Call for Proposals: Performance Research Vol. 23, No. 8 (December 2018)
Proposal Deadline: 10 February 2018 (see below for details)
Of all the concepts introduced by the Situationist International (SI), the idea of la dérive or drifting is the one, perhaps, that has proved most amenable to performance practitioners. One thinks, here, for instance, of performance artists and activist groups, such as Stalker, Wrights & Sites, and Laura Oldfield Ford who have used walking as a practice to explore the psychogeography of various types of urban landscapes; of Marina Abramovich’s epic journey along the Great Wall of China; of Graeme Miller’s haunted London in the audio walk Linked; of Rimini Protokoll’s voyages throughout Europe; of Janet Cardiff’s urban disruptions where the foot become an ear; of Francis Alys’ pharmaceutical-inspired strolls through Copenhagen; of Lone Twin’s actions, endurance work and bike performances; of Dee Heddon and Misha Myers’ ‘Walking Library’; of Mike Pearson’s and Mike Brooke’s static and assisted drifts in Cardiff with the disabled performer Lyn Levett; of Simon Whitehead’s stalking of urban foxes and group howlings; and, of course, of the recent explosion in feminist, post-colonialist and queer walking practices performed by (amongst others) Les Sapeurs, Nando Messias, Rosana Cade, Clare Qualmann and Amy Sharrocks, and Cathy Turner. In all of these performances and interventions, the drift, in accordance with the SI’s own concept, is employed as a spatial practice, a method for subverting normative notions of dwelling and territory. While we, too, are interested in how drifting and journeying may provide new and alternative insights into how neo-liberal space is gendered, racialised, sexualised and colonized, we are also concerned with how drifting may allow us to reconsider the political and aesthetic function of different art forms and everyday practices. What may it mean, for instance, to make architecture, language, photography, dance and painting drift? And how may this expanded practice of drifting disclose new possibilities for thinking about theatricality and performance in ways that are intimately connected to the medium of theatre but not necessarily limited to it? By interrogating the drift as a theatrical or performative concept, our intention in this issue of Performance Research is to engage creatively with the ideas of the SI, as opposed to looking for some authentic or pure actualization of them. To borrow something from Gilles Deleuze, we are interested in making ‘alliances’ with the SI, not in establishing an ‘affiliation’ grounded on some problematic notion of fidelity. In that respect, our aim is to show how the drift, like theatre itself, is a practice that is always contemporary, that is to say, untimely, never in step with its historical moment, and always in the process of being invented differently. Indeed, by theatricalizing the drift, we seek a critical and creative historiography that would not imprison the SI in the past, but rather would open their ideas to the future—to make ‘their drift drift’, so to speak.
Topics for discussion may include:
Drifting and Cruising
• Proposals: 10 February 2018
All proposals, submissions and general enquiries should be sent direct to the journal at: firstname.lastname@example.org
General guidelines for submitting a proposal: