18 February 2023, 12:00pm
UKS, Keysers gate 1


Saturday 18 February, 12–2pm and 3–4pm
UKS, Keysers gate 1
The event is free of charge


“Even when it tells stories, myth is not narrative; it is poetic and performative. As such it also eludes definition, and this is precisely what makes it adaptable to how societies make history. Because this history-making process is ongoing, myth is not archaic; it is always contemporary. It is the realm where societies imagine themselves (and their others, their adversaries), where they create conditions for themselves in the manner of poiesis, and they do this not with words, but with performative actions.”
—Stathis Gourgouris

Stemming from their year-long collaboration on the film Sprouts of a dragon’s teeth, shown as part of the exhibition OPEN SYSTEMS, Stathis Gourgouris and Danae Io host a workshop and conversation on the poetics and politics of myths in contemporary societies. The workshop and talk can be experienced separately or together.



12–2pm: WORKSHOP
A workshop on the role of myth as a performative system of poetics pertinent to how societies imagine and create their worlds. Participants are invited to read and write together through small exercises to think through questions such as: How do we read ancient texts and figures in a contemporary world? How do we understand performative action as history-making? Where do we find the poetics of form – of creating new forms – in a world controlled by technological repetition?

Please send an e-mail to info@uks.no to reserve a free ticket for the workshop.

Ruination, pollution, autochthony (the indigenous inhabitation of a country, including mythological figures) and myth: Danae and Stathis read poems written during their conversations and correspondence over the past year, which extend the themes set out in Sprouts of a dragon’s teeth. The reading will be followed by an open conversation with the audience.


Danae Io (b. 1993, GR) is an artist whose work is shown in OPEN SYSTEMS at UKS.

Stathis Gourgouris (b. 1958, GR) is a poet, essayist, translator and sound artist, living between New York and Athens. He is Professor of Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University, New York.


The conversation is spoken in English. UKS is wheelchair accessible. Read our access note here. The workshop will only be available onsite but the conversation will be live streamed.




Image: Film still from Danae Io’s Sprouts of a dragon’s teeth, 2022.

Images from Stathis Gourgouris’ and Danae Io’s workshop and conversation on the poetics and politics of myths in contemporary societies. Photo by Jan Khür.

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