JEAN-GUY LECAT ON BUILDING THEATRE TODAY: “The difference between a true space and one that is not lies in the criteria that favours or disfavours life. That which favours this concentration is thus legitimate while that which shies away from it is not.
CONVERSATION | Jean-Guy Lecat talks about creating a Theatre for a New Audience in Brooklyn on Jan. 5th
Over the next year, TFANA will host a series of free public discussions, which will focus on each team member’s exploration of how theatrical design can support art. I am honored to kick off TFANA’s Humanities series “Part One: A Conversation with Jean-Guy Lecat,” an exploration on space, architecture and performance design. Our conversation talk is set for Sunday, January 5, 2023 at 5:30pm at the Theatre for a New Audience at Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place, Brooklyn.
CULTURE KLATCH | Indonesian government focuses on the nexus of culture and sustainable development in Bali forum
Everyone knows that by investing in the arts and incorporating arts and culture into their economic development plans, counties can reap numerous benefits — economic, social, civic, and cultural—that help generate a more stable, creative workforce; new tourism; and more livable communities. But as long as cultural sustainability is framed in terms of promotion, national image, tourism and economic advantage alone, there will never be a true paradigm shift.
AFAC is now tossing the question into the field of pictures in motion, videos and animation. AFAC has opened the call for the “Why Culture? Video Competition,” and the challenge is: Can you create a 2 minute video that delivers a concept on why culture matters? The competition is open to everyone.
BUT IS IT PERFORMANCE DESIGN? | A ghost train from Bulgaria, composed of sound and lights, speeds through Berlin’s city center
HR-Stamenov’s The Phenomenon of W24°58’59,43″ N42°07’55,29″ is very much a site-specific, media, sound and light installation. This time, he toys with the image of a ghost metro train which has traveled throughout Europe and suddenly appears in Berlin. It ignores physics, gaps between buildings, space and time.
BUT IS IT PERFORMANCE DESIGN? | Tino Sehgal’s “This situation” dreamily implicates the art experience, and quite likely elite academia itself
“The situation” is purely experiential, engaging viewers immediately in real time and space to implore a questioning of the art experience, and experience itself. If “This situation” is not a work of performance design, I don’t know what is. It is not surprising to learn that Sehgal is a trained choreographer; he composes what is then physically interpreted by non-actors, actors and dancers, and in the case of “This Situation,” intellectuals.
CULTURE KLATCH | Trans Europe Halles grapples with art for social change in Europe and the Arab world
Twenty-five artists and cultural operators from Egypt, Jordan, Iran, Palestine, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey will be guests at Trans Europe Halles Meeting 76. They will offer inspiration and examples of how they work in independent culture under harsh conditions and to share their stories of how culture actions can lead to social change and a more open society.
Of particular interest would the November 9, Open Space Forum, which organizers say “will explore several key factors in the development of contemporary culture that we consider important. They are: the development of international partnerships, the establishment of independent art spaces, as well as the development of new audiences and international mobility of artists and creative products.”
IN EXHIBITION | “Fluxus as architecture” argues for the structural coherence of George Maciunas’s universal language
It’s a prefab vision, but the exhibition seems to be arguing for a Fluxcity vision. that allows a single module to form into clusters, communities and hives. The concept leans on Maciunas’s prefab design for Fluxhouse, which was completed in 1965. An architect, George Maciunas, educated in architecture at Cooper Union and Carnegie Institute of Technology, held several prestigious professional positions in firms including Skidmore, Owing and Merrill, Olin Mathieson Chemical Corporation and Knoll Associates. For sure, Fluxcity is not a fancy idea.
In “Wonderlust,” Canadian artist Sarah Anne Johnson’s work pushes the boundaries of photography by incorporating burning, scratching, gouging and glitter into her practice. These effects, she believes, “make visible the elation, beauty and self-consciousness of sex.” She photographed her subjects in their homes and then worked with the resulting prints in her studio
DISSENT VS. DIPLOMACY | Did the US exact revenge against Bulgarian-German writer Ilija Trojanov for his critique of America’s NSA surveillance powers?
Ilija Trojanov, a Bulgarian-German author, was on his way to a Denver conference of the German Studies Association, and had been issued an invitation to appear at the Goethe-Institut’s “New Literature From Europe” Festival in November. “Barring Mr. Trojanov, an outspoken critic of America’s controversial surveillance powers, from attending an academic conference in the United States will hardly calm the anxiety our colleagues around the world are feeling about America’s electronic spying,” said Suzanne Nossel, executive director of PEN American Center.
IN EXHIBITION | Last chance to see the secret history of postwar painter Alfonso Ossorio at Michael Rosenfeld Gallery
Alfonso Ossorio is a central figure of postwar American art, but he has been virtually absent from standard art history texts. Some people have claimed that Ossorio was just imitating Jackson Pollock. This exhibition shows that Ossorio had his own unique “wax-resist” painting technique that really no one else had used. He forged his own wild assemblages that he called “congregations.” It’s time to re-draft the history of postwar American art.
THEATER COMMENTARY | Viewing Jane Bowles and her “In the Summer House” through the prism of Tennessee Williams
You’ve likely not heard of Jane Bowles, but she wrote a cock-eyed, mesmerizing play that was one of the signal achievements of postwar American drama. It’s right up there with the classic works of Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Gertrude Stein, late Eugene O’Neill, Lillian Hellman, and Sam Shepard. This post is about Jane Bowles’s unjustly neglected play: “In the Summer House.”
CONFERENCE ON BREAKING BOUNDARIES | Looking back at the early marriage of Theater, Architecture and the Visual Arts
This conference, “Ephemeral and Permanent,” focuses on the interrelations of the visual arts and the dramatic arts in Rome broadly between 1300 and 1700. In this context, scenography and pageantry apparatus were as much the domain of visual artists as painting, sculpture, and architecture.
ART & POLITICS | Hope lingers in Sarajevo’s Festival MESS, one of the Balkan region’s most important festivals
Dino Mustafic, director of Festival MESS, describes this year’s Festival as conquest for happiness and hope. Mustafic, one of the most important theater directors in the region, adds that the theater in the Balkans is “struggling to survive.” Over the last five years, Festival MESS’s budget was slashed by 73 percent.
The British art critic Waldemar Januszczak rails against curators in today’s Letters Page of the Guardian
The works in The Future That Was exhibitions in New York and Manila are reflections upon the structures and ideas that produce, frame and promote art and design. Philippine artist Patricia Perez Eustaquio weaves an open-ended narrative that examines notions of innovation and novelty, timeliness and timelessness, particularly as they relate to the language of design and fashion. She is interested in how material, fabrication, and intention combine to form an object that then takes on a life of its own.
Ashley Bickerton (b. 1959, Barbados, West Indies) graduated from the California Institute of the Arts in 1982 and continued his education in the Independent Studies Program (ISP) at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. A seminal figure in the East Village scene of the 1980s, Bickerton has been associated with the “Neo-Geo” approach to art making.
BOSTON | An initiative of the New England Foundation for the Arts, the National Dance Project Touring Awards program provides grants of up to $40,000 to dance companies to support … Continue reading
RECOMMENDATION | See film screening of American version of German “Trust” at Goethe Institut-Washington
WASHINGTON, D.C. | Tonight, July 8, a young D.C. troupe will screen a film that documents that making of its new dance/theatre project Trust by the German writer/director Falk Richter. The … Continue reading