Performances: Other Jesus, Toronto Dance Theatre, Uno Festival. Podcasts: Still Processing, Tiny Spark. Reading: Rats and Zebras.Read More
Writing: A year end parable about magic. Podcasts: Reggie Watts makes it weird and Doreen St. Félix on Black Utopia. Small Wooden Shoe shows: everything you need to know about the Fun Palace 3penny Holiday Variety Show.Read More
Writing: Year End.
These letters feel still true and also so aspirational as to be fantasy. In a moment in which I find it hard to find the enthusiasm and promotional confidence that our moment seems to require – it is hard to imagine writing this sort of thing. There is a “we” that in a time of isolation is tenuous. And yet. Remember our asperiations…Read More
Small Wooden Shoe Show: 3penny Variety Show.
We’ve been working and laughing – oh god is there a lot of laughing – on 3penny, which, like the art I love most, changes meaning all the time. This is a different event now than it was in April. Even when we don’t change the words, the meaning has changed. And it’s a blessing to be in the room with smart, talented superstars who can deal with all that and more, like sing songs that are dark and great and darker for their greatness.Read More
So many performances: Lone Wolf at Dancemakers, writing and reading and encyclopaedia, Capitalist Duets, Wrecking Ball, Pomona, Black Boys. ArtsWork: Grant spreadsheet. Practice: Ideosyncratic ViewpointsRead More
First – I am optimistic. The old structure was a result of very different times, thinking and bureaucratic ideology. Times that both I envy and think ended a long ago and whose remnants have begun to harm, not help, art and society.Read More
There are eight words I return to. They are words I heard and haven’t been able to stop hearing. For the past three years, while I have been director of Small Wooden Shoe Theatre Co. in Halifax, they have been touchstones. I see them in the work I did with sabotage group before I heard them; I see them in all my plans and hopes for the future. So, eight words toward a theatre …Read More
Originally posted September 2005
Most manifestos or labels define a positive rule. To call work “Interdisciplinary” implies that all work will contain a mix of disciplines. That this disciplinary mixing will be a considered assumption of every project. Post-disciplinary make no such assumptions. Having worked though “multi” and “inter,” “post” argues that disciplinary assumptions are no longer useful. That art work and artists no longer require of themselves a primary distinction.Read More
Part of Field Notes from the Festivals, a series of posts, rough and not very edited of my experiences in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto from theFestival Transamerique, OFFTA, Magnetic North Theatre Festival and LuminatoRead More
Welcome to this new space for writing about the things that I, and the shimmering group of regulars and irregulars around Small Wooden Shoe, care about.
Exploring and linking of these cared-for areas makes up what I consider my practice.
And I would like that practice to involve more writing and thinking in public.
I'm writing a series articles about the experience of attending the festivals, more holistic than show specific. Those will come out between this summer and next.
In the mean time I'm going to keep more immediate and show focused Field Notes here. Daily mangled contributions to writing on performance and context.
"Practice as modelling, I thus realized, has an important real-time structure, with the contours of cultural extension being determined by the emergence in time of resistances, and by the success or failure of "accommodations" to resistance.
"This temporal structuring of practice as a dialectic of resistance and accommodation is, in the first instance, what I have come to call the mangle of practice." - Pickering (xi)
A "mangle", beyond gruesome imagination, is an old fashioned washing machine.
Though maybe sometimes that too.
I'm drawn to wringing, expanding and entangling a variety of practices and ideas - and I have been dissatisfied with the metaphors like "mixing" and "balancing."
The "mangle" has some of the discomfort, mischief and violence along with the historic usefulness that I want from my metaphors.
So I'm going to go with that.
- Andrew Pickering The Mangle of Practice (1995) -- I might use different language than Pickering in "resistance and accommodation." Accommodation rings too close to "compromise" and is currently bogged down in the "reasonable accommodation" conversations. "Resistance" is also overly negative these days, framed through psychoanalysis and The War of Art and less about people resisting untenable power.