Soft Cover, English, Glue Binding, 44 Pages, 2016, Robert Jelinek/Der Konterfei
Ulay is one of the pioneers of performance art. His practice is not about human alienation, but rather the kind of alienation that captures art and then forms its own identity.
Its experience cannot be captured by Ulay -- yet when immanence is grasped, the inner drive, uncontrollable urge, or the "must" become artistically visible as a necessary consequence. The must is Ulay's lifeblood; a driving force and principled approach to draw from himself and his own creativity; something he learned during the course of his life, often involuntarily as a chance to survive. His investigations are directed towards what one could generalize as Conditio Humana, of which there can be expanded and extreme forms, but never a cathartic purification. In fact, the inexorability of most of his performances, in combination with the openness into which the audience is disbanded indicates that Ulay makes a point of denying catharthis in the sense of controlled emotional release. With his work, he mainly sought to find his own identity, which he continues to do today. Second edition.