Marta Keil

I have been invited by Joanna to co-think about the Grand Re Union gathering as a researcher and curator working mostly in the field of performing arts and reflecting the institutional practices. Albeit my curatorial practice is deeply rooted in the contemporary theatre, I have been carefully observing and reflecting choreography in recent years, perceiving it as space where new ways of being together are actually activated, embodied and practiced.

While co-working on the original plan for the Grand Re Union as a 10-days long festival in June 2020, I have been imagining it as a crack in time, where we could not only take a break from every day flow, but also when we can invite contemporary artists practices to encounter with its past – and their various transformations, developed within last decades.

It was somehow about inviting the ghosts of previous fights and hopes to haunt our anxious present time and share with us their wisdom, successes and failures. I’ve been imagining Grand Re Union as a temporary common space that would let us feel, experience and learn each other; as a live gathering in its deep political meaning, where unexpected and unthinkable ways of being together and support each other are activated.

What seemed fascinating to me was an attempt to document such an encounter and search for diverse ways of translating the live experience into a material that can be shared further, outside the ephemeral community temporarily gathered at one place.

The pandemic outbreak forced us to resign from the live gathering but strongly reinforced the need of support and solidarity. I would be happy to see how we might translate the 10 days live gathering into 10 issues of online magazine: an online resource of knowledge and shared practices; a way to get together while being physically isolated. Maybe it could become an actual political gesture: as a tool we could potentially use to support our every struggles.