UP-ON International Live Art Festival

Pro Helvetia Shanghai, Visuelle Künste

Hinweis: Dieser Beitrag ist nur auf Englisch verfügbar.

Julie Monot and Katja Schenker are invited to conduct live performances and lectures at UP-ON International Live Art Festival in Chengdu.

“UP-ON International Live Art Festival”, founded in 2008, is the oldest of its kind in China. It has drawn 268 artists from home and abroad, and is internationally recognized for the creation, exchange, and research of live art. The festival’s four core values are Non-profit, Internationalization, Academic, and Publicity.

During the pandemic, the festival responded to challenges by scaling down. In 2020, only two foreign artists participated, and the ninth edition in 2021 exclusively featured Chinese artists. For the tenth edition in 2022, they adopted the theme “Internal Circulation” and invited only artists living and working in the Chengdu area. This year marks a return of international exchange, giving the stage to 10 foreign artists and 12 Chinese artists, portraying a diversified selection that includes renowned seniors who started in the 1970s and emerging talents with just three years of related experience.

At UP-ON, audiences aren’t just bystanders, instead, they could also contribute to the art-making process. Discover the charm of live art by watching and participating on-site.

Julie Monot

Julie Monot holds a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts from HEAD in Geneva (2017) and a Master’s degree in Visual Arts from ECAL in Lausanne (2019). Her artistic practice is inscribed in different mediums such as installation, sculpture, performance and video. She pays particular attention to the limits of the body and its modes of representation, exploring transformation accessories such as costume, prosthesis and body “furniture”. This artistic practice is deeply transdisciplinary, integrating concepts such as doubt and uncertainty. She celebrates these notions for their permeability and elasticity, which allow her to interrogate systems of dominant classification and representation. For her, doubt is a critical means of rethinking question established discourses and socially constructed norms, to free the imagination and explore new possibilities. In her works, Julie Monot invites us to reconsider our relationship with the body, to Identity, to difference and to the other.

During UP-ON, her performance Haunt takes place in the Guang Hui Art Museum, more specifically in one of the magnificent rooms displaying immense pictorial works by Chinese masters such as Zhang Daqian. She intends to invoke five almost spectral figures who will inhabit the space like ghosts from another time. Her aim is to confront the audience with a double presentation that, through its poetry, creates a latent and spellbinding tension.

Julie Monot, ©️ UP-ON International Live Art Festival, 2023, photo by Hu Yujie
Julie Monot, ©️ UP-ON International Live Art Festival, 2023, photo by Zheng Hanfei

Katja Schenker

Katja Schenker, born in St. Gallen in 1968, lives and works in Zurich. Her artistic works focus on the areas of live performance, drawing, sculpture and installations in internal and external spaces, highlighting the use of natural materials in most cases. The sensuality of these materials play an important role, as do their context, as well as their spatial and temporal dimensions, such as mass, permeability or perishability. Schenker’s artworks aim to thereby heighten the experience and perception of one’s own corporeality in relation to the bodies of the audience and that of the artist. In her processes, concepts such as skin, openness and hold play an important role.

She has received among others the Swiss Art Award three times, as well as the Swiss Performance Art Award and in 2021 the St. Gallen Cultural Foundation’s “Recognition Prize”. Katja Schenker studied comparative literature, art history and philosophy at the University of Zurich and the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Socials in Paris.

In the performance dress, Katja Schenker appears in a concrete dress that initially restricts her body as two rigid surfaces. The longer she moves in this dress, writhing, tapping her own body with bare hands and striding through the spaces, the more the appearance also evokes a sense of delicacy and softness. The net cast in concrete now falls softly and undulates almost elegantly on the artist’s body. Self-determined, somewhere between brutality and abandonment, cage and shelter at the same time.

Katja Schenker, dress, UP-ON International Live Art Festival, 2023
Camera/ Editing: Séverine Cornamusaz
Katja Schenker, ©️ UP-ON International Live Art Festival, 2023, photo by Hu Yujie
Katja Schenker, ©️ UP-ON International Live Art Festival, 2023, photo by Hu Yujie

UP-ON Festival

Creation and Performance
Julie Monot, Katja Schenker
21-22 October 2023
Guang Hui Art Museum

Lecture I
Speaker: Katja Schenker
18 October 2023
LUXELAKES·A4 Art Museum Documentation Centre (Lu Shan)

Lecture II
Speaker: Julie Monot
19 October 2023
Geely University School of Arts and Design

Participants: all artists, critics, observers
20 October 2023
Guang Hui Art Museum