RESIST! PERSIST! MAINTAIN!

Collective listening and installation
Wasserturm, Zurich
Address: Badweg 10, 8001-CH

Often invisible to most people, the Wasserturm is a symbolic place that resists the waves of modernization, hiding in the urban fabric of the city. It is from the history of this profane place that Stirnimann-Stojanovic and mfj rulla have found inspiration to develop their collaborative work. Indeed, the Wasserturm was born out of the need for water distribution, which saw some citizens sharing a common mission and becoming active participants in the construction of the tower in the early 18th century. This social story led the artists to investigate the literature that relates to actions of self-organization and redistribution of resources in the present time, also one of the central subjects of their own artistic research. They are practices of resistance that belong to a radical imagination capable of activating processes of awareness, survival and procreation in relation to our behavior with the environment, human and non-human beings. The audio piece Resist! Persist! Maintain! (2022) is a collage of existing texts with the intertwining of voice and sound – a fuse that wants to light up and urge action in connection to some questions such as "What are possible ways to (re)claim the public space? What are possible ways to care for resources in a non-exploitative manner? What are possible ways to maintain collective structures in a rootless capitalist world?". Composed by mfj rulla, the soundscape accompanies the contents contributing to the transmission of the words’ meaning, and creating a space for the imagination to travel.
The audio work is presented on 6th May in the form of a collective listening that starts from the Wasserturm and moves to the Old Botanical Garden via wireless headphones. It is accompanied by the installation of a 9-metre-long banner distributed along the verticality of the tower. Visible from the Old Botanical Garden for two months, it bears the title of the sound work Resist! Persist! Maintain! as a message addressed to the community. During this time, the sound work is available to listen to free of charge via a qr code.

The intervention is curated by Zaira Oram [Francesca Ceccherini, Eleonora Stassi]


bio

Stirnimann-Stojanovic is a Zurich-based artist duo composed of Nathalie Stirnimann (*1990 in Fribourg) and Stefan Stojanovic (*1993 in Vranje, Serbia) who have been working together since 2015. Holding separate Bachelor’s in Fine Arts, they completed their Master’s degree at the Zurich University of the Arts as a duo.
Stirnimann-Stojanovic's concepts manifest in situations, performances, words and objects. Central themes in their practice are the social and structural issues of the art system seen from the viewpoint of aspiring artists. They are interested in exploring the boundaries between art, activism and society using transdisciplinary approaches. By involving the public, spectators become actors, permitting new types of dialogue. Their aim is to probe and call into question the reality of the art field and, using collective approaches, to thematize fairer and more sustainable working conditions.
Stirnimann-Stojanovic's works were shown in Switzerland and internationally. In 2021 they were awarded with the “Art grant of the city of Zurich 2021”, the “JKON Prize 2021”, a studio residency in Shanghai by Pro Helvetia (for 2023) and were nominated for the “Werkschau Zurich 2021”. They were recently artists in residence at Forum Schlossplatz in Aarau (2022), at Theater Neumarkt in Zurich (2021) and are artist partners of the research “Collecting the Ephemeral” (HSLU/SNF, 2020-2023).

Rulla Sutter (1992 in CH) is a sound artist/composer aka mfj rulla.
Since ever, mfj rulla aims to diffuse the frontier of our cosmic perception, combining the known with the unknown, nature with culture, slowly building a cooperative intelligence, harmonised by a rhythm that we share – surrounded by like minded decentralized dedication.
mfj rulla is co-building spaces for collective experiments – since 2015 additionally in the form of musical research gatherings. Combining experiences from interactive ableton live-set tours with previous degree work in sociology and data science.
https://mfjrulla.tumblr.com/

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