To Become Two
Artist. Alex Martinis Roe
Organisations. AGNSW, ar/ge, Badischer Kunstverein, CASCO, If I Can't Dance I Don't Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution, The Showroom
Alex Martinis Roe – b. 1982. Melbourne, Australia. Lives and works in Berlin, Germany.
To Become Two (2014-2017) was an ongoing project in process, occurring in numerous iterations over a four-year period. As a theory-practice history project, To Become Two traced a particular genealogy of political practice among a number of different feminist communities.
To Become Two was composed of a series of six film installations. The work also featured sculptural, interior architectural and archival elements, performances and workshops, and a (forthcoming) book. For each of these six film installations, Martinis Roe aimed to look simultaneously at collective and personal histories in order to explore what has been, and what could be, transferred into feminist collective practices now and in the future. The non-linear structure of the project aims to foster productive relationships between different generations, as a way of constructing feminist histories and futures. When To Become Two was exhibited as part of The National at the Art Gallery of NSW in 2017, Martinis Roe showed the film It was about opening the very notion that there was a particular perspective. This film centred upon the Philosophy Strike at the Univeristy of Sydney in 1973, when staff and students protested gender studies not being taught within the standard curricula of the universiy’s philosophy department.
Each of the films explores the history and organisation of a particular group of feminists and their connections with groups explored in the other films: the Milan Women’s Bookstore Collective, Psychanalyse et Politique (Paris), Women’s Studies at Utrecht University, The Netherlands, a network of people who were part of the Sydney Women’s Film Group and General Philosophy at Sydney University in the late 70s and early 80s and then a milieu in Barcelona including Duoda and Ca La Dona. Through working directly with these groups, and a younger generation around them, Martinis Roe hoped to bring about new collective practices through the act of storytelling by using methods such as participant observation, oral history interviewing, archival research and collaborative social practices.
Each of these six films also explores the interior-architectural spaces that were used and created by these groups as a meditation on the materiality of their circumstances and political practices.
The Keir Foundation is delighted to have supported the presentation of To Become Two at the Art Gallery of NSW for The National 2017.