Performative research on masking and unveiling

Every day we move between the paradoxes of self-expression and disclosure. To what extent do we represent ourselves? What is veiled when we show up? What reveals when we cover-up? Where are the identities staged? The artist collective DIPHTHONG kidnaps the audience in a walk-in performance installation in intermediate worlds of reality and identity.

Trompe-l’œil describes a painting that creates such depth of image through perspective representation that an apparent three-dimensionality arises. Referring to this art form, DIPHTHONG designs an illusionist evening that deceives the eye and, at the same time, clearly demonstrates the deception. In doing so, virulent questions of digital illusion reality are transported into the analog theater space: self-expression or avoidance of a digital presence? Surveillance or shelter? Reality or staging? – Where are the limits, or do they still exist?

The performers Lenah Flaig and Nikos Konstantakis use different types of veiling and exposure, which open up room for interpretation and at the same time reflect their own self-presentation on digital surfaces. The media installation designed by Jacqueline Hen grants and denies access and gaze structures that directly confront the audience with the question of crossing borders. The installation forces viewers to make their own decisions: where am I looking? What do I waive to see the other? How close am I? How big is my curiosity?

Trompe-l’œil ”is a project by the artist collective DIPHTHONG, in cooperation with the Orangerie Theater Köln and the Theaterakademie Köln.
Funded by the Kulturamt der Stadt Köln.