photo: Pat Verbruggen

Mikes Poppe (°1983) is a performance artist and visual artist based in Antwerp, Belgium.

Since 2007, while focusing on his academic research on ‘performance art’, Mikes Poppe quoted a number of live performances in the form of re-enactments (aka ‘Archive-projects’): he specialized in meticulously reconstructing canonical/historical performances (from the 1960ies & 70ies) and confronting them with so-called ‘Inspired-by projects’: i.e. semi-autonomous performances inspired by the historical antecedents, creating a personal interpretation and/or transformation of the original material. In this light, Poppe re-enacted works of Marina Abramović, Danny Devos, Vito Acconci, and Chris Burden just to name a few.

Nowadays, Poppe’s work focuses on questioning the relevance of ‘art performance(s)’ today: how does a young artist relate to today’s art world where (performance) art is often diluted to ’theatre’ or even entertainment…?

Poppe endorses the necessity of the ephemeral character of performance art and its specific craftsmanship: his work is tailor-made for the occasion and location. The artist’s body —in dialogue with the art history— is his main tool and starting point.

Mikes Poppe —who describes and presents himself as an artist/terrorist—, tries to incarnate a kind of artistic trinity: the ‘homo historicus’, the ‘homo analyticus’ and the ‘homo spectaculator’.

These 3 simultaneous identities define and energize (1) his struggle with the (canonical) art history, (2) his desire to disclose and analyze the world (of art), and finally, (3) his need to make a constant appeal to the viewer/public/audience while offering elements of physical and mental transgression.

All this is Poppe’s personal attempt to reach out for the sublime within each of us.