Zeta Kolokythopoulou: Zeta Kolokythopoulou (aka Zeta Alex) is an interdisciplinary artist and a PhD candidate in Arts and Performance at London South Bank University. She has previously studied Fine Arts (BA, MFA) and holds a Masters in Culture Industry from Goldsmiths, University of London.
Network technologies: potentialities in performance documentation
Costumes, props, and audio-visual recordings; these are the components forming most theatre and performance collections today. Rooted in matter, documentation has often been addressed as antagonistic to performance (Phelan, 1993) having the live event as its ‘raw material’ Auslander, 2006). Yet, the immersion of networked technologies within several performances impacts on what is possible to document as well as how practitioners engage with the documentation of their work. Enabling an active participation of the audience, they transform individual and/or self-documentation into a dramaturgical event. Technology, in such instances, blends the ‘live and pre-recorded, online and on the street, the real and the staged’ (Blast Theory, 2003) while simultaneously records all activities within the performance environment.
A question arises: How do performances in which ‘documentation and liveness collapse into each other’ (Chatzichristodoulou, 2011) impact on current notions of the performance archive?
This presentation will lay out the conceptual framework of a practice-led research engaged with the documentation and archiving of performance within the context of social media and network technologies. Looking into the performance Speak Bitterness (Forced Entertainment), and analyses of online documentation in media studies, it will examine the possibilities offered by the liveness and performativity of performance documentation. As the investigation unravels, a wider set of questions relating to the identity and owenership of the document begin to surface. Critically tracing their patterns will be the first step towards an active mode of engagement with the archiving process of performance pieces in the emerging technologies of networked culture.