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ever since the hungarian philosopher georg lukács pinpointed the “existential homelessness” modernity has brought upon us, both cultural theorists and primetime theologians have been at pains to diagnose the diseaseand to market their cures for the ailments deeply rooted in our modern global village. for lukács, the illuminated pre-modern universe, though large, was eminently habitable; here “the world is wide and yet it is like home, for the fire that burns in the soul is of the same essential nature as the stars; … fire is the soul of all light, and all fire clothes itself in light.” this world, art friends, is gone. but how often do we glimpse this loss?

 mia florentine weiss has been touched with our homelessness for some time now. she spent 10 years of her life travelling the continents of the globe, documenting her voyage with the various media available to her at the time, while posing one single question to everyone she encountered on her journey: “what is your place of protection?” with this disarmingly humble question she has found a way to provoke responses from the people she has talked with. in part, her question addresses an urge already felt by lukács and the romantics he cited. was it not novalis himself who said that “philosophy is really homesickness,” an “urge to be at home everywhere”?

but weiss’s question also has universal implications.  in her multi-media artwork mia florentine weiss has continuously sought to address this profoundly troubling question. rather than casting art’s diagnostic glance at one aspect of the world’s ills (we’ve all seen such images: this is a picture of a slum; that is a portrait of a polluted environment), weiss uses her interrogatory art and performances to provoke and encourage her spectators to formulate their own responses, thereby forcing them to take note of the “lack” her questions point to. at her mixed media installation “what is your place of protection?” featuring 54 digital poem clips (each in its own frame), spectators are at liberty to navigate their own way through the audio-visual material—a terminal with headphones for the sound will be provided. it is a journey that spans the globe.


 >> information about the artist - mia florentine weiss

>> flyer "those in love live in fear" (jpg, 467kb)

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