Corentin JPM Leven is a multidisciplinary artist from France established in Oslo, Norway. His means of expressions are performing arts, scenography and visual arts. As an artist, Leven focuses on various queer perspectives and domains such as queer stories, queer/queered spaces and queer aesthetics.
Dates of residency:
23 – 30 January 2019
14 – 24 July 2019
At Narva Art Residency he works on his solo performance “+ -“. The work constitutes a visual theatre exploration within the life and narrative of a young homosexual immigrant living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
During his residency in Narva Leven carries a site related research as the city has the highest HIV rate in Estonia.
The performance invites the audience into the existential torment the protagonist undergoes while dealing with his recent HIV positive diagnosis. Instigating the grieving process and the different steps in the trauma recovery process. Steps such as Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance as the psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross stipulates in her model of grief.
The work is an effort to understand and expose HIV as a diagnosis in modern times. A current way to look at the impact HIV still has on a person’s life despite the tremendous scientific and medical progress regarding the way the virus is handled and suppressed.
The protagonist is torn between himself and the collective aspect of the disease, the legacy and its heavy human cost. How to pay tribute and carry this legacy apart from the stigmatized AIDS popular icons? How to face your own body, your social privileges, the stigmatization, the intimate and sexual implications of the virus in modern-day society?
A reflection upon the vulnerability of the human body and the virus’s psychological effects on a young mind. The path to acceptance and the undertaking of a lifelong fight against stigmatization.