The Tempest

2015 – 2018

Video quadriptych / Installation

The Tempest is the expansion of the project We Split! We Split! We Split!…

For this expanded version, over the course of two years and half, three new scenic episodes were added to the initial project.

In the inaugural scene of Shakespeare’s The Tempest (circa 1610) sailormen yell “We split! We split! We split!” and in the wrecking they sob “All lost! All Lost! All Lost!.” For researchers Maslin and Lewis the Anthropocene began in the beginning of the 17th century with the irreversible cross-ocean exchange of species alongside a pronounced dip in atmospheric carbon dioxide centred on 1610 and captured in Antarctic ice-core records. Bruno Latour stands in the dispute of the dating of the Anthropocene relying on their hypothesis, picking on the argument by framing it with the cultural transition between the “old” and the “new worlds” and specifying that this transition was marked by a significant shift in the representation of time, namely the transformation of western arbitrary time into the real time of the count- down to the Sixth Extinction. The project The Tempest was carried out over the course of the three first years of my doctoral artistic research on expanded theatre and time ecology in time of the collective and critical acknowledgement of the Anthropocene.

Each of the four videos consists of the simultaneity of three point-of-view shots, operated with an action camera, of the successive acts of reading, rehearsing and performing four different key-scenes of Shakespeare’s play: the shipwreck scene (sc.1 act.1), the encounter with Caliban (sc.1 act.2), the love scene between Miranda and Ferdinand (sc.1 act.3) and Prospero’s renunciation of magic (sc.1 act 5). The three different footage of each videos were realised on different days on the same location, over the course of one week to three months.

The four videos were shot in four different locations: on the island of Suomenlinna/Helsinki (Finland) during the winter 2015-16, in the tropical greenhouses of Montreal (Canada) during the winter 2016-17, in the Site of Reversible Destiny in Yoro (Japan) in October 2017 and in a cave under a sea rock in Biarritz (Basque Country-France) during the winter 2018.

The recorded poly-caco-phonic acting and environmental soundscape, the specific visual regime of subjective camera and the simultaneous display of the three sequences through split-screen are combined in the videos in order to render a theatrical experience of the representational diffraction of the mythological play, both temporally and spatially.

Episode 1: We Split! We Split! We Split!.. Reading, Rehearsing and Performing The Scene One of The Act One of Shakespeare’s The Tempest Within Three Winter Baltic Storms 

Episode 2: Bogs, Fens, Flats…; Reading, Rehearsing and Performing the Scene Two of the Act Two of The Tempest Within Three Illusive Aboriginal Forests

Episode 3: Ye elves of hills…; Reading, Rehearsing and Performing the Scene One of the Act Five of The Tempest With/in The Site of Reversible Destiny by Gins and Arakawa

Episode 4: I do not know One of my sex…; Reading, Rehearsing and Performing the Scene One of the Act Three of The Tempest In the Cave Underneath the Basta Rock in Biarritz at Low Tides

TheT