The concept of “the artist as art” is the driving force for Yannis Adoniou, founder of KUNST-STOFF arts, a performance space hosting its second annual festival, which starts today at its new home at 1 Grove St. in The City.
“Our space is intimate. It’s not a theater, but it provides a good setting for someone to have direct communication with the viewer,” says Adoniou, who also directs KUNST-STOFF dance company, a San Francisco-based contemporary troupe.
“When people come in, they are on the same level as the performers. They are close to the art. They can almost touch it,” he says.
Communication between the viewer and artist is one of the main points of the festival — which offers three dance, theater and music programs throughout May — and many of KUNST-STOFF’s programming choices.
Just as with ART Pot-Lucks, in which artists bring a work to perform instead of an entrée, dialogue among viewers and participating performers is encouraged at the festival.
“Normally you just leave, and you have no connection to the artist,” says Adoniou. “If you stay and talk to the dancers and artists, and you identify with them as human beings, you realize that they do their work because they want to share with you. The social aspect between the viewer and the performer is crucial to the development of the connection between the viewer and the artist,” Adoniou says.
IF YOU GO
KUNST-STOFF arts/fest 2011
Where: 1 Grove St., San Francisco
When: 8:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, plus May 25; closes May 28
Contact: (415) 777-0172, www.kunst-stoff.org
– Thursday-Saturday: La Alternativa, Christine Bonansea
– May 19-21: Jesse Hewit, Stephen Pelton, Christy Funsch, Mary Carbonara Dances
– May 25-28: Laura Arrington, Rob Bailis, Abby Crain, Margit Galanter, KUNST-STOFF dance company, Julia Stiefel