Artist’s Statement

a wee statement of what I do as a performance-maker:

My work is about what it feels like to live under capitalism, and how to survive and resist in a violent world. I make participatory performances, working as a solo performer and as a director/facilitator to create one-to-ones, installations, street sideshows, interventions and longer interactive shows in theatre spaces.  My work is processual and activist: making performance is a way to explore politics, performing a way to intervene.

I am exploring in the performative possibilities of internet spaces. I use social media and blogging extensively to build public discussion around each project: increasingly my performances take place simultaneously online and offline. I Want to Blow up the Palace of Holyroodhouse, for example, exists as research and explosions in public spaces, discussions and arguments with participants around those events, a continuing twitterstream and discussion during each event, and satirical online auto-surveillance reporting. My website is a source of performance and documentation together.

This is not a riot (2011-12, various venues) was a performance lecture and training session on the political history of riots and what to do if you find yourself in one. Class Act (2012-13, Ovalhouse, Camden People’s Theatre, Buzzcut) was a gameshow about class war, designed to teach class politics and incite political action. What We Owe (2012 and ongoing, Forest Fringe, LIFT, NTI Latvia and others) is a debt counselling service, supporting participants to to grips with overwhelming feelings of emotional and political obligation.

I consistently occupy aesthetics appropriated from regimes of power: PowerPoint, lectures, spreadsheets, reports, business suits, surveillance, corporate social media. I enjoy clownishly inhabiting these regimes, both as a form of critique for the audience and as a form of therapy for myself. I like taking bankrupt aesthetics and making a good joke with them, or disrupting a lecture with a teddybearfight, or using a deathly scatterplot to ask a political question.

Overall, I am interested in political agitation through art. I am trying to use disruptive action, satire and discussion to drive a wedge into political moments, opening a space for audiences to think, feel and act.

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