Long time…

Untitled performance, Arnolfini, February 2009, Photo Caleb Parkin
Untitled performance, Arnolfini, February 2009, Photo Caleb Parkin

So it’s been a good few months since I last posted, a strange few months… Life has been presenting all sorts of new and intense experiences: from the new work that I made at Arnolfini in February, to NRLA, where I helped Misha Horacek with her piece Still Desire and saw some really good work and met some really nice people, to various things that have been happening in my personal life, good, bad and otherwise. Artwise, I’ve been thinking about the shamanistic, or what I might term “the shamanoid”, in the function of the artist as healer, transformer, ‘technician of ecstasy’ (to use Phil Babot’s term). For certain reasons, I’m less interested in “authentic” shamanism, in atavistic or appropriative practices, than in contemporary manifestations that are perhaps incidentally (or at least appear so) shamanistic, or which operate through a much more open definition of the term (perhaps the shamanoid?). I’m talking about the potential of (performance) art to transform, socially, politically, affectively, and the role of the artist as one of “the anomalous”, the one who is a-normal (not abnormal) to the pack, the group (D&G, ATP: 244). Deleuze and Guattari go on that “the anomalous is the borderline makes it easier for us to understand the various positions it occupies in relation to the pack or the multiplicity it borders, and the various positions occupied by a fascinated Self (Moi)” (245). I’ve also been listening to a lot of Maria Callas recently and taken a renewed interest in gardening.

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