(Cancelled) What does xen dream of in the Theatrum?

Unfortunately due to covid-19 this event has been cancelled. Participants have received an email. New dates will be announced as soon as possible.

Waag’s Theatrum Anatomicum was built in 1691 as a space dedicated to advanced experimenting, observing and learning. In practice, this often meant that corpses of criminals or other “undesirables” were put up on display for the public and opened up in the name of science. With her performance and exhibition, artist in residence Adriana Knouf goes into dialogue with the history of the Theatrum.

By creating a queer response encompassing soundscapes, light projections, poetry, bioart, and interactions with the visitors, Knouf will add another layer of meaning onto the building’s history. She invites visitors to consider a more expansive realm within the Theatrum Anatomicum for xeno (“other, strange”) bodies, inspired by ancient Greek and Roman sculptures of bi-gendered deities like the sleeping Hermaphrodite.

The performance and expo What does xen dream of in the Theatrum? reappropriates the space for queer multispecies purposes and invites people to understand their own potentials for xenformation. 

Set design: Toni Steffens


Book a ticket á €5 for the performance (45 minutes) on Friday June 24 at 19:30 hrs. Afterwards, there will be a Q&A with the artist. A ticket for the opening includes a drink. 

A radical access plan will be implemented as part of this event: people that identify as a refugee, person of color, sex worker or those who identify as trans don’t pay admission. To facilitate this we will be using a guest list. You are very welcome to write us an email to tonya@waag.org with your name and reason of request.


Visit the exhibition: reserve a ticket with free admission!

Opening hours
Friday June 24 20:45 - 22:00 hrs
Saturday June 25 13:45 - 17:00 hrs

Accessibility: the Waag-building is a protected monument, so unfortunately it is not equipped with an elevator. The venue is on the second floor and up two flights of stairs, the second of which is steep. There is a gender neutral bathroom available on the first floor. A transcript of the spoken part of the performance can be made available. If you wish to have a transcript, please mail to tonya@waag.org. Seating will be on the floor, with chairs also available.

Sleeping Hermaphroditus
Sleeping Hermaphroditus at the Louvre

About the artist

Adriana Knouf, PhD (NL/US) works as an artist, writer, and xenologist. She is the Founding Facilitator of the tranxxenolab, a nomadic artistic research laboratory that promotes entanglements among entities trans and xeno. Adriana regularly presents her artistic research around the world and beyond, including a work that has flown aboard the International Space Station. 

Her work has been recognized by a number of awards, including an Award of Distinction at Prix Ars Electronica (2021) and an Honorary Mention from the Science Fiction Research Association's Innovative Research Award.




EU official flag

This project is funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union.