open call_koumaria residency 2019 | deadline 1/4/2019

Onassis Stegi in cooperation with Medea Electronique call for artists, musicians, composers, philosophers, archivists/researchers, video artists, designers, dancers and anyone who designs, builds and/or employs new interfaces or pre-existing interfaces in innovative ways, and performers who are excited by the prospect of working with new interfaces, or becoming one.

Who is invited
Given the theme, we are looking for artists excited by the idea of collaborative artistic creation, grounded in an improvisatory spirit and practice, who are excited by the thought of reanimating our archived works. We hope this call will be of interest not only to new and mixed media artists, but also to archivists excited by the idea of thinking about the archive itself, and methodologies for its creation and access, in new ways.

This year's theme: Improvising the Archive/Archiving the Improvisatory
Within the framework of the Interfaces Project, this year’s residency is on the theme of Improvising the Archive/Archiving the Improvisatory. Medea Electronique has collected documentation (audio, video, photos, text, image) of its past ten residencies, in and about Sellasia, approx. 10 km north of Sparta. Focusing on site-specific mixed media performance, this material not only traces the history and development of Koumaria, but also that of the village of Sellasia—stories told, histories revealed, places explored, narratives uncovered. What are the potentials of an archive that is simultaneously a collection of cutting-edge site specific new media art, and a repository of village life and change? How can the improvisatory impulse behind the art created at Koumaria interact creatively, faithfully and responsibly with the highly improvisatory ways in which communities evolve and grow? What might an archive be like which can reveal both, and allow the archive visitor to themselves be an active improvising creative agent—an archivist of the archive?

Koumaria 2019 will explore these themes, as part of our ongoing project to create an innovative archive for Koumara, and therefore also for Sellasia. In particular we will focus on the exhibition of this archival material in the village of Sellasia, as a way to give back to the village for our ten year (and ongoing) collaboration with them. Focusing on text-based and photographic materials we will install an exhibit at five sites in the village—3 coffee shops, a tavern, and an abandoned oil processing facility. Each site will be indexed to one of five themes: architecture, space and in situ performance; interviews/portraits; the olive facility and the residency house; textures, nature and pathways; traditional items, memory traces and myths. The residency with produce five performative/installation outputs, one for each site, related to the exhibit theme of that site. As part of Medea Electronique’s desire to reanimate archival materials and have them serve as materials for improvisatory creation, each of the five residency performances/installations should take as their inspiration a pre-existing documented Koumaria project. We therefore invite applicants to explore pasts Koumaria performances/projects as found at: The relationship between the archival work and the new work can be very close—a reenactment, a montage of the previous materials, a continuation of an earlier piece– or quite tenuous, a new piece conceptually linked to an archived project, building upon it, contradicting it. All we ask is that the artists be prepared to speak to how the new piece is in dialogue with an archived project, and is appropriate given one of the five themes. We ask applicants to go over the past projects found on our website, and formulate possible ideas which speak to their artistic interests and expertise, as to how they might use these archived projects in new projects that can be presented/performed in the manner outlined above.

Your application should include a way you want to use/revisit one or more of these projects. Examples might include (but of course feel free to propose your own idea!):

What would it mean to restage a past performance with different (or perhaps the same?) performers), in the same site, or a different site?
How might a past piece of documentation be used itself as a score for producing a new work?
How might a new work bring into dialogue a number of past documented performances?
What might it mean to archive these past performances in an innovative way?
How might a little change in a past work (the Epicurian swerve (paregklisis) effect a large change in meaning/affect/aesthetics?

More generally your proposed project should think creatively about our existing archive—about ways to improvise with it.

The Residents
Medea Electronique, being an eclectic art collective, is interested in people from diverse cultural and artistic backgrounds. Past residents have come from a variety of artistic backgrounds, and from numerous countries. While assorted nationalities and ethnicities have been represented, the common language of
the residency is English (although fluency is not necessary, an ability to interact with other artists in English is necessary).
Members of Medea Electronique will be on hand to both assist in guiding the overall direction of the residency, and to fully participate in the residency as artists. While these members will be able to lend their expertise in assorted new media practices, and have great knowledge of the area, they are equal partners with the residents in the artistic production. In other words, the Koumaria Residency is not a school, or workshop in new media art production run or taught by Medea Electronique, the residents are expected to be experienced in their chosen media, understand the use of the technologies they interact with, and come with these technologies or make it clear in advance what they will need to be supplied. (Note: This is a remote region of Greece, with limited ability to obtain tech/electronic materials while we are there. Residents will need to check in advance concerning what materials will be available, and what they will need to bring. It is far easier to get in the area a bail of wire, or a piece of pipe then a semiconductor or an obscure battery!) Artist working in any media or practice are welcome, as long as you have experience in collective improvised work, and interest in the archive project outlined above. We hope to attract archivists, particularly those working on innovative digital platforms for interacting with archives in creative ways.

Artist working in any media or practice are welcome, as long as you have experience in collective improvised work, and interest in the archive project outlined above. We hope to attact archivists, particularly those working on innovative digital plateforms for interacting with archives in creative ways.

It is worth emphasizing that Koumaria’s focus is COLLECTIVE art creation. Individual should expect, and desire, substantive input from other residents, and be open to having their projects morph considerably during the course of the residency. While the final outputs we produce may each have a primary organiser behind them, Koumaria is not the place for the development and presentation of solo works/content.

Please visit the Koumaria website to find documentation of past residency projects. 

Make sure you read how to apply before filling up your application.

To read more about Koumaria Residency click here.

Sellasia, Greece
Deadline: 1 April 2019

organised by:
Medea Electronique 

in collaboration with:
Onassis Stegi


Visit the official site of Kourmaria Residency HERE.