The relation between performing arts and public space is not a new concept. From its first inception in rituals, performing arts have nearly always taken place in public spaces such as town squares, designated places for celebrations. The introduction of venues into performing arts has occurred much later on. In the twentieth century, first with the avantgarde theatre movements and later with the performance arts and fluxus, performing arts turned “back into the streets” accompanied with artistic and/or political manifestos.
PERFORMART Conference takes lead from the ever-existing relation between the performing arts and public space and focuses mostly on the culminating new performing arts events, festivals, celebrations that use public space, and concentrates on the confrontations, problems and opportunities between the two. However, it also wants to explore the exchange and dialogue between the designated spaces for performing arts such as theatre venues, theatre halls, alternative performing arts spaces and public space. PERFORMART also encourages the participants to reflect upon various possible takes on the term “public space” rather than considering it a mere physical space/venue.
Can the increasing use of new media, digital technologies and multimedia installations in traditional theatre-making such as video art, web spaces and free-to-access online shows be considered an orientation towards the idea of public space?
Can new theatre writing that tackles with societal and political issues and themes of our zeitgeist such as minority group visibility, social inclusion, occupy movements and the idea of congregation of individuals through social media channels turn a conventional physical venue into a public space?
While PERFORMART aims at exploring above stated themes, questions and the dialectics between performing arts and the public space, it also welcomes papers, individual and/or collective workshops revolving around the current advancements and trends in the fields of contemporary theatre, music, dance, performing arts festivals and performance in general.
PERFORMART’14 Conference, hosted by Istanbul Bilgi University and organized by DAKAM (Eastern Mediterranean Academic Research Center), will take place on 20-21 December 2014. More information can be found on conference website.