engagement and to explore how contemporary global and local connections can be focused on thematically and experienced physically. Thus a "together(ness)" or collective is imagined, staged and, ultimately, performatively enacted on an aesthetic, theoretical and physical level.

Corporation of People's Situations has been working since 2015 in alternating interdisciplinary formations developing situations, performances and lectures on the thematic cluster of property, ownership, community and the scope for collective action. The conceiving of specific spatial situations, in which visitors become part of the experiment as co-producers and accomplices, invariably plays a decisive role. Participation is practiced on the understanding that it is an open offer, which codetermines its conditions and the decision-making processes of the group and which continues to develop as an ongoing 'work-in-progress' project. Various projects have already been realised, including invitations to Flutgraben e.V., Berlin (2016), Radio Archipel, Hamburg (2016), Stadtkuratorin Hamburg (curating public art of the city of Hamburg), Hamburg (2015), Motel Spatie, Arnhem, Netherlands (2015). 

Jennifer Bennett's conceptual practice resides in the fields of visual art, lecture, music and text with a main focus on balance, the correlation of art and life and problematizing the drawing of boundaries.

Alice Peragine focuses upon situations and actions in sites of transition, operating on the interface between performance, installation and intervention.

The community and urban researcher, designer and cultural sociologist, Lene Benz focuses on aspects of urban life, as well as forms of community and the world of work.

Balz Isler works as a performer, artist and thinker and uses multimedia forms, installations and performances in which he engages with today's clip and documentary culture.

Ida Roscher studied art and criminological social research. Starting from the dynamics of play, she searches for ways of translating social forms and norms.

Jo Zahn is an artist, filmmaker and organiser and focuses upon the social and economic reciprocal arrangements of public and medial space.

The artist, filmmaker and art educator, Katja Lell focuses upon the themes of movement, the interstitial, real time and digitality.

Carl Gerber works as a dramaturge (performance) and screenplay writer. 

Daniel Loick teaches political philosophy and the history of ideas, the philosophy of law and social philosophy, as well as ethics, in particular critical legal theory and the theory of the state in the context of politics and the form of life. 

Justin Francis Kennedy studied dance, choreography and ethnology and works as a dancer, artists and teacher.

Signe Koefoed's performance-related work deals with concepts of reality and perception, social structures and behaviour as well as different forms of its representation.

Christin Zarzinsky works as a freelance performance artist, dancer, yoga instructor and trainer.

Choreographie und Widerstand (Choreography and Resistance) is a loose, international group of activists, artists, dancers and choreographers from Berlin.

The dancer and choreographer, Josephine Findeisen explores the production of insight and memory in her work.

Via installations often activated through performance, the artist Sonja Hornung focuses upon the relationship between market-based reality and the ideal of a world without borders.

The platform Archipel engages with communicative and integrative production, self-organisation and questions of space, developing potential for a broad network of civil and non-institutional partners.

GARDEN is an initiative for sustainable food culture and collective social practice.

Patricia Carolin Mai is a dancer and choreographer who examines what happens when the body is exposed to extreme situations. As an educator, she leads workshops in contact improvisation.

Track Academy
Track_4: Corporate Subjects & Track_5: Decoded Situations – Media Translations
 There will be two events in the series Track Academy to be held on Saturday, July 1 2017 as well as Saturday, 16 September to accompany the exhibition on the topics of property, the body and the law, comprising performances, discussion and cinematic contributions. The series Track Academy is supported by Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung. 

The program of Kunstverein Harburger Bahnhof is supported by Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg, Behörde für Kultur und Medien.