Altruism as Arttruism at Truth is ....

Truth is Concrete

A 24/7 marathon camp on artistic strategies in politics and political strategies in art.
21/09 – 28/09/2012, Graz

What role does art play in the whirl of political, ecological and economic events? Must art help solve those problems that politics and society have ignored for so long? Should art be a social or political tool, can it be useful?

“Truth is concrete” is a 24-hour, 7-day marathon camp in the context of steirischer herbst festival 2012: around 150 artists, activists and theorists lecture, perform, play, produce, discuss, collect artistic strategies in politics and political strategies in art. All day long, all night long. It is a platform, a toolbox as well as a performative statement, an extreme effort at a time that seems to need some extreme efforts.

The camp takes the possibility of concrete truth as a working hypothesis and look for direct action, for concrete change and knowledge. Large or small scale, loud and aggressive, or intimate and careful. Obscure or obvious. An art that not only presents and documents but that engages in specific political and social situations – and an activism that not only acts for the sake of acting but searches for intelligent, creative means of self-empowerment.


Michal Murin: Altruism as Arttruism

Between Social Curatorship and Artistic Curatorship

Social Work as Artistic Act, as Permanent Performance

Michal Murin (1963) launched this project in 2005 by first helping Milan Adamčiak in small ways. Using the processes of unstrained, ergonomic, nonconfrontational intuitive management, amateur banking, do-it-yourself dealership, spontaneous executive production, hobbyist real-estate brokerage, but also enthusiastic editorship, Murin has now – thanks to assistance from the artistic environment – spent seven years recreating an author who had disappeared from public view for 20 years, in the position of an important personality, based on his work and character. The project reacts to the absence of relevant functional systems in the post-Communist context in the social, but also artistic area. It emphasizes the preference of non-institutional activity, and confronts it with the dysfunction of institutions.

Murin offers his project of social help and altruistic act in an artistic context, but due to giving priority to the human element of help, he does not insist on the said context and does not view it as essential, nor does he vehemently proclaim it as his own. He adopts a dispassionate and resigned attitude towards opinions, limiting himself to specific situations, results and facts. He allows the flow of situations brought about, evoked and provoked by the project, including them in the meshwork of opinions and reactions.


Michal Murin (1963) is a project-oriented artist who works with conceptual art and performances. His theoretical focus is on new media, action art and sound art. He teaches at the Academy of Arts in Banská Bystrica, Slovakia, and the Faculty of Arts in Košice, Slovakia. His most recent project, Altruism as Arttruism (since 2005), aims at a long-term performance lasting several years: at an artistic and curatorial, but also social and curatorial act, whose climax – following Adamčiak’s homelessness period – was the provision of real estate for Adamčiak’s permanent use. Murin organizes Adamčiak’s exhibitions, presentations, and concerts, and their newest output are publications documenting Milan Adamčiak’s work.

Milan Adamčiak (1946) - Urspruenglig Violoncellist, später Musikwissenschaftler, Mitglied der Slowakischen Akademie der Wissenschafften /1972-1991/. Seit 1964 beschäftigte sich mit experimentellen Poesie und Musikalischen Graphik unnd war tätig auch als Aktionkuenstler. In 1974 war Teilnehmer an Darmstädter Ferienkurse fuer Neue Musik. Nach 1989 inizierte Entstähung der Transmusik Comp. - ein offene Ensemble fuer Musikperformance mit seine gefundene und home made Klangobjekten. und hat Gesellschaft fuer unkonventionelle Musik mit Michal Murin und Peter Machajdík gegruendet. Als Kurator hat in Slowakischen Nationale Galerie mit persoenlichen Partiziipation von John Cage eine grosse Austellung seinner Partituren in 1992 präsentiert. In letzten Jahren war tätig als Performer und Installationskuensttler. Dank Michal Murins Initiativen ist seine ältere und neue Schaffen mehr kennengelehrt und akzeptiert.




Michal Murin:

Truth is concrete Newsletter #20
24/7 marathon camp, 21/09 – 28/09/2012, Graz
21/09 (2 pm) – 28/09 (4 pm), Camp (Opernring 5-7, 8010 Graz)

Truth is concrete sum up
It has already been one month now since the "Truth is concrete", 24/7 marathon camp took place. More than 200 artists, activists, theorists from all over the world, 100 grant holders and hundreds of guests reflected on, discussed and practised artistic strategies in politics and political strategies in art. What role does art play in the political turbulences and transitions all over the world? What role should it play? "Truth is concrete" was driven by the urgency to meet on the common ground that art and activism share.

With around 300 lectures, panels, tactic talks, performances, concerts, films, workshops and a parallel, self-curated, spontaneous Open marathon, "Truth is concrete" created a 170-hour performative space for thinking and networking. For us it was an overwhelming experience – people listening to lectures on Sunday morning at 8.30 am, going on excursions at 5 am, discussing, listening, engaging around the clock – there was not a single moment without constant engagement. It was both an exciting and exhausting week, with the authoritarian clock ruling strictly in the middle, but with time earmarked for discussions and meetings.

"Truth is concrete" brought together art that not only represents and documents, but that engages in specific political and social situations – and activism that not only acts for the sake of acting but searches for intelligent, creative means of self-empowerment. Despite all the differences: This was the common denominator that was shared by the contributors, grant holders and by the many visitors from all over the world and the city of Graz. And by the hundreds of people who followed the event via the live stream on the website. It was a working meeting – and it will continue in many different constellations, with many different approaches, in many different places.

Truth is concrete continued
Already we have started work on a book which will not be a mere documentation, but another aggregate state of "Truth is concrete". It is supposed to be published at the end of September 2013 – we will keep you updated.

To continue the discussions till then and allow people to revisit the marathon, we have put together some video material: a whole range of tactic talks, which were the short introductions to different artistic and activist practices by various contributors, many lectures and some of the themed blocks and panels are online now at //

On the website you can also find in the "Material" section with our reader in progress, a bibliography that will continue to grow and many other things. Furthermore, we are also welcoming further discussions and comments in our forum and on Facebook.

We are also grateful for the many feedback emails we have received over the last few weeks and also for the links to both public and private publications, comments, documentations on the "Truth is concrete" marathon and look forward to receiving more.

Thanks again
to everyone who contributed in many ways. It was a strong collective effort that hopefully will lead to many more discussions, actions, involvements and collaborations.

Nov 03 2012, 21:30

Michal Murin: VIDEO from presentation:

Mar 17 2013, 01:26

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