How Does a Document Act?

Research-based Art as Docudramaturgy

Yota Ioannidou

Within Open! Academy, Open! occassionally publishes research, essays and reports that came into being within educational contexts. This text by artist Yota Ioannidou is an individual writing project she produced as a PhD candidate at PhDArts Leiden University / KABK Den Haag that offers a doctorate in art and design.

The project The Storyteller, The Knife and The ‘Machine’, created for the Athens Biennale in 2013, serves here to introduce the research topic. It is a form of ‘research-based art,’ which denotes artworks whose research process – in situ, visits to archives, discursive conversations, research material, etc. – includes images, texts, interviews, documents, records and other forms of data, constituting dominant elements in the shaping and presentation of the artwork itself. The research process and material thereby become the artwork – either in the form of a performance, an event, an installation or a publication.





MoBY Museums of Bat Yam

Design: SDAJ - Socialist German Workers Youth.

The Kids Want Communism
February 25, 2016–January 21, 2017

Opening: February 25, 8–11pm

MoBY Museums of Bat Yam
Struma 6
Bat Yam

Featuring: BANKI (Young Communist League of Israel), Keti Chukhrov, Ekaterina Degot, Galit Eilat, Odeh Al Ashab, Max Epstein, Iliana Fokianaki, Tal Gafny, Jonathan Gold, Alioscha Gozansky, Marina Gržinić, Ronny Hardliz, Nir Harel, Raanan Harlap, Micah Hesse, Vít Havránek, Yota Ioannidou, Nikita Kadan, Ohad Meromi, Julia Moritz, New Barbizon (Zoya Cherkassky, Olga Kundina, Anna Lukashevsky, Asia Lukin and Natalia Zourabova), Kostantinos Kotsis, Olaf Nicolai, Ingo Niermann, Tamar Nissim, Antonis Pittas, Oleksiy Radynski, Gilad Reich, SDAJ (Sozialististische Deutsche Arbeiterjugend), Eran Sebbag, Joshua Simon, Kuba Szreder, Kostis Velonis, Vladimir Vidmar, Vangelis Vlahos, Nicole Wermers, Noa Yafe and more

Spectres are haunting Earth—the spectres of anti-communism. From Wahhabism to neoliberalism, overproduction to debt, the disastrous "war on terror" to the genocide of the welfare state, and from cold war game theory to cybernetics' networked offspring, the internet—these are all anti-communist projects that came back to haunt us. In this apocalyptic climate, where CO2, ISIS and HFT (High Frequency Trading) stand for the self-annihilation of this civilization on a cultural, economic, political and biological level, we propose The Kids Want Communism. This ongoing clandestine and public series of events marks ninety-nine years to the October Revolution.

"Communism" might sound like an irrelevant term for many people today, but more than any other word in our political vocabulary, communism is the radical negation of the current regime which celebrates exploitation and inequality. It is a cosmos that was devoured by the black hole that is 1989–91. This cosmos includes many communisms; an epic reestablishment of property-free communities, communal indigenous societies, real-existing socialism with its achievements and crimes, the long history of anti-Fascist resistance, egalitarian mysticism, the dialectic abolition of capitalism through its internal dynamics, the uncharted, un-exploitable pockets of resistance that cannot be appropriated by capitalism, the already present humane solidarity and camaraderie shared by people everywhere and the political proposal of the emotion called "love." It is a hypothesis of universal emancipation, an actuality to be revived.

The Kids Want Communism operates as a constellation of moments and movements, inviting histories and practices, gestures and ideas. It seems fitting to recall Chris Marker's closing statement from The Last Bolshevik, his profile of Soviet film director Aleksandr Medvedkin, here. Marker comments about how the great Soviet filmmakers are regarded as dinosaurs today, and then adds: "but look what happened to the dinosaurs. Kids love them."

The Kids Want Communism is a joint project of numerous individuals and organizations, which will host its exhibitions, screenings, discussions, seminars and publications in a variety of locations; among them Tranzit, Prague; Free/Slow University of Warsaw; State of Concept, Athens; Škuc gallery, Ljubljana; Visual Culture Research Center, Kyiv and MoBY-Museums of Bat Yam. During 2016, MoBY-Museums of Bat Yam will dedicate its program to this yearly theme.

The Kids Want Communism is organized by Iliana Fokianaki, Vít Havránek, Oleksiy Radynski, Joshua Simon, Kuba Szreder and Vladimir Vidmar.
Natasa Biza, Constantinos Hadzinikolaou, Yota Ioannidou

The Breeder is pleased to present Study Room: The State of Things, coordinated by Vangelis Vlahos, the show includes works by Natasa Biza, Constantinos Hadzinikolaou and Yota Ioannidou.

Study Room: The state of things can be seen as an observatory of different mechanisms for understanding reality with uncertain political and historical limits. It can be seen as a study space of small fragmented narratives without profound connections between them. The relocation of a factory from Greece to Czech Republic, the planting program at the archaeological site of the Athenian Agora in the 50s or the course of a man who carries a mattress on his back in the streets of Athens can be seen as attempts of a personal understanding of a reality that relates – not always with a direct or profound way- dynamically to the present.

16 Jan. 2016 to 13 Feb. 2016
HOURS Tues-Sat 12-6pm


Good Morning Mr. Mesmer by Yota Ioannidou

No need for references - Kunsthalle Exnergasse, Vienna

Opening: June 10, 2015, 7:00 pm Exhibition:June 11 to July 18, 2015.

Mariel Rodríguez


Neither a statement nor a command, No need for references investigates relations between the production of art and knowledge through different incursions into the collective discussion about the concept of artistic research. The exhibition deals with research per se as an independent gesture. The concept will be put into question by presenting artworks that claim – or not – to be research-based projects. Notions such as knowledge production and power relations as well as various borrowings from traditional research-related imagery also feed the discussion. Ana de Almeida, Catalina Ravessoud, and Mariel Rodríguez invite Andréas Hochuli, Yota Ioannidou, Nuno da Luz, Sandra Monterroso, Berenice Olmedo, and Alicja Rogalska to perform this exhibition together as a successive collaborative gesture. The programme unfolds in three weekly modules elaborated by one host and two or three guests.

Parking Lot, Issue #0

Out in October 2014


Editor in Chief: KATERINA KARAGIANNI, Design:LINA OZERKINA, Flexi-disc Curator: ANDRÉ AVELÃS, Assistant Editor:LINDA THEODOROU



Tactics of Resistance

The Archive of Crisis and the 'Capacity to Do What One Cannot' by Elpida Karaba

In different contexts of 'crisis', there has always been a discussion as to which mode of resistance to develop: legal, illegal or extra-legal. This article considers archival art as an alternative mode of artistic and curatorial 'resistance' to the challenges of today's crises that lead many people to utopian and 'out of law' withdrawals. It examines the particular paradigm of the work of the Greek artist Yota Ioannidou within a wider scope of contemporary archival and research-based art practices which aim to construct and articulate dispersed discourses, individuals and histories in dynamic structures of resistance. Notions of re-enactment, vicissitude, interpretation of law, performativity, parody, 'reversibility' and subversiveness are discussed as expanded artistic and resistance modes. The particular archives are presented as a radical form of conjunction of theory and praxis, as a 'lawful' (en loi) tactic of resistance and as an instituting practice. The specific (Greek) paradigm of Ioannidou's work suggests that one should consider the dynamic of aesthetic resistance within a trans- and intra-local mode, investing in the potentia of global democratic ideals


The Storyteller, the Knife and the "Machine” a project by Yota Ioannidou, 4th Athens Biennale, 23/10- 01/12

The Storyteller, The Knife and The «Machine» is a re-enactment that has its starting point a historical event, a riot against Othon (1862) and more specifically, the riot in Kapnikarea square by Greek and Italian libertarians. The narrative also introduces another event –the assault with a knife perpetrated on November 3, 1896 by Dimitris Matsalis against two prominent citizens of Patras, a banker and a sultana merchant, on Gerokostopoulou St. (formerly Anexartissias St.). Participants: Myrto Stamboulou, Maria Sarri, Anna Tsouloufi-Lagiou, Elpida Belali, Akis Gavrielides, Tina Kotsi, Dimitris Dokatzis, Yorgos Theodorakis, Maria Gargaroni, Angelina Gerostathi, Maria Mitsopoulou, Pol Merchan,


“What Would I Say if I Had a Voice?”


On Thursday, March 7, 2013, the Contemporary Greek Art Institute (iset) presents the exhibition “What Would I Say if I Had a Voice?” first exhibition of the Archive Rights series. Aim of this exhibition series (curated by art theorist Elpida Karaba) is to utilize iset’s archive and turn it into an open platform of contemporary art creation and discourse. Within the framework of this series, artists are being invited to study iset’s archive. Any artworks, as well as printed or other material originating from this process, will be deriving from the archive contents and will return to it in the form of new material, enriching it and opening it to new thoughts and ideas. The programme promotes the expanded objective of iset’s archive, which is not just a structure that receives data, but also a living entity that produces new documentation material, artworks and research programmes. The first exhibition presents the artworks of Nikos Arvanitis, Mary Zygouri and Yota Ioannidou. Nikos Arvanitis studies the audiovisual material of the archive, from which he selects ‘silences’, silent pauses in artists’ course of speech during interviews, monographs, tributes etc., and creates an audiovisual installation. Mary Zygouri has been studying the archive of Maria Karavella for several years, with whom she developed a close friendship, sharing her agony to rescue what was left of the archive, as most of it was burned during a fire in 1996. Zygouri utilizes iset’s archive in her video installation, complementing it with data from her personal work.

Yota Ioannidou explores the turbulent period of the dictatorship (1967-1974), trying in particular to spot any exhibitions that ended hastily. In this context, she organizes a performative lecture by linking past and current events. During the exhibition and as part of its “Dialogues” series, iset will organize discussions involving artists, art theorists and the public.

Exhibition duration: March 7 - May 18, 2013 Opening hours: Tuesday-Friday 10.00 - 17.00, Saturday 10.00 - 15.00


Goleb at Kunstvlaai 2012 presents / AULA INTERGALACTICA / Screening and discussion on Peter Watkins La Commune / by Yota Ioannidou and Teresa Diaz Nerio
THU 29.11.2012
Location: Ephemeral Geometry ( Main Stage) at the Festival of Independents Time: 19:00 - 21:00
As part of the Aula Intergalactica's archive, a project by Yota Ioannidou and Teresa Maria Diaz Nerio, Peter Watkins' film La Commune will be screened in different installments, of which the first will take place at the Kunstvlaai. Each screening will be followed by public discussions on the representation of women during La Commune. The other installments will be at Goleb's space on 30 November and 1 December.
AULA INTERGALACTICA is a research based collaboration that first began in 2009 between the artists Yota Ioannidou and Teresa María Díaz Nerio. The project's first materialization appeared at the 3rd Athens Biennial as an archive and three performative lectures on three different historical events; the protests by indigenous peoples in the Peruvian Amazon (the Bagua massacre of 2009) the 9 hours movement of Canada and the UK in the 19th century (one of the predecessors of the 8 hours movement), and the life of Maria Pantazi an early greek anarchist and former prostitute who was arrested and executed in Paris in 1871 (after the "defeat" of La Commune).

Translator- Betrayer / Artistic practice on fidelity and infidelity in the process of translation, International Symposium with artists, writers, translators and activists, University of Applied Arts Vienna 22nd-24th November
participants: Arpi Adamyan, Shushan Avagyan, Ute Eisinger, Veronika Hauer, Yulia Kostereva, Yuriy Kruchak, Irene Lucas, Yota Ioannidou, Ina Ivanceanu, Barbara Philipp, Lusine Talalyan, Sabina Shikhlinskaya, Tatia Skhirtladze
contact and organization: Tatia Skhirtladze

"Good Morning Mr. Proudhon" an ongoing project by Yota Ioannidou
Other Possible Worlds - Proposals on this Side of Utopia Dictionary", curated by Dorothee Albrecht and Berit Fischer

On the hill one happens to be sitting on: A tribute to failure- Yota Ioannidou
Exchange/Art Project/ Broadway Passage/Athens. 11-19/6/2012. curator: Sofia Dona. Production:GOETHE-INSTITUT ATHENS-BAUHAUS UNIVERSiTY WEiMAR

"Notes on Fear" a contribution by Yota Ioannidou to "Museum TV Station" a project by Lado Darakhvelidze
Exhibition I’m Losing More than I’ll Ever Have (The Practice of Everyday Life)
SMART PROJECT SPACE, Amsterdam, NL, June-August 2012

“AULA INTERGALACTICA” a project by Yota Ioannidou and Teresa Maria Diaz Nerio
A lecture-performance, Goleb, Amsterdam, May 2012

The Absent Image, curated by Raqs Media Collective for the online session of PhotoEspana 2012

“AULA INTERGALACTICA”a project by Yota Ioannidou and Teresa Maria Diaz Nerio
An archive and a sequence of three lecture-performances, Word of Mouth Athens Biennale 2011, Diplareios School, Athens, Greece 22 October – 11 December 2011_curated by Kernel.

Yota Ioannidou participates with the on-going project Restage Radio_A