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Adrian Heathfield and Edward Scheer


Tuesday 3rd February 2009 at 5.00 pm The Theatre Studies Studio, Millburn House

In this panel Adrian Heathfield (Roehampton) and Edward Scheer (Warwick) discuss the aesthetics of duration and question the models of time through which performance art has predominantly been interpreted.

Adrian Heathfield (Roehampton University)

“Walking Out of Life”

Taking the long walk of Tehching Hsieh’s One Year Performance (1981 – 1982) as a prompt for an ambulatory mode of writing, Adrian Heathfield’s presentation passes through questions of the relation of exile to being, and of movement’s relationship to opening. Retracing one day of Hsieh’s course across Manhattan, Heathfield’s writing engages with the interplay of document and event, memory and the present, to reconfigure Hsieh’s apparently isolated and peripheral performance. In so doing, the talk arrives at a notion of lived duration – rather than the shattering moment – as a paradigmatic temporality of performance. Walking emerges as an aesthetic practice of perpetual reflective exile, a belonging to restlessness alone.

Edward Scheer (University of Warwick)

 “Delays in Glass”

At the end of the last century Australian performance artist Mike Parr performed a series of twelve intensely poetic and durational events in which the artist appeared as a surreal bridal figure. In Bloodbox 1998 the artist remained in a glass container for 24 hours while Edward Scheer recorded immediate occurrences in the gallery space every hour on the hour for 24 hours. The presentation uses some of this material, a document which forms a part of the event which it records, as a way into thinking metonymically about the different time signatures in performance art and how these reconfigure the forms of duration in aesthetics more generally.

Adrian Heathfield is a writer and curator working on and in the scenes of live art and performance. He is Professor of Performance and Visual Culture at Roehampton University, London. His latest book, Out of Now: The Lifeworks of Tehching Hsieh, is published by LADA and the MIT Press in March 2009.

Associate Professor Edward Scheer is President of PSi, Performance Studies international and lectures in the School of Theatre, Performance and Cultural Policy Studies, University of Warwick. His study of duration in the work of Mike Parr, entitled The Infinity Machine, will be published in early 2009 by Schwartz Press, Melbourne.