Dancers at Work – Symposium Vienna, Nov 22

As part of the ongoing, durational performance Negotiations, Kunstverein Archipelago organises a symposium that focuses on the notion of “the artist at work” and researches models to improve and make the working conditions for dancers and other freelance artists more sustainable in Vienna. An important aspect of Negotiations is to highlight and make visible the fact that dancing is also a form of highly skilled and physically demanding labour which requires daily practice. At the same time, the actual working conditions of professional dancers are becoming more precarious everywhere in Europe. In order to discuss this tension between the actual needs and the real support, we invited Dr Pascal Gielen, director of the Culture Commons Quest Office research institute at the University of Antwerp, who studies how the situation of freelance artists can be improved and made more sustainable at city level through creating commons. Flemish sociologist Annelies van Assche has studied in depth the working conditions of freelance dancers in Brussels and Berlin. She will present the result of her research, which will be complemented by the Nomad Sessions, two short artistic documentaries by Montreal-based choreographer Sarah Manya that give an impression of the working conditions of freelance artists in Amsterdam and Montreal. The international guests will enter into dialogue with local representatives of the artistic community and cultural politics. Ulrike Kuner, managing director of IG Freie Theaterarbeit will present the results of the pilot study analyzing the working conditions of independent performing artists across ten European countries, commissioned by the new European Association of Independent Performing Arts.

Hosted by Guy Cools

Archipelago (AT)
THU 22 Nov
TQW Studios
Free admission


14.00: Introduction by Guy Cools and Alexander Gottfarb

14.15: Presentation by Pascal Gielen, followed by Q&A, moderated by Claudia Bosse

15.00: Nomad Sessions, Amsterdam by Sarah Manya

15.15: Coffee break

15.30: Presentation by Annelies Van Assche, followed by Q&A, moderated by Alexander Gottfarb

16.15: Nomad Sessions, Montreal by Sarah Manya

16.30: Coffee break

17.00: Presentation of the pilot study by the European Association of Independent Performing Artsby Ulrike Kuner (IG Freie Theater) followed by Q&A, moderated by Guy Cools

18.00: Reception offered by the Flemish Delegation,with a speech by David Maenaut, General Representation of the Government of Flanders in Austria