18th September - 18th December, Thessaloniki
Alexandra Bachzetsis (born 1974 in Zurich) is an artist, performer and choreographer based in Zurich. She studied at the Dimitrischule in Verscio, Switzerland (1995-97), and the Performance Education Program at the STUK Arts Centre in Leuven, Belgium (1997-99). She then continued to post-graduate level at Das Arts, the Advanced Research in Theatre and Dance Studies Centre in Amsterdam (2004-06). During her training years, she began to work as a dancer in contemporary dance and performance context. Since 2001, she has been working independently, producing and presenting her own work in theatres and contemporary art venues. Bachzetsis received many awards, among them the Migros Kulturprozent Jubilee Award (2007), a grant for choreography of the city of Zürich (2009) and the Swiss Art Award (2011). In 2007 she co-founded the artists collective Company with Lies Vanborm and Tina Bleuler. Selected solo exhibitions: Play, Kunsthaus Glarus (Glarus, 2010); Show, Kunsthalle Basel (Basel, 2008); This Side Up, (in collaboration with Julia Born), Perla Mode, Message Salon (Zurich, 2007); Show Dance, De Appel (Amsterdam, 2006); Handwerk, Juliette Jongma Gallery (Amsterdam, 2005); Murder Mysteries, (in collaboration with Danai Anesiadou), Etablissement d’en face (Brussels, 2004). Selected group exhibitions: DESTE Prize, Museum of Cycladic Art (Athens, 2011); Performative Structures New Existentialism Part 1, Alte Fabrik Rapperswil (Switzerland, 2010); Quick, Quick, Slow. Text, Image and Time, Museu Colecçao Berardo and Experimenta Design Lisboa (Lisbon, 2009); The Swiss Cube, Instituto Svizzero (Rome, 2009); Word Event, Kunsthalle Basel (Basel, 2008); When Things Cast No Shadow, 5th Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art (Berlin, 2008).
My work constitutes an inquiry into expressions of performing arts, techniques of choreography and forms of scenic behavior. My main interest lies in the codes defining gestures, both in everyday life and on stage. My choreography scrutinizes the use of gesture and movement in terms of the mutual influence developing between expressions of “popular culture”, such as romantic comedies, TV soap operas or hip-hop video-clips and expressions of “high culture”, such as ballet, modern dance and performance. I search for new ideas in dance performance, inducing a productive crossing and translation between the, hitherto, isolated or even mutually exclusive cultural fields. In my performances, I draw on stereotyped modes of representation of the female body in contemporary popular culture, in show business and in the sex industry. I divert the clichés of commodified femininity and idolized masculinity, in order to use them as building blocks in a new, consistent formal language that evolves into a tool of self-reflection and a means to empowerment.
Alexandra Bachzetsis will perform at the MMCA on the 13th November, at 21:00.