In the thick of it. On all fours. We’re sweating cold on the warm soil as billions of bacteria give off essential gasses. Condensation rolls down computer screens from the evaporation of bodies as they dance, think, fear, fight, love, feel determined, and hold each other—virtually. We are celebrating being in two: the heat of the living and the cold fallowing of winter.
In Heat: Cold Sweat, online until February 13th, is indeed not a place to harvest, but to root down and metabolize in. It’s not an offer of solace, but our attempt to mirror the abundance of ways we are affected by loss, change, growth, and the chance to collectively realize something better. This series is an effigy to the monolith of power—invisible to some, abhorrent for others—as we continue to burn it. How hot is your yearning? If it is screaming, let it all out. Picture wrestling with your sibling or lover until you’re covered in sweat. Or bolting upright in bed to outrun a nightmare, soaking and ice-cold. Daring to multiply in an apocalypse and boldly caring for one another. In Heat: Cold Sweat is a multimedia collage made with old friends and new collaborators to express the contradiction of regeneration by fire.
COVEN BERLIN introduces our very first multimedia series with videos by Daddypuss Rex, Luiza Prado, Crab Content, etaïnn zwer, and an hour-long podcast focused on collective strategies of care. Daddypuss Rex unleashes rage and joy into the Tegel forest in “Blackbodywhitetears.” Luiza Prado charms us with her mother’s hot sauce recipe made from penis-shaped peppers, and gives insight on the link between cooking and decolonial practices. Crabby’s belly bubbles and lurches with a living goblin inside him. etaïnn zwer leads us into the hot, dank dungeon of ausland, where we danced til dawn at CLUB APOCALIPS on one sweaty night. And finally, DOTYK, Power Makes Us Sick, Olga Łaniewska + Anurita, and COVEN BERLIN call each other from Germany, Belarus, and the USA to ask how we can show solidarity and accountability when politics reach a boiling point, and revolutions catch fire.
In addition to our videos and podcast, this episode features five text-based contributions: Simon(e) van Saarloos argues that fire is an anti-capitalist superspreader and time-collapser. Laura Lulika narrates their experience as a taut hot egg-pregnant king, while Louise Trueheart reports on a dog’s first heat. Sonia Fernández Pan reassembles histories of the dancefloor and its politics.
With this series we inaugurate our new multimedia platform, the cyberbog: here you’ll find a cool and wet place to preserve past and living matter all together under a single slimy surface. Not much grows in bogs, but what does flourish is as mysterious as carnivorous plants. Keep coming back all year for new content in our peat-y little online limbo ecosystem of multimedia experiences.
In Heat:Cold Sweat is us reaching through our computer screens to our communities in these rapidly changing times, like rushing through hot and cold, and back again.
This project was conceived during our artist residency at ausland in Berlin of August, 2020 with the support of the Berlin Senate Zweijährige Basisförderung für Projekträume und –initiativen.
© Coven Berlin 2020