VOTE – WORK IN PROGRESS
Performance with: Adina Mocanu, Marina Oprea, Izabella Lészay, Cristi Gheorghe, Ruxandra-Mihaela Enache,Florin Bădiță. Performance coordinator Ioana Păun
Atelier 35, Bucharest, 23 May 2014
Each Romanian citizen over 18 years old contributes with 8.1 Lei to the 2014 EU Parliament elections budget. Each Romanian citizen contributes financially to shrift some politicians to Brussels.
In may 2014, a group of independent artists sent a letter to the Romanian candidates at the European Parliament whose contacts were publicly available. The letter asks for their position opposite the problems faced by young artists and contemporary art. In response to the answers received, they decide to use the performing assets to reach the Brussels in the appointment day of the politicians in the European Parliament and make a radical action. In the night of 23 May 2014, the collective VOTE of the performance, the day before the European parliamentary elections, raising the amount of artists 800 lei (180 euro). One of them (Gabriela Mateescu) ends up in the Belgian capital and makes the whole experience into a manifesto against the University education system that discourages critical thinking and creativity.
The performance was similar to a marketplace. 7 artists had to convince the public to give them 8.1 lei (almost 2 euro). The one that raised more money received all the money raised by the others. I got to go to Brussels.
I didn`t talked during the performance. I used some paper sheets on which I wrote my name, the fact that I`m an artist, I declined some well payed jobs in the graphic design field lately, I don`t believe that art can be done in the weekend or the few hours that are left when you come home tired, I am supported by my family, I teach at the University, but I only am payed 160 euro, the PhD costs 1000 euro per year so I can`t raise the money to go to Brussels.
People empathized with my situation, the condition of the poor artist is always sympathetic. I only promised that I will visit, because I earn so little money it would be a big financial difficulty for me to get there. Artists are pushed to take exhausting jobs that disable their artistic practice, but the suffering artist aura seems to be a legacy that the public fancies. You can not work 9 hour + 2 hour on the way to get there and come home and expect to be creative, plus to fulfill the new requirements to be a good self manager and promoter of your own work outside your own studio.
My name is Gabriela Mateescu
I am a woman artist
In the last year I turned down a couple of better paid jobs in advertisement
I assume the responsibility of this act
I think that art can not be done in the weekends
or in the 2 hours left free after work
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