Democracia – ORDER / A/Political
Exhibition run: 27 April – 23 June 2018
“When the people shall have nothing more to eat, they will eat the rich.”
For their exhibition at Rua Red, Dublin, artistic collective DEMOCRACIA will exhibit their expansive new work ORDER for the first time. Presented as a tripartite film and installation, the Spanish artists seek to radically critique the conventions and injustices of capitalism.
Filmed between Dublin, Houston and London, ORDER moves between distinctive and divergent settings – lavish dinners, gaudy limousines, out-of-town mega malls and open-carry demonstrations – to recount the oldest of stories, that of the oppressors and the oppressed.
ORDER presents in its three acts – Eat the Rich/Kill the Poor; Jeremiah; & Dinner at the Dorchester – not only a dramaticized analogue of our reality but carefully engineered interventions in public and private spaces. By taking the opera away from the constrictions of the theatrical medium and its habitual environment – the bourgeois high-art format of grand theatre – the piece presents its message through the disruption of the cultural grammar of opera. Using this medium as a tool with which its natural audience, the ruling classes, may be pilloried, lambasted and held to account for their actions.
The libretto of ORDER is inspired by Hesiod’s didactic poem Works & Days, in particular its telling of the Myth of Five Ages. Believed to have been written during the Ancient Greek agrarian crisis, a time of colonial expansion, debt-slavery and class war, Works & Days bears stark and pertinent correlations to our present context. Hesiod details the “race of iron”, an age where “men never rest from labour and sorrow by day, and from perishing by night; and the gods shall lay sore trouble upon them”. An age in which “men will praise the evil-doer and his violent dealing”. DEMOCRACIA seize this central premise of Hesiod’s poem and transform it into a scathing and effective lyrical treatise on the ills of contemporary society.