The issue of exclusion has always played a central role with respect to urban spaces. Although today’s world of globalised capitalism promotes universality and the fiction of multicultural tolerance, respect, human rights and democracy, the coexistence of many different lifestyles often leads to processes of outer and inner exclusion. This is heightened further by a diverse array of collective and political identities and interests, such as nationality, religious affiliation, ethnicity, sexual orientation and economic benefit.
The unique social and political history of South Africa and its current status as the strongest economic power on the African continent have emphasised the significance of these tensions in social, geographic and urban spaces. In view of the important role racial ideology once played in the territorial and urban planning policies of the former Apartheid regime, South Africans today regard the spatial transformation of their cities as a key strategy for addressing the past. The historical architectures of exclusion have long since merged with new ones; the current situation is strongly influenced by gross economic disparity within South African society, by the ghettoisation of the poor, the isolation of the affluent classes into gated communities, the high rate of criminality and violence, migration and xenophobia.
The project series “Space Tales - Futures Cities” by the international dance company Dorky Park explores the dynamics of exclusion and spatial urban transformation in South Africa in the context of socio-political developments and current art production. In cooperation with the Outreach Foundation and The Forgotten Angle Theatre Collaborative in Johannesburg, the Maxim Gorki Theater in Berlin, the Thalia Theater in Hamburg and the Festspielhaus Hellerau in Dresden, the project will present a series of events which are divided into three sub-projects:
Hillbrowfication was a performance project with children and young adults ages five to nineteen about the life of migrants in the Hillbrow quarter of Johannesburg. The performances took place at the Maxim Gorki Theater. The project Chastworth centred on the Indian community in Durban. The dance film production was presented at the HAU in Berlin. Super Local stories features a series of small site-specific formats with artist-in-residence programmes and workshops at various locations in Johannesburg – predominantly in the former townships and the more rural urban outskirts.
Artistic director: Constanza Macras (DE)
Artists: Ariel Efraim Ashbel (DE), Gerald Bester (ZA), Lizi Estaras (BE), Adham Hafez (EG), Roman Handt (ZA), Dean Hutton (ZA), Lucky Kele (ZA), Spoek Mathambo (ZA), Mandla Mathonsi (ZA), Hector Thami Manekehla (ZA), Ana Mondini (DE), Manuel Osterholt (DE), John Sithole (ZA), PJ Sabbagha (ZA), Tatiana Saphir (DE), Fana Tshabalala (ZA), Andrew Tshabangu (ZA), Jan Sebastian Suba (DE), Nicolas Vladyslav (BE)