Theatrical Fields

Theatrical Fields

NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore

Eva Meyer and Eran Schaerf, She Might Belong To You (still), 2007. Film. Courtesy of the artists.

August 19, 2014

Critical strategies in performance, film and video
August 22–November 2, 2014

Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore
Block 43, Malan Road, Gillman Barracks,
Singapore 109443

T +65 66840998 / 63396503
ccaevents [​at​]

From 22 August to 2 November, the Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore (CCA) will present Theatrical Fields, which introduces theatricality as a critical strategy in performance, film and video. The exhibition and the public programmes are scheduled to coincide with the Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA, August 12–September 21).

All the video installations in Theatrical Fields will be shown for the first time in Southeast Asia: Voice off (1999) by Judith Barry, USA; Suspiria (2003) by Stan Douglas, Canada; Lines in the Sand (2002) by Joan Jonas, USA, Vagabondia (200) by Isaac Julien, UK; She Might Belong to You (2007/13) by Eva Meyer & Eran Schaerf, Germany/Israel; and X Characters Re(hers)AL (2003/4) by Constanze Ruhm, Austria.

In this exhibition, theatricality is not conceived strictly as a phenomenon in theatre; rather, it points to the ‘constructedness’ of everyday life. Theatrical forms make visible how our realities are staged and the way our histories are constructed and performed. The artists in this exhibition make use of various theatrical elements—from “script” to “play,” “choreography” to “character,” “protagonist” to “voice”—to question and re-vision society’s existing conventions, repetitions and rituals.

Theatricality also refers to the meeting point between theoretical reflection and theatrical spectatorship through their common etymology. The concepts of “theatre” and “theory” share etymological roots: both are derived from the Greek word “thea,” which means “to see.” Theatrical Fields evokes this deep-rooted connection between theatre and theory; in this conception, theory suggests an act of contemplation with something that unfolds in front of our eyes.

Theatrical Fields is curated by Ute Meta Bauer (CCA Founding Director) with Anca Rujoiu (CCA Curator, Exhibitions), and was first presented and commissioned by the Bildmuseet, Umea in Sweden (2013).

A series of public programmes will explore the notion and potential of theatricality as a tool to question and rewrite existing scripts and histories. The programme includes exhibition tours and talks by Ming Wong, artist; Miguel Escobar, theatre researcher; Petrus Liu, Yale-NUS College, Singapore; Judith Barry, artist; Ground Provisions Collective (Stefano Harney and Tonika Sealy); Isaac Julien, artist; Mark Nash, curator; Hendrik Folkerts, curator, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. In addition Judith Barry will host a workshop with the support of NTU School of Art, Design and Media (ADM), and Isaac Julien will run a master class at the School of the Arts, Singapore (SOTA) as part of the Louis Vuitton–SOTA Arts Excellence Programme.

A one-day (Saturday, August 23) symposium will be hosted by TheatreWorks Singapore and moderated by SIFA artistic director Ong Ken Seng, which will explore Theatrical Fields from different perspectives, including keynotes by Timothy Murray, Cornell University; writer and filmmaker Eva Meyer, and a presentation by artist Eran Schaerf.

A catalogue focused on Theatrical Fields will be published collaboratively by the Bildmuseet Umea and the Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore in 2015.

Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore
The Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore (CCA) is a research centre of Nanyang Technological University, developed with support from the Economic Development Board, Singapore. Located in Gillman Barracks alongside a cluster of international galleries, the CCA operates as a local hub with an international perspective. The CCA embraces academic and scholarly research with contemporary art as knowledge production in its own right, taking a holistic approach towards art and culture by intertwining its three platforms: exhibitions, residencies, and research.

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NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore
August 19, 2014

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