In its many forms and manifestations, Action art has questioned the logic of the spectacle and the distance between producers and receptors; between those who perform and those who simply watch, or so it seems. Being a programme of performances, Idiorhythmias feels the need to examine what it is that attracts an audience and what configures it. While the previous edition cast a critical reflection on the role of institutions and their capacity to ‘institute’ practices, set disciplinary limits and draw up the rules of the game, as well as examining their responsibility as guarantors of the relationship between artist and public, the present edition focuses on the viewers to explore the multiple roles they can play and the spaces allocated to them by the institutions.

Programme curated by Soledad Gutiérrez, independent curator, and Pablo Martínez, MACBA’s Head of Programming.

One of the art forms that has most radically confronted the relationship with the public is the happening. In this sense, we welcome the exhibition Oscar Masotta. Theory as Action, currently at MACBA, which investigates the contribution of Masotta, an intellectual whose work is based on transmission, repetition and artistic forms such as the happening and the ‘anti-happening’ (1966). The programme also features the screening of Segunda vez (2018), a film by Dora García inspired by Julio Cortázar’s eponymous short story, presenting two re-enactments – or repetitions, to use Masotta’s psychoanalytic terminology – of two of the happenings created by Masotta in Buenos Aires during the 1960s. Happening, public, author, musical score/script, filming and repetition are some of the concepts to be discussed in the context of Dora García’s film, and as part of this year’s programme.

Another concept developed by Masotta was dematerialisation as an artistic practice and resistance, a concept first expressed by him in a lecture given at the Instituto di Tella in 1967 under the title ‘After Pop: We Dematerialise’, which MACBA has recently re-published in its collection of online publications Quadern Portàtil. A common reflection in many of the works included in the present edition of Idiorhythmias, the idea is central to the practice of Mette Edvardsen, featured in this year’s programme. In her work objects become tools to trigger the public’s imagination, so they become active thanks to dematerialisation. Edvardsen’s performances are part of a body of work built upon the research the artist has been conducting over the last decade. In her seminal piece Private Collection (2002), the dancer/choreographer enters the world of objects and their presence on the stage. Her relationship with objects, already apparent in this early work, is proof of her capacity to transform through a game of absence and presence. Edvardsen pushes her investigations to the limit in two works from a trilogy she produced from 2011 to 2015: Black and No Title. Here language plays with the objects, while the presence of the artist on stage alters the real space. The performative power of words cannot only do things, but also summon things by their appearance and disappearance. While in these pieces the activation of the public’s imagination and the orality of the dematerialised text are fundamental, in Oslo (2017), it is the performer who disappears to make room for the spatial presence of the text and other multiple voices. Accompanying these performances, a selection of Edvardsen’s video works and publications will be available for consultation in the atrium of the Museum.

Running parallel to the presentation of Edvardsen’s work and closely linked to the idea of idiorhythmia, the programme opens with a concert by Luke Fowler and Richard Youngs, a kind of musical dialogue experimenting with various genres and invented instruments.

While dematerialisation is important for the development of this programme, so is the construction or recreation of other imaginaries through words and the invocation of other beings, as in the work by Mercedes Azpilicueta, Ye-gua, Ye-ta, Yu-ta (2015–17), and her collaboration with Decòrum, the Museum’s choir, on the ‘dishonest investigation’ of texts by the Argentine poet Néstor Perlongher; the analyrical recital Jinete Último Reino Frag. 3 , by María Salgado and Fran MM Cabeza de Vaca, a call to subjective disobedience aiming to provoke emotion through words; and Fino Fantasma (2015–17), by Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa, a subtle piece about life beyond death, a kind of journey to the materialisation of that which no longer exists.


Dora García
Mette Edvarsen, "Private Collection". Foto: Ilse Joliet


28 ABRIL, 2, 3, 4 AND 5 MAY 2018 SATURDAY 28 ABRIL
6.30 pm Luke Fowler and Richard Youngs
Venue: Meier building Atrium.
Price: Free admission

8 pmScreening of Segunda Vez (2018), by Dora García.
Followed by a talk with Dora García, Marla Jacarilla y Victoria Pérez Royo
Venue:Cinema Maldà
Price: Single ticket 3 €. Sale exclusively at the ticket office of Maldà cinema

8 pm Mette Edvardsen, Private Collection (2002), performance.
Venue: Museum galleries*

9 pm Mette Edvardsen, Black (2011), performance.
Venue: Capella MACBA
Price: Combined ticket 5 €

8 pm Mercedes Azpilicueta and Decorum, Bestiare of Tonguelets (2018), performance
Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa, Fino Fantasma (2015–17), performance
Mercedes Azpilicueta, Ye-gua, Ye-ta, Yu-ta (2017), performance
Venue: Exhibition gallery, Convent dels Àngels.
Price: Combined ticket 5 €

10 pm Mette Edvardsen, No Title (2014), performance.
Venue: Capella MACBA.
Price: Admission 5 €

12.30 pm Talk and drinks with Mette Edvardsen, Soledad Gutiérrez and Pablo Martínez.
Venue: Espai Taller.
Price: Free admission

7.30 pmNina Power, lecture Conflict, Compassion, Commitment.
Venue: Espai Taller.
Price: Free admission

9 pm Mette Edvardsen, Oslo (2017), performance.
Venue: Capella MACBA.
Price: Admission 5 €

10.30 pm María Salgado and Fran MM Cabeza de Vaca, Jinete Último Reino Frag. 3 (2017). Venue: Exhibition gallery, Convent dels Àngels.
Price: Admission 5 €

From 28 April to 5 May, a selection of publications and video works by
Mette Edvarsen will be available for consultation at the Atrium of the Meier building.

*There are limited places for Private Collection, so admission will be on a first come first served basis

Public Programmes
macba [at] macba [dot] cat
Tel: 93 481 33 68