Saturday 4th May
After months of studying the warehouse and through studying the warehouse, learning more about traces, documentation and contemporary culture, my team and I were finally able to put it all into action with a final performance involving many installations. Our performance involved the audience walking through a door and simultaneously being greeted by hanging artefacts which we had collected from the site including a broken candlestick holder, a mud-guard for a bike wheel and my personal favourite, a bike tyre. Considering our performance is about bringing the warehouse back to the studio, I feel this was a good way to have included the items that people leave there; they’re were hanging so they were easily visible. If they were on the floor, then it would have been exactly how it is at the warehouse, hardly visible and disregarded, but we wanted the audience to see what’s in the space; these items that at one point in their life cycle had a good use.
Also greeting the audience when they walked in was items of the floor including bits of the graffitied sheet used in the research process, photos of that graffiti-filled day, and bits of paper including a blurb-like description of our research and performance which had been screwed up in different ways; some drenched in alcohol, burnt, ripped etc. We had strewn on the floor, remnants of the graffitied cloth we used in our graffiti day. All this had helped towards strengthening the idea of traces in our piece.
The audience were also allowed to leer upon the video of our graffiti project which was completed last month. An edited video was being projected onto the wall in our performance space which was just alerting the audience to the other research and preparation we had done for the performance. This was important as they may not know about the previous research project that we had undertaken and it was imperative that they understood what we did and then make the connection themselves.
The most central aspect in significance in our performance was my team and I being placed on a graffitied sheet of material, approximately 2m X 2m in size, all writing on each other in black marker pens whilst whispering some extracts from the centrality book in our studies, Invisible Cities by Calvino. The extracts we were writing however, were stories written by our peers describing other invisible cities.
Although this was not as physically demanding as our graffiti project recently it was still very gratifying. To become the artist as well as the canvas; there was a great sense of unity within the group. We were neither defacing nor celebrating the opportunity but merely documenting a book that had been so helpful and important to our studies.