I was yours and you were mine

Slightly delayed update this month, I apologise for that, we have all been snowed under lately with loads of seperate projects. That shouldn’t be an excuse though to not report on  the wonderful evening of the 14th February at the Old Fire Station.  Last Playground was truly full of surprises for us and for you. First of all, it was the first time since we started Playground that we had the Gallery space all for ourselves, which was brilliant, and it gave the whole evening a slightly more event-like quality. ALSO two of the acts last time where artists that we also met there for the first time. It’s such an unusual feeling, a mixture of excitement and anticipation, when you organise an event and even you have no idea what *exactly* is going to happen!

As most of you already know, we like starting the evening with a game and this time we really went to town with that. Everyone was split into groups, each group randomly got one object, they had 2 minutes to make a piece using this object, the piece could be anuthing: sculpture, performance, music, instalkation anything really and it had to be presented to everyone else in less than 1 minute! Everything sounds ridiculously quick, right? I have to tell you guys, it was amazing. Something weird hapoens when you have to work with people you’ve never met before and respind to an object you’ve never seen before in such an incredibly short period of time. There is no time to rationalise, there’s only time to do. We had such a great time seeing what everyone came up with!

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First *proper* act of the evening was Veronica who was going to share her toys but decided to do an uncooked instead, but we didn’t know that. She came in wearing this extraordinary costume, the head was particularly big and soft and cartoon-like, and it was intriguing and slightly unsettling the way she entered the room, dressed as a big, soft, cushion-y mexican doll. We didn’t know what to expect. Then she stood infront of us, took her head off ( of course, I mean the DOLL head, not her own actual flesh and bones kind of head) and talked to us about the project that she has been working own regarding a mexican doll and how she inspired people to make stories about this doll using the very elegantly simple introduction “Once upon a time there was a mexican doll that…” . It was quite incredible to see how people respinded to that almost as if they were unwittingly investing a part of themselves into the inanimate doll.

After that the Playmasters had a special slot in the evening. We have been planning this for quite sometime and, seriously, if you weren’t there you missed the beginning of a big social revolution. I am not even joking. We created a relatively elaborate performance in order to introduce a new idea into Playground.

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The idea goes somehow like that: We are all here. We all have things that we know and things that we don’t know. Things that we’re good at and things that we’re not that good at but we would like to be. We need things. We can offer things. There are things that could be very important for our practice right now. There are things that we could teach, show, give, explain without giving it a second thought. Why don’t we just help eachother out?! When I called it a social revolution I didn’t mean that I  a global over encompassing kind of way. I meant it in a local and art based kind of way. We gave everyone a domino. This domino is a Seed. You can give your Seed to someone in exchange for something. But if you want another Seed, then you have to offer something to someone else who wants to give you a Seed. It’s a very simple and really unsophisticated way of exploring what can happen when different people with a variety of skills and knowledge and experience come together. You can use the Playground facebook group to continue all these conversations and offers and wants that sprung up that night. And whoever doesn’t have a Seed yet, you can pick one next time.

And of course after the Playmasters finished their round we had a break. Because, that’s what we do. 2 rounds and then a break. You must already know that by now.

Everyone came back into the room only to see Rob, having already taken his top off by now (no, really, look, I have a picture)-

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Here. Ok? Good. The loveable Rob had an unusual collection of devices in the table, microphones, telephones (yes, the old fashioned one that you plug on the wall, not the one you put into your pocket and go out) and his performance had an unexpectedly dynamic of poetic and child-like qualities that made everyone there going between audible “ooh”s and serious wtf moments. It was a really energetic end to the evening.

Some things up there might not make complete sense and some formatting might be all over the place, but please, forgive me, I have been working tto much this week and my brain has turned into a jelly. I hope I’ll be more together next time but even if I’m not I’m sure you can still fimd a way to not hate me for it.

Love to all.

Stav.

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