Aksioma – Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana, in collaboration with Center For Urban Culture Kino Šiška and KUD NUM,

Nina Jan and Urša Sekirnik

The online shop À la Cart Performance Webshop opened at www.a-la-cart.com on 5 September at 12 pm. To celebrate the fifth anniversary of Kino Šiška, the artists appeared for the first time playing the trump card of their online shop – a performance made to order.

Center For Urban Culture Kino Šiška
Trg prekomorskih brigad 3, Ljubljana

Performance made to order (20 mins): Friday, 19 September 2014 at 7:30 pm

À la Cart Performance Webshop is an offbeat proposal. Two Slovenian artists, Nina Jan and Urša Sekirnik, set off to build a real performance webshop. Sounds controversial? Perhaps! It is for sure a little bit revolutionary.

In September 2014 Jan and Sekirnik opened a fully functional performance webshop (from September 5th 2014 accessible on www.a-la-cart.com) through which you can adapt their work to your personal taste and demands and thus order a live customized performance.

With a perfectionistic care for details, Jan and Sekirnik are using and abusing the principles of web shopping, aggressive marketing and customization procedures. So much so that at first glance they manage to convince us that they are aiming for total commercialization of their artistic work. However, as they state in one of their performance chapters: "In general, the system of customization is always done in a way that the buyer is convinced to have a certain power, freedom of decisions, ability to take part. This sells better because it gives people a feeling that what they feel, need or care about matters. And it does, but only to a point. All the really important decisions stay in the hands of the corporations which produce the products. But now, what if it is the artist who is offering customized products? Does this endanger his creative autonomy or does it mean that it is the him now who is in charge of the important decisions? That in this way he can always stay in charge of his work which is customizable and in accordance with the contemporary marketing, but only to the point determined by the artist ." (Jan and Sekirnik, A Chapter That Answers Questions)

In the À la Cart Performance Webshop, Jan and Sekirnik are not only always in charge, they are also all the time consciously referring to the real unseen work hidden behind their artistic process. They warn us against seeing art purely from the position of artistic romantic euphoria, a view which is in their opinion so often an excuse for constant self-exploitation and minimal or no financial compensation for artistic work. Rather, they invite us to look to the other side, into the circumstances of a creative process, to understand the invested labour, dedication and time as well as to comprehend the traps and benefits of precarious lifestyles.

Although in their work Jan and Sekirnik are using concrete examples taken from their own experience of artistic precariat, it is however clear that their examples can easily be projected on a much broader scale - that of a widespread contemporary precariat.

Seeing the À la Cart Performance Webshop project in detail, one can understand its relevance not only because it proposes a new and controversial way of creating, marketing and executing contemporary performance works and thus offers an alternative to the existing practices of marketing performance art, but also because it calls for awareness among the artists and the consumers about the reality of Post-Fordist lifestyles.


Conception and realization: Nina Jan and Urša Sekirnik
Web design: Maarten Janssen and Fabian Valkenberg (Janssen & Valkenberg)
Online shop programming: Quentin Drouet
Camera and editing: Momchil Alexiev

Production: Aksioma – Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana, 2014
Artistic director: Janez Janša
Producer: Marcela Okretič

Coproduction: KUD NUM and Center For Urban Culture Kino Šiška

Supported by: the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia, the Municipality of Škofja Loka, Muelle3, Centre Cultural Albareda, NFTA, Turist Farm Žgajnar

Sponsor: Datacenter d.o.o.

Special thanks to: Toni Mlakar, Momchil Alexiev, Bram Loogman, Maarten Janssen, Sergio González Cuervo, Polona Reya, Etienne Van Hezewijk, Ida Jan, Žan Kalan, Jana and Matej Demšar, Marjan Sekirnik, Fabian Valkenberg, Kaja Teržan, Nina Djekić, Matevž Ftičar, Boštjan Jakopec, Kobe Geboers, Tomaž Furlan, Dragan Kalinović

The project was conceived as part of the U30 – the initiative for supporting young artists.

Aksioma | Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana


Nina Jan (1986) is a conceptual artist, performer and director, lately mostly working between the Netherlands, Slovenia and Spain. Her conceptual work that covers the fields of performance art, installation, film and internet art often investigates audience friendly ways for interactivity as well as questions the default settings of artistic media, artistic processes and the creative position of the author herself. Within the À la Cart Performance Webshop she has become increasingly interested in developing alternative marketing strategies for performance art practices and exposing the effects of Post-Fordist production on the artistic realities. She is currently also setting up an online museum called the Museum of (un)sent emails, which, by its detail use of certain structural elements and curatorial practices in various ways introduces Duchampian institutional critique. At the same time, her email museum proposes a detailed research into the multitudes of individual voices hidden among the mass e-communication and exposes their charming beauty. Nina is also a co-founder of KUD NUM, multidisciplinary artistic collective.

Urša Sekirnik (1986) worked as a member and co-founder of ARWA experimental movement collective between 2004 and 2007. In 2011 she graduated at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance). In 2010 she became a co-founder of KUD NUM, a multi-disciplinary artistic collective, based in Škofja Loka, Slovenia. Through the work with KUD NUM she has focused more and more on performance and cross-media art, and has become increasingly interested in concepts such as customization, Post-Fordism and abuse of marketing procedures. As a dancer, she has been collaborating with Joana Serra (Spain), Phoebe Osborne (USA), Carolina Alejos (Spain), Silvia Elgarrista (Spain) and Collectif PoPs (Spain).