existência / existence_reprise

Concept and direction: João Fiadeiro

Performers and researchers: Sílvia Pinto Coelho, Luca Bellezze, Luara Learth Moreira, Julia Salem, João Estevens, Joana Von Mayer Trindade, Iván Haidar and Julián Pacomio

In the frame off the event  “Ação / Decisão” at CIAJG in Guimarães, commissioned by Mariana Brandão

Photo by Jorge Gonçalves, Performance Existência (Existence), 2002

EXISTENCE was premiered at the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris in 2002 where, for the first time, Real Time Composition was performed live. The protocol of the proposition consisted in placing the performers in front of an audience without any type of score, whilst refusing the idea that it was an “instant composition”. The decisions taken by the performers  on the spot that conditioned the direction of the event, the relations created and the sense of the emerging dramaturgy, were rehearsed by the performers until exhaustion, according to absolutely rigorous criteria and premises that characterize the practice of Composition in Real Time. The play placed  performers and audience in a place of radical experience in relation to the idea of “present” (and presence) and the experience of not knowing together.

Video-still from the film “Ação/Decisão” from Filipe Bessa Vieira

In this new version for  a museum, that we called EXISTENCE_reprise, the spectacle gives place to an exhibition (for the simple fact that takes place in a gallery) and the spectator becomes a visitor who, unlike the original version, has access to the general context. But that’s all. They do not know for certain the status of what they are seeing (if it’s a performance, a rehearsal, an interval, etc.) or if the “event” is ongoing, just ended or it’s about to begin.

EXISTENCE moved in the frontier between process and product, work and essay, action and thought. It is this same hybridity one can find in this “reprise” where during 5 hours in a row participants remain in the museum, in a continuous state of in-betweenness, navigating from ON (action) and OFF (preparation), with the only purpose of mixing the two states to the point where one can’t distinguish the guest from the host. And, in the process, create a g.host.


Film-document done by Filipe Bessa Vieira during the exhibition held at Centro Internacional de Arte José de Guimarães (CIAJG) between 24th of April and 13th of May, 2018.