4 frågor till Manolis Tsipos
1. Who is Manolis Tsipos
Manolis was born in 1979 in Athens, Greece. He is a cross-disciplinary performance artist and mentor with extensive professional experience within the European contemporary performing arts field. He coaches workshops on the DasArts Feedback Method internationally, and he is a writer of prose (texts for the stage, novels) and of poetry with publications in Greece, France and the USA. He holds two MA degrees (in “Theater”/DasArts, Amsterdam and “Environmental Politics & Management“/University of the Aegean, Greece). Lastly, he is founding (and active until 2014) member of the Institute for Live Arts Research |Π|, and also founding (and active until 2011) member of the performance group Nova Melancholía, both based in Athens.
2. Give us the Elevator pitch for DasArts feedback method.
The DasArts feedback method is an intensely discursive peer-to-peer tool with which we can address interdisciplinary artistic practices belonging in the contemporary performing arts field. Philosophical practices, such as the Socratic Dialogue, are its starting point. The method is primarily an exercise of collective thinking and of vivid reflection among professional peers on a specific artistic work; it aims to both address the specificity of an artist’s work-in-progress, and gradually their overall artistic practice. The method invites us to activate our knowledge and professional expertise in a structured way, and experience the three positions that constitute the function of the method; the positions of the feedback-giver, the feedback-receiver and the moderator.
3. What’s exciting about stage art in Athens from your perspective?
Following the turbulent history of modern Greek state, on her way of establishing herself as the capital city and – without any doubt – the most interesting place to live in Greece (in terms of socio-political and cultural significance), Athens has suffered many difficult moments. This fate has formed in time a truly “sui-generis” identity for the local art scene. A vibrant and ambitious one, which simultaneously feels proud and fed up with its heavy cultural heritage; A greatly resourceful and imaginative one, especially when it comes to devising creative ways to keep on existing and functioning in times of no real state cultural policy and barely existing structural funding for the arts; An angry one, because she feels unfairly marginalized. I love her!
4. Name a book, a performance and a piece of art or exhibition that is important for your artistic work right now.
I have only recently discovered Doris Lessing; better late than never. Currently reading a second book of hers, “The Golden Notebook”, I got utterly captivated by her exquisitely anatomical – almost surgery-like – language. When it comes to a staged performance though, I find it rather hard to name any, as it’s been a while since I saw something that I found pleasingly fascinating… However, I could perhaps offer another one in exchange; in one of my recent travels for reasons of work, I visited once again the Ticcino area, in South Switzerland. Could I perhaps offer the natural beauty of that blessed land, as one “performance” I hold very warmly in my heart? It is simply breathtaking; the Alps, thriving in steep mountains and dramatic canyons, the long rivers, a walk on the shore of Locarno Lake… As for a visual artwork, I am currently in the process of writing a novel, still a fresh endeavor, in which Pisanello’s late gothic painting of the “Vision of Saint Eustace”, now hanging at the National Gallery in London, will play a role. I am not writing about this painting, albeit truly dear to me; this painting will only perform an “apparition” in the life of the people I am writing about. Language in my work, in all its variations, is an obsession.