Black is a solo by Mette Edvardsen which explores and tests the act of making things appear in space through language. Initially, space is presented empty, with nothing inside but the body of the artist. Through the spoken word and the movements it makes on stage, a world appears “visible”; a world where the artist, performing, works as a mediator between the audience and what is there before their eyes. Black advances a game which unfolds in time and space, where only the body is physically present, acting and handling invisible objects, constantly attempting to save the distance that exists between thought and experience, between the here and there.
After the performance of this piece an encounter will be held with Mette Edvardsen, presented and moderated by researcher Victoria Pérez Royo. Both will discuss common interests, with the focal point and narrative thread resting on some of Edvardsen’s most recent works, such as Oslo (2017), We to be (2015) and No Title (2014), all three of which, together with Black, form an ensemble of pieces whose common denominator is the study of the limits of language and access to the imagination, thereby intervening in and expanding towards real space.
Creation and performance: Mette Edvardsen
Production: Mette Edvardsen/Athome
Co-production: Black Box Teater (Oslo), Work Space (Brussels)
Collaborators: Kaaitheater (Brussels), Vooruit (Gent), Netwerk (Aalst)
Support: Norsk Kulturråd, Fond for Utøvende Kunstnere, Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“These four pieces share the same economy of reducing the elements at play right down and the exhaustive exploration of their possibilities, and a particular way of inhabiting the chasm between text and body.
In the transition from one to the other, a series of tensions are articulated between the repetition of text and its anchorage here and now in every theatre and with every audience, between repetition and the opening up of possibility, between repetition and inventory, between imagining so much and seeing so little, between the palpable absence of what is not there but present through language, an absence which is ultimately so present, rich, varied, diverse and possible, which opens a unique stage scape: an empty space was never so full”.
(Victoria Pérez Royo)
Mette Edvardsen works in the sphere of performing arts and performance, and also explores other mediums and formats such as video and the editing and experimental composition of books. Due to her training as a dancer and her participation in choreographic projects and with prestigious companies such as les ballets C. de la B. and Mårten Spångberg, her work has often been framed inside the field of dance; perhaps it is from that place that she investigates forms of generating practices and situations, even though her practices exceed the limits of such disciplines, moving into hard-to-define areas, with a core interest in the relationship between language and action. She is currently a researcher at the National Academy of Arts and an associate artist at the Black Box Theatre, both in Oslo. With Juan Domínguez, Alma Söderberg and Sarah Vanhee she created the structure Manyone. She lives between Oslo and Brussels.
Victoria Pérez Royo is part of Artea, and a professor of Aesthetics and Art Theory at the University of Zaragoza (UZ), as well as co-director of the MA in Arts Practice and Visual Culture (UCLM, Artea and Museo Reina Sofía) and a guest professor in university programmes in Holland, Germany, Belgium, Finland, Costa Rica, Brazil and Chile, among other countries. In recent years, she has worked intensively as a curator in the framework of research initiatives in art centres, including La Casa Encendida, the Museo Reina Sofía and Matadero, all in Madrid. She has edited the books ¡A bailar a la calle! Danza contemporánea, espacio público y arquitectura (2008), Práctica e investigación (2010, with José A. Sánchez), To be continued. 10 textos en cadena y unas páginas en blanco (2012, with Cuqui Jerez), Componer el plural. Cuerpo, escena, política (2016, with Diego Agulló) and Dirty Room (2017, with Juan Domínguez).