‘Hands Against The Wall’ - Ben Benaouisse
For - The Performance Show - at Art Rotterdam 2020, we are happy to apply with the performance
‘Hands Against The Wall’ by artist Ben Benaouisse (B).
For explanation; this performance was purchased last month as a non-material work of art
by the Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst S.M.A.K in Ghent (B).
This performance is one of the simplest that Ben Benaouisse, visual artist and former dancer,
has ever created. The performance also consists of only one performer, usually the artist
The performance "Hands Against The Wall" activates, for example, an exhibition through a
simple action. Ben Benaouisse opts for one strong pose in this performance: a man is standing
wide-legged with his arms open, his face against a wall.
Is this man searched by the police? Do we see the back of a Christ gure? Or is this an icon of
victimization? By always bringing his performances into a different context - and sometimes
unannounced, for example during the opening of an exhibition - Benaouisse emphasizes
his own autonomy and the power of the spectator's interpretation.
The artist himself writes the following about this performance:
This performance does not happen on stage, but can pop up at different places in
the Art Rotterdam setting during a certain period, which is actually the ultimate strength of
this performance. This performance also has virtually no technical needs, just a place, a
situation, a public passage in which it can suddenly pop up.