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group photo

Group photo taken from CalArts Plays Itself Group show at PACT Zollverein.

Who For/What For

Mélodie Mousset's installation and sculpture combined with Zachary Sharrin's cheorography and Kristín Þóra Haraldsdóttr's audio performance scores makes for an incredible viewing experience. Drawing on texts from art criticism and popular culture, the Who For/What For project examines paradoxes of artistic inspiration and production, as well as its social, political and ontological aspirations and limitations.

Performers: Mélodie Mousset, Zachary Sharrin, Kristín Þóra Haraldsdóttr, Rachel Boyajian, Cameron Evans, Princess Mecca Romero and Andrew Wojtal


Last night's dance event consisted of three performances: Symbiosis Mutualism; a,e,i,o,u,y; and a person I once was. To hear the dancers talk about their projects click here.

Symbiosis Mutualism

Choreographers:  Jordan Saenz, Cameron Evans, Princess Mecca Romero
Dancers:  Cameron Evans, Princess Mecca Romero
Composer:  Louis Lopez
Costume Designer: Lynne Marie Martens

Symbiosis Mutualism is based on an exploration of human interaction with horses. The bond between the two forms creates a single operational being. The process of learning about each other and developing a movement vocabulary based on the attempt to form one living organism and create a synchronized process of becoming one being. The result of the interaction is mutual clarity and peace, and the bond between the two becomes a symbol of friendship, love and partnership.  As trust and connection build, this bond grows stronger over time. 


Choreographer/dancer:  Andrew Wojtal
Music:  “Coffee Stains and Beer” by Magestic Star
Costume Designer:  Andrew Wojtal

a,e,i,o,u,y is a multilayered work that braids together different forms of physical theatre to express a singular energy through variously accrued mediums. Specifically a,e,i,o,u,y functions as a mechanism for coping or mending an area of emptiness while simultaneously functioning as a display of the age-old dichotomy between loving to live, or living to love. Through support for  the common man and woman’s entanglement in this dichotomy, a,e,i,o,u,y is an all-accommodating confession that acknowledges loss as the necessary means of understanding gain.

a person I once was

Choreography: Rachel Boyajian

Dancers: Cameron Evans, Princess Mecca Romero and Andrew Wojtal
Original Music Composition: Louis Lopez
Costume Design: Silvanne Park
Lighting Design: Nick Percell

Through a distinct choreographic language and keen sense of invention, a person I once was explores the fragility of human cognition and acuity. Featuring three dancers and original music by Louis Lopez, a person I once was is a new work created by Rachel Boyajian.


Irit Rogoff

This morning Irit Rogoff gave a talk on the notion of the Public. Her work attempts to diagnose ways in which the public is being reconsidered and re-presented--particularly in relation to our 'contemporaneity'. Of particular interest were her thoughts on the documentary trend in contemporary art and how this trend allows the public to emerge through a (shared?) 'struggle to survive'. After her talk, she joined us for a group crit of the Expanded Archive. We will be posting video of her lecture on this page shortly.



Live Performances Last Night

Yesterday, we had an evening of live performances: Luminis Sphaera, "2", and DARK FARE Trio. For more information on the specific performances please read the descriptions here.


How To Make a Concrete Situation

We were able to follow artist Fiona Conner as she installed some of her pieces from Concrete Situations. Her sculptural work deals with (dis)placement when viewing art in relation to its surrounding materials. Questions of authenticity and functionality become rooted in the quest for an aesthetic experience. Differentiation and appreciation are both grounded in her permanent additions to the existing concrete structures of PACT. Conner will be conducting informal walks around the PACT facilities in order to point out the individual works.     


Thinker, writer, and video artist Jalal Toufic came to speak this morning as part of the CalArts Plays Itself symposium. His lecture titled Don’t Go to Hell for the Sake of Finishing Watching the Film raised some interesting concerns. Ultimately, Toufic's paper requests that we as film-viewers question the value of an "aesthetic" experience when it places us in direct relationship with evil. 

Following his talk in the SAANA building, Toufic visited some of the installations at PACT. Students were able to continue the conversation within the context of their own art practices. Our discussions will continue tomorrow at 10:00 with Irit Rogoff's talk Public. For a complete description please visit our symposium page.  

Experimenting with Acoustics

Through these three improv sessions, Archie Carey (bassoon) and Heather Lockie (viola) explore all the subtle and wonderful acoustics that PACT Zollverein has to offer. This site-specific blog exclusive exemplifies the process-centered approach to art making featured at CalArts Plays Itself.

Faculty Crit.

During the last day before the exhibition opens, Travis Preston (Dean, School of Theater) visits the installations to discuss the work with the artists.   

Lonely Traveler

This is not the first time Ellen Reid has been to PACT. In 2010-2011 she was one of two CalArts students sent to the Feldstärke Residency program in Paris (CENTQUATRE), Essen (PACT Zollverein), and Istanbul (¨cˇu’m„a*). Her piece for CalArts Plays Itself is titled Lonely Traveler and is a site-specific installation focusing on international sounds and how individuals experience them personally. 

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