Luchezar Boyadjiev interpreted a piece by Lora Ivanova on Nov. 5th 2008 around 10 am Eastern time from the window of the room/apartment where the artist works and lives when in Sofia, Bulgaria.
“Coffee with a View”, 2008
Performance project in public/private space with a significant level of popular involvement meant to happen on a given day (or over a period of several days) in November 2008
A/ Identify a friendly neighborhood coffee place with a sidewalk terrace that will be willing to “play along” and establish relations of collaboration for the purpose of the performance.
(Size of coffee place and terrace do not matter so much, the minimum seating capacity though should not be less then 20-25 with at least 4-5 seating tables available for action; coffee place could be located in an art institution as long as it is frequented by local people, for instance, the cafeteria of the Project Space of Kunsthalle Wien in Vienna);
B/ With the help of a compass and Google Earth identify (visually and physically) the general direction from the coffee place to: New York, Moscow, Mecca, Rio de Janeiro, Sofia, Beijing, Katmandu, Lhasa, Jerusalem, Tehran, Singapore, Johannesburg, Kinshasa, Bogotá, Brussels, Berlin, Rome, Tbilisi, Kabul, Baghdad, Dubai, etc.
(You are free to choose either all or some of these cities, depending on your local choice and preferences based on political, private, logistical or other considerations; you should select cities from the list provided above or input a new city but only after consultation with me);
C/ At opening time of the coffee place (or at the beginning of each city-oriented cycle of the performance) arrange all available chairs in the coffee place in such a fashion so that when people are seated they would be facing the direction of a single city from your locally motivated list. Tables remain static.
(Stick to the following “rules” –
- alternate directions of chairs every once in a while;
- depending on the collaborative “deal” with the host and the size of the establishment this could happen either every day at opening times, or twice a day, or every hour, etc.;
- any period is OK as long as – the chairs keep on changing direction; people are aware of the direction to the city they are facing; and people have the choice to or not to seat)
D/ All normal activities, commercial or otherwise, of the coffee place are carried out as usual.
The performance is meant to make the “performers” aware of the multiplicity of today’s world and to provide basic “training” in orientation in this world. The intimate motivation of the performance is grounded in the necessity to “refresh” the global/local perspectives of modern day politics. This issue will be of crucial importance in the upcoming elections in the US in November 2008 for whoever is elected president will have to re-adjust the “political optics” (orientation, values, priorities, etc.) of the administration. This performance claims that new perspectives are identical with new respect (-ives) for places and cultures other then your own. This claim is proposed through the creation of a temporary visual, talking and coffee-drinking (hopefully contemplative) situation.
Luchezar Boyadjiev is an artist living and working in Sofia, Bulgaria (born 1957). Among his most recent exhibitions are: “Wonder”, the 2nd Biennial in Singapore; “The Jerusalem Show” with Al-Ma’mal Foundation in the Old City of Jerusalem; “Eurasia” in MART – Museo di Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Trento e Rovereto, in Italy; and “Lucky Number Seven”, the 7th SITE Biennial, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the USA, all in 2008.