This year, Block Universe, Londonâ€™s leading performance art festival, takes place across three major cultural locations in Europe. As the festival continues to celebrate its fifth anniversary, it will expand internationally to continental Europe for the first time. Following the organisations largest London festival programme to date and an inaugural intervention at the Venice Biennale, both this Spring, Block Universe will present a sister programme of performances and interventions as part of the launch of a major new German institution: E-WERK Luckenwalde. The occasion cements Block Universeâ€™s founding of a new international strand, establishing the organisation further as an international commissioning body.Â
E-WERK Luckenwalde is a new Brandenberg institution in a former brown coal power station, with a bi-annual art programme, artist studio programme and commissions. E-WERK Luckenwalde will also produce its own renewable energy that will be fed back into the National Grid. POWER NIGHT, curated by Block Universe, will take place in several locations across the large scale, 10,000m2, E-WERK site and will connect artistic concepts with the real production of energy. The programme will bring together EWERKâ€™s architecture with cutting-edge performance at the cross-section of contemporary art, dance and music for one night. Performers will map the raw spaces of the listed buildings with their bodies, objects, soundscapes and installations, creating live environments across spaces such as a nearby abandoned Bauhaus designed swimming pool and E-WERKâ€™s galleries, which include a 350m2 Turbine Hall and outdoor sites.Â
Fittingly, for a curated programme that spans both Europe and the UK in the current political context, the 2019 programme of Block Universe explores the concept of internal and external â€˜world-makingâ€™ by looking at the diverse environments and realities we create for ourselves to exist within, whether those be mental, physical or virtual spaces. Taking place alongside Berlin Art Week, this first edition of POWER NIGHT will reflect on the vision of sustainable futures in the context of a historic power station, whose very fabric carries a wealth of history and collective memory. Taking E-WERKâ€™s position as a new sustainable institution and power station, the performance programme asks us to consider our role in shaping the world that we live in.
Curated by Block Universeâ€™s Founding Director and Curator, Louise Oâ€™Kelly and Curator and Director of International Programme, Katharina Worf, POWER NIGHT included new commissions and premieres by eight international artists and collaborators.
The programme took place during Berlin Art Week 2019 on Saturday 14 September, with performances running from 6pm to midnight. POWER NIGHT included Nina Beier (DK), Cecilia Bengolea (AR/FR), Charismatic Megafauna (UK), Marikiscrycrycry (US/UK), Fernanda MuÃ±oz-Newsome (UK), Performance Electrics gGmbH (GER), Rowdy SS (UK) and Nora Turato (CR/NL).
Block Universe consists of an all-female team: Founding Director & Curator Louise Oâ€™Kelly; Katharina Worf, Curator & Director of International Programme; Xica Aires, Head of Production, Tatjana Damm, Managing Director, Nicola Jeffs; Press Relations and Sara Muthi; Communications Assistant.
EWERK’s Team: Helen Turner, Pablo Wendel, Adriana Tranca, Myrina Andrack, Maike Carstensen, Courtney Russel, Jen McHugh, Clair Boetschi and all EW volunteers.
POWER NIGHT is funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and supported by Mondriaan Fonds
With Special Thanks to Edelmat Veranstaltungstechnik and The World Famous Wrestling Clubs: 1.Luckenwalder Sportclub e.V. & RSV Hansa 90 Frankfurt (oder) e.V., Campari, Nordholz, the city of Luckenwalde, Absolut, Feldschlossen