TENUOUS BORDER OF THE PERFORMANCE ARTISTIC LANGUAGE,
ITS POSSIBILITIES WITHIN TECHNOLOGICAL MEANS
Maria Beatriz de Medeiros
“Adam and Eve left both Eternity and Happiness of Eden for the ephemeral”
Bernard Teyssèdre, class notes, Sorbonne, 15 November 1984
We may place the rising of the Performance Art as a multidisciplinary artistic language, usually based on Visual Arts, although not identified as so, on Futurism and Dadaism. Its activity is expanded through actions of Tristan Tzara, Francis Picabia, Marcel Duchamp, John Cage, Fluxus Group, Gutaï Group, among others. Being called as Performance, Happening, Body-art or Art Corporel, we may find it intensively from 1960 to about 1975: Allan Kaprow, Wolf Vostell, Yves Klein, Michel Journiac, Dennis Oppenheim, Vito Acconci, Gina Pane, Chris Burden, Gilbert and George, Nitsch, Maccheroni. Performance is present all along the 80’s, although it was not one of the commonest artistic languages: Joseph Beuys, Daniel Buren, Ben d'Armagnac, the New York Kitchen Group, the General Idea Group, Tom Scherman, Ulay and Marina Abramovic. Most recently, we could refer to Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Roberto Sifuentes (since the 80’s), Ulrike Rosenbach (since the 70’s), Regina Frank, among others; in Brazil, Renato Cohen[i], Alex Hamburger, Eduardo Kac, and the Research Group CORPOS INFORMÁTICOS, coordinated by me, among others. Since the Performance artistic language involves new aesthetical elements, by modifying the concept of arts and giving new dimension to the Theater, we would refer to Trisha Brown and Pina Bausch (Dance-theater). The new aesthetical elements introduced by the Performance are: the artist body as the object of the art; time as a language element and the action short living; audience participation, not only intellectually and emotionally, but also physically; and the multidisciplinarity in arts.
Nowadays, with all artistic languages confronted not to new technologies, but to omnipresent technologies, we would talk about the possibilities of the Performance, as enhanced by that omnipresence. First of all, let us analyze how the term “performance” has been understood. Let us not forget that in Brazil the verb “performar” [to perform] is recent and the term “performance” appears only in the 70’s, having different meanings for several knowledge fields that, roughly speaking, we could distinguish as: Performance Art, machine performance and in the linguistic sense of the word (John Langshaw Austin).
As we have briefly seen, the art changed into an ephemeral corporal action, which we call Performance Art, arose as Happening (event); some named it as Body-Art, others as Art Corporel, all claiming the initial spark for a new artistic movement. Allan Kaprow, in 1984, in Salzburg, told me that only Wolf Vostell and him performed happenings, according to his concept of Happening, i.e., "artistic action involving an active participation of the audience".
François Pluchart, writing in French, where the verb "to perform" and the term "performance" recently appeared, decided to call his book L’art corporel and, thereby, he states: “If the expression 'Body-Art’ has the merit of maintaining the body issue within the art scope, the word ‘performance’ has generated the worse misunderstandings”. [ii]
Arnaud Labelle-Rojoux, also writing in French, called his book “L’acte pour l’art” and wrote, indiscriminately, about futurists and dadaists, the history of happenings, of Art Corporel,... and ends by stating that: “no matter the shape undertook by it (the action art), it is undeniable that it ‘was there’. Rather: it is there. It is called ‘performance’, tomorrow it will have a different name...” [iii]
It is not the case for labeling the artistic language Performance which is probably the one who most hardly tried to deceive the classifications of theoretic, critics and journalists; rather, it tries to follow the tenuous borders of that language.
One should keep in mind that, for us, art is language; however, that language cannot be codified, is not compatible with words, and is irreducible. Languages aim at communicating[iv]. Art is the non-linguistic communication.[v] For Kant, beauty gives pleasure independently of concepts. We would say that arts mean communication through a non-concept language, providing pleasure or disgust. The purpose of art is to produce affects and percepts, as would say Deleuze and Guattari. Art is a non-concept communication through affect. The reason for the affect during the affect communication is not precisely distinguished; it is not explicable and its effect is not limited.
The Performance Art is one of the arts language (maybe the most non-linguistic), it is live art, the art of presence for excellence. Its output is process and its process is ephemeral, in principle. The body is both subject and object of the art “piece”, but all of its resources and techniques are sympathetic to this multidisciplinary art.
The term performance is being used in several senses, according to the knowledge field to which it refers. Therefore, we have a machine performance, the performativity of a system. Measurable performance and performativity, computable in the relation between the input (dispersed energy) and the output (productivity reached). For this use of the term, in Portuguese, we say efficiency. In French, accomplissement, résultat chiffré. Jean-François Lyotard, French philosopher, in his excellent book "La condition Postmoderne" [vi], reminds us that this meaning for the term performance is metaphorically resized to the “functioning” of a society. Lyotard recalls Austin, in his language theory, where he distinguishes an constative enunciation (the one describing an event. We would say that an constative enunciation is of the information order) and a performance enunciation “that has the capacity of having an intrinsic sense that is not understandable independently from a given action, whose accomplishment is allowed by it”.[vii] Lyotard warns about undue appropriations of that language theory, applied to the dynamics of civil societies, institutions, powers, systems, hence, of human kind. He also criticizes the system legitimated by the performativity; a criticism to determinism, to the positivist philosophy of efficiency.
Since we are within the artistic field, we could change the performance enunciation of Austin, and think it towards arts – not in the sense of action efficiently carried out, but in the sense of the effect produced. We may say, with Aristotle and, closer to us, with Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari [viii], that arts allow for carrying out affects and percepts, and that the affect is nothing else but a given action over the viewer. For Aristotle, the affect could be any change undergone by the soul, the affect would be produced by sensitive qualities and would happen in soul. We are far from the performativity of a machine, which results from a specific and known reason and that has an effect, that can be measured and forecasted. In arts, the affect cause (of the performance, the action over the viewer) cannot be explained and has no concept (Kant).
Bert States, emeritus professor of the Drama Department of California University in Santa Barbara states in his essay "Performance as Metaphor", that performance is clearly one of those terms that Raymond Williams refers to as “keywords”, or words (such as Realism, Naturalism, mimesis, structure) whose meanings are “inextricably constrained by the issues being used for the discussion”. [ix]
Words are daily developed in a chaotic process, where the semantic ground, due to recurrence, has its meanings subdivided until reaching incommensurable territories. We would mention as keywords: arts, language, science, technology, multi-means, multimedia, interactivity, interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity, globalization, among others.
Bert States reminds us that we would say threshold-problem (as for subject, world) – the problem where “the researcher moves so as to become part of it” – for performance in philosophy.[x] Such enunciation leads us to think, on one hand, about self-analysis, where the researcher is the “problem” and, on the other hand, about Roland Barthes, when he says that we are “always in a show state”.[xi] For the last one, are we always performers? Are we always performing? Such as in self-analysis, Barthes’ enunciation is fated to a dilemma. So, would it mean that Performance could not be accomplished, analyzed, managed, since it is a threshold-problem? In our view, there is a difference among keywords that surely develop as Bert States wishes – and that comprises the word performance – and threshold problems, where the researcher is part of them. During the artistic Performance, the artist is dropped into a threshold problem; however, as conceptor and evaluator, respectively previously to and after the action, the artist needs to plunge into and fly over the research site, so as to proceed with the artistic creation process. Similarly, when thinking about the concept of Performance, the performatic artist moves out of the problem.[xii]
Studies on Performance and Ethnoscenology
Studies on Performance have represented, for about 15 years, a real movement in the United States. There, the Performance is largely viewed; however, the studies are, as a rule, sited in Universities, in the Theater Department. Those departments offers the following courses: studies on authors, actors and actual Theater philosophers; studies on historical artistic movements; on distinguished cultures; and also: Aesthetics of Everyday Life, the Sacred in Everyday Life, Performance Spaces, Time and Performance, Gender and Performance, Auto-Biography and Performance, Ritual and Performance, Body in Shock, Possession, Oral Arts and Performance, Tourism Productions, Food and Performance, among others.[xiii]
In our understanding about Performance, as well as in our effort towards understanding that artistic language within a society full of technology, we are surely interested in Aesthetics of Everyday Life, Performance Spaces and the relation Time and Performance; we discuss about Body in Shock and think about the conjugation text/action.
In 1995, in Paris, the Centre International d’Ethnocénologie was created, as a result of the desire for “multiplying the points of view and enrich them”.
The term “ethnoscenology “ is presented in the Manifest, dated 09 February 1995, as a “neologism” that “ is inspired by the Greek usage that suggests the organic dimension of the symbolic activity”. The Manifest presents the definition of ethnoscenology: “the study of Organized Spectacular Human Practices and Behaviors among several different cultures,” where “the word “spectacular” would not be reduced to visual; it would refer to the set of human perceptive modalities and would underlie the global aspect of human expressive manifestations, including the somatic, physical, cognitive, emotional and spiritual dimensions”.[xiv] Different from Ethnoscenology, we do not consider mystical rituals and folkloric acts as Performance, in the sense that we accept the term, as we shall observe along this essay.
With the Performance Studies and Ethnoscenology, we may observe how comprehensive this knowledge field is, mainly concerning Theater. Further, we should return to ethnoscenology when dealing with Teleperformance, since we will be referring to Performances that, although permeated with technologies, refer to, modify and break the “organic dimension of the symbolic activity”.
Different from Ethnoscenology and the view of some (many) performance thinkers, we do not consider the ritual process as Performance. That is because that action will never be a “first-time action”; rather, it will be a repetition: a repeated act that, however, remains currently performed. Obviously, one cannot deny that each time an actor acts – even repeatedly – within a context, an environment and time previously determined by a director or by a team or, even, that when an individual participates in a ritual with booking of places, texts, environments long ago established by unknown ancestral, sometimes the actor enters a state of trance borderline, or literally in trance, and carries out a given performance (action). However, we would not be dealing with the artistic language Performance, which excludes almost all the theater, exactly due to its repetition, automation and non-creativity load, having no self-language. It is undeniable that some approaches of current theater language differ from the previously mentioned one, exactly because they have incorporated, from the Performance Art, the possibility for the actor to experience the theater repetition with its full emotiveness at each time. Generally, the theater actor, although representing (become another persona) and re-present, is not an author. The author creates the text, the director creates the scenography, and the scenographer creates the scenic space. The actor interprets within the context previously established by them.
"What characterizes the corporal action, what makes it completely different from happening and any other kind of theater, be it mimics, is exactly its feature of unique and non-replicable gesture".[xv]
The unique and non-replicable gesture is not mechanical, i.e., unconscious, reflex, automatic.
We should keep in mind what Michel Foucault said if we are to pay more attention when using the term “ritual”. He was referring to the “word rituals”.
"The most superficial and visible expression of these restriction systems is composed by what may be grouped and named as ritual; ritual defines the qualification that speaking individuals should have (and that, in a play of dialogue, questioning, declamation, which shall occupy a given position and formulate a given kind of enunciates); define gestures, behaviors, circumstances and all the set of signals that should follow the discourse; finally, it establishes the supposed or imposed efficacy of words, their effect over the addressees, the limits of their coercion value. The religious, legal, therapeutic and, somehow, political speeches cannot be dissociated from the practice of a ritual that establishes both unique properties and pre-established roles for the speaking individuals[xvi].
For Peggy Phelan, “performance is just life in time being. Performance cannot be saved, recorded or documented. It becomes itself by disappearing.” [xvii], thus producing an interaction between the self and the viewer. We would believe we had reached the Performance artistic language, since Phelan refers to the notion of presence and to the interaction of the art object with the viewer; however, her refers to photography, paints, films, theater pieces, and political claims. He refers to the photographs of Mappelhorpe and Cindy Sherman, which are undoubtedly sensational. The photographs of those two artists reveal the real human body, with or without masks, the rescue of the being-body, of the being-subject, of the self, of the individual. However, photograph could never represent the real as we perceive it, due both to lens distortions and to bi-dimensional support and, above all, because it is static.
The exhibition “Sensation”, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1997, presenting the Charles Saatchi collection, shocks because it has the characteristic of a rude world, “eroticism, violence, vulgarity and humor”, “abandon of almost all abstract experience”, and “strong concern with corporal nature”, said Felipe Fortuna, with no reference to the existence of performances in that exhibition.[xviii]
Laymert Garcia dos Santos [xix] refers to Gilles Deleuze, in his book about Francis Bacon, where is presented the “feeling logic”, that is “addressed to the brain, acts through the brain”, and the “sensation logics”, “that acts immediately over the nervous system that is flesh.”
The photographs of Mappelhorpe and Cindy Sherman would belong to the “sensation logic” because they act over flesh, since they pulsate “in the intersection between the Nature world and the oppressive world of Contemporaneous Culture.”[xx] However, photographs cannot be considered as Performances, no matter how strong and involving they are. They will be art and records, pieces of actions withdrawn from their contexts, discharged from their sounds and smells, they will be registers, pieces of non-territorial instants. Time, the vital aesthetical element of Performance, will be disintegrated.
Phelan refers to the “aesthetic of presence”; however, in photograph, painting or sculpture that presence refers only to the confrontation: piece of audience-art, where the audience is typically passive, although existing an intellectual interactivity. If the intellectual participation of the audience is considered as Performance happening at the conscience level, in the audience’s imaginary all pieces of art, architectonic works and pre-recorded music experienced centuries later, all literature would be performance art. Every “open work”, as wishes Umberto Eco would be Performance. [xxi] In art, one might say, there is a performative enunciate (non-enunciable) where performance (affect) happens on the viewer, and we are speaking not necessarily about Performance Art.
Phelan’s reflection is interesting because it expands the Performance field and valuates the intellectual participation of the viewer as a part of the art piece. Not willing to delimit the tenuous borders of the Performance artistic language, that procedure would lead to the full dilation and further disappearance of the Performance artistic language. Therefore, we agree with Bert States who, although following different paths, reaches the impasse and states that we should ask ourselves “what is not performance”?[xxii]
Any art piece needs the viewer so as to become an art piece, and that is also how photographs become art pieces, exactly like paintings or arts objects. For Performance, the presence of the viewer is a requirement, not as a viewer a posteriori, but as part of the art piece, while aesthetic element of the art piece. Here, one may refer to installations, where the whole gallery becomes an element of the art piece, or in ex-situ works, where all grasses, rain or cloud become part of the work and its aesthetic element; so, they become a vital organ of the work. Therefore, in the Performance Art, the presence of the other, of the others, is an aesthetical element, a vital organ.
RoseLee Goldberg specifically deals with performance as an artistic language arisen out of Plastic Arts, or even better, arising out of artists meetings: poets, musicians, plastic artists, not always upon the expressive presence of actors. Let us examine Goldberg’s statements. For her, the Performance could be a sole or group act, performed with light, music or visual effects made by the artist or with his collaboration; it could be performed in galleries, museums or alternative spaces; it could barely follow a narrative (however, it could follow or not a script); it could be made up by a series of intimate gestures or in high visual scale theaters; it could last some few minutes or several hours; it could be spontaneous and improvised or performed (repeated) several times; in it, the performer would be the artist, whose presence would be the differential for other artistic techniques. However, Goldberg states that the presence may be esoteric, chamanic, instructive, provocative or, even, entertainment[xxiii]
Goldberg mentions essential topics of Performance, such as ephemerality, which brings time as an aesthetic element, the audience participation and the group work. However, by the end of this part of the book, she states, “each artist makes its own definition (of Performance)”. Here, we face once again a boundless bulk. We do not intend to define Performance; rather, we want to go along the tenuous borders of this artistic language so as to be able to analyze the possibilities for it to exist permeated by video, numerical and remote live technologies, thus allowing that interactivity. Nowadays, the Performance reappears, through communication networks, as virtual presence, with its time expanded and space made full.
Performance and technologies
Only the touch may try to feel the lowermost part of the other, its cover. Only the naked body reveals that lowermost part and the wish for meeting (sic). The smell is revealed only upon presence, or gradually dissolved on other supports. The sound is promiscuous: it allows to be captured and reproduced. Then, only the Performance Art brings to art elements of carnal wish: love and hate; pleasure and aesthetical pleasure (aesthesis). If it is a live Performance Art, it allows the interaction among desiring beings, i.e., what we consider as the major feature of Performance. However, the Video-Performance carries images and sounds and may expand such desires and intensify presences.
Therefore, also in the artistic Performance one may refer to an increase in the communication artist/work/audience, an increase in interaction wasting less energy, space and time for reaching the interaction. The participation of monitors, cameras, tactile or sound sensors, information networks and other technological tools may be required in an artistic Performance, in the sense of optimizing it. On the other hand, the artist may benefit from low performativity of some equipment, including a completely different participation of the machine, i.e., a performance usually regarded as a mistake.
We should have in mind that new technologies, the so-called communication technologies, are in fact information technology and only promises interactivity. They make us believe that we are navigating when we visit web sites. To press buttons for “continuing” among pages previously created does not imply in communication. Only upon the technology that allows for the Teleperformance Art, the computer networks may be called a communication network, because there is a sharing act.
"…the exclusive subject of corporal art is the body as civil society experiences it, hides it, oppresses or rejects it. Sex, pleasure, enjoyment, suffering, death, fantasy (travestissement), collective determinisms and all notions that allow for taking the core issue of the socialized body, however, have there a particular relief.[xxiv]
The corporal art is interested in body materiality. The Body that we have today acquires a new awareness about such materiality, about the materiality of its body “expanded through technologies”. Such “expansion” is just a metaphor, since body remains the same; but we shall remember that such “expansion” interfere in human conscience.
Our contemporaneity is full of technologies, and such technologies involve several – if not all – subjects of human knowledge (aesthetic, anthropology, sociology, communication, language, ecology, logic, mathematics…). Art is necessarily reflection and reflects our reality, a reality “pregnant of an airplane[xxv]” (as would sing Marina Lima, a Brazilian singer), pregnant of technologies.
It is part of the meaning of a Performance melting artist and audience, where they become mixed in one single movement. To which direct confrontation are we sensitive today? Pluchart would ask which body does society live, hide, oppress, reject? Sex, notions “involving the socialized body” many times become aware through different supports for capturing and broadcasting the reproduced image (photograph, movies, video, Internet…)
The meaning of a Performance depends on recognizing oneself in the other. Which are the possibilities of involving with images and sounds electronically reproduced, either live or a posteri? All possibilities. Erotic films excite; the number of persons accessing erotic web pages is enormous if compared to the pages on subjects such as art, economy, ecology or other.
I have mentioned the organic dimension of symbolic activity (Ethnoscenology). I use to refer to symbolic ecology, in which each new technique, building up a new understanding about the being, the other and world, organizes the eikos, the habitat of symbols and their interrelations.
The body resists to any treatment: Video-performance, Tele-video-performance and the full submission to pulsional intensities. The artist, the first conceptor, the art piece generated through the midia, the viewer becoming co-author and its response-art piece generated through the midia, the artist becoming co-author: flux, crude being in improvising the immediate response, group work.
However, let us conclude with Pluchart: “The corporal art is not an avant-garde. It is a permanent injury on the hole of the binary thought”. [xxvi] Corporal art, as well as Performance, is no longer Avant-Garde; however, if mixed with technologies, they still have a lot to experience. “An injury … on the hole of the binary thought”, does not avoid a technological performance because, since it is a questioning, it exposes the other side of technology. The Performance Art questions the machine performance while a controllable system, which as more performatic it is, as more efficient it will be.
Our daily life overblown with technology generates the understanding we have about our horizons. Spaces are filled in with electronic images and virtual places. These are the somatic, physical, cognitive, emotional and spiritual dimensions (Ethnoscenology Manifest) that are being resettled. The mediated body, trespassed by technologies is not (yet) ritualized, is not (yet) folklore; rather, it is brandy new or, at least, the game is fair. Somehow, mediated by technologies, there is an expansion of the meaning initially given to the Performance Art by artists who have practiced it. However, in the innermost of the artistic practice, remains the questioning about art concept, the market denial, several provocations besides the viewers. Communication – and not information – and, in this sense the Performance Art, taking technological means for it, questions them by corrupting/breaking the expanded information society, inserting communication and Art therein.
[i] Renato Cohen, Performance como Linguagem, S.P., Ed. Perspectiva, col. Debates, 177 p.
[ii] François Pluchart, L’art corporel, Paris, Images 2, col. Mise au point sur l’art actuel, 1983, p. 43. All mentioned books and articles with titles in French were translated by us.
[iii] Arnaud Labelle-Rojoux, L’acte pour l’art, Paris, Les Éditeurs Evidant, 1988, p.320.
[iv] We shall keep in mind that we are talking about a full communication of aspect, unarticulated (Wittgenstein), unutterable (Barthes), and not about the German theory of communication pragmatic (the first Habermas).
[v] In the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary we find as the second definition of language: “(2): a systematic means of communicating ideas or feelings by the use of conventionalized signs, sounds, gestures, or marks having understood meanings”.
[vi] Jean-François Lyotard, La condition Postmoderne, Paris, Les éditions de Minuit, 1979.
[vii] Ducrot, O., Todorov, T., Dictionnaire Encyclopédique des Sciences du Langage, Paris: ed. Seuil, 1972, p. 427,428. We should remind, once again, that when adopting Austin, we are not getting closer to Habermas theory and to the concept of speech act.
[viii] Deleuze, G. and Guattari, F., Qu'est-ce que la philosophie?, Les éditions de Minuit, 1991.
[ix] Williams, Raymond, Keywords: a Vocabulary of Culture and Society, New York, Oxford, 1976, p. 13, quoted in Bert States, “Performance as Metaphor”, issued in the Theatre Journal, March 1996, p. 1 to 26. p. 1.
[x] Bert States, op. cit., p. 2.
[xi] “The body is always in a state of show in face of the other or even of itself”. Roland Barthes, essay: “Encore le corps”, in magazine Critique, volume XXXVIII: Roland Barthes, no 423/424, aug./sep. 1982, pp. 645 to 654, p. 653.
[xii] Bert States recalls our custom of using words, mainly keywords, as metaphors, forgetting that they are metaphors, thus leading to a gradual loss of a common denominator, to an “illusory transitivity”. We are also concerned about words used as metaphors. The one that most amazes us, when carrying out a research in Arts and Technology, in Performance and New Technologies, is the body expanded by technologies, technologies as an extension of the body, of time-space and even of conscience. In fact, the body remains a body and, even if technologies allow for reaching other spaces and somehow reducing time, the body does not expand. Perhaps the contrary is true: there may be a contraction, an atrophy of the body.
[xiii] Our main reference was the Department of Performance Studies of the Tisch School of Arts, New York. We did not list herein all courses; all courses’ titles were respected.
[xiv] The term “ethnoscenology” is also defined in the Manifest: “This neologism is inspired on the Greek usage that suggests the organic dimension of symbolic activity. In its origin, skené means a provisory construction, a canvas, a cottage, a tent. Further, the word sometimes acquired the sense of temple and theater scene. A skené was a sheltered place, invisible to the viewer’s eyes, where actors used to dress their masks. There are several derived senses. From the idea of a protected shelter and temporary shelter, skené meant the meals in tend, a banquet. The metaphor generated by the female substantive resulted in the male word skénos: the human body, while the soul lives there temporarily. Somehow, the “soul tabernacle”, the case for the Psuchée (Psiqué). In this sense, it appears together with the pre-Socratics. Democritus and Hypocrites have recurred to it (Anatomy 1). Similarly, the root generated the word skénoma that means also the human body. Skénomata: mimics, jugglers and acrobats, men and women, were produced in show tends during festivals (Xénophon, Hélleniques VII, 4, 32). Translated by us.
In Portuguese, assuming the existence of the word performatics we could redefine the Ethnoscenology as Organized Performatic Human Practices and Behaviors. We would ask which animal practices and behaviors are consciously organized, or even, which human performatic practices and behaviors – therefore artistic practices – are not organized at all. Therefore, we would redefine Ethnoscenology simply as Performatic Practices and Behaviors, keeping in mind that, as we will further observe, different from Ethnoscenology, we do not consider mystical rituals, folkloric acts as artistic Performance.
[xv] François Pluchart, op. cit., pp. 38 and 39.
[xvi] Michel Foucault, A Ordem do discurso. (Inaugural lecture at the Collège de France, Dec. 2nd, 1970), São Paulo, ed. Loyola, 1996.
[xvii] Phelan, Peggy, Unmarked: the Politics of Performance, London-New York, Routledge, 1993, quoted by Bert O. States, op. cit., p. 9.
[xviii] Fortuna, Felipe, “Individualismo Sensacional”, in Folha de São Paulo, Caderno “Mais!”, 23 November 1997, p. 6.
[xix] Santos, Laymert Garcia dos, “Sensação da contemplação”, in Folha de São Paulo, Caderno “Mais!”, 23 November 1997, p. 6.
[xx] Laymert Garcia dos Santos, ibidem.
[xxi] Umberto Eco, L’oeuvre ouverte, trad. C. Roux de Bézieux, Paris, Seuil, 1965.
[xxii] A text, a painting, would not be performance because they are not current, because they are not physical presence of the performer, states Bert O. States. However, he also says, “they are not performance because they are built through non-human means”. (Bert O. States, op. cit., p. 8). Using Bert O. States’ own strategy we could state that metaphorically a text, a painting, an installation could be a project for performances, intellectual or even physical performances of the reader. We would like to ask Bert O. States what would be human means. We believe that human mean would be just the naked body. If a text, a painting are non-human means, clothes, ornaments, music, lights, could also be considered like that. Where would be the boundary of human means in a Laurie Anderson show? And in the simplest performance where the artist is naked with a corporal painting?
[xxiii] RoseLee Goldberg, Performance Art. From Futurism to the present. Singapore, Thames and Hudson, 1995, p.96.
[xxiv] François Pluchart, op. cit., p. 46.
[xxv] Lyrics of a Brazilian music.
[xxvi] François Pluchart, op. cit., p. 4.