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      2019 - SISYPHUS / TRANS / FORM
  • A lesson for the sickness of «conceptualism»

    "the mythological man of Papaioannou goes further: curiosity emerges, another archetypal quality: it is the one that plunges the new Sisyphus into the abysses of those walls with enormous effort. As if sucked in, physically disjointed, genre-transformed addictions reappear, now swallowed up by Pre-Raphaelite jellyfish, now become Christs condemned to eternally build their cross.
    Papaioannou plays of synthesis and uses with simplicity few materials and calibrated gestures. But there is a whole world behind and inside, that boils and is channeled into those powerful images. A lesson for the sickness of «conceptualism»."

    Silvia Poletti, Il Sole 24 ORE, 15 November 2019
    original review

    The unbearable heaviness of being

    “the multiplicity of being that reveals itself (even in the transformation of gender identity) thanks to the very heavy slab of cement that sucks and spits out, which cancels and generates, which oppresses the human being yet it is the necessary protective shell, like the shell of a turtle, or the uterus that renews the birth ritual.”

    Stefano Casi, casicritici, 31 October 2019
    original review


    "Dimitris Papaioannou is probably the greatest genius on the European scene today. With his tools from Arte Povera, with his objects and elementary materials, which seem to be removed from a construction site, with an eye, persuasive and rapacious, able to grab the most diverse languages of contemporary art, he creates his performances so outwardly as poor as they are amazing, imbued with an archaic heritage but with a look at science fiction. All this thanks to extraordinary performers and impersonal appearances, in this case all in a dark suit, wrinkled and marked with chalky prints on the shoulders. He, too, who, like the magician of every fable, moves, directs, handles cables, hands the microphone (for noises/there are no words), a new Kantor, but projected into a post-atomic future, which pulsates, suffers and gasps already today."

    Gianfranco Capitta, il manifesto, 02 November 2019
    original review

    powerful empathetic force

    “The barrier between “stage” and audience is dissolved in a way that’s both thrilling and uncomfortable. The constant movement of the performers around the space means at times we are forced to follow in order to see and at other times forced to manoeuvre ourselves to avoid colliding with them. The performers, dressed in dark suits covered in dust, are subordinate to Papaioannou’s dispassionate taskmaster but the dust on his own jacket suggests he was once in their position.”

    Aida Amoako, The Quietus, 9 November 2019
    original review

    elegant imaginative and technical mastery, between materiality and spirit.

    “while continuing to put in light the elegant imaginative and technical mastery that characterizes the work, at the same time shamelessly exposes the secret, the soul; like a magician who, in showing us his number, does not bother to hide the trick. We find ourselves, in spite of ourselves, first voyeurs and then overt witnesses of a so spontaneous and sincere as well as surprising revealing of a scenography”

    “[…] as it is in the poetics of Papaioannou, with the appearance of assemblages of bodies that compose unusual, mythological and monstrous images: men and women with an anomalous number of arts, broken, elongated, deviated, metamorphic or even impossible shapes which make the alternation of the chiaroscuro of light and of the different densities of the materials used an instrument comparable to the perspective distortion in Escher's drawings. It is in this kind of visions, in fact, that we experience that excitement - which we also find in Papaioannou's most recent theatrical performances including The Great Tamer of 2017 and Since She created the following year for the Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch - given the success to "see" something that alters the regular perceptive experience by innovating reality with new possibilities and formal impossibilities. The magical game of vision is a tireless articulation between full and empty, between light and heavy materials, between rigidity and lightness, between the flesh of the muscles and the bones of the skeleton, between materiality and spirit.”

    Gaia Clotilde Chernetich, DOPPIOZERO, 08 November 2019
    original review

    a physicality that impresses and astounds

    “the man is literally consumed by his wall, the staging of the piece is revealed as extraordinary, as a series of seemingly impossible vignettes are created with a physicality that impresses and astounds.”

    Hannah Hayes-Westall, FAD Magazine, 11 November 2019
    original review

    powerful and original visual writing

    "the Greek choreographer, director, performer and visual artist, a genius recognized for his powerful and original visual writing in movement, derived from the great work on the body capable of symbolic transfigurations that draw on mythological, literary, pictorial and cinematographic sources: an imaginary constructed with Arte Povera materials”

    Guiseppe Distefano, exibart, 01 November 2019
    original review

Conceived, visualized + directed by Dimitris Papaioannou

Performers: Dimitris Papaioannou, Christos Strinopoulos, Drosos Skotis, Costas Chrysafidis, Pavlina Andriopolou, Ioanna Paraskevopoulou, [Kalliopi Simou (Athens)]

Assistant Director + Creative Producer Tina Papanikolaou
International Relations & Photographer Julian Mommert
Technical Director Manolis Vitsaxakis
Sound Composition Giorgos Poulios 

Project realized in collaboration with Collezione Maramotti + Max Mara
Produced by 2WORKS in collaboration with EdM Productions / Elisabetta Di Mambro and Simona Fremder

A site-specific work for the Collezione Maramotti as part of the Festival Aperto (Reggio Emilia)

Performed on
• 24 – 27 October 2019 at Collezione Maramotti in Reggio Emilia, Italy
• 27 – 30 December 2021 at NEON | 'Portals' at the former Public Tobacco Factory 
[admission free, pre-reservation required via from 6 December at 17:00]