Archives

Certain Fragments

“The struggle to produce witnesses rather than spectators is present in the contemporary performance scene. You can see it in excess/epic style at least in the public piercings and mutilations by American artist Ron Athey or the ‘suspensions’ on meet-hooks carried out by Stelare, events in which extreme versions of the body in pain, in sexual play and in shock demand repeated of those watching – ‘be here, be here, be here…’. You can see it in much milder work too, and sometimes more clearly. In the rearrangements of audiences space and contract repeatedly employed by the UK performance companies Station House Opera and Blast Theory, and by the US group Goat Island, whose physical vocabulary) of school gym class, nervous ticks, sports moves and intimate gestures) its itsel...