Anna Ten (Paris, France): Absence 10
- duration: 10 hours
- watch: 9th February 2018 at 11 pm UTC
- watch: 10th February 2018 at 11 pm UTC
DESCRIPTION: The performer is filmed sleeping and the video is broadcasted via live streaming platforms. We can watch it online. At 3 o’clock in the morning, the alarm clock rings. She wakes up and starts talking in front of the second camera that records and retransmits her words. She describes the dreams she has just “seen”. After finishing telling her dreams, she goes back to sleep. This action resumes the principle of segmented sleep and the ritual practiced by the Runa of the Napo region of Ecuador described by the anthropologist Eduardo Kohn. The tribe wakes up at a specific hour of the night, this hour is recognized as conducive to this kind of communication. Once awake, the participants tell each other their dreams, during which they try to reconnect with the dead relatives and seek answers to the questions they ask them. The discontinuous 8h night has become a standard or almost normal in Western society and is largely related to the invention of electricity. Segmented sleep, on the contrary, is now relayed to the rank of health disorders. The performer tries to revive this ancestral practice where dreams are shared and the boundaries between wakefulness and sleep are erased by promoting the state of semi-consciousness. The performer resumes this process but does so by sight of the public, because during her sleep and during the story, she is filmed and the video is visible on live streaming platforms. At the same time, the discussion focuses on the need to communicate with a deceased person, a need repressed by today’s society, and the criticism of social media, YouTube-like channels and the “live” presence of bloggers. Western European society hardly recognizes the possibility of feeling the presence on our side of a nearer or nearer disappeared whereas, for example, polls conducted in the United States show that a quarter of American citizens believe in ghosts, regardless their religious affiliation. Communication with the dead in society is accepted only as a therapeutic issue. The choice of YouTube seems relevant because it has become one of the main mediums of communication. The site has developed tremendously, particularly with the cosmetics industry, which allows a variety of beauty reviews and especially unboxings where the channel animators introduce subscribers to the contents of beauty boxes that they discover by opening the boxes in front of the camera in real time. The performer thus proposes an unboxing of her unconscious. At first, the artist allows the public to observe her in her sleep, a moment of vulnerability she shares with strangers. The performance takes place over several consecutive nights. The performer is filmed all the time she sleeps, the recording stops only when she is awake.
BIO: Anna Ten is an actress and performer. She graduated from the Faculty of Foreign Language and Literature of Zaporizhya State University (Ukraine) and the Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris III Theater Faculty (Master 1 and 2 in Performance Economics). In 2014, she co-founded a theater company, Campe. In her artistic work, she deals with issues of feminism, male society, censorship and civil disobedience. Since 2016, she collaborates with the Cultural Center of Ukraine in Paris and sets up conferences-debate “Dialogues with time”. She also teaches at the Ecole Supérieure d’Architecture Paris La Villette. ARTIST WEBSITE
Performance – 10th February 2018 at 11 pm UTC: