Lost in a Sea of Glass and Tin

Theatre (Claire Hind) in collaboration with Gary Winters

Gary and Claire were invited as artists in residence to the Defibrillator Gallery Chicago to develop a new work to premier at the gallery for an international audience. The process for making the performance took as inspiration the fan base rituals of a local seaside entertainer in North Yorkshire, the eremitic rituals of the 14th Century English Hermit Richard Rolle and the concept of David Lynch’s ‘eye of the duck’.  Before arriving in residency at Defibrillator, Gary and Claire spent days driving through Wisconsin and visiting some of the filming locations from Lynch’s movie The Straight Story about Alvin Straight who travelled a 240-mile journey on a lawn mower to Mount Zion. Once in Chicago, the residency allowed the work to reflect upon that journey and to activate through practice, the cross-fertilizations of art forms; the porosity between cinema and live performance and so we practiced a distortion of gestures for the singing body as per Christopher Roman’s ‘queering the hermit’. Compositional strategies for making a new work illuminated the distinctiveness that contemporary performance celebrates; the exciting potential of hybridity. We found that the practice of desire, solitude and disruption, inherent in the themes we circle around, performs nostalgia and also led others, (as evidenced by the audience through panel discussion) to contemplate the position in performance of the then and now, as Professor Roberta Mock outlined in her keynote presentation on our work at the Queering Ritual international symposium, as she playfully described the work as a ‘yesturbation’.

Performed at Defibrillator Gallery, Chicago, 30 September 2017 and the Queering Ritual International Symposium at York St John University 3 November 2017

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