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This is an Art School was an exhibition made in collaboration between Central Saint Martins art students and the Tate Exchange, housed on the fifth floor of the Tate Modern, London. For this event, I held a performance and lecture called Blind Scripting in the auditorium of that space.
The performance is called A Ritual Resuscitation of Eternal Lovers and consists of a text designed to be spontaneously read aloud by a pair of volunteers who have never encountered the text before. It's what I call a 'theatrical seance', a way of waking up the characters dormant in the text, by placing them in direct conflict or relation with the people reading on their behalf. It's worth mentioning at this point that the performance is not intended primarily for the benefit of an audience; it's designed for the benefit of the two performers reading it. So if you haven't heard the text before, and are interested in trying it out for yourself, do feel free to get in touch with me and we can organise a little reading event so you can experience the text's effect on you yourself. The documentation in the video above offers a secondary experience of the work.
Where the text is usually performed by people who don't necessarily think of themselves as performers, on this occasion it was performed by the actors Emma Jarvis and Charles Craddock. I then followed the performance with a 15-minute lecture called Blind Scripting. In the talk, I expand on some of the thinking that went into making the performance - specifically relating to my interest, at the time, in cross-examining different types of scripts: play scripts, genomes and code. I continue to be curious in the relation between a script and its performance, particularly where this gives rise to so-called agent-like behaviour. For more on this, see my PhD project.
Tate Exchange, Tate Modern
13 January 2017
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