SNF Nostos


Art & Exhibitions

Paris Legakis (b. 1981, Greece)

Two Teams Play with the Same Outfit: A Reenactment, 2017.
Participatory public-space action (first staged in Thessaloniki, 2013).

Saturday June 24, 19:00, Great Lawn

Paris Legakis (b. 1981, Greece)

In this work, Paris Legakis orchestrates a friendly football match between a team of immigrants and a team of lawyers. Live music frames the field of action, enhancing it with a carnivalesque element. Audience members rotate as referees, contributing to the game’s outcome. Central to the work’s politics, both teams wear identical outfits in violation of the official rules of soccer, staging the game as performance and play. Wearing the same outfit symbolically blurs the social borders between players. While illustrating the poetic mandate “Only connect,” the work also foregrounds the antagonism embedded in football as a sport, a spectacle and a metaphor for contemporary society. These tensions surface in the discussion between the teams following the match in which the audience is invited to participate.

Two Teams Play with the Same Outfit reenacts a performance that took place in Thessaloniki in 2013 in the context of the project Artivists for Change, and was inspired by the observation of a public space, where immigrants and lawyers coexisted as social groups but did not interact. As a form of “irregular temporary interaction” it exemplifies the artist’s methods of engagement with the multitude in public space, central to political art as defined by Legakis’ writing and practice. Influenced by avant-garde forms of live art, such as happenings, the work also gives homage to Yoko Ono’s Play it by Trust (1966-2011) where Ono challenges chess players with a white chess set, playfully collapsing the game’s inherent antagonism.

Paris Legakis is a multidisciplinary artist, activist and theorist researching how art can be beneficial for society and influential to politics. He has travelled to many different places worldwide conducting field researches and experimenting with different art practices of social engagement that aim to reveal different perspectives of everyday life and foster the idea of social change. He has written the manifesto Claim your Anger: On politics and Political Art, and he has created his own methodology Irregular Temporary Interactions (I.T.I). He studied in NYU, Performance Studies (MA), where he was awarded for Outstanding MA Work and in Bauhaus University-Weimar, Public Art and New Artistic Strategies (MFA), Germany. In 2009 he graduated from the Athens School of Fine Arts. His projects have been displayed internationally. His research interests focus on memory and emotions, geopolitical and social borders, language and translation.

Paris Legakis