Latitude 53 presents Visualeyez 2016, the sixteenth edition of Canada's annual festival of performance art, from September 19–24, exploring the theme of Kindness

The Flight of the Animator (2)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 25th, 2015

My laptop’s charging in the AC stand and my cell phone’s daisy chained to the USB port, both hungry for power after a week of labour. A BBQ pork steamed bao works its way down my gullet. People mill about the airport, wandering from gate to gate, towing children or luggage or time. I just said goodbye to Guadalupe and Luciana, who’re heading back to Van city for the Live Biennale. The other artists have already left, their homes spread across the wide expanse of this nation. My flight’s in an hour or so. All of a sudden the festival’s over, I can feel it in my bones.

Breakfast Symposium - photo by Mathieu Léger

Breakfast Symposium – photo by Mathieu Léger

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Luciana D’Annunciação: The Sound Between (2)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 24th, 2015

Luciana D'Anunciação - photo by Owen Murray

Luciana D’Anunciação – photo by Owen Murray

In a room in a building in Edmonton, Luciana D’Annunciação  sits perfectly still: amidst a tight-knit crowd, on the floor, with her speaker; breathing, she begins, drawing us in through the darkness; no shoes, and no socks — for this is an intimate affair. That’s the first word I wrote down in my notes: “Intimate.” The speaker lounges on its side, the cord bunches in relaxed coils, and Luciana is there, embedded in the sound. And so are we. Three benches pulled away from the wall sit near the centre of the room, barely a metre from the action. There are no wallflowers in this dance. Everyone is close, huddled on benches, stooped over Luciana, listening to her breath tug through the space.

If her previous performance was an elastic band being pulled until it snapped, this one is a harp whose strings are plucked to provide perfect transitions throughout. From sound to sound. (more…)

Rachel Echenberg: Nine, Five and Three (3)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 23rd, 2015

Rachel Echenberg's "Three" - photo by Todd Janes

Rachel Echenberg’s “Three” – photo by Todd Janes

There’s something new in the air. After Nine and Five, Three is something of a shock. Today the latex structure acts as a greater intervention on the street. At the corner of Jasper Ave and 101st, Rachel Echenberg and two participants stand between the marble benches in front of the CIBC. At first you can’t even see the balloon unless you get close, it appears to be nothing more than some hot pink multi-user bagpipe, but then it grows, and Rachel steps back into the communal space. (more…)

Mathieu Léger: The Distance Between Us

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 23rd, 2015

"The Distance Between Us" - photo by Mathieu Léger

“The Distance Between Us” – photo by Mathieu Léger

Mathieu Léger is going for a walk. His work, The Distance Between Us, is a perambulatory tour at both the micro and macro scale. He spends approximately two or three months a year at home, the rest is invested in residencies around the world. Residencies where he walks to an interconnected series of nodes that provide waypoints for continuous travel. In a sense, each residency or festival is yet another node on an even larger map. In my head, I picture a manifold map of his many walks animated like a great sprawling mass of tentacles. He says that, thanks to GPS tracking his every step, he’s been working on just that.

He is careful in how he describes the map, the route, and his action, because these details reveal a world of subtle exchange. A bit of a spaz, I stumble over the way he describes his work. I ask about “The End” of one walk, and he looks at me over his beard, a smile twinkling in his eyes, and tells me that it isn’t an end, but a bouncing off point, an intermediary through which his journey moves. And I realize that I’m thinking in a box. I’m thinking in terms of the festival only, in terms of the performances and actions ahead, and he is trying to bring me somewhere else. (more…)

Christian Bujold: In/Side/Out/Side (bonus)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 22nd, 2015

Christian Bujold – photo by Luciana D’Anunciação

Christian Bujold – photo by Luciana D’Anunciação

 

He stands. He stays. He wobbles and he sways.

In a complement to his earlier performances, Christian Bujold stands before the legislature building and beneath the mottled sky. For an hour he is cut off from the rest of the world, a null figure, not a person but a body, an any body. (more…)

Rachel Echenberg: Nine, Five and Three (2)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 21st, 2015

Rachel Echenberg - photo by Luciana D’Anunciação

Rachel Echenberg – photo by Luciana D’Anunciação

Rachel sits alone. She breathes into a latex structure. She’s on the steps of the legislature building, her balloon already the size of a basketball by the time I arrive. She’s halfway up the steps and halfway through inflating the balloon which blocks her face from my approach, like a hot pink, gargantuan sphere of bubblegum. It’s overcast, and the day is remarkably sombre despite the joyful architecture of the space: there’s square-cut pools of overlapping geometry, round stepping stones, and two rows of trees shedding autumn’s fireworks in the esplanade before the great granite steps of the seat of legislature. (more…)

Guadalupe Martinez: Memories of the Body I Never Was, and Forever Will Be

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 21st, 2015

Guadalupe - photo by Todd Janes

Guadalupe Martinez – photo by Todd Janes

Preface

A stolen sentence: “What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot speak thereof one must be silent.” Below is a series of similarly hijacked propositions tuned to Guadalupe Martinez’s Memories of the Body I Never Was, and Forever Will Be, a performance based upon her walks through the city. She collects artifacts and phrases from the city and activates them within the gallery space. Each nest of propositions is followed by a description of her action that attempts to follow the grammar established therein. (more…)

Luciana D’Anunciação: The Sound Between (1)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 20th, 2015

Luciana D’Anunciação - photo by Todd Janes

Luciana D’Anunciação – photo by Todd Janes

In a room in a building in Edmonton, Luciana D’Anunciação dances, struts, stretches, and snaps; taps, grinds, pitters, and pats; lolls, breathes, and reaches — but never quite releases; with a microphone and a cord and a speaker. The Sound Between is an improvisational performance stripped down to such an extent it is almost plundered. There is no room for superfluity here, because the elements of sound and noise married to movement and play are wells of perpetual replenishment fecund enough to easily overwhelm. (more…)

Christian Bujold: In/Side/Out/Side

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 20th, 2015

Christian Bujold - photo by Mathieu Léger

Christian Bujold – photo by Mathieu Léger

In/Side/Out/Side
noun, verb

  1. a man standing in a drape at the corner of Jasper Ave and 103 St for an hour, then building a structure with the drape and a stick
  2. a man standing under a sheet in front of the Baccarat Casino (beside the bus stop, in front of the parking lot) for an hour, then building a structure with the sheet and three sticks
  3. the same man within the gallery space: lofting sheets upon the floor, tilting things over until they crash, bending sticks until they break (against the tension of trying to lift a chair draped in a sheet, against the tension of his shoulder wedged up against the ceiling), and huddling beneath the drape while coiling his body around a stick and snapping it in his embrace

used in a sentence: In/Side/Out/Side, by Christian Bujold, is really two different performances, one nested within the gallery space and the other exposed to the elements of urban Edmonton. (more…)

Rachel Echenberg: Nine, Five and Three (1)

Posted by Cian Cruise on September 20th, 2015

"Nine" - photo by Jack Bawden

“Nine” – photo by Jack Bawden

Step forward.

Breathe in, breathe out. Nine people crowded shoulder to shoulder. Spouts hang from their mouths, limp latex between pursed lips. They make eye contact over the saggy, posset coloured balloon and slowly imbue the sack with life. They stand in the square in front of Edmonton’s City Hall, by a war memorial obelisk, across the street from a myriad of hyperactive spin cyclists churning electric butter for charity. This is the first performance of Rachel Echenberg’s Nine, Five and Three a participatory piece in which observers cross the boundary between actor and audience to join the performer in an act of blowing up a multifaceted bladder of thick, pinkish, floppy material that reminds me of an oversized haggis, or a collection of distended udders. (more…)

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