Ian Whittlesea’s new publication Mazdaznan Health & Breath Culture launched as part of the Stanley Picker Gallery’s No Competition! offsite programme, taking place at the Barbican Centre London to accompany their major exhibition Bauhaus: Art as Life.
The Swiss artist and teacher Johannes Itten famously led his Bauhaus students in a series of physical exercises before each day’s work. A devout follower of the teachings of Dr. Otoman Zar-Adusht Ha’nish, founder of the Mazdaznan religion, Itten would have based these exercises on Dr. Ha’nish’s 1902 instruction manual Mazdaznan Health & Breath Culture. Ian Whittlesea has produced a newly illustrated and annotated edition of Mazdaznan Health & Breath Culture, together with a set of posters depicting Kingston University Art & Design Foundation Course students performing the original Mazdaznan exercises.
Commissioned by the Stanley Picker Gallery and co-published and distributed by Open Editions London, the book launch too place as part of the Bauhaus by Day/Bauhaus by Night programme of events accompanying the Barbican’s major summer exhibition Bauhaus: Art as Life.
Many thanks to Christian Breidlid, Ezzidin Alwan and Helen McCathie for their invaluable photographic assistance, and to Rosie Brunning, Ivan Robirosa, Joey Phinn, Annabelle Syms, Harry Edwards, Amelia Butlin, Olivia Wills, Sophie Flanagan, Robert Hawkins, Ailis Brennan, Hamish Pearch, Jessica Dyer, Ruby Law, Molly Maher, Harvin Alert, Sophie Ray and Nettel Grellier who all took part in the workshop to practice Mazdaznan exercises.
Together with his new film The Demonstration of Gentleness, Ian Whittlesea’s Mazdaznan Health & Breath Culture forms part of No Competition! a programme of free off-site events exploring the relationship between art and non-competitive sport, staged by the Stanley Picker Gallery whilst the venue itself is closed for refurbishments.