[-empyre-] FWD: From Artist-in-residence Janice Perry

MISCHA TWITCHIN mischa.twitchin at btinternet.com
Thu Oct 14 10:17:29 EST 2010

Dear colleagues - just wanted to break my silence to say thank you for the 
various threads i have been following. I am participating in the Making Sense 
colloquium next week and, indeed, find the discussions challenging for my 
thinking towards it. With the beginning of the academic term I am finding it 
difficult, however, to make time to reply properly to the debates. Also, here in 
the UK we are currently facing the possibility of the withdrawal of government 
funding for arts and humanities subjects in universities - potentially to be 
paid for in the future by a "market" in student fees (in effect, a further step 
towards the privatisation of universities here). More Dickens' "worst of times" 
than best - a "winter of despair". In this context it seems rather solipsistic, 
but i had wanted to reply to Janice's notice of her "Being Derrida" piece - 
simply to offer a link to a short film i made also mining the "Derrida" film, 
called "Deconstruction: The Famous Yogurt Scene" (it is probably rather too 
"wordy", but it has moments of 
humour!): http://shunt.co.uk/mischa_twitchin/yoghurt.html
Apologies for not contributing more thoughtfully at this time. With all best 
wishes, Mischa

From: Renate Ferro <rtf9 at cornell.edu>
To: soft_skinned_space <empyre at gamera.cofa.unsw.edu.au>
Sent: Monday, 11 October, 2010 5:05:56
Subject: [-empyre-] FWD: From Artist-in-residence Janice Perry

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Janice Perry <jp at janiceperry.com>
Date: Sun, Oct 10, 2010 at 10:05 PM
Subject: RE: [-empyre-]

Making Sense?

Well, as you know, it is not so simple to talk about one’s work. Especially work 
one hasn’t yet made. I’m just going to jump in and start with a bit of 

I have a very active international performance practice. I work live onstage, in 
multi-media live art, in video, and installation, and I teach. I also engage in 
collaboration with emerging and established artists around the world. I often 
use web technology to facilitate and document new work.

I have a strong interest in physical, social, and natural sciences, linguistics, 
and philosophy, and a history of making work that reflects and translates human 
experience and concerns.

I’m creating multi-media pieces in hopes of making abstract concepts more 
accessible. For example at present I’m using live performance, video, 
photography, audio, and installations to illustrate some of the extremely 
contradictory predictions about the effects of climate change on our lakes, 
streams, rivers and seas, and to speculate on the consequences for our cultural 

A recent piece, "Being Derrida" began as an act of mourning, integrating 
practice and theory through live performance. Being Derrida reflects and 
embodies Jacques Derrida and aspects of his system of ideas through technology, 
physical engagement and re-creation. The piece is comprised of two 
simultaneously screened 6-minute videos. Objects resembling those used in the 
videos (a cordless phone, knife, jar of honey, etc) lie on a table at the side. 
A “deconstructed” version of the documentary film “Derrida” is projected on a 
large screen while an original video (in which I’ve imitated Derrida’s movements 
as closely as possible) is shown on a monitor. The videos are synchronized-- 
Derrida and I move together in a deconstructive dance that illustrates remarks 
on the myth of Echo and Narcissus, Self and Other, and Being, made by Derrida in 
the deconstructed documentary. In installation, the audience is invited to use 
the objects on the table to imitate the movements shown on the videos, to 
themselves, “Be Derrida.” Hard to describe, and surprisingly fun. In making the 
piece, I realized that “being Derrida” -- breaking down Derrida’s movements and 
actions, reinterpreting and re-ordering them—is itself a performative 
deconstruction of Deconstruction.

I don’t have any specific plans about what I’ll make at/of Making Sense. I will 
be as present as possible, and try to respond quickly to what happens during the 
colloquium. Hard to know what those responses will look like, but I will know 
more once I see the physical space and see what is available to work with. And 
then of course, once the intellectual space comes into being, well… we’ll see!

Looking forward to seeing you there.
Best wishes,
PS: Take a look at my web site-- www.janiceperry.com
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