Reframing Conventions for INTERBELLUM #1 (2013/2020)

The work ‘Reframing Conventions’ by Lisette Ros is an 8-hour sitting performance which originates from 2013: back then, the focus of society’s debate was on the 8-hour workdays in the Netherlands and the act of sitting, which was proven to cause a 40% increasement of premature death. The aim of the performance was to research the convention of sitting as a part of INTERVENING SPACE.

Today, the COVID-19 pandemic has given the research into the act of sitting a new layer of meaning, reshaping our understanding of collective spaces and changing the way we physically approach to them. This new performance stems from the same aim, with a slightly different focus: to highlight how spaces and settings worldwide got alienated from their function, and how we physically adapt to this schism.

In this new live performance Ros solely sits for eight hours on the same chair which she has been using since 2013, without practicing any other human action. ‘De Stelling van Amsterdam’ as a location offers an interesting decor as it was officially build as a part of Amsterdam’s defense mechanism for war, but has never served its original purpose. The weirdly idyllic landscape serves as an interesting setting for the work, its natural inhabitants unbothered by her presence.

Video work in collaboration with Rob Schröder and Gabrielle Provaas.

About INTERBELLUM – Lisette Ros, Gabriel Rolt:
The word ‘Interbellum’ commonly refers to the period Between the Wars. It defines a period in-between. When alienation finds its way throughout all layers of existence, and at the same time the opportunity rises to redefine conventions. As the COVID-19 pandemic results in a political and economic crisis, the INTERBELLUM project is framing and continuously questioning the function of art and behavior in this specific period. INTERBELLUM covers 5 chapters: 5 performances on 5 different locations, that all represent a different approach on this period in-between.  

VIDEO: The streaming launch of this performance was part of New Viewings at Barbara Thumm Galerie / ‘DEFENDER’ exhibition curated by Gabriel Rolt.

Watch the entire 8-hours performance – video registration (medium res) below!

Reframing conventions at De Stelling van Amsterdam by Lisette Ros. INTERBELLUM collaboration with Gabriel Rolt, 2020.

© Camera by Joao da Costa
© Image by Rob Schröder
© Text and assistance Maria Langerhorst
© INTERBELLUM by Gabriel Rolt, Lisette Ros
© Lisette Ros