The Passion

The Passion by Haitian-American artist Jean-Ulrick Désert was initially an interactive installation-sculpture photo performance for the Exhibition “Ein Spiel-viele Welten" (One Game-Many Worlds) during the  World Soccer Cup championships held in Germany in 2006 and was created and presented in the museum lobby of the Stadtmuseum München (The Munich Historical Museum).
The artist focuses on football (soccer) fan-culture eccentricities, typified by extravagant fanaticism and the hooligan subculture and a critique against the growing corporate exploitation of this globally celebrated game of football (Soccer).  A form of (corporate) Hooliganism exemplified by FIFA and other corporate partners. The project functions as an act of resistance against the presence of unbridled nationalism while re-inscribing the attributes of tribalism. Visitors to the museum and the general public are invited to participate and "perform" (for the camera) by choosing freely soccer-fan costume elements typically familiar from fan-culture . Mr. Desert’s reconstructions significantly avoids affiliations with specific soccer club franchises, nation or city teams or public, private or corporate sponsors. The archetypes of tribalism are all the more made visible in THE PASSION without the distractions of the signifying colors and logos used ubiquitously in sports today. The project's growing collection of digital photos in the museum lobby allowed the public to be part of a historic exhibition during the Soccer World Cup Championships.
This project were also presented at the Jack Shainman Gallery in The Color Line curated by artist and color-theorist Odili Donald Odita.
The Passion has also been presented at The Shelly and Donald Rubin Foundation's The 8th Floor Gallery in Between History and the Body curated by Artistic Director Sara Reisman. Between History and the Body features artists Elia Alba, Firelei Baez, Nick Cave, Jean-Ulrick Désert, Nicolás Dumit Estévez, Brendan Fernandes, Jeffrey Gibson, Shaun Leonardo, Ana Mendieta (†), Paul Anthony Smith, Chungpo Tsering and Saya Woolfalk.

Footnotes
  1. Performance Art an online introduction
  2. FIFA scandals as noted on wikipedia
  3. Hooliganism in the football (soccer) world.
  4. This Video documentary alludes to the collaborating forces of hooligans with right wing groups who gather around these identifiers of nation states (in this particular video example Germany, though this phenomena currently exists throughout many different countries in western and eastern europe)
  5. Jack Shainman Gallery presented The Passion in the exhibition The Color Line curated by artist Odili Donald Odita. The exhibition included works by Tiong Ang, Radcliffe Bailey,  Christiaan Bastiaans,  Bili Bidjocka,  Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, Nick Cave, Jean-Ulrick Désert, Kira Lynn Harris,  Fred Holland,   Rashid Johnson,  Remy Jungerman,  Kerry James Marshall, Nzingah Muhammad, Senga Nengudi, Mario Cravo Neto,  Olu Oguibe, Senam Okudzeto, Orgacom, Carl Pope, Miguel Angel Rios, The Trinity Session / Stephen Hobbs & Marcus Neustetter, Stanley Whitney.
  6. Book Fußball: Ein Spiel - viele Welten: One Game - Many Worlds (ISBN-10: 3897902427) Introduction accompanying the Munich exhibition: "Football exerts an irresistible pull throughout the world. It represents a stage for world-views, religions and values held by all sorts of cultures. From Brazil to Japan, from Cameroon to the Ukraine, from Mexico and even the US to Europe: throughout the world, this sport is interpreted and celebrated in different ways. Which players become heroes? How do fans from these entire different cultures act during a game? What is the importance of football to politics and what is the politics of football? Why do eleven team members become eleven advertising vehicles for sponsoring companies? Why do stadiums end up as multifunctional arenas? What cults and rituals are entwined with this sport in all the different countries? "Football: One Game - Many Worlds" looks at football from an anthropological view, discussing customs and rituals from around the world, such as Japanese football mangas and the Neapolitan cult of Maradona, Latin American 'fetishes' to invoke 'the gods of football' and West African coffins shaped like football shoes."
  7. PDF Rubins Foundation Press release

The Artist would like to extend thanks to Patricia Müller of the Landeshaupstadt München Kulturreferat and her collaborators at the Münchner Stadtmuseum (Munich City Museum) Karin Guggeis and Director Dr.Wolfgang Till. Irene Schoeller and her organizational team and security at the Stadtmuseum for the first manifestation of THE PASSION. Karin Sommer director of the Villa Waldberta, Exhibit designers Udo Vollmer & Thomas Hamann, Joachim Hausknecht and Andrea Naica Loebell, art assistants Karen Ernst (Munich) and Devcharya Hamann (Berlin), Peter Buchheit (Tischlerei), Tamiko Thiel and Ada Gerowitt, for their generous hospitality.