MPA-B ABOUT

M O N T H  O F  P E R F O R M A N C E  A R T – B E R L I N | Born 2011 – Ended 2015

WE ONCE WERE 

The Month of Performance Art-Berlin (MPA-B) was a 31-day, city-wide,  non-profit and non-funded collaborative platform devoted to supporting and advancing independent performance art practices in Berlin, and from around the world. 

Established in 2011, and running annually in May, MPA–B connected and brought together hundreds of artists, spaces, networks and initiatives, who collaboratively contributed to the development of a unique and radical month-long cultural programme, featuring: indoor and outdoor performances, site-specific interventions, talks, workshops, screenings, exhibitions, public encounters and interactions, durational and days-long actions, food gatherings, public try-outs and many other formats and projects which did not have, or rejected, any definition.

As a non-institutionalised platform, running on the voluntary work of a handful of performance art makers cum organisers/producers, and with its non-hierarchical and jointly assembled performance art programme, co-organised by hundreds of participating artists, curators, venues and networks, MPA–B sets itself apart from most festivals and gave life to a unique project reflecting on, and celebrating the particularity, experience  and creative force of the local, national and international independent performance art community.

WHY A MONTH OF PERFORMANCE ART? 

MPA–B was founded with 5 main objectives at its core:

  1. to facilitate connections and cooperation amongst venues, artists, curators, networks, organisations and other independent players working in the field of performance art;
  2. to support and draw attention to Berlin’s unique community of performance artists, practitioners and international guests;
  3. to foster innovative critical discourses, practice-based exchanges and interactions between performance art makers and new audiences;
  4. to explore new models and methodologies of making, presenting and sharing performance art;
  5. to document the history of contemporary performance art practices in the city through the annual Berlin Performance Art Report.

During its five editions, MPA–B took place at over 90 locations in 10 city neighbourhoods. It showcased the work of hundreds of performance art makers from around the world. It facilitated local and transnational collaborations, partnerships and artists’ mobility which now continue beyond MPA–B itself. It interconnected and brought visibility to Berlin-based independent spaces and performance art practices relegated to the fringes of mainstream and funded performing arts structures. It brought to the broad cultural panorama in Berlin, the only annual international platform dedicated to performance art. It helped create the Association for Performance Art in Berlin e.V. 

THE FUTURE 

MAY 2015 marked the final edition of MPA–B in its current form. 

Under the title MPA–B ANTHOLOGY,  the closing edition wrapped up 5 years of the platform’s history of mapping/connecting the independent performance art scene of the city, and brought together one more time, under its acronym, the creative minds and indefatigable spirits of the performance art community of Berlin, and beyond. 

As a live compendium summarising and drawing attention to the work of independent performance art practices from Berlin and around the world, the MPA–B ANTHOLOGY reflected upon how these non-institutionalised models and activities of cultural production and social engagement, responded critically to contemporary socio-economic conditions and traditional art market normatives.

The MPA–B ANTHOLOGY also wanted to expose how through the formulation of new collaborative systems for the theorisation and making of performance art works, these alternative self-sustaining organisms impacted artistic practices, shaped human experiences, interactions and personal narratives. 

MPA–B has now moved towards establishing a more holistic, sustainable and year-round base for performance art practices and research under the auspices of the Association for Performance Art in Berlin e.V.

READ ABOUT OUR PAST EDITIONS

MPA–B 2011         MPA–B 2012        MPA-B 2013        MPA-B 2014         MPA-B 2015

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