Sandra Man: Public Elsewhere

Public Elsewhere is a cycle of works dedicated to the public and its presence. It started in 2020 in the frame of the Berlin Flutgraben Performances series. Public Elsewhere is both, related and not related to the Corona situation and its impossibility to have (large) audiences.
The moment of addressing and the presence of those who are being addressed has been at the core of my work and my artistic struggles for a long time. I experience ”all of us”, that is the public, as an extreme void, a cause for anxiety as well as for energy, freedom and joy. Before Corona, at the February edition of Flutgraben Performances, I invited the philosopher Marita Tatari and the talk she gave was precisely about the public as a strange ”all of us”.

The pandemic highlights the difficulties and impossibilities of us coming together, sharing time and space and being present in the face of each other. I do not believe that Corona is the reason for the troubles we have in addressing and being together; but because of the pandemic and the lockdowns ”the public” became the obvious thing and it was soon clear that this would be the only topic during this crisis and probably also after: How do we go on and create moments of presence between us when we are all somewhere else? How can I address the ones who are not here and how can I let myself be moved by a public that is not appearing in the same time and space? – In Public Elsewhere I am trying to take the limits as resources.

01 No One Else Will Ever Read It | May 17th, 6pm | Remote Text Performance | 11 Readers

A text written during the spring lockdown addressing an audience who is known from the beginning, and present in the writing. Sent to each of them at a given time for reading it all at the same time and one time only, turning reading into coming together.

02 The Attenders | June 14th, 5pm | Text-Space-Installation | Künstlerhaus am Flutgraben Berlin | 1 Visitor

12 chairs, 12 texts, 12 titles set up at the outdoor gallery of the Künstlerhaus for one visit and one visitor moving along the stops. Texts and titles are portraits of the 12 artists of FP 2020, the chairs create an auditorium for one visitor at the time, reflecting the portraits in sky and water.

Sandra Man: Public Elsewhere

03 Tenderness of the Blue Light | June | Text-Screen-Installation | Unpublished

A table, a chair, a screen. You sit down, the screen is showing your portrait. A voice is reading a text, almost depicting your face.

04 The Visitors | November 9th, 10-11am, Milla Koistinen; November 11th, 10:30-11:30am, Jasna Layes-Vinovrški; November 15th, 6-7pm, Jefta van Dinther; November 18th, 10-11am, Ixchel Mendoza Hernández; November 22nd, 6-7pm, Jared Gradinger; November 23rd, 10-11am, Stella Geppert | Space Choreography | 6 Sending, 6 Receiving, 1 Walking

6 people, one at a specific time and for one hour, are visiting the room I work in while I leave for a walk. Each of the 6 has an absent partner, a name selected by chance, to whom they send ”a postcard” from their visit. On my walk I write to all of them.

05 The Gift of Three | December 3rd, 12-12:30pm | Space Choreography | 6 Talking, 6 Filming, 6 Watching

6 people are together in Public and Private studio at Künstlerhaus am Flutgraben, 6 people are at different outdoor sites in the city, 6 guests are on Zoom. The 6 people in the studio describe one after another a place they like, the 6 people on the streets go to a site they are emotionally attached to, and film it. Words and images are streamed live, coming together only on Zoom for the 6 spectators.