Sara Heitlinger in Purg Franc: Privileged Tactics 1
Translators and readers: Arbel Stern, Cecilia Järdemar, Yuki Higashino , Madalen Vicassiau, Iris Garrelfs, Mario Radinović, Yulia , Nagisa Moritoki Grazia Dentoni, Cristian Perisi, Tanja Schlander, Maja Gorjup, Inmaculada Saranova de Martin, Ida Hiršenfelder.
In a white room ten speakers line the walls, from which ten women talk at once. They describe tactics for stealing, each in a different language (all from the developed world). In the centre of the room, hanging from the ceiling is a bag. Beneath the bag a statement reads:
This bag blocks signals from Electromagnetic (EM), Radiofrequency (RF), Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), and Acoustomagnetic (AM) security systems.
These are the most common security systems used as theft-prevention in retail environments.
Stealing has always existed and always will as long as money is around.
The neoliberal capitalist system facilitates the process of ‘legal’ theft from the poor by the powerful. Unregulated commerce driven by profit alone, without regard to human values or environmental concerns, has increased the gap between developing and developed nations. In wealthy countries we see nothing wrong with exploiting the developing world for its natural resources and cheap labour. We do our best to protect our privileges through immigration controls such as the Schengen border. But it is an illusion to believe that our prosperity is secure and capitalism will never end. Every day the pressure on the majority of the world’s population grows.
Stealing from multinational corporations is a form of resistance. We can use the same tactics as the global capitalist system in order to survive, as well as to undermine that system.
When is stealing criminal, and when is it a privileged tactic?
This project takes something that is hidden and puts it in the collective arena. Like a homeopathic remedy, a small amount of criminal activity within the safety of our society may help cure delusion and indifference to greater crimes. (statement, 2006)
Franc Purg lives in Celje, Slovenia and London, UK.
Through video, performance, sculpture, site-specific work and interactive installation my art aims to ask: How do we live in society? How do we inhabit the earth? For me, the vital experiences of life are on the margins as sites of creativity, resistance and transformation.
I have participated in numerous research-based residencies around the world, including at the Santa Fe Art Institute (USA); Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris (France); Artist Research Residencies in Berlin (Germany) and New York c, FlaxArt Studios Belfast; travel research residencies in Ukraine and Cairo (Egypt), Midbar residency in the Negev (Israel),
I won a UNESCO Digital Arts Award for the project Privileged Tactics II about environmental sustainability (together with Sara Heitlinger), Rihard Jakopic National Slovenian award, International media art award. The 50 best. Zentrum fur Kunst und Medientechnologie, Karlsruhe.
I have shown work at Zentrum fur Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM); The Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast; The Centre for Contemporary Art, Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw; Moderna Museet Stockholm; National Centre for Contemporary Arts, Kaliningrad; Exit Art, New York; European Capital of Culture, Sibiu, Hamburger Banhof –Museum fur Gegenwart Berlin, E:vent Gallery, London, Museum of Modern Art, Ljubljana., The European Festival of Media Art in Osnabruck, Germany, the Biennale for Graphic Arts in Ljubljana and the latest in Garage Museum of Contemporary Art-Moscow
Artist's web page: http://saraheitlinger.net/
I am an artist, writer and researcher whose practice involves sonic art, performance, creative writing and participatory design. I use practice-based research as an ongoing inquiry into the relationship people have with their environment, and the ways they use creativity to survive in crisis situations. Collaboration is essential to my practice, and I have worked with people from different backgrounds, communities and life-situations including the visually impaired, rubbish recyclers in Cairo, street children in the Ukraine and members of the Romany Gypsy community in rural England.
I am currently researching the ways that digital technology can support more sustainable food practices in the city. As part of this research I am designing a “smart” seed library that connects the stories of seeds to the stories of the people who grew them and environmental data. I won a UNESCO Digital Arts Award for the project Privileged Tactics II about environmental sustainability (together with Franc Purg), and won a Time Out Short Story Award. My work has been shown in exhibitions and festivals around the world, most recently at Exit Art in New York, the European Media Arts Festival in Osnabruck, and the Triennial for Contemporary Slovene Art at the Museum of Modern Art in Ljubljana.