Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Untitled (On an escalator, turning around, I look into the eyes of the person standing behind me.)
(3 September 1977)
Jiří Kovanda first appeared on the art scene along with the second generation of Czech “actionism” in the late 1970s. There is a certain romanticism in his artistic gestures that may have been stimulating in the depressing 1970s, when it served as a contrast to so many traumatic and politically-laden performances. Simple actions like gazing fixedly into the eyes of people encountered on an escalator, for example, or intentionally-unintentionally touching chance passers-by on the street can be understood as attempts to make contact.