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Guillaume Désanges with Frédéric Cherboeuf,
A History of Performance in 20 minutes, Performance, Gasworks, 2007

Guillaume Désanges with Frédéric Cherboeuf,
A History of Performance in 20 minutes, Performance, Gasworks, 2007

Guillaume Désanges with Frédéric Cherboeuf,
A History of Performance in 20 minutes, Performance, Gasworks, 2007

7-9pm

Programmed to introduce Showtime, A history of performance in 20 minutes… will provide a quasi-historical context for the four commissioned performances. Described as a “living exhibition”, this short performative conference by curator and critic Guillaume Désanges and actor Frédéric Cherboeuf aims to distill a history of performance art into ten gestures.

The lecture read by Désanges and brought to life by Cherboeuf, focuses on the body within contemporary art practice. Referencing seminal performances by Chris Burden, Marina Abramovic and Vito Acconci among others, the lecture meanders through actions from appearance to disappearance, falling, biting and crying. From Désanges' formal viewpoint, the conference is not, “representation of the body but… a history of gesture, barely sketched, already expired.”

…On November 19th, 1971, Chris Burden stood up in a gallery in Santa Ana in California. Stood up in front of a gun, a movie camera and a photographic camera... There is a shot. The bullet goes through his arm. (…) Arghh. Radical performance – the suicide gesture. Burden is thus immobile, determined. The outcome is inevitable. Shoot, 1971. Inescapable. It’s – I don’t fight… 
[Extract from the script of A history of performance in 20 minutes…]

Following the conference, there will be a discussion providing a platform to consider Désanges’ notion of an embodied and subjective history, and elaborate on other themes arising from the work. Désanges and Cherboeuf will also present a new collaborative project.

For more information see the Showtime webpage.