Syndrome de la Décélération I-V (2016)

walking performance series throughout european cities: Vienna, Brussels, Hamburg, Luxembourg and London, 2016

© François Dauphin

© Maurice Bender


In Deceleration Syndrome IV, Clio Van Aerde explores the anatomy of a room by walking backwards repeatedly, without a firm point in time, through a previously defined, space oriented pathway. She moves for the benefit of the space; with her body she underlines its architectural structure. Without the concept of time and lost within the repetition, she becomes infatuated with the space. The duration and repetition, the absurdity of the gesture, and the refusal of the spectacular turn this performance into a rejection of the dogma of performativity. With her movement, she leads the observer to contemplation, offering it as a contrast to everyday overstimulation.

Artistic Statement

In an Acceleration Society, where everything has to happen very fast, walking, as the trivial human movement, becomes more and more insufficient to sustain the ambition, turning into a constrain of this acceleration. The aimless activities, like pointless, decelerating walking, is regarded as a suspicious nonsense and a waste of time.

In a meritocracy, the human can be seen as an athlete with a restless desire to surpass himself. Stadium, the symbol of the ultimate, reduced strive for physical performance and acceleration, becomes the space without an aim; it is a movement in a circle with only one significance: how fast you run.
My artificial walking backwards stands as an absolute refusal of achievement and any form of acceleration. I take the senseless path, seemingly without a goal. Facing the past, I walk towards the future to which my back is turned, but the one who moves in a circle actually knows what lies ahead of her.

Syndrome de la Décélération I is a site-specific solo-performance by Clio Van Aerde, realized and carried out as her scenography diploma project at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna.
Video by : Raphael Haider
January 2016 at the Prospekthof of the Semperdepot in Vienna (AT)

Extract of the beginning of Syndrome de la Décélération II at Friche residency in Anderlecht.
A slow motion experiment. A trial to resist the everyday rhythm.
Video by Fabrice Schneider
April 2016 in Anderlecht, Brussels (BE)

Syndrome de la Décélération III is part of the same-titled site-specific solo-performance serie by Clio Van Aerde, realized and carried out during the 'Gegenwartsbewältigung' Festival in June 2016 in front of the Hochschule für bildenden Künste (HFBK) building in Hamburg.
Video by: Maurice Ascan Habib Bender
June 2016 at HFBK in Hamburg (DE)

Syndrome de la Décélération IV was part of the nuit des musée in Luxembourg and echoes the installation Clockwise by the artist Cristina Lucas, presented in her solo exhibition Trading Transcendence at MUDAM.
Video by Catherine Dauphin
October 2016 at MUDAM, Luxembourg (LU)

Syndrome de la Décélération V
November 2016 for Visions in the Nunnery at Bow Arts in London (UK)

© Sonja Gengler