Posts Tagged ‘Architecture’

Making the Content Site Specific– ‘Is architecture the concept of space, the space and the definition of space?’ (Tschumi 1995, p.32)






‘to develop work that responds to the environment’1 .

* The Bible: too broad a concept but in development.

*I offered the idea of blending in with the library’s architecture, making our actions parallel to the building.  Rather than focus on what is contained on the insides of the library, examine its outside.  The building is a modern development and we could examine its development over time.  Could we bring the outside inside or vice versa? Reverse the unexpected.  This image was taken during a Practitioners class when studying Edward Gordon Craig.  He focussed on the architecture of theatrical sets and the symbolism of simple gestures to produce Kinetic Theatre; a combination of architecture and dance, concentrating on the ‘actors movement and body in space’2 that would create the intended image, whatever that may be, without emotion but with physical intensity.  For Craig, this was just as effective, as together the elements would create an illusory world far away from Naturalism.  It was all based on artistic meaning, to ‘mystify’3 the audience and help them search for meaning, to reinvent a space anew.

Nicholls, Natasha 28/02/13, University of Lincoln Library.

Nicholls, Natasha 28/02/13, University of Lincoln Library.

With this in mind, I can see each one of us on a different floor travelling up/down the stairs, being with and in close proximity to the building as if one, to reach our destination.  It would be aesthetically pleasing to outside audience members and would integrate 3 different types of audience which for Peter Brook is described as ‘links between the actor and his inner life, his partners and the audience’4; the audience performer, the audience that chooses to come and watch and the audience who observes unintentionally.   Distancing the audience but enlightening them simultaneously to the structure of the building and its functionality.

‘The real power of site specific work is that it somehow activates or engages with…the formal architecture or history of the building’5 .

The walking = Sharing MY personal experience.

Looking at the exterior of a building in a different light reminded me of a past performance created by Laurence Payot who, in 2011, covered houses in Lincoln in mesh giving the ‘building a new poetic meaning.  By placing an image over the façade of scaffolding, she asks us to consider what may have been there, what the city should become, or what it may never be’6, entering other realms beyond what we perceive to be there.  We are the façade.

Payot, Laurence 2011

Payot, Laurence 2011

Payot’s work was created as part of a series of site specific performances around Lincoln by A WORKING TITLE, who aim ‘to explore the modernisation of situation, exploring how situations develop as a consequence of modernisation’7 .

This is not unlike the work created by Christo and Jean Claude who, in 1970, wrapped monuments in Milano out of fabric and rope that lasted from 2 days-1 week.  For Pearson, this is an ‘interruption of human activity [on the environment] by employing man made materials to draw attention to frame or harness natural elements’8 .  Integration into the site.

Word Count: 534

Works Cited (in footnote order):

(Title)    Tschumi, Bernard (1995) Questions on Space: Lectures on Architecture, London: E.G. Bond Ltd, p.32.

(1)    Govan, Emma, Helen Nicholson and Kate Normington (2007) Making a Performance: Devising Histories and Contemporary Practices, Oxon: Routledge, p.120.

(2)    Allain Paul and Jen Harvie (2006) ‘Craig, Edward Gordon’, The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Performance, London and New York: Routledge, p.40.

(3)    Allain Paul and Jen Harvie (2006) ‘Craig, Edward Gordon’, The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Performance, London and New York: Routledge, p.40.

(4)    Brook, Peter (1993) The Open Door: Thoughts on Acting and Theatre, New York: Anchor Books Ltd, p.37.

(5)    Pearson, Mike (2010) Site Specific Performance, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, p.35.

(6)    Warner, Sophie (2011) A WORKING TITLE, 26-27 November:  Launch 25 November, programme,

(7)    Warner, Sophie (2011) A WORKING TITLE, 26-27 November:  Launch 25 November, programme,

(8)    Pearson, Mike (2010) Site Specific Performance, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, p.33.

  1. Govan 2007, p.120 []
  2. Allain 2006, p.40 []
  3. Allain 2006, p.40 []
  4. Brook 1993, p.37 []
  5. Pearson 2010, p.35 []
  6. Warner 2011 []
  7. Warner 2011 []
  8. Pearson 2010, p.33 []
Posted: February 28th, 2013
Categories: Les dames des livres, Library
Tags: , , , ,
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