What drew you to each other’s practice?
DK: Teddy May is a relentless artist. She does not settle on a prescribed routine, rather, in her performance making, she digs, digs and keeps digging. I love that in her work she draws from vast richness of sourcess – old, new, popular culture and fine art, serious theatre, comedy, music and tv. We share the love for the approach expressed by a Polish painter, Witkacy, (paraphrasing) ‘an artwork should be borne from an artist as naturally as flower grows from a plant’. We are both great believers in art working on a verge of rational, subconscious and physical, and that subjugation of that richness for the benefit of a political message acts against the greatest gift that art can give us – an inner freedom (which incidentally, in a greater scheme of things, can allow us to act politically where we need to).
TM: Dominika has the rare quality to be a type of artist who has great knowledge of/interest in; art, crafts, science, literature, politics, as well as in people, in places and her environment. She endlessly joins these different elements together, in beautiful and original ways, led by the great desire to connect, to create and to be critical. Kosmoss is a great example of this. It’s an online gallery created to show art in the online world, a world which our generation is – whether we want it or not – related to, sometimes even depending on. Dominika investigates this relationship in the most generous and inspiring way: by creating this gallery and inviting other practitioners to investigate and play along with her. This is exactly what draws me to Dominika and her practice. The ability to create, connect and investigate together. And the eagerness to take steps into the unknown to help us further into perhaps a deeper but much GREATER unknown. (Also, I just love her sense of humour!)
How will you use the 1:1 FUND?
The key word in this project is ‘experimentation’. In terms of formal research we will be looking at critical reasoning, freedom and various forms of storytelling. This will inform other forms of research: looking, listening, feeling, thinking, talking, playing. Over a series of intensive workshops in the beginning of 2022, we will be developing a new performative work, and all this will be enveloped in the spirit of experimentation. We will be working in Thamesmead, in Lakeside Centre where Dominika has a studio and where we can use a project space to develop and later show this work. All this will be leaving its traces at kosmoss.co.uk in the first few months of 2022.
What is the one thing you most hope to gain from undertaking this work?
For art to become alive for us again.
Teddy May de Kock is a performance artist. She trained first as an actress and later as a performance maker. Her current practice is deeply rooted in theatre. Teddy draws from classical drama and pop culture. Her references can playfully move between a Greek tragedy and a soap opera and between what we see as sacred culture and that which is daily. Teddy is currently working on ‘Going Places’ at Poplar Union – a piece she is creating with Yunus, a young boy with Down’s syndrome, that she worked with over the past five years. She’s also setting up a new company where she offers performance-making workshops for children with SEND in primary schools.
Dominika Kieruzel is a multidisciplinary artist who began her work as a curator in 2017 with the creation of kosmoss.co.uk. It started as a personal project and it became an attempt to find an alternative, quiet and sensitive space to see art online. It came from a need to be a little bit more incognito, to have a project that is not career related and that has love of art at its core, that promotes collaboration, wonder and spontaneity. Dominika lives in Thamesmead where she often works on community art projects, currently working on a team producing a commission for a new artwork at the basketball cage in Thamesmead.