In ‘The Performativity of Performance Documentation’[i] Philip Auslander explores the various ways ‘performance’ and ‘performance documentation’ may be interpreted and classified. He begins by categorising performance documentation into either documentary or theatrical and then gives many examples of both.
Auslander deeply explores the possibilities and complexities of using ‘photographs’ and ‘performed photography’ as a method of performance documentation, with focus on Vito Acconci’s ‘Photo- Piece’ (1969) as it questions the ‘relationship between performance and documentation’(ibid. p.4). This piece gave me ideas of using time-lapse photographs and studying the possibilities of performing at particular times of the day.
This week I also listened to a few of the podcasts from Fuel Theatre Company’s ‘Everyday Moments’ Project as it combines elements of both site-specific and one-on-one theatre. A podcast was released once a month through the course of 2011, each by a different artist and designed to be listened to at a certain time and place, ranging from on top of a hill at sunrise to in an express supermarket at 5:30pm.
Adrian Howell’s podcast was intended to be listened to in the morning with a hot drink. The 9-minute long soundscape uses the sound effects of rain, clock chimes, breathing and background radio news and classical music to create a momentary setting with a feeling of peace and relaxation. Although this piece (like a few others in the series) does not include any kind of ‘narration’ I felt that no sense of the piece being ‘personal’ was lost as the sound effects and obvious presence of Howells was enough for the listener to be able to envision and appreciate themselves in a certain moment.
[i] Auslander, P (2006) ‘The Performativity of Performance Documentation’