The Postspectacle Trilogy

Is an ongoing process, within the postspectacle practice, continuously reformed and updated that have concluded in three performances: Come to see our performance, Neocatharsis and The Presidential Candidacy. The trilogy proposes three different perspectives and approaches over the changes that are taking place in the representational arts in particular and cultural practices in general. We will consider these transformations within the political status quo of our society. This is a period in which the artistic paradigms, the patterns of performing and even the way of living are changing almost too rapidly to be assimilated and reflected upon in a social-political-media-crisis context. The performance is always elsewhere, on TV, in politics, in sports, in agriculture, in charity, in religion, on youtube. What's going on in the theatre then, how should we define it?

The contemporary synchronization between the time of an event and its exhaustion in representation (through its image) changes the way we perceive memory and history narratives, thus there is no more stability, all ideological grounds have been compromised. Let's enjoy the collapse!

We need to go beyond the spectacle, but first let's dismantle it. Today, experience has a director, a conductor, a mediator that knows better the conditions of the spectacular dispositif. Propaganda is present as ever before it is just harder now to pin it down to one leader or source. The society of spectacle has reached its peak, its climax, and it seems we've gotten used to it. We just contribute or get hypnotized.

Another set of questions that is important to us: How do you recognize a radical artistic-al gesture/manifestation? What does it mean nowadays to be radical, and what is the point(l'enjeu) of it? What makes a dance piece contemporary art? What are the last borders between arts domains that deal with representation, if any are left?

First Part
come to see our performance
"Staging communication"

Media the new reality. Stronger and more credible, that produces information and consummates it almost simultaneously. The simulacrum wins over the one that it simulates and goes beyond, to "fascination" as Baudrillard would put it. The huge amount of information available every second now is dissolving the traditional meaning, leaving us in a catatonic state. Prearranged, predetermined way of perceiving. The mass media is the new organizer of perception after religion and ideology have been integrated.

We are interested to question the ways in which media evolution affects and transforms human consciousness and behavior: for instance the evolution from tv> internet sites> blogs> facebook> twitter is an evolution from a centralized, hierarchic, propaganda like model of dealing with information to a decentralized, anarchic and free one. from the focus on information to focus on relation between informations.

Youtube performances have captured the imagination of contemporary viewers, and today each one of the spectators is making his own show. This means also that this is the only solution to exit the passive condition of tv and theater spectator. Everyone has become and author, a potential one at least. No more the need for special talents, for discipline and disciplinary activities. Performance is everywhere, is at hand. Virtuosity, as esthetic goal, has no more weight in the process of elaborating a work.

Our intention is to investigate the relations between presence and image, experience and representation with a concern for the modality in which media is framing the perception of reality and is structuring the entire psychological construction (thinking, values, decisions, emotions, language).
We will make use of the "amateur" aesthetics, the Youtube culture of self made performances, minimal means and awareness of context as never seen before at a global human consciousness level.

Second Part
"Disorganizing perception"
The representation operates in a manipulative way - it sends you from the experience to the translation and interpretation of the experience. We are interested to question and maybe to annihilate the mechanism of representation. We try in a way to search for new ways of producing the same old catharsis, but this time as an emotional experience that in the end you cannot fully trust, or it makes you wonder, once you saw the laboratory of represented emotions. To mix all kind of aesthetics almost randomly in order to make them somehow even and unimportant as content, to focus on their shape, on the image that they produce whether is dance, acting, religion rituals and preaching, conference/lecture situations, tv debates or political speeches.

Other techniques or strategies would be constant awareness of the context, self-referentiality - show or performance that in the same time is a comment to itself - eluding the final message or goal of a traditional performance. It remains in the interrogation and alterable state, in an imposed ambiguous "material" that leaves the impression of an unworked, unrehearsed piece that doesn't formalize itself in anyway.How social classes are represented in the performances, movies and media? How different types of characters are to be found on screen or stage and their extended analogies: robbers/vagrants/vandals/protesters, bankers/serious men/family/god, thinkers/serious/abstract/not practical/easy to defy, artists/anarchy/a few/not understandable, army/obeying/discipline/protection.

Constant manipulation through representation, we will use the same methods and go beyond. A combination performance tactics that are not rationable controllable and have no end(purpose) to the manipulation. The manipulation that we try to produce will attempt to reveal the instrument, deconstruct it, but not use it. Even though the medium is the meaning.

Third part
the presidential candidacy
"leaving the theatre"

The presidential candidacy is real, an authentic political campaign but with a performative attitude. How to get out of the art frames? How to step into a different, in between, artistic practice that juxtaposes art and activism, critical to both of these activities. The candidate is focusing on the exposure of ideology. The political arena is the vital one, and it is the most manipulative spectacle, the most dangerous. Constant awareness of the performing ingredients of a campaign rally, examining the set-up (la mise en scene), using the same tools. The politicians have improved their performing skills, we have to improve our political practice, to parasitize the system by emulating and exposing it in the same time. We need to bring spectacles from "outside" into the theatre and go to the "exterior" (bigger scene) with our "theatre" practice.

The Presidential Candidacy proposes an analysis of the power of the spectacle and the spectacle of power.

Ion Dumitrescu and Florin Flueras