Aksioma - Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana
in collaboration with Kapelica gallery

Gazira Babeli and Patrick Lichty
the ways of Performance Art in Digital Realities


Round table

Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana, Slovenia
and Odyssey Art and Performance Simulator
November 2, 2009 at 7 pm (CET), 10 AM (PST)

Domenico Quaranta

Participants: Helfe Ihnen, Manager of Odyssey Art and Performance Simulator; Patrick Lichty, artist, theoretician, curator and (as Man Michinaga) founding member of the performing art collective Second Front; Gazira Babeli and other members of the Odyssey community.


What happens to performance when the place is a computer screen and time is better described as the timelessness you experience in front of it, as both a performer and a spectator? When reality fades into the background to be replaced by a simulated scenario where physical laws are disregarded and almost anything is possible? When the body itself becomes a software (and cultural) construction? On the occasion of the exhibition of Second Life performer Gazira Babeli hosted by Kapelica Gallery in Ljubljana, this panel will try to answer these questions involving some of the most important practitioners and theoreticians in the field.

More screenshots of the seminar at Odyssey HERE

Gazira Babeli has been living and working as an artist, performer and film-maker in Second Life since spring 2006. In September 2006 she published records of a number of “non authorized performances” on the web, capturing the attention of art critics and artists. Artists above all. She then became part of Second Front, an international group of artists/performers dedicated to the formal, aesthetic, cultural and social exploration of a reality dubbed “virtual”. She was involved in the launch of the first native artistic community in Second Life: Odyssey. In April 2007, after filming the movie/performance Gaz of The Desert, she staged an exhibition entitled [Collateral Damage]. Gazira Babeli has taken part in various festivals and events outside Second Life, including: Peam2006 (Pescara), DEAF07 (Rotterdam), Fabio Paris Art Gallery (Brescia), iMAL (Brussels), PERFORMA 07 NYC (with Second Front), DAM Gallery (Berlin). Most of Gazira Babeli's works are currently archived in the Locusolus region of Second Life.

Patrick Lichty is a conceptually-based artist, writer, curator, and activist. He has been exhibiting internationally since 1990, and is best known for his 3D animations with the activist group, The Yes Men, and as Editor in-Chief of Intelligent Agent Magazine in NYC. Venues in which Lichty has been involved with solo and collaborative works include the Whitney & Turin Biennials, Maribor Triennial, Performa Performance Biennial, Ars Electronica, and the International Symposium on the Electronic Arts (ISEA). He is currently a member of the faculty of the Interactive Art & Media Department of Columbia College, Chicago.

Domenico Quaranta is a contemporary art critic and curator based in Italy. PHD, he lectures internationally and teaches at the Accademia di Brera in Milan. With a specific interest in digital culture, Domenico regularly writes for Flash Art magazine. His first book titled, NET ART 1994-1998: La vicenda di Äda'web was published in 2004; he also co-edited, with Matteo Bittanti, GameScenes. Art in the Age of Videogames (Milan, October 2006) and edited or contributed to many other books. As a curator, he organized several exhibitions in Europe, including: Connessioni Leggendarie. Net.art 1995-2005 (Milan 2005); GameScenes (Turin 2005); Radical Software (Turin 2006); Holy Fire. Art of the Digital Age (Bruxelles 2008); For God’s Sake! (Nova Gorica, 2008); RE:akt! | Reconstruction, Re-enactment, Re-reporting (Bucharest – Ljubljana – Rijeka, 2009); Expanded Box 2009 (ARCO Art Fair, Madrid 2009); Hyperlucid (Prague Biennal, Prague 2009).


Gazira Babeli and Patrick Lichty
ACTING AS ALIENS - the ways of Performance Art in Digital Realities

Produced by Aksioma in the frame of the Seminar of Contemporary Performing Arts organized by Maska and Cankarjev dom
Co-produced by Odyssey Art and Performance Simulator
Executive producer: Marcela Okretič and Janez Janša

Supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia and the City of Ljubljana.
Special thanks: Fabio Paris Art Gallery, Helfe Ihnen, Jansmina Založnik, Bojana Kunst

Aksioma - Institute for Contemporary Art, Ljubljana

Related event

Gazira Babeli

Curated by Domenico Quaranta

Galerija Kapelica, Ljubljana
November 3 – 15, 2009

Text by Patrick Lichty

Talking to Gazira Babeli: Can We Understand Avatars, or One Another, for That Matter?


at the opening of Moderna galerija Ljubljana - Media Art Collection


Pod virtualnim soncem
Delo, 9 Jan. 2009


Gazira Babeli (monograph)

EDITOR: Domenico Quaranta
TEXTS: Mario Gerosa, Patrick Lichty, Domenico Quaranta, Alan Sondheim
RELEASE: March 2008

Gazira Babeli is an artist who lives and works in the virtual world of Second Life, a 3D online universe entirely constructed and possessed by its residents. Gazira Babeli has created a vast body of works which address the world she lives in, and which have lent her such a solid, recognizable image that she has become a household name in Second Life. She acts like a virus, unleashing earthquakes, tornados and storms of images, deforming the bodies of other residents and constructing metaphorical machines; a capricious deity, she herself is a work of art, a "constructed identity" which ably generates its own legends. This monographic publication tells her story, and presents and analyzes the most significant areas of her work, with contributions from writers such as Mario Gerosa and Domenico Quaranta, and Americans Patrick Lichty and Alan Sondheim.

download book sample