THE VESSELS (LES VASES)
“The Vessels” (“Les vases”) is a site-specific performance made during a three-day festival in Quebec city. It begins with a durational action: the performer, holding a white scepter under red fabric, sits waiting during another performer’s action. Visible is a crate containing performance ritual objects to be used during the main part of the performance. “The Vessels” continues with the deployment of a series of small containers and other elements. Their presence is revealed as the performer rotates the box using the scepter as a lever. The ritualistic aspect of the actions presented are accentuated by the manipulation of a cat curio filled with red paint, leaving a long blood-like mark on the crate, and the slow spread of a bad scent emerging from an opened food receptacle.
The piece is about, or inspired by, sacrificial rituals, methods of conservation and past civilizations. It focuses on multiple manipulations of common objects as organized ways of conducting actions. It also generates prepared upheavals and acts that are somehow violent or anxiety-producing, like the separation of the “devil’s scepter” into a lance and a nail-like tool, or the collapsing of a paper-made roof on the audience. This piece is distinctive in that it focuses on a sculptural way of engaging performative art.