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Themesicon: navigation pathOverview of Media Articon: navigation pathPerformance
Aus der Mappe der Hundigkeit (Export, Valie), 1969Step Piece (Acconci, Vito), 1970Triangle (Iveković, Sanja), 1979
Baba antropofágica (Clark, Lygia), 1973

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(Valie Export/Peter Weibel, «Aus der Mappe der Hundigkeit» 1969). Vito Acconci attempt-ed to draw up a classification system for his own works.[37] Between the almost private gesture, or attitude, and the public interventions, concepts were to be found that precisely investigated the interconnection of the private and the public. In that way, a performance might take place at home, but would still be addressed to the public. Describing «Step Piece» (1970), Acconci wrote: «The public can see the activity performed, in my apartment any morning during the performancemonth; whenever I cannot be home, I will perform the activity wherever I happen to be.»[38] Thus, artists deliberately extended the venue of the art action into the private sphere, charging it with both cultural and political codes. With her action «Triangle» in 1979, Sanja Iveković demonstrated how private space is subject to public surveillance and a private, sexually explicit action can be interpreted as a public threat by a totalitarian state. Documented in photographs, this action simultaneously points to the media apparatus of the surveillance state and the resultant thematization of the political and collective


body, primarily by East European artists.[39] The extent to which the collective body is also one propagated by the history of images and by the visual media will be discussed below.

Without audience: A room of one's own

The reality of state control in Eastern European countries was in contrast with the specific search for non-monitored «domination-free» spaces in the west. Referring to «Baba Antropofágica» (1973), Lygia Clark stresses the establishment of collectivity as a process of group dynamics: «We arrived at what I call ‹collective body,› an exchange between people of their intimate psychology. This exchange is not a pleasant thing … and the word communication is too weak to express what happens in the group.»[40] But no matter how much the body could join up with others to form a temporary, flexible structure—as was the case in the group actions by Lygia Clark or the multimedia, usable installations by Hélio Oiticica—it still remained a hermetically sealed border. The body «disclosed» itself solely to the internal view and mental experience of one's own body. Bruce Nauman defined

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