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Performance Club To Do List

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

P. Club will be heading to MoMA on the 30th to check out the Marina Abramović retrospective. In the meantime, I’ve got your preparatory to-do list.

Luckily, it can all be accomplished in the same place.

1. Check out the final weekend of 100 Years, the performance art survey at P.S. 1.

2. Stick around for the 2 p.m. launch of Everywhere and All at Once: An Anthology of Writings on Performa 07.

Performa founder RoseLee Goldberg, one of the 100 Years organizers, will read from the book, and be available to sign after. And she’ll be joined by a bunch of Performa artists.

3. If you really want to go the distance, stay until 4 to catch the latest installment of Saturday Sessions, P.S. 1’s newish series dedicated to a new generation of performance artists. Check out the line up here. And, oh yes, this is the same series that featured the infamous Ann Liv Young/censorship incident several weeks ago. You can read all about it here. And here.

Go to it! And see you next week.

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Comments [1]

Vangeline from Brooklyn, NY

Well, I went today as well...
What an incredible exhibit....
I was so struck by the similarities in Marina's earlier work and Hijikata's first years of work, when he had performers run from one end of the stage to another for hours until they fell from pure exhaustion (the time before Butoh became locked into a form and was an exploration of human limits, a true crisis of the body). Butoh training still utilizes these body explorations " until the ultimate consequence".
Watching the performers touching each other's finger and standing for hours was touching. I could see that they were tearing up, and again I was struck on how this type of contained stillness carries so much movement and emotion inside. It carries such force, mystery, intimacy. How much it forces the audience to come closer and observe! It pulls one in, acts like a magnet. The audience is forced to participate actively, even if it's on a very subtle level.
Of course the nude bodies provoke the audience, but the stillness is so much more interesting to me than the actual nudity. In the end, the nude bodies became devoid of meaning, empty.
Perhaps this emptiness is what makes us uncomfortable, because we then have to actively engage and ascribe meaning to what we see.
In the end, Marina herself in the live installation embodies such power in her commitment to share silently with her partner and the audience.
Why is it so compelling?
I could feel her years of commitment in exploring her limits. I also thought:
It is the intention to offer one's body to the public, like a collective sacrifice of sorts, which makes it relevant. The act becomes an offering. It becomes transformative. I thought: she is erasing herself so that I may be creative.
Without this intention to exchange while taking a risk, the exploration could be meaningless, egocentric, a bag of tricks.
Through her commitment to complete stillness, she becomes the ultimate blank canvas the audience can project onto. We are able to transform through her concentrated energy.

Apr. 30 2010 11:21 PM

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Open to everyone, the Performance Club is a freewheeling conversation about New York performance of all kinds, from experimental theater to gallery installations to contemporary dance. We go, we talk (online and at bars and cafes, with artists and amongst ourselves), we disagree and, sometimes, we change each other’s minds.

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