This is an interview with the artist Joan Jonas, who talks about her performance piece Mirror Check, which she showed at 14 Rooms, the Live Art exhibition during Art Basel, organized by Fondation Beyeler, Art Basel, and Theater Basel. In Joan Joans’ work Mirror Check, the female performer observes and examines her own naked body with a small, round hand-held mirror. The mirror serves as a symbol of self-portraiture but also as a device of fragmentation, reflecting parts of the body but not the whole.
Joan Jonas has been chosen by the curators Hans Ulrich Obrist and Klaus Biesenbach to participate in the Live Art exhibition 14 Rooms, which ran concurrently to this year’s Art Basel art fair in Basel (Switzerland). In this video, Joan Jonas speaks with Mirjam Baitsch (Fondation Beyeler) about the idea behind her work.
14 Rooms was presented by Fondation Beyeler, Art Basel, and Theater Basel. The curators Klaus Biesenbach and Hans Ulrich Obrist invited fourteen international artists to each activate a room, exploring the relationship between space, time, and physicality with an artwork whose “material” is the human being.
Joan Jonas: Mirror Check. 14 Rooms Live Art Exhibition. Messe Basel, Basel (Switzerland), June 10, 2014.
More videos covering 14 Rooms coming soon.
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From the press text:
Joan Jonas is an acclaimed and influential multimedia artist working with performance, video, drawing, and sculptural installation. After studying art history and sculpture she continued to work with the medium of sculpture while exploring performative actions with the body in relation to film, video, and space in the late 1960s. Jonas found that performance and movement allowed her greater scope to represent image and gesture. Her pioneering works draw inspiration from the fields of film, literature, visual art, contemporary theatre, dance, and traditional Japanese theater.