The performative research body Public Movement investigates and stages political action in public spaces. From 2012 – 2017, in conjunction with this ongoing practice, Dana Yahalomi (Director, Public Movement) and Alhena Katsof (Director of Strategy and Protocol, Public Movement) engaged in a collaboration that moved the group’s activity from the streets into museums. Over five years they critically examined the role of the museum within civic life, with an emphasis on civil pilgrimage, choreographic memory, behaviors of citizenship, the embodied archive, museum collections and national identity. The investigation focused on exhibition structures as they relate to political ideology.
Image: Spring in Warsaw, 2009
Director of Strategy and Protocol, Public Movement, 2011 - 2017
In her role as a concept advisor and writer with Public Movement, Alhena collaborated in the research and development of large-scale projects. Alhena has written and/or performed numerous lectures for Public Movement at venues including: Kunsthalle Basel, Basel (2015); Rongwrong, Amsterdam (2015); SPIELART, Munich (2015); SITAC XI, Mexico City (2013); steirischer herbst, Graz (2012), IASPIS, Stockholm (2012), and Baltic Circle, Helsinki (2012).
Image: Cross Section, Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev © 2014. Photograph by Sergey Illin and Alexander Pilyugin
Public Movement members gather extensive research. Often large portions of material stay in the background as part of an internal research process, influencing our decisions but remaining undisclosed nonetheless. Sometimes, the material Pubic Movement gathers isn’t suited for large-scale, public action, ritual or ceremony.
The development of methodology for the transmission of this kind of material through scripted meetings has been the central focus of Alhena's work with Public Movement. The Debriefing Session performances are at the core of this work . Each Debriefing Session deals with the relationship between culture and national identity, and implicates the participant directly within a political dilemma.
Image: Opening Ceremony for National Collection, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, 2015. Photograph by: Kfir Bolotin