With this exhibition project by Ingrid Hora, ar/ge kunst continues to reflect on its thirty years of activity as Bolzano/Bozen’s Kunstverein and on the meaning of its own name (ar/ge kunst as Arbeitsgemeinschaft or working group). You play this game, which is said to hail from China. And I tell you that what Paris needs right now is to welcome that which comes from far away. (Der Grillentöter / L’Ammazzagrilli) is the first phase of a body of research that Hora is carrying out under the title freizeyt, or ‘leisure time’. Her research considers leisure time as a key concept through which to observe and investigate the forms of collaboration and organization that operate in and regulate society.
Against the backdrop of the progressive disappearance of the border between leisure time and labour time under semio-capitalism, in this exhibition Hora traces a series of historical references that make explicit how the management of leisure time in ‘productive’ terms is a preoccupation that emerges with modernity. She looks at the institutions and associative forms that began to proliferate in Europe at the beginning of the nineteenth century (mainly in central Europe) and the way the modern state made it possible for people to meet outside working hours. Three focal points of her research are the Vereine (the root of the word Kunstverein), Schrebergärten and Turnplätze  – all of which imply the possibility of combining cultural and recreational activities with the educational, the civic and the political.
At the same time, Hora is also interested in another minor phenomenon that occured in Europe around the same period: the spread of Tangram, a sort of puzzle or pastime imported from China. The game begins with seven elements arranged in a square and then proceeds with the composition of thousands of possible abstract or figurative forms. The title of the exhibition quotes a vignette from the box of a Tangram set from that era and conveys the need to welcome different perspectives on how to ‘pass time’. In answer to this appeal, Hora makes all these apparently disparate elements converge, constructing a personal grammar that facilitates the migration of forms and perspectives.
The time and space of the exhibition are articulated by seven sculptures – translations of sports equipment and the Tangram set itself – which produce a sort of potentially performable and functional gymnasium where two videos and one performance are also presented. These videos and the performance were realized in collaboration with choreographer Claudia Tomasi and the male voice choir of Völs am Schlern, an association from the South Tirol.
If on the one hand this setting appears to favour collective forms of exercise, on the other it implies that ‘logic of competition’ which, to paraphrase the German sociologist Hartmut Rosa’s Alienation and Acceleration, is intrinsic to both sport and economics.
After its first stop at ar/ge kunst, the exhibition will travel to DAZ – Deutsches Architektur Zentrum in Berlin (01.12.2015 – 14.02.2016)
Ingrid Hora’s research project Freizeyt is a collaboration between ar/ge kunst and DAZ
With the kind support of:
Autonome Provinz Südtirol
Abteilung Kultur Autonome Region Trentino Südtirol
Stiftung Südtiroler Sparkasse
Barth – building interior architecture.
A special thanks go to:
Male voice choir of Völs am Schlern
 A Verein is an association or society; Schrebergärten, or allotments, are urban gardens for families gathered in small colonies – their emergence is attributed to the research of German pedagogue Daniel Gottlieb Moritz Schreber (1808–1861); a Turnplatz is an open air gymnasium, the first of which was founded by Friedrich Ludwig Jahn at the Hasenheide park in Berlin.