The Marathon: Cyprus Performance Art Workshop 2016
09/09 : PLUS-MOTION – Live performance art series featuring workshop facilitators
10/09 : Arrivals / First Meeting (Participants should arrive in Nicosia no later than 17:00)
11/09 : Sculpting Action – By Zierle & Carter
12/09 : Along the edge, across the borders – By Francesco Kiàis
13/09 : The Performative Walkabout – By Dagmar I. Glausnitzer-Smith
14/09 : Training for performance – By PASHIAS
15/09 : Reflection
16/09 : Planning final event / Individual tutorials
17/09 : Live performances presented by workshop participants
18/09 : Reflection / Feedback
Detailed description of facilitators workshop days:
Sculpting Action – Introduced by Zierle & Carter
We will share with you our experiences and personal perspectives on performance art through a highly experiential exploration of our working methods from our personal toolbox. Here we find a number of physical and mental processes and experiments, statements and beliefs that have helped us to expand, deepen our practice, and have continuously lead us into new territories.
We will look at the more visible components of a performance practice, such as the body, time/duration, space, materials and objects, within the context of ‘sculpting experiences’, as well as explore the more hidden components, such as intention, emotions, inner senses, intuition, focus and visioning. We will explore mind-body centering exercises as well as some body-space perception exercises as methods of arriving into a place of enhanced embodiment and presence and as preparation for the process and material led approaches.
We will experiment with material led processes that will lead us into an intimate dialogue with chosen material/objects and will give us the ability to explore its essence, letting it guide our actions and allowing us to really listen to what qualities captivate us and want to be expressed through us. Through this journey the materials/objects can become an extension of our bodies and we are able to put aside our conventional societal and cultural filters and find new meanings/experiences. We will learn how to switch off the intellect, the critic, the logical mind, to welcome intuition as an ally and guide, opening a space for raw, authentic poetic actions, and finding a balance between instinctive and rational inspired thinking. We will introduce methods of personal reflection throughout the workshop through experimental forms of documentation and record keeping and share practical creative and devising processes that can be used both in solo work as well as in collaborative/group work beyond the workshop.
Other aspects we aim to touch upon: Alchemical processes and symbolism – Shape-shifting as performance practice – The sculptural language and aesthetics of performance – The fabric of the everyday – Dynamic provocations – Actions and their ripple effect – Traces left behind – How do you treat your audience? – Reversing orders and turning things inside out – How to arrive at meaningful questions?
We will encourage participants to explore and expand their visual/action-based vocabulary offering exercises and methods to gain new perspectives and insights into live performance practice. There will be time to witness, discuss, and reflect on what each has shared and experienced. This is a predominantly experientially focused workshop, based on first hand embodied experience, however we will give insights into our work, our performance ethics, methodologies and approaches, encouraging the development of both solo and collaborative/group work.
Along the edge, across the borders – Introduced by Francesco Kiàis
Between you and me, we and others, there is a territory in which communication can be activated on several levels. “Along the edge, across the borders” it’s a moment of practice, in which each of us will reveal to him/herself the limits that brings within, activating that territory of communicative potential which is between us.
Along a limit I can meet, I can collide, I can reveal, I can feel that which is on the other side, and my body becomes a means of activation of memories, emotions, and sensations; a presence, in dialogue with other bodies, identities, biographies.
We will explore this territory in words and in deeds, aiming to develop an awareness of our personal, expressive and visual potential, related to time, space, context, and extending it to the relationship with the materials.
Besides, I will introduce you to a particular historical perception, and parallelly, to an analysis of the present of performance art, also through my didactic, artistic, and curatorial experience.
In the end, we will summarize, in a moment of shared reflection, our experiences, giving them a position in the compounded whole of the Marathon, shaping our presence also in sight of the final presentation.
The Performative Walkabout – Introduced by Dagmar I. Glausnitzer-Smith
The learning process assesses cultural experiences with ‘local’ people, urban settings and country-specific places and the abundance of ‘raw’ or ‘fabricated’ materials. It creates links to artists’ working practices in the process of intervention and adaptation of ‘foreign’ encounters: experiencing language with ‘street impressions’, border situations, border patrols, people and site-specific architectural discoveries. The connections between the social and environmental signs connect with the idea of subjectivity, which is tending to become a recourse of the consideration of Self. Expectations are changing places and ‘images’.
The live body of the workshop participant and his/her consideration of presentation politics are being negotiated against the plane of immanence and becomes a highly absorbent ‘body organism’ as material and object in the understanding of the “now”. At the root of the art-making process here lies the production of an individual approach in a far less specific event than to manifest a method: an action with and alongside a foreign cultural background. Individual action and interaction gives rise to clarity of a situation, understanding and image making processes, which invite personal generosity and fuels the viewer’s impression and memory during the final presentation day.
Training for performance – Introduced by PASHIAS
At the beginning of the day, workshop participants will be introduced to the artist’s new series of work entitled “Training for performance”, as an attempt to establish an active connection between the art of performance and the field of athleticism. PASHIAS draws upon the positioning of the human body as an agent of energy, skill, aesthetic qualities and potentiality, as used in the activity of sports. Through an examination of what it means to ‘compete’ and to ‘complete’ a specific aim, the body comes in contact with another entity or with the parameters of its own self, in a similar manner that the artist reaches an audience through the embodiment of his own presence. In “Training for performance”, drawing upon references from the time of antiquity to the present, the body ‘in action’ is presented as a political body that confirms, tests and disrupts the functioning of a social ensemble.
In continuation, the participants alongside the artist, will use this initiation into ‘training’ as an attempt to tackle performance art in terms of a continuous preparation for ‘something to come’ – an intention/aspiration for a future situation – instead of a final result with a clear ending. Each individual’s practice will be approached in terms of ‘imagery’, in which duration is sliced into a tight series of slides/images. For instance, the plethora of imagery – as a pool of reference, situated within Greek mythology and antiquity, can serve as a starting point both literally and metaphorically, for the artist’s body. Artistic practices, such as sculpture and painting, as well as our daily routine and urban settings, can offer imagery of a body ‘in position’.
Using this body as a ‘first step’, the participants will be encouraged to make use of a two-dimensional image, a three-dimensional object, into an all-senses experience, and locate the moment of performance within these levels of creation. As implied in “Training for performance”, participants can move beyond the idea of an ‘athletic’ body, into a crossover field of their interest, in an attempt to parallel performative processes with any other type of methodology or practice, in which this body in action touches upon a personal moment of urgency that can expand into social, political and cultural relevance for an ensemble.
More information about the project available at: