Dante Buu, I am so nice to you & you are so mean to me, 2021, Performance, Duration: 27 days, 5 hours per day, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)

Dante Buu´s “thigh high” at Künstlerhaus Bethanien

#SaveTheDate Berlin – an ongoing exhibition till 11.07.2021! Dante Buu’s “thigh high” reaches for the fine, enduring line between the obvious and the insinuated, between the private and the public, between attention and ignorance. In the passages of time, the exhibition skirts the question: and you, do you also feel constantly that one side of you is seen, whilst the other side remains hidden?

Dante Buu, I am so nice to you & you are so mean to me, 2021, Performance, Duration: 27 days, 5 hours per day, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)
Dante Buu, I am so nice to you & you are so mean to me, 2021, Performance, Duration: 27 days, 5 hours per day, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)

@dante_buu
www.bethanien.de/en/exhibitions/dante-buu
@kuenstlerhausbethanien

Exhibition
till 11.07.2021
Tue – Sun: 2 – 7pm
Admission free

Dante Buu is the only artist from a Muslim background so far to come out publicly as gay in the Balkans. Albeit a pioneer freed from the suffering of form and paving the way for generations ahead, the position he is in doesn’t come without its fair share of intimidation and persecution.

Rather than aggressively passing back these experiences and the feeling of self-alienation, in contrast, his practice is conceived as a journey of love and resistance. Blurring the boundaries of the autobiographical and the lives of others, his art is fluid in the medium.

Dante Buu, I do not know what is worse: that he thought Montenegro is bordering Kazakhstan, or that Kazakhstan is in Europe? Or that he lied about his age in decades, or that he thought I am into him? Well… I guess “that’s America for you”, 2021, Hand-embroidery, cotton on cotton, aluminium wire, Dimensions vary with installation, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)
Dante Buu, Today I bought flowers and lifted the shades for a friend who never calls, 2020, Hand-embroidery, cotton on cotton, aluminium wire, Dimensions vary with installation, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)

In “thigh high”, Buu presents a new long-durational performance which he will
execute with optimal physical effort for 27 days, 5 hours per day. A selection of his sculptural embroidery pieces receives their debut in Berlin; at first glance, they divulge no painful revelations, yet their delicacy and high aesthetic embody the emotional value and labour of the artist—symbolised especially in their handmade quality and titles crafted from his poetry. The exhibition is framed by a series of drawings on watercolour paper: their forms generated with felt-tip pens and the artist’s saliva in his attempts to revive the remains of their colour from the fading of time’s disregard.

Dante Buu, If you fall asleep, are you afraid you might die?, 2020, Hand-embroidery, cotton on cotton, aluminium wire, Dimensions vary with installation, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)
Dante Buu, Can you please count the years?, 2021–ongoing (detail), Series of 30 drawings–so far, Felt-tip pen and saliva on watercolour paper, Dimensions variable, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)

At first glance, the exhibited works seem miles away from each other, yet Dante’s ”thigh high” opens up a playful experience of time and duration: Time embodied in the creation of an artwork, as a transforming agent in the passing of memories, dreams and societal revolutions, time as the experience of an embroidered textile or time as the body of performance.

Is the time contained in the threshold of “thigh high” the time that will reveal everything?

Dante Buu, If you fall asleep, are you afraid you might die?, 2020, Hand-embroidery, cotton on cotton, aluminium wire, Dimensions vary with installation, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)
Dante Buu, Can you please count the years?, 2021–ongoing, Series of 30 drawings–so far, Felt-tip pen and saliva on watercolour paper, Dimensions variable, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)
Dante Buu, “thigh high”, Exhibition view, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, photo: David Brandt (© the artist)

Dante Buu (Rožaje, Montenegro) is an artist, storyteller and performer. His works and performances have been shown in numerous exhibitions and festivals worldwide, including: and you—do you die happy? Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin; Weekend Lovers, Dim, Belgrade; NEXUS 1, TBA Festival – PICA, Portland; Careful with that Axe, Eugene, AKT Art Space, Kyiv; I do not want my Lover to go to Work, Cultural Centre Tobacco 001, Ljubljana; Universal Hospitality 2, Centre for Contemporary Art FUTURA, Prague. Dante Buu lives and works between Rožaje and Berlin. He is a grantee of the MRI Martin Roth-Initiative. The exhibition is kindly supported by the Senate Department for Culture and Europe – Department Culture.