MATERNAL FANTASIES is an evolving and interdisciplinary group of international artists and cultural producers based in Berlin, Germany. We (re)connected in 2018 to share experiences and insights into the most marginalised topic within both the art world and feminist discourse: Motherhood.
We join forces to embrace, discuss, elaborate and express contrasting experiences and family stories, memories, fantasies, desires and horror scenarios related to ‘Maternal Fantasies’.
Currently we meet every three-weeks to examine through artistic research, collaborative artworks and lived experience the dynamics between artistic creation and motherhood seeking to shape the discourse of motherhood through our artistic working process.
We are an organic group that produces works in different constellations between the individual group members.
Current group members are: Aino El Solh, Hanne Klaas, Isabell Spengler, Lena Chen, Magdalena Kallenberger, Maicyra Leao, Mikala Hyldig Dal, Olga Sonja Thorarensen, Sandra Moskova.
Maternal Fantasies “Landpartie”
The Maternal Fantasies “Landpartie” is a collective action in form of a mini-residency, where we experiment with open authorship modes, while actively practicing the fusion of art and life by integrating our children in the process of our collective art production.
Landpartie 01 took place in June 2018 at BetOnest, an emerging new art space located in a former cement factory in the village of Stolpe/Oder in the Uckermark region.
The Maternal Fantasies “Landpartie 01” consisted of two parts of collective production: A creative writing session as well as collectively created photographic and video works.
Part I: The collective writing session at “Landpartie 01” was inspired by our ongoing debate on motherhood, identity and representation and writing as a practice of resistance. With this regard we had discussed in previous sessions leading up to the “Landpartie 01” feminist writings by Audre Lorde, Lisa Baraitser, Sarah Ahmed, Andrea O'Reilly and Silvia Caporale Bizzini. The collective creative writing session at “Landpartie 01” started out as response to the essay “Anger and Tenderness” by key ‘second-wave’ feminist writer and poet Adrienne Rich.
Part II: Collectively created photographic and video works. Hereby we self-imposed a basic set of rules for the production process.
Set of Rules:
We each produce one work, in which we direct the whole group. Each prepares one scene to be staged with the collective. You pick one location at BetOnest and imagine a scene that takes place there.
The outcome is a Tableau Vivant, a living image, and will be additionally recorded as a video in which each subject holds the position for 1 minute. We will also produce a photograph of each scene.
The image will be a re-appropriation or feedback response to something existing, preferably an artwork reference.
The setting should relate to the industrial context of BetOnest
Each of us produces a body extension that protects, fixates, improves, enables, or hides our body or can be used as a tool to interact with the children. The extensions can also exist inthe form of masks. The extensions are used in the shoots. We will produce them collectively in a working session beforehand with our children.
One small action should happen within each scene (e.g. a gaze, an object drops, someone turns around).
We will be co-working with our children (as far as possible) e.g. ask our kid/s to help pick the location, to tell people where and how to stand, how to hold their bodies, what the interaction should be, design the body extension together etc.)
The director defines the location, the position, the number of actors, the nature of the action, and the body extensions used for her shot. You bring whatever (else) you need for your scene.
Participants: Aino El Solh, Hanne Klaas, Isabell Spengler, Lena Chen, Magdalena Kallenberger, Maicyra Leão, Melanie Schlachter, Mikala Hyldig Dal.
Additional participants: Ten children, one unborn and one father.