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Brief Encounters (Or The Breaking of Images)

A series of performance installations made in collaboration with Katja Hilevaara between 2006 and 2011 exploring the mechanics of how we make and break visual images in performance.


May 2011

We explored the 16th Century philosopher Giulio Camillo's concept of the Theatre of Memory using seven buckets and seven pyramids of sand on seven different levels.

Camillo's idea was never realised, but he predicted that when it was finished, the user of his Theatre of Memory would have access to the knowledge of the whole universe. The visitor would be able to stand on the stage and look out into the tiered, semicircular auditorium, which could house memories in a clearly laid-out fashion in seven sections. Each section would in turn have seven arches spanning seven rising tiers. The seven sections were divided according to the seven planets known at the time and represented the divine macrocosm of alchemical astrology. The seven tiers that rose up from them, coded by motifs from classical mythology, represented the seven spheres of the sublunary down to the elementary microcosm.

Part of a Shift: Gaps in Memory: Pop-up Performance at PSi#17, Camillo 2.0, Utrecht, directed by P.A. Skantze and Matthew Fink of Four-Second Decay. 

(photos© Julio Velasco)

Ivory Towers

June 2009

We laid a dining table with an ever-increasing array of cutlery to create a small-scale but epic landscape. We worked slowly as we explored the idea of service (paid and unpaid, domestic and public) and the difference between inhabiting an ivory tower and making one.

Part of the sixth You and Your Work Festival. Easton Community Centre, Bristol.  

(Photos© Mel Shearsmith)


November 2008  

The Resistance Gallery is underneath the railway arches in Bethnal Green, London, and not far from where Jack the Ripper's victim's were discovered. It is thought to have been the site of an opium den and later an air raid shelter. For the installation we made track made from knives and nuts that spelt out a rhythmic message in Morse code. Part of the fourth my site | in space curated by Switch Performance Company.

I long for you I long for you I long for you I long for you

(photos© James Shilland)


June 2008

A performance installation with mirrors, torches and a hammer, involving the making and breaking of a series of images in response to the myth of Narcissus and Echo. Shunt Lounge, London.

Part of the first Roehampton University Lab Night, showcasing work by postgraduate students in the Drama, Theatre and Performance Department. Other artists showing their work at the event included Simon Piasecki, Richard Talbot, Jungmin Song and Chris Davey.

(photos© Elinor Brass)


October 2007   

Our second Brief Encounter performance installation. We responded to the site of the cafe-bar at Manchester's Greenroom Theatre by moving a fleet of teaspoons slowly across the floor.

Shown as part of an Emergency Platform for Live Art. 


October 2007   

The first of our colloaborative Brief Encounter performances. We responded to the site of the Shunt Vaults in London by tracing indoor puddles with electrical tape.

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