Revaluation, a performance

In this performance, made for the opening of the exhibition Revaluation in the Atelierhaus im Anscharpark, Kiel, I recall several works that are dear to me. They have never lost their significance and continue to influence my thoughts and my artistic practice. At the same time, I relate to victimisation and sacrifice. Growing up as a young woman, I was surrounded by women who had completely internalised the idea that their natural role was to sacrifice themselves for others.

The sacrifice – it starts with the sound of bellowing deer in late summer. The calls resound in the gallery space as I enter. Slowly, I pass through the audience to the plastic bags with sand that are on the floor between Marianne’s clay statues. I take the bags, one by one, and empty them on the floor until the sand forms a bed. Adding a few small globes and toy balls sets the stage for the next step.

Le Sacre du Printemps (Igor Stracvinsky) begins to play and I step on the earth. I slowly turn, evoking the temptation of Eva, a painting by Lucas Cranach. Then the arms are raised towards the sky, as in Pina Bausch’s piece Das Frühlingsopfer. Reaching to avoid the fall. I fall anyway and land on the balls, squeaking sounds, and the globes are crushed.

The music repeats. This time, I unfold an insulating rescue blanket. The rectangle floats through space; I disappear for a moment and then wrap the blanket around me; Hugo Bal – DADA – appears. I am no longer a victim and step away from this context. Using the reflection of the blanket, I try to hold up a mirror to people’s faces. But only briefly.

Wrapped in the blanket once more, I crouch across the sand, like the images of refugees on the beach we see on television every day. The toy balls, which squeak and light up when you squeeze them, have disappeared in my clothes. The glimmering lights shine through the fabric. I evoke Valie Export’s Touch Cinema from 1968, but instead of asking people if they want to touch my breasts, I invite them to have a look at the balls in my décolletage. I parade in front of the audience, offering them a peek down my dress – but in order to say anything they will have to move real close. Most people refuse, they are too shy or embarrassed. Now I leave the room quietly. The earth, the plastic bags and the globes remain.

Concept/Performance by Sonja Augart


  • King of the Forest „The Red Deer Rut“
  • Igor Stravinsky „Le Sacre du Printemps“