SUR*VIVER: Antistress Techniques

In the series Anti-stress Techniques Tina Smrekar through mediums of photography, video and installation suggests to artists (and as well, as she states herself, to all the other overstressed) a bundle of relaxing methods, maintaining the characteristic irony which was already noticeable in her former works (for example video Always Smile, 2005, or artist book Work, a Manual, 2005). The author thus proposes for example to Blow Bubbles Until You Are Out of Breath, in the video Let the Holes make You Whole she uses an office method and recommends relaxation using a sheet of paper and a paper puncher, in Stand On Your Head Straight as a Tree the tree in the image as on purpose has not found a straight growth and in Listen to the Sound of the Typewriter she invites us into a clinking mechanically repetitive Zen. The artist visualises and suggests the techniques and furthermore offers direct usage through works using objects.
In the series Anti-stress Technique the author hence proposes routines of de-stressing available to anybody while at the same time, if we read the works in the context of the SUR*VIVER project, these are implying to the unenviable position of contemporary art and foremost to the undernourished artist as the basic producer of artworks who is nonetheless a person of flesh and blood, thereby accordingly oscillating between paying the bills and producing works of art.

text by: Alenka Gregoric, 2008