Enacting Populism

An on-going project on the possible relationships between art practices and the populist mediascape that connotes the current political zeitgeist of Europe

The project - a kick off.

In the title ”Enacting Populism” lays the ways in which the project wants to create a relation with this contemporary populist condition of Europe. ‘Enact’ means to make a plan realized, to carry it on but also to make a representation of this plan, to interpret it. These are the two dynamics that the project follows, having always a double level with which to deal with the concept of populism.

As Dieter Lesage says in its Populism and Democracy, Populism has many different faces. Many different things can be called populism for very good reasons”, and these different faces of what populism might mean will be the ones investigated in the research opened by the residency period, analyzing important historical passages of this rising phenomenon. In fact, if the populist wave we’re experiencing seems to belong only to right wing parties – making the concept behind the current populism one with the conservative and xenophobic right wing discourses – the concept in itself is not ascribable just to this genealogy. In the process of enacting and making the aesthetic strategies embedded in the creation of a consensus visible, some very basic and fundamental mechanism, on which our representative democracies are based, become apparent. The visual strategies that take place on a daily basis in the media sphere, on a purely visual level, in order to create alternative, cheap and fictional feelings of belonging, might not only be seen as completely negative productions of our times. They can also be seen as materials that can be much more easily deconstructed, so to offer clearer visions on how democracy looks like in our times. Moreover, developing an historical perspective on the idea we have on populism generates tools through which creating an awareness,  and consequentially a potentiality for change in our ways to comprehend participation.  

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