Monday, 18 July 2011

11 Rooms – Part Two

After leaving Simon Fujiwara's Playing the Martyr I final decide to join a queue, one of the shorter ones and I quickly find myself facing a chorus line or rather the chorus line is heading towards me. This is Allora and Calzadilla's Revolving Door. The audience and I are being kettled by this high kicking goon squad. They seem to acting some passive aggressive programme unknown outside of the line, which creates the situation where the reaction of the audience determines the intent of the wall.

After escaping the wall I head back towards where I started and end up walking into a room where a man sits at a small table. This is Roman Ondak's Swap.He is cheerful chatting to the people who are already there. The man at the table is asking the audience to exchange items, any item. On the moment of my entrance there is a business card on the table and air of joviality. The card is swapped for a travel brochure. This is swapped for my own broken and sodden umbrella. There is a strange moment were the woman to my right offers to swap me for my own umbrella but luckily things that breathe aren't up for swapping. My umbrella is swapped for a pen and I begin to wonder about these valueless objects and whether through their involvement in the swapping process raises their value. I mean I spent the rest of my time there clutching my travel brochure even taking it home.

So me and my brochure join the queue which after consulting my map turns out to be Tino Sehgal's Ann Lee. As we are ushered into the room we are greeted by a young girl who stands alone in the middle of the room as we take up position around her. I take a really awkward position behind her, which also gives me a view of my fellow audience members. The girl enters into a measured monologue explaining that she is an avatar, created by the context and conditions of the cultural space we are in. The child/avatar seems to be aware of this and questions the nature of the museums and her own nature, now I know that this is an actor recounting lines but maybe the context has allowed me to accept the idea of this child as a conceptual manifestation. Or it may just be my Sci-Fi nerdyness which is comfortable with the Ann Lee character. One thing which was noticeable was the audiences interaction with Ann Lee, there is a point where she directly asked a question to a member of the audience, who doesn't answer it's an odd moment and I don't know whether that is the audience members unwillingness to break the characters monologue, a unawareness to they were part of the performance or some unease about interacting with a young girl I am unsure. The girl/avatar announces that its time to leave she opens the door and disappears into the crowd.

Part Three -


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