net art, video, performance

Annie Abrahams

Annie Abrahams

loz1photo Loz

Annie Abrahams Born in 1954, Hilvarenbeek, Pays Bas Lives in France since 1987

Mail : bram(dot)org(at)
Download: cvbio.pdf in English (336 Ko)
Book – 20 pages with images .pdf 2.3 Mo
Bio et cv en français

Annie Abrahams has a doctoraal (M2) in biology from the University of Utrecht 1978 and a MA2 from the Academy of Fine Arts of Arnhem 1985. In her work, using video, performance as well as the internet, she questions the possibilities and the limits of communication in general and more specifically investigates its modes under networked conditions. She is known worldwide for her net art and collective writing experiments and is an internationally regarded pioneer of networked performance art.
Abrahams develops what she calls an aesthetics of trust and attention and creates situations meant to reveal messy and sloppy sides of human behaviour, where she traps reality and so makes that reality available for thought.

She has performed and shown work extensively in France, including at the Jeu de Paume; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; the CRAC, Sète; the Paris–Villette theater and in more than hunderd international galleries and museums including The Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb; the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, Asheville, North Carolina; the Espai d’Art Contemporani de Castelló, Spain; the New Musem, New York; the Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art, Yerevan; Furtherfield gallery, London; Aksioma, Ljubljana, and NIMk, Amsterdam, in festivals such as the MoscowFilm Festival; the International Film Festival, Rotterdam and the Stuttgarter Filmwinter (1prize 2011),  and on online platforms as and Turbulence (NEA commission 2015). She was leadperformer in the ELO2017 conference Porto en nominated for the H3K Basel netbased award 2018.

She teached at the university of Montpellier in the arts department. (2002-2005) Autumn 2005, she started provi&testi: meetings around art works to become, not yet finished, trespassing habits; and +++plus+++ editions. From november 2006 to january 2009 she curated the project “InstantS” and organized the “Breaking Solitude” and ”Double Bind” webperformance series on In 2012 she co-organised the first Cyposium – online symposium on cyberformance, and published an article on webcam mediated communication and collaboration in JAR #2 (Journal of Artistic Research). In 2013 she started with Emmanuel Guez the project ReadingClub, an online venue for collaborative reading and writing performances. In 2014 she published two books: “from estranger to e- stranger” with CONA and Aksioma, Ljubljana; and “CyPosium – the book” published by LINK editions and la Panacée, co- edited with Helen Varley Jamieson. In 2015, also with Helen, she started unaussprechbarlich – a project on language learning and living in a country where one can’t speak one’s mother tongue. In 2018 she did her first performance using VR. Since August 2017 Abrahams is the artistic director of a thesis by Muriel Piqué (University of Aix-Marseille).

Annie Abrahams was born as a farmer’s daughter in a small village in the Netherlands in 1954. When she is going to high school for the first time, she stays mute for three days, the time necessary to learn to express herself otherwise than in the local dialect. Having obtained a doctoral in biology in 1980 she leaves her post as an assistant researcher at the university because her colleagues didn’t appreciate she read Dostojevski in her spare time. Annie is teaching biology at high school and obtains a diploma in painting at the art school in 1986. In 1987, with a two years grant from the Dutch government for young artists she is going to live in France, where she stays until now.
There, using a custom-made computer program called DOEK, she learns to use a computer to help her to construct and to keep trace of the installations she makes with her paintings on complexity. Annie Abrahams shows her computer drawings for the first time in her show “Possibilités” in l’espace Forum in Nice, France in 1992. When in 1996 she creates a ‘meeting place’ in a show in Nijmegen, Annie uses the computer to be present from a distance. Since then she produces net specific work and starts “Being Human” (low tech mood mutators / not immersive 1996 – 2007) her most important web work, that explores interpersonal relations on the net. This work concentrates on the possibilities and limitations of communication on the net and has been shown in various international new media and video festivals and shows. (Skopje, Mexico City, Tallinn, Seoul, Atlanta, Montreal, Athens, Clermont Ferrand, Tokyo, Bristol, Seattle, Split, Rotterdam, San Fransisco etc.) Her work evolved into Internet related research pieces among which Huis Clos / No Exit : a networked performance series investigating collaboration and relational dynamics in a dispersed group, and Angry Women.  Abrahams continues investigating the role of empathy, things, the voice, absence and presence in online communication and the concept of “being with” in projects as besides, On Object Agency with the choreographer and theorician Martina Ruhsam and DistantFeeling(s) with Daniel Pinheiro and Lisa Parra. Abrahams often collaborates with other artists as for instance Nicolas Frespech, Antye Greie, Curt Cloninger, Mark River from MTAA, Laurie Bellanca, Helen Varley Jamieson and Igor Stromajer among others. In 2018, with Muriel Piqué and Daniel Pinheiro she started Distant Movements a research project on the possibility of an online blind shared dance in front of a screen. 3G(enerations) Constallations also started in 2018 with Pascale Barret and Alix Desaubliaux is interested in online collaboration based on radical trust, surprises and challengens.

Published articles:
with/in languages – a pretty pathetic / avec et dans les langues – un assez pathétique, Annie Abrahams, The Creative Web of Languages / Le réseau créatif des langu.ages, Hybrid 07 | 2021, ISSN électronique 2276-3538.
#PEAE Participative Ethology in Artificial Environments, Electronic Book Review, May 3, 2020.
Distant Feelings, Annie Abrahams & Daniel Pinheiro, p185-193 Video Vortex* Reader III, Edited by Geert Lovink and Andreas Treske, INC reader #14, Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam 2020.
L’Agency Art ou une Éthologie Participative dans des Environnements Artificiels ?, LINKs séries 1-2. ISSN  2592-6756. 2019.
The machinic author” Artist’s Statement: The Reading Club, Abrahams, Annie and Guez, Emmanuel 2019, Journal of Creative Writing Studies: Vol. 4: Iss.1, Article 8. ISSN: 2474-2937.
Preconditions for Online Participation PAIC, 2019.
Learn together what it means to be connected CyPosium – The Book, 2014, ISBN 9781291988925.
Trapped to Reveal – On webcam mediated communication and collaboration. Annie Abrahams, Jar #2 ISSN 2235-0225, 2012.

When studying biology I had to observe a colony of monkeys in a zoo. I found this very interesting because I learned something about human communities by watching the apes. In a certain way I watch the internet with the same appetite and interest. I consider it to be a universe where I can observe some aspects of human attitudes and behaviour without interfering. (for instance in ViolenceS )
I am also interested in providing a situation in which the visitors, by leaving a personal trace, collaborate in revealing a collective voice, participate in the emergence of a staggering beginning for a language of the multitude. I am convinced these collections contain a revelation of actual tendencies in society (our contemporary being) and procure us a kind of cartography of the other. (I am looking for ways to introduce the web-created-text objects in real space, to inseminate these collections with physical energy, I want to give “flesh and bones” to what exist as potential in a computer and what appears as only light on a screen)
On the web I am also experimenting with the possibilities of making visitor behaviour (by clicking, choosing, participating, the visitor reveals the work of the artist) the content of an esthetical contemplation (see Separation , Painsong, Karaoke)
. “Interview with Annie Abrahams” by Béatrice Bonfanti 2005.

I want to know how they function, not by them telling me, but by me almost forcing them to reveal an instance of their ‘hidden code’ in public. I want us to go beyond self-representation and the control that this requires. Am I really forcing them to do this?… No I am not. What happens is that the situation in itself that is, the telematic performance interface, the protocols, the flaws in the streaming connections rewrites the conditions of communication in a way that makes this revelation possible, if not inevitable. Annie Abrahams. Allergic to Utopias, Interview by Maria Chatzichristodoulou fir digicult, 2010.

We perform experimenting thinking together using words and things and the affects transferred via our voices. We experiment performing thinking together, We think performing experiments together, We experiment thinking performance, We experiment performing thought together using words and things and the affects transferred via our voices... Extracted from besides, what are we doing? Notes on besides,… by Annie Abrahams 03/2016.pdf

Information in Fr on (en français)

2021 text ENG Naoto Hieda invited me for an experimental conversation. 2020 txt ENG Revisiting the net artist’s Flash poem Separation / Séparation, Ania Szremski, 4Columns, NY. 2020 txt Ned. De kunst van het online ontroeren, Alex Burghoorn, 06/04 De Volkskrant. 2018 txt Eng Disentangling the Entanglements. Randall Packer, thirdspacenetwork. 02. 2018 txt Eng Unlocking Proprietorial Art Systems interview: with Artists, Gretta Louw, Antonio Roberts & Annie Abrahams. Interviewed by Marc Garrett 26/02. 2017 txt Eng Reading as Writing, Coding as Public Performance, Daniel Temkin / 2017 txt Eng Addictive Behaviours: Interview with Artist Annie Abrahams by Marc Garrett and Ruth Catlo for Furtherfield. 2017 txt Eng The Laboratory of Networked Behavior, Randall Packer, Third Space Network. 2015 txt Eng Choose your muse interview: Annie Abrahams, Marc Garrett, Furtherfield. 2015 txt Fr Annie Abrahams, Le principe d’incertitude .pdf, pages 12-13, Gaspard Bébié-Valérian, MCD #78. 2014 txt Slo Annie Abrahams: Jezik v svetu med realnim in virtualnim Pogovor z umetnico ob njeni aktualni razstavi 29 10 2014 ob 06:28 Pina Gabrijan, Potrpežljivost in pozornost (Patience and Attention), DEVNIK Nov 3, Mojca Pišek., V performanse vložim tisto, ?esar ne razumem Interview Annie Abrahams Tanja Lesni?ar – Pu?ko, Dnevnik 17/04. 2014 vidéo Fr Interview Annie Abrahams par Cyril Thomas festival Chemins Numériques #4 Reims 2014 txt Eng Igor Štromajer & Annie Abrahams by Gretta Louw, BOMB Magazine April 21st 2014. 2013 txt Fr Entretien avec Annie Abrahams (page 20 – 33) INFRA 02  Editions Macrosonges 2012 txt Eng Annie Abrahams interview by Alessandro Ludovico, Neural 43, Autummn 2012, Networked Tangibility, ISSN 2037-108X. 2012 txt Eng Today I conversed with, Interviewed by Filippo Lorenzin 20/05. 2012 vidéo Fr Montage de On Collaboration CRAC Sète. 2012 vidéo Fr Training for a Better World, Entretien Exposition solo CRAC Sète. 2012 txt Fr Ita Being Human /Tweet-intervista a Annie Abrahams Tweet Intervista by Simona Polvani. 2011 vidéo Fr INTERVIEW DE LA BOITE # 28 – ANNIE ABRAHAMS C’est à Sète (intime -personnel) 2011 video Eng Reportage made for “Simeio Art” by Evi Tsirigotaki and Philippe Vu for the Greek public television  NET . 2011 txt FrConversation avec Annie Abrahams“, livre avec Manuel Fadat 60 pages. 2011 txt Fr| Interview | Annie Abrahams |” Entretien par Aleksandra Smilek pour 2010 txt EngANNIE ABRAHAMS, ALLERGIC TO UTOPIAS“, Interview by Maria Chatzichristodoulou for Digimag 58 2010 txt EngAnnie Abrahams and life in networks” by Maria Chatzichristodoulou [aka Maria X], Lecturer in Theatre and Performance – School of Arts and New Media -The University of Hull @ Scarborough, for Digimag 54. 2010 txt Frqui suis-je? Annie Abrahams (1999)” Review, article, Cyril Thomas, Magazine electronique du CIAC no 37. 2010 txt FrLa vie dans les réseaux d’Annie Abrahams“, by Maria Chatzichristodoulou [aka Maria X] for Digimag 54 translated in French for Poptronics. 2010 txt Eng Artistic Textual and Performative Paths in New Media Correlations: An Interview with Annie Abrahams by Evelin Stermitz. 2010 txt Eng If not you not me – catalogue essay, Ruth Catlow, Catalogue txt for the show in HTTP gallery, London. 2009 txt Fr SORTIR DE SA BULLE : ENTRETIEN CROISÉ ENTRE ANNIE ABRAHAMS ET ALBERTINE MEUNIER par Cyril Thomas. 2009 video Fr Derrière l’écran : Entrevue avec Annie Abrahams  10 min.  Paule Macrous Patric Mondou. 2009 video Fr Entretien avec Annie Abrahams. Annie Abrahams présente son film “The Big Kiss” lors d’un regard croisée avec Agnés de Cayeux dans le cadre des RIAM 06 à Marseille. 2006 txt Fr Entretien avec Annie Abrahams pour une mémoire. 2003 txt Fr Eng interviews anniea for P2P 2000 txt Fr Interview with Annie Abrahams par Bertrand Gauguet in Archée.

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