Feb 21

Disorientation as a starting point. By Gerda Kochanska iN RESiDENCE at the Institut Doctor Puigvert secondary school


This educational centre in Sant Andreu participates in the programme for the tenth consecutive time. This was the first secondary school who got students actively involved in the ‘contamination’ sessions.

A group of 1st-year students welcome around twenty teachers who attend the ‘contamination’ session at the Institut Doctor Puigvert secondary school. The youngsters wear white masks which conceal their faces completely. A performance begins, in which the teachers are not able to move about freely in the centre as the masked students stop them from entering certain areas, whilst leading them towards the gym. Along the route we come across interventions which make it difficult to pass through and which make them divert from their usual course with the aim of making them critically reflect on the situation from a distinct location.

In this way, the young artists manage to create a sense of confusion in the participating group, so they get to feel for themselves the main theme proposed by Gerda Kochanska iN RESiDENCE at the Institut Doctor Puigvert school: disorientation and a situation of uneasiness, strangeness and surprise.

Once they get to the gym, the students tell the teachers about the wide range of artistic activities they have carried out throughout the school year with the Polish artist: ranging from the appropriation and transformation of objects to their work with words and the creation of a conceptual map to summarise their emerging ideas and the research they have carried out.

Finally, Gerda Kochanska together with the students share some experiences of when they have felt disoriented. The artist explains that, despite always carefully preparing all the sessions, the youngsters’ reaction has disoriented her on various occasions. Similarly, the 1st-year students explain the disorientation they felt on the first few days when they joined the school.

You can follow the students’ experiences and what’s happening with their creation process in Gerda Kochanska’s blog, iN RESiDENCE at the Institut Doctor Puigvert secondary school.