Participative Performance

03.06.19

How to meet the public through the sensible of poetics? And how to let oneself as an artist and new to a city share personal stories for the public to be a part of? 

On the 3rd of June, Qi performed the first sequence of ‘The Freedom I Thought Would Turn Into Nostalgia’. Starting at Fridtjof Nansens Plass and later moving to Rådhusplassen, the Migrant Car migrated together with Qi and photographer Milagros. Through guitar playing and written poems, Qi invited the passerby to conversate upon the experience of being in a new country and new to a city.

According to the observations from the photographer, it was an interesting first intervention where the public was intrigued by the car and Qi’s performance. 

Still, asking people to join or participate in something – there could also be a bit of skepticism from the passers-by. It is easily associated with the typical seller on the street, trying to sell something or either people just do not have the time to stay.

Apart from that, one can wonder if connecting these small gestures of genuine participation, can lead to questions of how the experience through art can open up new perspectives, where you challenge both the means of public space and the artist herself:

“I mean, asking random people in the street for help is a quite embarrassing and uncomfortable thing for me. It reminds me of the first time when I moved from a small town to a big city. The chaotic and the distance from the streets frustrated me. But I had to ask people for help even though I was not reluctant to. Doing this performance makes me think about the past me who tried very hard to adapt to life in a big city.”

Qi Tan

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