Now, here’s some notes…
Notes from journal…
Luckily, a woman from class, who has her own private studio at the Art Barn with a couch and coffee table setup, allowed me to use it for my installation.
I had the phone on a side table, but ti didn’t play a part in the installation, really.
The laptop was on the coffee table and had a Facebook page that I’d created for the space (Installation Room) open. I also brought my portable Bose speaker, but the lack of an outlet made it practically useless.
I had a volunteer sit at the couch. From my iPad, I Facebook messaged him from my iPad under the character name I’d created for the installation (Annie Anderson). We had a brief conversation as I explained the piece.
It went over okay. As usually happens with my work, my fellow students seemed more enthused than my instructor. I swear I’m destined to be a popular artist that the academy looks at with a quiet disdain as a pseudo-intellectual. Anyway…
Class discussion, however, was again very constructive. And the concept changed even further.
Now, the installation is completely online and completely run through social media.
Here’s my concept:
There is a website that serves as the “box office” of sorts for the performance. Given that it’s moved online, the performance can now accommodate more than one person at once. What happens is the audience member buys a ticket for the performance. Then, they’re given a list of the characters and all their social media profiles. From there, they can go friend/follow/etc. the characters. Once the performance starts, which will play out over the course of something like a couple of weeks or a month, it takes place on the audience members social media feeds. There is a general narrative between the characters in the performance, but again, the audience can interact with these characters and effect the course of events.
This still plays with the same themes I’ve previously written about. What has changed is the space.
I’ve written about the question of what comes next for art after people like Kaprow essentially blew the box up. And this seems to be an interesting answer. The internet as a performance space.
I’m sure I’m not the first person to think of it or even do it, but my interest is certainly piqued.
Hopefully a performance like this can help the audience look at their carefully curated online social lives in a way that examines context and how exactly we craft and define the roles we play online versus who we are in the real world.
The scripting process will be kind of crazy. I’ll have to develop full social media pages for my characters, going into great detail crafting them and who they are. Second, I’ll have to script a general storyline, even if specific lines aren’t written down. I think of it like a commedia del’arte situation. I’ll have a carefully constructed schedule in which different characters will post different things. From there, they’ll react to the comments from audience members and other characters. And these situations will have to be fluid based on where the audience, the spect-actors, take it. I imagine a gargantuan, annotated, and organized scripting system that has dossiers for each character, a collection of situations, and a schedule of postings. It’s a huge project, but one people seem excited about it. And it’s something that genuinely interests me.
The idea of taking performance/art to the online space is intriguing, despite my relative lack of social media experience. I’ll have to do a lot of work and studying. Especially when it comes to making a website to serve as a mission control for all of this. I’ve never seen anything like it.