fbpx Liesel Burisch | CIRCA PRIZE 2023

Liesel Burisch

I am a video artist based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Combining an adoration for the in between of everything and the loop, my practice investigates what potential transitions and repetitions hold for our understanding of self and each other.

How is your project tied to the theme of ‘HOPE’?
The club lures its visitors in under the promise as a space for hope, dreaming of a world which can encompass the longing for freedom. As these spaces often fail in creating such spaces, we, the dancers, and dreamers, have to look for other spaces to recover and heal from the disappointment. The promise of enjoying oneself, imagining a pleasure lifeword needs to recluse, oftentimes into our minds. In the video Critical High, the performer Maji Claire embodies the resistance and resilience of hope, of the dance floor, as she moves through a deserted exhibition space. She claims her rage and leaves it all on the exhibiting halls turned possessed dance floor and actively challenges both gaze and objectification through her movements in space. Between tear down and build up, Claire exposes the viewer as it / we creep up on her mesmerising  interaction with the space and camera. She embodies the hope which is embedded in us and fights back at our attempt to contain her.

Most importantly I would compensate everyone involved with Critical High. Being able to pay back and forward the people who graciously shared their immense and apparent talent with me would be a massive joy.

Secondly, the prize money would enable me to take a couple of months of paternity leave. As a (heavily pregnant) artist/freelancer I am unfortunately not eligible for coverage through the Danish state. This has been devastating and enraging to realise. A moment of rest would help me gain the strength and energy to fight for others in similar horrendous situations.

Thirdly, I am in the midst of a project on the limitations and potential of postpartum support for marginalised communities. I have been working as a postpartum doula/birth worker for over a decade, and this would be the first time I would revisit this work, the theories and knowledge that are the backbone of it and my own process within a video project. I will be focusing on community trauma care and its ability to both foster healing from and build resistance against exclusionary society practices. The prize money would enable me to dream bigger in terms of production. And who does not like to dream?

Hope is the ultimate estrangement from personal responsibility. A toxic response to feeling or being powerless. But also an essential factor for developing and maintaining resilience. It is therefore both death and birth. Freeing and limiting.