The exciting innovative work I have seen this weekend offers insight into understanding the development and practice of experimental art today. These processes were seen in the refreshing approaches given by Indefinite Articles performance of Penumbra at the Roundhouse and the avant guard ensemble Triptik at the 14th London New Wind Festival.
Both of these shows had much in common and say as much about the performer as it did the performance. All had utter integrity, courage, were inquisitive and experimental and celebrated new and exciting ways to communicate.
In Penumbra Sally Todd and Steve Tiplady used their bodies to communicate an intimate view of a serene world through measured corporeal movement and rhythmic sensual music. In a mix of silhouettes, puppets and live action they took the viewer into a shadow world where desires were fulfilled. They shaped their environment truthfully and skillfully using multiple screens, exotic colours and reflections to give a witty, romantic expose of both themselvesand their journey.
TripTik’s performance as usual was radical and fantastic. The ensemble improvised to films by Helen Petts, the work of performance artist Vicky Langan and experimental filmmaker Maximillian Le Cain, Patirica Walsh and my film Lucretia. Lucretia demanded close observation as it was screened triptych style with a narrative in two parts. TripTik rose to the occasion and together reached a moving dissonant crescendo for the rape scene and a light lyrical rendition for the animation. I was very grateful for such a sensitive response to my film.Their guests John Russell and Roland Ramanen entered the collective ‘play’ very smoothly. They all had a sense of immediate communication I particularly loved the energized play off between Adrian North playing sax and Rolland Ramanen on trumpet. The evening’s repertoire was varied with many rhythms, styles and diverging codes. Adam Bohmans sound piece was superb. It’s refreshing to be amongst artists with alternative value systems. Their culture of spontaneity is electric.
With so much of our viewing these days prescriptive and deceptively ordered both Indefinite Articles and TripTik make performances which tap the revolutionary energy of experimentalism! Check them out.