RUHE

Solo performance on September 29th 2012 at Autocenter Berlin documentation photos made by BentenClay 

documentation video on vimeo HERE

The 160-mtr2 empty white cube got slowly filled with audience over a duration of 2 hours. 18 performers, who are ordinary people selected through street casting and calls on amateur dance and theatre platforms, are invisible among the audience. People having their opening evening in this empty art space including chatting, networking with a glass in the hand. At 10 pm the performers received a collective text message with ‘ruhe’ after which they collapsed. The domino collective fall of the 18 performers caused total silence in the space. The performers stood up on their own chosen moment and the last performer came up after 35 minutes. The work RUHE got its existence by the empty art space, the instruction as in collective text message from Anouk Kruithof, the action of the performers and the reactions of the audience. People out of the audience reacted by trying to get the performers up again, giving them a beer or even started making out on the floor next to a performer. Lots of social interaction appeared. The confusion of the collective fall caused uncomfortable feelings within the audience. People were quiet and lightly shocked or laughed a bit. Soon after the fall, people collectively got their phones and camera’s out of their pockets and started making pictures of the performers, as if they were quiet human sculptures. “Shoot and post. Like or trash’.

Kruithof sees this performance more as a ‘constructed situation’ a term, which is introduced by Tino Seghal. RUHE conceptually foregrounds the role of networked technologies and people’s dependence on them, it is in many ways a tribute to direct experience for both performer and audience. People collectively immersing themselves in their networked mobile devices and RUHE sketches a poetic doom scenario of a hyper stress effect caused by the continuous stream of emails, text messages, push notifications. Documentation is from great importance. The documentation as in the photographic and video ‘material’ can be used in various ways after the performance, which also resonates important elements of networked technologies.

The fall is no end but a metaphor for failure, which is any way a new start.