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Katsia Kaya                                  Idea, concept, singing, music, performer                          

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Out of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety

Shakespeare , Henry IV

Does being safe mean the same thing as not being at risk? 

There is a hard truth to this that most people prefer to avoid: We are always, more or less, at risk for death. The more actively we love, the more risk we place ourselves. In truth, living cannot be totally risk free and, no matter how careful we are, we will all eventually die.

Project description

And as I immerse myself in the water, I am reborn - ready to face whatever challenges lie ahead.

In 2014, a girl named Siran taught me a song on the shores of Lake Sevan. We played it in concert in Yerevan, accompanied by musicians from Britain, Belarus, Ukraine, and Armenia. The song was not an easy one to learn, especially without knowing Armenian. The lessons were long and tedious, but somehow we managed to master it. At some point, I forgot the song. But at another point, I remembered it again - in the safe haven of my bathroom. For the past three years, I have felt completely stripped of my sense of safety. The only place where I find peace is in the warm embrace of water. I use it to swim to another shore, to cross the river Styx that flows through my personal Hell. To me, this water symbolizes initiation and transition - the possibility of rebirth and renewal. And just like the water, the beautiful Armenian wedding song "Hars em gnoum" is a symbol of hope and new beginnings. This song is a product of warm human blood, a symbol of the pain and suffering that we all share. It's easy to get lost in that blood, to drown in it even if you know how to swim. But I refuse to let it consume me. I want something new to be born from it - something that doesn't kill or flood. This song is ornate yet precise, like a route and a prayer. It helps us continue our journey together, even when the road ahead seems uncertain. And as I immerse myself in the water, I am reborn - ready to face whatever challenges lie ahead.


Mischa Badasyan

was born in Rostov on Don, Russia. He studied Political Science at Rostov ́s South University and have been working in social, human rights, LGBT and environmental protecting organizations since an early age. It has made a huge impact on him and his artwork. In 2008, he moved to Germany and eventually began studying social work in Dresden while staying active in social/AIDS/LGBT organizations. In October 2011, he started just coincidental his career as a performance artist after working as a nude model at the art academy in Dresden. He strongly believes that the art exists only through our life experiences. There is no need to use physical objects to create; you become the artwork yourself. The art should be immaterial like you; feelings of deep love of the World, the Earth and of Humanity. In September 2013, he moved to Berlin which was the next stop in his artistic career where he started doing long duration performance lasted days, months and years.

Interview about the project How was the process of creating that work for you? Was the water warm enough? First, I should say that I was very surprised and excited at the same time about the invitation to participate in this project. When I heard its an Armenian song and it’s dedicated to a wedding, I gave my YES without any further hesitation. Also, I missed the creative process in the last weeks and months of living in Berlin. So, this art creation became kind of farewell ritual with Berlin. Once we met and talked about the concept and Katsia turned on the song (which I never heard before) I got immediately goosebumps on all parts of my body. Her voice got into my bones. I literally started screaming as my body had to express this happiness. This gave me a completely trust in what we do. Everything was so natural and spontaneous, I felt very comfortable and at the moment of NOW. All the ideas and emotions were coming during the process were authentic to me. I closed my eyes and focused on the warm water and the sound. My body was just moving by itself. The tears were there. Not on the face but deep inside and those tears were also natural. It’s incredible how much you can experience in the bathroom by just laying down in the bathtub. A such small place creates a lot of emotions. Have you participated in a traditional Armenian wedding? I haven’t been to an Armenian wedding for long time. Actually, like more than 15 years. All the traditional weddings I experienced in my Armenian villages in Rostow on Don. Armenians came there by invitation of Catherine the Great in 1779. Since then, we keep the languages, the churches and Armenian life there. As a kid I participated in a wedding of my relatives, and they were looking for someone who could lead the street march of a wedding with a bread loaf and candles inside of it. The have chosen me to hold this bread. But then when they found out that I am not baptized they took another boy. I was very sad about it. How often do you take a bath? Never to be honest. I think I tried it maybe one or two time in my life. But after this video project I should do it more often. Such a good way to relax. Are you feel safe? Safety is a big term with a huge meaning. It ́s also not a constant and stabile state. Now I am based in Zurich. I left Berlin after 11 years. It was a huge step in my life. Migration is always a hard nut to bite and it gave me for sure a lot insecurity. Nevertheless, I am safe by keeping my lighthouse inside always burn light.


Aleksandra Kononchenko

is a Belarusian photographer and visual artist. Her work has been presented internationally. Her visual language evolves around lighting experiments and portraying the movement as a photographer and visual artist. Fascinated with capturing the fleeting moment, Aleksandra often works with performers, dancers, and actors and creates dynamic projections for their performances. As a photographer, she understands the importance of reportage and had many collaborations with journalists on critical social themes such as autism, the death penalty, domestic violence, and labour slavery, to name a few.

How was the process of creating that work for you? Was the water warm enough? The process was amazing, a pure joy of improvisation and collaboration, I was keeping balance with my camera above the performers. As you know, hot air rises upwards so I was in quite a warm position near the ceiling. Also three persons in the bathroom, made it the warmest place in Berlin. Have you participated in a traditional Armenian wedding? Not yet, but I hope one day. How often do you take a bath? Only when I’m visiting my friends who have a bath. But I have a strong feeling that water is calling me, ready to swim anytime in beautiful places. Are you feel safe? Only when I swim in the water that I like.

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