Circus at the end of the world

Just nu jobbar Ruby Rose tillsammans med John Paul Zaccarini i hans artistiska research project Circus at The end of the world. Så här skriver artistens själv om projektet:

The Concept of (The Ethics of) Circus at the End of the World.

This is an artistic research project based on a dialectic of the relational dynamics of mastery and failure in circus practice and production, where one of the results is a commercially viable production called Circus at the End of the World. The overspill of the research – that which the aesthtic artefact cannot cope with – results in workshops, participatory seminar performances, University courses and publication of articles to expand the field at the level of intellectual production. The banner for this series of results is called The Ethics of Circus.

Circus technique requires success, showing, proving – never drop, crash, fall, fail, achieve perfect shape, speed, timing, strength and conform to social ideals of gendered beauty. Potency, vitality, achievement, mastery and winning are the gold standard in circus. This denotes a certain position in relation to the ”other” or spectator. What happens when these performances (of circus, masculinity, mastery) are pushed to their logical limits so that they fail and become something else? What sort of relation would emerge?

John Paul Zaccarini’s doctoral research at DOCH/Stockholm University in the practices of circus and Lacanian psychoanalysis resulted in the methodology called Circoanalysis – a process facilitating the unconscious of circus to emerge within its subjects. The circus had a lot in common with the analytic clinic – a confessional space for the artist, a therapeutic holding space for overwhelming past experiences, a daily practice of homeopathic trauma. What was absent from the artists in analysis was any consideration of the ”other”- the spectator – as an enabling condition and motivation for their actions. While they were busy creating ”characters” to justify their craft (and perhaps mask their more serious intentions) – sailors, mermaids, cleaners, bunny rabbits, superheroes – they were repressing the real (unconscious) contents of circus, that which it actually knows something about i.e. desire, masochism, death drive, jouissance (the Lacanian term for an anxiety producing, excessive satisfaction bordering on pain) hysterical rebellion, fantasy, obsessive compulsion and a manic hyper-achievement/narcissistic omnipotence covering a deep (occasionaly suicidal) melancholia. Circus is a field of crisis, not cuteness. The spectator also knows (unconsciously) more about these than what it means to be a bunny rabbit or mermaid. All these psychoanalytic terms have something to do with the ”other” and the discursive field that sits (uncomfortably) alongside psychoanalysis as a discourse of the other par excellence, is ethics