Let’s shake the dead birds from the trees

2017, June 24

Helicopter presents during Laagtij: A tour that explores The Hague’s artists perriferial art initiatives by boat.

The boats part from De Besturing at 1pm and will stop for concerts and interventions at Maakhaven 3pm, WD4X 4.30pm and Helicopter 6pm, bring your boat or be on time to have a ride

**Performance by Evelina Rajca and Sara Pape in Helicopter’s project space.
** Continued by yiddish soul train Schlemiel&Schlemazzle who will perform on the Helicopter platform sailing back to the Besturing.

In our project space another collaborative exploration in the artistic practice and research of Sara Pape Garcia and Evelina Rajca culminates in an intervention at Helicopter.

During their performances, the artists will present their recent research on currencies with references to energy policies and monetary systems, in which they focused on the paradoxes that are deeply embedded in the way society values (free) time, labour and “living things”. They will do this from both a geo- and bio-political, but also from their artistic point of view, by reformulating collective symbols and their circulation within an ubiquitous planetary computational era. By focussing for instance on the speculation of Helicopter, the Hambach Forest and Echo Systems.

Kindly supported by The innogy Foundation and Helicopter ………………………………………………………………………………………..

Sara Pape´s obsession in revealing ambiguous behaviour reaches her art practice, as does her engagement in social justice. She is active in local food initiatives, and is also co-founder of Timebank.cc., a parallel monetary system that uses worked time as a currency. In both roles of activist and artist on a continuous basis she unravels the irrationality within the model of the free market, opposing Adam Smith’s view that people are rational profit-maximizing agents. The common denominator within these pursuits is that she wants to defy the current value systems within our society.

Within the context of this intervention Pape will further explore different questions raised by the conception of seeds and their regenerative qualities.
Seeds are promises for the future. Value is only a social construct, it is defined by people, therefore it is subjective, it can be changed. Seeds embody prospect and tangibility, and can therefore be much more precious than any golden standard.

However, there is a friction within our current agreement on what is value. By taking a look at the inventions that lead towards an unequal, excluding system; or our tendency to provide decreased value to essential interaction between people, like in the health and education sector, less than the business of extracting diamonds or selling copper on the London Metal Exchange – What is justice if the legal systems protect property constructions profoundly which are executing social exclusion and exhaustion of the planet?
How to deal with these ideas that seem to be weightless, and yet fuel the world?

If we agree that the neoliberal system, with its colonial roots, violates human rights and is therefore barbaric, how can we negotiate today with the institutions that maintain this status quo? What are the limits of maturity of the individual—the subjected— the sleeper? Perfection is the one thing that reality is truly not… yet!?

Evelina Rajca will present aspects of her long-term project “Sleepers as bistable figures and its implanted peripheries”. This research on the manipulation of circadian rhythms addresses different notions of exhaustion and “smart-energy harvesting” concepts. By dealing with questions regarding the myth of control, the structuring of time and space and the dehumanized traces inscribed in them, the realization that time is running out on climate change is crucial.

Displeasure, loss of performance, an increased “appetite” or even aggressive behaviour are some of the responses to everyday work pressure – further exhaustion numbs interest in alterity experiences and its value systems. If fatigue and exhaustion also add fuel to uncertainty, the readiness to conform is more present. Also, the fact that the manipulation of the sleep-wake behavior is used as a method of torture to break the capacities, will, and resilience of a subjected person, to manipulate ideas and information, and to obtain the desired confessions, statements, etc., sheds a different light on meritocracy. Rajca will share a selection of experiments that she evolved in the so-called public and private spaces in the scope of her residency in the context of VISIT at Innogy/RWE and Rijksakademie.

Rajca’s research and practice brings epistemological, scientific, and artistic perspectives to the questions raised by chronobiological and energy research, while also grappling with the contemporary cultural debates on accessibility, agency, knowledge production, and epistemic corruption


Both Sara Pape and Evelina Rajca’s artistic research and practices unfold echoes between value systems, technologies, and processes that crystallize at different levels but which indeed are also incorporated in our daily life.