The idea of the RADICAL LOVE HAPPENING is coming from a very old wish of mine. A wish that was not fulfilled and so did not past. As Walter Benjamin said, "The past is not past." I carried this wish long time in me. This year it came up again after one of those filmdinners where friends came together to watch films and having dinner. These filmdinners which followed happenings organized by Die DilleTanten gave me the confidence to pursue this happening. Among people who organized these happenings and who were participating and I also was getting close with which was the most important there are to mention Maren Blume, Katrin Euller, Ipek Hamza, Hannah-Lisa Kunyik and Juliane Saupe.
Another wish was once (2012) to found a space for performance discours in vienna. Yet another wish that I was longing for much longer came up then was the desire to connect art, life and politics. So to open my flat, studio to a space for performance art, discourse and community. (This is connected to my history of punk. We used to organize concerts in the flat we lived in on a farmhouse. So there is also this connection to D.I.Y. subculture.)
The RADICAL LOVE HAPPENING therefore is to create a space and time for community, friendship, love, supporting each other, pushing a discourse and grow through discussions and taking care of each other to develop our auto-realization.
In this sense it was on one point of the development of this idea completely clear that this has to happen at my place. I want to share my flat and create a space which aims to be safe from dominator culture. As bell hooks put it: "The only safe space we have is our home where we can share our love, friendship and solidarity with our beloved ones" (You find this in the book Sehnsucht und Widerstand; there is a special chapter on Heimat. - Ein Ort des Widerstands).
On a talk on black masculinity together with Kevin Powell (you find this online) she gave another inspiring political notion to the idea of home saying: "We have to see our homes as places of resistance. We have to look at our history and see how much started at home."
Excited by this idea it is important to question also what home is. For me home is not a place to find physically. And that place which used to be my home in childhood reminds me more of wounds of interrogation and feeling foreign than of love. Since I ran away from home to find one; home seems to be a space to create. Or to be found actually through friendship in terms of feeling connected and welcomed. By friendship I mean a relationship beyond domination and which invokes a practice of love, freedom and solidarity. In the end home is a place where we are able to become people who can love. The feeling of being at home for me is thus connected to be able to love myself. Discrimination of class, race, gender, and all other kind of differences to the normatives of imperial white suprematist capitalist patriarchy is present in various forms of violence which makes us feel bad, lower valued, shit and so on. Therefore it is one more bell hooks I have to thank because she puts it so splendid and also remarkable when she says that love is the only answer to the [racial and sexual] violence.
Well, there is also another thing that occured to be interesting on this behalf. That is the question how - as a white heterosexual man - to be a man? What kind of masculinity in this kind of way would look like. How to be able to love. Trying to find ways to equality I found very interesting the ideas of radical softness; which is a new queerfeminist discourse/ movement to oppose a masculinity that is based on strength by softness. Not by chance MISSY MAGAZINE (german queerfeminist Magazine) put in there last issue that there topic for 2016 will be feelings. So it ́s about estimating feelings, tenderness and caryness.
At least I got very excited and touched by the ideas of this years program of the WienWoche FOREVER TOGETHER which focuses on one hand relationships, love, friendship and politics. And in the end there is great inspirations coming out of talks and thinking together with Nataša Mackuljak(friend and curator of the festival).
Due to this conversations she also introduced me to a new book from Srečko Horvat which is only published in croation still. It inspired actually the title RADICAL LOVE. The books title Radikalnost Ljubav is quite similar. It means The Radicality of Love and is a theoretic reflection on latest revolutionary movements, activism and love. Thesis like: "There is no revolution without love." or "There is no communism without love and no love without communism." are remarkable in this discussion about love so far.
Finally this happening(s) is(are) not to be meant a single show of mine. I am doing it because it is a pleasure to me and therefore I am very happy and open to participation.