Capitulation Project 2003
Jun 16–20, 2010
The terror of war and its irrational dynamics challenge representation. One of the American traumata of the Vietnam War, the massacre of My Lai was “staged” by the Performance Group in New York in 1971. Instead of addressing the inconceivable terror with theatrical coherence, the public was invited to interact on stage in order to create unforeseen scenarios.
Following historic documents that recall this legendary theater practice, Moser and Schwinger recreated the original stage design from 1971 and reenacted the play, but with a different methodology and a rewritten script: in their staging - performed for a 16mm film production - the usually dissociated perspectives of victims, offenders, witnesses and commentators meet their ability to coexist as theatrical representations.
“Capitulation Project”, Moser and Schwinger’s reaction on Iraq War II, supports Jacques Rancières’ proposal that fiction does not oppose the real, but that “the real must be fictionalized in order to be thought”. In their films, the Swiss artist duo uses fiction as an instrument to appropriate the real and to publicly discuss its constitution.