editorial – rt83

Does our cover celebrate Easter? Not intentionally. But if you’re that way inclined, Happy Easter! We celebrate, instead, the screen. The cover photograph is from a remarkable production Clark and I Somewhere in Connecticut [p4] by Canada’s Theatre Replacement. We saw it in January at Vancouver’s PuSh Festival where we were running a review-writing workshop [www.realtimearts.net/features]. It’s about an actor who finds a discarded suitcase full of photographs and decides to perform the lives represented therein, working inventively with video and projections of images from the found albums. In this and other works the screen appears in more manifestations than ever in this edition of RealTime—the stage as screen in Electric Company’s Palace Grand [p5, 11], Chunky Move’s Mortal Engine [p15] and Terrapin’s Explosion Therapy [p38]; in cinemas [of course, but mutating, p22]; on pocket computers and GPS devices in Anita Fontaine’s Ghostgarden [p24] and Blast Theory’s Rider Spoke [p26]; in video installations [Atom Egoyan’s Auroras, p28]; and, from the UK-German outfit Gob Squad, in 360 degrees as spontaneously filmed performance [p34]. But in this very same edition we record a great surge in physicality and materiality: the live action sculpture of Cirque Ici [p40], the artist machines of Joey Ruigrok van der Werven’s Volta [p40], Speak Percussion playing with glass [p48], the bicycle works seen by Jean Poole at the Istanbul Biennale [p28], Ricardo Miranda carting audiences in his rickshaw for Mexico City’s Transitio_MX02 Festival of Electronic Arts & Video [p18], site works entailing tumbleweed, coins and being rowed to an island in Finland’s ANTI Festival [p30], the audience journey in Second to None in an imaging of Port Adelaide’s Aboriginal past [p37], and then there’s Aalst [p13], The Black Watch [p12] and The Last Highway [p12] in the Sydney Festival, each in their own way reconstructing social bodies under investigation.

There’s no obvious tension between the virtual and the physical—they co-exist, part of a spectrum of possibilities, or they work in creative counterpoint in works like Rider Spoke where you do a lot of bike riding, guided by a laterally minded computer on your handlebars, or in works like Mortal Engine where bodies and responsive technology unite to generate new worlds. Everything is raw material for art: bicycles, rickshaws, machines, fashion [La Pocha Nostra, p31; Hackers and Haute Couture Heretics, p28], ape masks [p34] and rabbit suits.

RealTime issue #83 Feb-March 2008 pg. 1

© Keith Gallasch; for permission to reproduce apply to realtime@realtimearts.net

1 February 2008