Performance Art Archives and Documentation

                                                                                                                                  with Anja Foerschner

Course Description

This course examines how the time-and site-specific experience of performance art is translated into physical material with sustainability. It investigates into the relation of physical remains to ephemeral artistic practice, their meaning for the inscription into history, and ways of use for artists, scholars, and curators.
The course presents various theories related to the concept of the archive, modes of documentation ranging from traditional to contemporary, as well as examples of use of archival material in artistic and exhibition practice. Students will consider how documenting strategies are changing in relation to new technologies and media and what the implications are for the concept of the “archive”. Through a range of practical experiments, they will inquire into what constitutes the 'artwork' in performance art as a dynamic process and how can documents reflect its context of practice? How does the artwork provide meanins in relation to the contexts that it moves through? And how can we generate, understand, and curate performance art as a ddynamic and fluid phenomenon? Students are also invited to consider non-traditional, non-material, and non-Western forms of archiving such as body-based concepts, memory, or storytelling. 

This course is aimed both at practicing performance artists seeking to gather insights into historical precedents as well as modes of documentation and archiving practice relevant to contemporary practice, and scholars/curators who wish to explore theories related to the archive and learn about ways how to use documentation in their scholarly or exhibition work.


About Anja Foerschner

Anja is the founder of ECC Performance Art. Originally trained as a visual artist, she holds an MA in Art Pedagogy, Art History and Philosophy and a PhD in Contemporary Art History from Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich. Anja has researched and curated performance art for almost a decade and worked with institutes such as Munich’s Haus der Kunst, the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles and PerformanceHUB in Belgrade. She is passionate about exploring the many facets of performance art and the various ways in which it engages with our cultural, social, and political landscape. 



AVAILABILITY: Places still available
DURATION: November 4-25, 2024; Mondays 6pm-8pm CET
LOCATION: Online course
TUITION FEE: 175 €  (no equipment required)




"This class is extremely informative and rich. I now understand the creative potential of performance archives and documents in a completely new way."


Course Image Caption
AS Interakcije A1-14 01, 9 April 1974, photographer unknown, courtesy Student Cultural Center Belgrade