Poetry Exercises: an archive of (un)familiar things

Many of our experiences of life in the city are so commonplace that they are not consciously perceived. Yet it is precisely these “minor” experiences that define our inhabiting the city. The archive of (un)familiar things collects such stories of inhabiting and passes them on to visitors. Three performers exercise themselves in a self-invented practice of storytelling, going beyond a merely functional way of speaking. In their Poetry Exercises, which take place in the space between the storytellers and the listeners, the nomadic archive enters into a dialogue with the official collection of the Frankfurt Institute for City History.

The goal of the Poetry Exercises is to search for, invent and enable a possibility for poetry within contemporary relations of production. Poetry here does not mean ‘poetic form’ in the conventional sense, but rather a self-invented practice of oral (story)telling of contemporary experiences. These storytelling exercises are tools for relating to the surrounding world and to each other. The goal of the poetry is to express the intensity of inhabiting the contemporary world.

Marialena Marouda

1982 GR, BE
Marialena Marouda works in the fields of performance art and choreography. Marialena studied philosophy and visual arts at Columbia University in New York, USA and continued her studies at the Institute for Applied Theater Studies at the University of Giessen, Germany. In May 2018 she completed the program for artistic research Advanced Performance and Scenography Studies (a.pass) in Brussels, Belgium.

Marialena develops in situ, research based performance works. Her current project Oceanographies was presented in the framework of the Wandering Arts Biennial 2018 in Brussels, Belgium, among others. Former works include Poetry Exercises: an Archive of (un)familiar Things (2016), a performative archive presented within the Frankfurt City Archive during the site specific festival Implantieren2016, Walking in the City: on the Poetics of Space, presented at the 2013 Athens Biennial and Walking Exercises (2011-13), which premiered in the Mousonturm in Frankfurt. She has collaborated with the choreographic collectives MAMAZA and Deufert& Plischke and with the choreographer Martin Nachbar.

As a dramaturg, Marialena is currently collaborating with Fabrice Mazliah on The Manufactured Series, a series of ten duets, each between a human and a non-human body. She has previously collaborated with the Forsythe Company, Andros Zins-Browne and the Belgian workspaces wpZimmer in Antwerp and Workspace Brussels. Her texts and reviews have appeared, among others, in the performance journals MASKA and Etcetera.


Concept and idea: Marialena MaroudaPerformance and choreography: Katja Cheraneva, Marialena Marouda, Malte ScholzInstallation: Eleni MouzourouDramaturgy and production: Maja ZimmermanTechnical director: Harry SchulzFunded by: the Cultural Office Frankfurt am Main and the Hessian Ministry for Science and ArtSupported by: the Institute of City History Frankfurt am Main, wpZimmer Antwerp, BUDA Kunstencentrum Kortrijk and ID_Frankfurt.