Photo documentary: Matthias Drobeck
Wayward interactions with a normative world are often detrimental to the protagonists. From the cradle to the grave, they are subjected to a plethora of mechanisms used to exercise interests and violence, depending on the respective political and economic systems in place. A life outside the norm is often seen as socially incompatible. The docile desire for such a life is accepted, while the zeitgeist of the capitalist lifestyle wallows in conformity and worships the monetization of all spheres of life.
Art is one of the few sanctuaries in which alternative forms of life are tolerated or encouraged, whereby the contradictory confrontation between individual and social needs is as old as the search for alternatives itself.
A sanctuary quickly becomes existential. The sanctuary serves as a „sacred“ space that enables individual localisation in the highly charged relationship between past and present. The SAFE HAVEN is a place of return and individual redemption.
In the performance SAFE HAVEN, John Herman examines the need for and the loss of sanctuaries. He uses a performative space that sheltered him from domestic violence in his childhood and then later, in his military activities, guaranteed his very survival.
19. Juli 2021