There Is Nothing Outside the Stage Any Longer
(or This Box Left Intentionally Almost Blank)
NB / The duration of the (close) hyper-reading of this exposition might be approximately 90 minutes - Sound output is recommended - Click on the images/pictograms to pop up/open - Click right down corner of the videos to enlarge and play.
The Yellow Folder. A Research on the Periphery of Life
During his forty years career as orchestral clarinetist, my teacher Ernesto Olivieri (1905-1985) refaced, revoiced and repaired hundreds of clarinet and saxophone mouthpieces. He began even before he entered Bologna Conservatory with Bianco Bianchini, and continued refacing as a side activity, to meet his professional needs or to make some extra money during hard times (the Great Depression in Italy, World War II across Nazi Germany and occupied Europe, the immediate Post-war in Tito’s Yugoslavia). Often, though, he did the work out of friendship and always for his research and sound experimentation. Soon after he retired from his last position at the Teatro Massimo Bellini in Catania, he bought himself a typewriter and started a project he had long been planning: the “Treatise on the Clarinet Mouthpiece”, part memoir part refacing manual for clarinet students, complemented by the “Studies for Research”, a collection of short technical compositions devised to detect problems in mouthpieces and test the progress of the refacing work. When my teacher passed away and his widow entrusted me the yellow folder in which he kept the various drafts of the Treatise and the Studies, I attempted to edit that material for a print publication, guided by what I imagined were his intentions and the recent memory of our friendship. Overwhelmed by the vague structure, elusive content and faltering language of the text, I put the yellow folder in a drawer where it remained for over thirty years, until I recently came to reconsider the Treatise and the Studi in a different perspective.
Not only was his refacing practice marginalised within the conservatory and profession, but also writing remained a secondary practice and in advance excluded from consideration for being carried out autonomously, without formal training and outside the academia and the profession. Accordingly, the knowledge he created through those practices can be easily confused with technical skills, too limited in scope for today’s student and too marginal for the clarinetist, especially now that professional refacing services have become globally available, and that multimedia instructions and expertise are easily accessible over the internet. Thus, it would appear, Signor Olivieri’s knowledge is forever lost, trapped inside his text and irretrievably embedded in his life and practice. Nevertheless, this non-collaborative re-presentation of the Treatise and the Studies shows how his writing succeeds in exposing his refacing practice as research, and why this matters to artistic research today.
Ways of Visiting: non-traditional and peripheral approaches to museums
This exposition is part of my PhD thesis that discusses the possibilities of building approaches in museological institutions, based on specific case studies that were visited and problematized during the study. The result is an experimental inventory of possibilities for critical action in these legitimating spaces of art and history - with an interest in the decoding of their discourses and strategies, revealing their power games, explicit or implicit, and often moving in the opposite direction to their procedures.
Just a mere Spring to take: Embedding in Capitalocenic Atmospheres
30 years after the publication of Félix Guattari’s “The Three Ecologies,” we are facing a turning point in the way we are encountering our environment. Established concepts of “nature” have proved to be considerably part of a grand homocentric design whose spatiality Peter Sloterdijk poignantly defined as the “World Interior of Capital.” To investigate these capitalocenic strata, it becomes necessary to re-territorialize institutionalized debates, conceptions and practices, and perceive contemporary landscapes as manifold, unknown and peripheral alterities.
This research exposition aims to encounter the capitalocenic field, its actors and inherent specificities, and to propose a peripheral methodology for its investigation. According to its etymological roots, periphery not only implies a field or site at “the outer surface”, but also refers to the Greek verb periphérō, meaning “to carry around.” This adds a proto-ethical component, as we become part of a carrying and compassionate interplay with virtual forces of capitalocenic dominance, violence, and destruction.
In this intimate moment of becoming peripheral, we are striving from the grand institutional narrative towards the fragility of an uncertain world interior. To Félix Guattari, this is an act of empathy, of an affective affinity and imaginary re-construction that unfolds new practices, grounds, and epistemologies of how to encounter our manmade planet. Furthermore, it highlights the importance of peripheral discourse on the edge of the planetary crisis, and unfolds a vibrant and democratic borderspace within the all-encompassing ecological trauma.
Departing from Victor Turner’s “social drama” and the unpredictability of a global monetary system, the research exposition focuses on the specific context of Iceland as a knot geographically located within the global fabric of the Capitalocene. Being the site of a massive banking crisis between 2008 and 2011, the island-state is seen as an artificial environment of capitalist warfare, based on an ecosystem of virtual forces that actualize themselves on a social, economic, cultural or ecological level.
Applying a situated performative research praxis, the research exposition affirmatively investigates this manifold and monetary-driven spatiality. As the research exposition suggests, performative research allows to confront the unpredictability of the capitalocenic field in all its complexity and to pave the way for “vanquishing [...] or even befriending“ the dominant forms of global financial market capitalism” (Gilles Deleuze, Logic of Sensation). “Just a mere Spring to take” is a discursive assemblage of various investigative highlights on a virtual, global and elusive phenomenon, aiming at peripherically unfolding horizons of performative thinking, and enabling a fragile intra-active confrontation with our vertiginous, traumatized but still living cosmos.
LYCANTHROPUS ERYTHEMATOSUS I – Artistic Research on the Edge. Poetical Investigations on the Margins of Medicine and Mythology
In this exposition on the peripheries of medicine and art I will enrole the concept of my project "Lycanthropus erythematosus" and the applied strategies of artistic research.
The essence of the work is the proposal of a new thesis concerning the understanding of autoimmune diseases, especially of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE, lupus).
SLE is a rare autoimmune disease characterised by acute and chronic inflammation of various tissues of the body. Its cause and pathogenesis are still unknown.
The work aims at providing new knowledge in regard to these open questions. Its thesis is exposed in different formats resulting from different strategies of artistic research. It proposes to understand autoimmunity as the expression of transformative processes that cause various physical and mental effects in the afflicted organism. This ongoing metamorphosis is driven by a plan: it is about the emerging of a new being – the Lycanthropus erythematosus.
MIXED DOUBLES: COLLABORATIVE WRITING AND PERIPHERAL STRATEGIES
David Carlin, Peta Murray, JOSHUA MICHAEL LOBB, Catherine McKinnon
This exposition attends to the theme of peripheral spaces, sites, practices, epistemologies and conceptions. It takes the form of a playful, nonfiction archival document that comprises the interleaving of two scripts within a series of photographic images. It stands as trace for an event—originally described as “peripherally performative”—that took place at an academic conference in creative writing in Australia in 2018 (the annual Association of Australian Writing Programs Conference, in Perth). As a research artefact, the methods and mode of presentation of this work are tangential to normative procedures.
This exposition co-mingles the performed accounts of two collaborative writing projects in which the exposition's four authors—Carlin, Murray, McKinnon and Lobb —had been variously enmeshed: the collectively written book project 100 Atmospheres; Studies in Scale and Wonder (Open Humanities Press, 2019), and the Murray/Carlin speculative research endeavour How To Dress For Old Age: an Enquiry with Costumes. Each of these projects experiments with devising creative methods of collaboration so as to approach research questions multifariously and heterogeneously. Slant, in other words.
What does collaboration offer writers and writing processes? How is vision refracted through a multiplicity of gazes? How does the peripheral make itself felt? In an era shaped by critical ecological transformation, the 100 Atmospheres project—speculative, poetic, provocative—pays attention to future ways of being and becoming. In a tightly scripted dialogue, Lobb and McKinnon reflect on a collaborative process involving an interdisciplinary ensemble of 13 people, that uses ‘cross-over writing’. This process allows for fluid boundaries, multiple entries and exits, and other peripheral strategies, to enliven living and practicing in the Anthropocene. This first script is met sideways by the more improvisatory, contingent approach of Murray and Carlin, who re-construct their process of framing and investigating “how to dress for old age,” as a live and unfolding methodology (including costume changes). They report on how, in improvising with writing methods that involve alternating responses, redirections, and unanticipated shifts in focus / tempo, they have been drawn to sport, theatre and domestic metaphors to negotiate evolving rules of engagement and exchange.
The original performance used a length of rope pinned with images to stand in for a tennis net and a backdrop. This malleable object allowed us to demonstrate materially the multiple experiences of collaboration: combative and communal, public and private. In our written document we will use inset photographs (portraits and images of place), columned text and variable typography: these will interrupt and intersect with the ideas discussed in order to amplify the complex interactions central to the collaborative process.
Our visual and verbal approaches assert tactics of peripherality to examine that which is often overlooked, irrelevant or superficial, and serve as a counterpoint to normative methods. Our approaches argue for a different kind of sensitivity in practice, one which pays heed to the dance of agency between subjects and objects.
Icephery and Icy Score - concepts for multi sensory approach
For years during the darkest moment of the year, I have photographed the reflections of light in the cracks of ice on a remote frozen lake in Eastern Finland. At first glance it may seem that there is only ice, snow and some light. And this is the case in some point of view, but the more detailed focusing widens the view.
This exposition describes how by carefully multisensory reading the environment – here by reading the auditive and thermoception information - is organized and is in continuous moving process. My key concepts are Icephery and The Icy Score which I have created by analyzing what kind of information my thermoception and auditive orientations will give about the ice and the icy environment. In this presentation the other senses are less attentive. Those I have opened in my previous investigations (see Timonen 2014, 2019). By concentrating the multisensory close-reading the place gets new meanings and layers. The place that while ago was peripheral, remote and silence are now near with full of meanings and sounds. The understanding created by the sensory attention pushes the borders of periphery of the place in a constant float. The article proceeds by presenting the theoretical starting points of the research, then describing the concrete workplace on ice from the point of view of the place and materiality and then presenting the concepts the Icephery and the Icy score as a result of carefully multi sensory close-reading. The Icy Score is a visual outcome of the auditive layers of the ice.
VOICES_ruukku_peripheries/katveet issue: FLOATING PERIPHERIES Conference 2019 – Sites and Situations
Maiju Loukola, Mari Mäkiranta
FLOATING PERIPHERIES CONFERENCE 2019 – SITES AND SITUATIONS was an international conference on artistic research organized by the research consortium “Floating Peripheries – mediating the sense of place” between Aalto ARTS Department of Film, Tv and Scenography and University of Lapland’s Faculty of Art and Design.
The conference and the curated event of experimental and situated artistic research practices, “Sites and Situations Art Event”, took place on 14 – 16 January 2019 at the University of Lapland in Rovaniemi.
This "VOICES" exposition presents a selection of conference and post-conference contributions (essays, articles, conference papers, abstracts, afterthoughts and images) by participating artistic researchers, scholars and students across disciplines, aesthetics and practices. It also presents a "visual journey" of the art event, curated by the artist-in-consortium Pia Euro.
The conference focused on the notion of periphery/ peripheries in relation to the varied methods, materials, concepts, questions and ideas accurate in the fields of artistic research and visual studies. During the 3-day international event, which took place at the heart of the arctic periphery, a multitude of peripheral sites and situations were speculated as multi-layered and complex phenomenon – as conceptual, spatial and site-responsive domains, aesthetically and spatially shaped and experienced associations, representations and practices through different mediums in arts and epistemologies. The conference included presentations, artistic interventions, discussions and installations.
The exposition editors are Maiju Loukola, Mari Mäkiranta and Pia Euro.
The "Floating Peripheries" consortium is funded by the Academy of Finland during 2017–2021.
(See more: https://floatingperipheries.fi/about/)
Exploring Liminality in Cyprus: Spaces, Voices, and means of Expression
Susan Brind, Jim Harold, Ana Souto Galvan
Key words: Place Identity, Conflict Zones, Border Territories, Liminality, Peripheral Spaces and Voices, Access to Spaces, Right to Speak and Dissemination.
This exposition explores concepts of liminality, access, and means of expression using the divided island of Cyprus as a main case study for analysis and reflection. The exposition is structured in sections or liminal means of expression, which are punctuated, interrupted and / or interrogated by "normative" voices such as "historical facts", definitions, museum displays, etc. published by voices of authority or agency:
Poetic dialogues: These are descriptive letters, Coffee Letters, co-authored by Susan Brind & Jim Harold, written while travelling and in a state of liminality. The letters have no direct addressee nor any formal signing-off. They are intended as fragments of letters, and moments of time passing from an unidentified “I” to and un-named “you”.
Photographic essay on the Buffer Zone, Caesura, part of an ongoing series of images by Jim Harold that document the landscape along and within the demarcation lines of the UN-brokered Buffer Zone (established 45 years ago). These photographs are intentionally understated images that touch upon the zone’s state of disruption and dislocation (physical, social political, and cultural) and that of a returning, if misshapen, appearance of idyll within the uninhabited landscape.
Exploring the role of the 'self' and the 'other': Part 1, by Ana Souto, questions the role of the 'other' and the 'self', the outsider educator negotiating postcolonial tensions around agency and access with local students, open to interpretative quotes from established authors, reflections through texts and images.
Exploring the role of the 'self' and the 'other': Part 2, by Susan Brind and Jim Harold, reflects on the use of Travelling Colloquia and Nomadic Dialogues as methods to enable meaningful exchanges with people with local knowledge. This is exemplified by the CCFT Nicosia Colloquium, 2016; Timeless Encounters: 'Place of Barley', Agios Sozomenos, 2018; and the Buffer Fringe 2019, Nicosia, in addition to conversations in the space of the City.
Three other sections reflect a multiplicity of observations, facts and voices that, collaged together, reflect the complexity of place, and the processes and methods used to explore these ideas.The main methodology of this submission is practice-led and phenomenological in nature, moving from visual, textual, and reflexive ethnography to autoethnographic scenarios, explored and analysed through dialogue and exchange. This collaboration between the authors sits under the umbrella of the Creative Centre for Fluid Territories (CCFT), an international research centre which interrogates how interdisciplinary artistic research practices contribute to and share critical insights about place making, belonging and occupation. The core participants in CCFT are a group of artistic researchers, architects, designers and cultural theorists from England, Scotland, Norway and Cyprus whose practices, individual and collectively, seek to consider the role of artistic research in shaping narratives of place. Attention has been given to the diversity of each creative and academic practice to allow for the expression of difference as a dynamic aspect of interaction. CCFT’s working methods build on an established mutual respect; track record and insight, rooted in a continued collaborative relationship that has emerged through trust and dialogue. The collaboration focuses on practice-based research methods, exploiting the creative intersection between image and text, presented as performance, publication, installation, architectural and design interventions, and spatial practices.
CCFT’s key methods are the use of Travelling Colloquia and Nomadic Dialogues as strategies to explore the meaning(s) of ‘place’ from different locations, perspectives, and across time. This exposition, focusing on Cyprus as a case study, offers a multidisciplinary collage of contrasting voices which does not aim to resolve the question of liminality, but add liminal voices and spaces to the debate.
Note: The descriptive text about CCFT, its membership, focus and approach is extracted from the group's aims and objectives and is part of an introductory text in a forthcoming publication Fluid Territories, University of Bergen, 2020.