Is it truth if it occurs before our eyes – because someone happened to place it there? Or do we knowingly allow ourselves to be deceived by iconic images in spite of and especially during the age of classical modernism? “The Treachery of Images” addresses a current phenomenon, namely what we hear often contradicts what we see; images reveal the true nature of words – and vice versa. While artists create a poetic world, politicians shape reality. In view of the aesthetic and social impulses which arose from the “primal catastrophe” of World War I and quickly triggered new forms of radicalism, this project presents the Bauhaus as a laboratory of perception. On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus, the ensemble Nico and the Navigators together with the Panthea Company shall return to the place where the Bauhaus began; in the Dessau Masters’ Houses, they will investigate the suitability of a pioneering technology for presenting the history and stories of the Bauhaus. With the aid of augmented reality (AR), the project transfers the aesthetic and political convictions of the Bauhaus masters such as Paul Klee und Wassily Kandinsky, Oskar Schlemmer and Georg Muche to the place of their former activity and reassesses them in their typical navigational manner. The viewers will be placed in an intimate situation with the performers who will introduce them to the myriad images and biographies of the various artists – whereby the viewers will be presented with AR elements that occasionally contradict what they see and hear. In this way, the performance will address Bauhaus-related stories about migration and assimilation. In an age of fake news and alternative facts, the project examines the reliability of historiography and memory, and presents the tech-savvy school of art and design of the Weimar Republic embroiled in countervailing artistic and political currents. In the place of museum-like presentation, the project offers visitors a vibrant adaptation of history with scepticism and respect, thoughtfulness and boundless humour.
Artistic directors: Nicola Hümpel and Oliver Proske
Set design: Andreas Hillger
Dramaturgy: Carl de Poncins, Torsten Maß