DARKNESS VISIBLE 9 days intensive workshop
April 19, 2023
9 days intensive

Darkness Visible: 30 artist participants, 7 facilitators, 9 immersive workshop days which also include critiques, one-on-one meetings, themed seminar days, and a finals pageant. At Communitism Athens, Greece, 19–27/04/ 2023.

This 9 days intensive will hold a multi-faceted vision of how performance can be embodied. We will work to develop your practice and build context. We will strongly encourage a research-based practice, and through teaching and experiential workshops we will look at the structure of opera, greek tragedy, passion plays, psychic surgery, burlesque, live sex show, corporal punishment, mortification of the flesh. We will engage with a measure of psychobabble, “archetype work”, certain expressions of catharsis, query, and philosophical ideas, the polemic.

In this process we hope we can all enter the double mode of orchestrating our own work and being present and bodies and talent to support each others work during this time.

Additionally we will come together on a few themes, such as an inter-departmental “accessing ecstasy” day, which will be the theme of our finals pageant. We will have sessions for all, as well as breakaway sessions and research/development times.  Finally, we will end the workshop in a structured pageant, free and open to the public.

Ron Athey: research and development consultation on overall projects, automatism, performing ecstasy and other altered states

I’ve been making performance work (in all directions from actionism, solo work, vocal/sound, movement, theater) since 1980. I am interested in how to bring the unseen and unfelt to life on ‘stage’ and what that means. Performance is a ghetto in the ghetto of non blue-chip art, and such, i’m a huge believe in self-producing, DIY, collectives, etc. We will look at bypassing the gatekeepers.

Hermes Pittakos:  character development/masking/prop making 

I am a  craftsman, performer, and coach for creatives, with a background in theatrical makeup and art direction. In my collaborative practice, I accompany artists and performers, both assisting them in the realization and production of their work. My sculptural work play a twofold role, at once enveloping the body of a performer, etching its surface and extending its contours as well as manifesting and transforming into your character.  it’s then often uprooted and presented in its own right, as sculpture, performance or installation. My research is rooted in themes of transformation and rebirth, mythology, rituals, and the psyches healing abilities, folding in my own personal experiences of overcoming creative blockages and re-invention using these techniques.

Offerings :
I will be facilitating any artists wanting to experiment and make stuff that can accompany or elevate/ transform their performance. We will have access to a Craft making studio, Wood / Tools studio, and costume making studio.
We will be working together on Prop making, mask making, character design, costume making and creation.
There will also be Individual 30 min Creative coaching sessions for those that may need it. 

Federica Dauri /  performance artist, choreographer, and visual artist. 

My work investigates corporality through an intimate and personal gaze. My attempt therefore is to place the body at the center of my performativity, not only in its ways of presenting itself or in its possibilities of acting, but above all in its research on its own identity. A subjectivity and an identity that are incorporated, that are not recognized only in the physical body, but also in the imaginaries they produce. The body is driven to be experienced as an intimate and concrete reality, as a living form that moves, mobile and immobile, sensitive and insensitive. Attempting to subtract the body from ideal forms, and make it break through new forms that challenge conventions, becoming an experiment on the physical and psychic limits of identity. A body in the making, in continuous transformation, in a perpetual motion, which pushes towards the unknown, the obscure beyond, the hidden, the indistinct, the elusive, it is here that the performance truly reformulates feelings and actions.
My offering for the upcoming workshop:
Investigating performative practices of Butō Dance, Eurythmy. Intercepting the energetic and creative potential of the human being. Awakening the body to its most subtle resources, activating its intuitive intelligence.
The breath as an essential key to get in touch with the subtle body, permeating and shaping the body matter from within.
Through profound listening to the inner body, an awareness of self is created which provides information on what the body is, on what the body can do and on how to interact and build relationships with others.

Juliana Snapper / Operatic Voice Coach

Juliana Snapper is an opera singer, voice researcher and artist. Much of her work is sparked by the question: Was the operatic voice embalmed in the 1920s or is it still a living medium? She explores this by challenging her own entrained body: For example, using inversion to initiate internal gravitational shifts to the vocal mechanism, changing the acoustic ecology (singing underwater), using architecture (buildings made into megaphones), re-routing the compositional process to develop a  “Listening Vocality”, and collaborating on DSP platforms that enable more nimble expressive interactive models. Many of her projects engage amateur or “non-singers” and she enjoys working voices that thrive outside the conventional reams of beauty: Queer and trans-voices, “older voices”, and injured or just morbidly shy voices. For DARKNESS VISIBLE, Snapper offers techniques to cultivate the body-as-sound, and frameworks to activate the voice as a material, visceral component of visual, gestic, sculptural and conceptual work.

Sunrise collective voicing. As Orpheus sang the sun into the sky… until he entered the underworld, which can be the territory of the rest of the day.
Open group sessions:(90-min to 3 hours), These workshops present conceptual frameworks for re-thinking vocality, and practical exercises for working with one’s voice through these speculative frameworks
The voice as the inner self/real self/ secret exposed:
The voice beyond language/interstitial language/hysteric body speaking
The voice as primary body (manifest in sound waves vs light waves visual, gestic)
The voice as erotic, always involving more than one body (also political)
The voice as descriptive of space, always in relation to place
Individual sessions: (Daily for those focusing on voice)
90-minute deep dives some days, 30-minute check-ins.

Diana Torres

Diana J. Torres (Madrid, 1981) is an anarchofeminist activist who has focused her work on the body and sexuality. In 2001 she created the term “Pornoterrorism” which she will continue to develop until today as a multifunctional tool/weapon against the patriarchal capitalist system. On a scenic level her performances use resources such as poetry, postpornography, live sex actions, blood, intracorporal microphones, among others. Diana’s performances are rituals of revenge and healing, and usually involve the audience to participate.
She is also the author of three books (Pornoterrorismo, Coño Potens and Vomitorium) and has given multiple workshops and lectures on vulvar ejaculation, performance and pornographic writing.
She has been living in Mexico City for the last 10 years.

I am planning to offer the following, categorized into those 5 groups:
– How to engage sexuality, desire and one’s own body as sources of stage energy.
– How to use intra-body sound devices to make “the body speak”.
– Rage and revenge as an engine of creativity. Techniques to develop healing mechanisms through the manifestation of hatred in public.
– Ethics in performance: ways of acting from feminism and anarchism. Review of the terms cultural appropriation, racism, sexism, etc, and how absolutely NOT everything is valid in performance.
– Poetic language and use of the poetic voice on stage.

Michele Occelli/ Hypnotist

My expertise is in working with both complex therapy, creative practices, mind/body communication and altered states. I am trained in Ericksonian hypnotherapy, Generative Coaching, neuroaffective psychology and group mindfulness. I have a strong philosophical and theoretical background, coupled with long term body and meditation practices, and both clinical and life experience with altered states. 

Possible offerings:
We will work through group processes based on the needs and skills of the group – possible elements/formats will be hypnosis/trance, automatic/ideomotor processes, group mindfulness, visualization, somatic tracking, PMR/ breath work. Additionally I will be offering individual one to one sessions of hypnotherapy to enhance resources and help you connect with your creative source and flow. 

Morning session : Different kind of guided hypnosis / meditation exercises to facilitate both group dynamics and mind/body/creative attunement
daytime: when appropriate bringing together conceptual framing and practice based exercises
One to one : depending on the actual need and context of the individual, we will work through specific creative/emotional/cognitive/somatic issues, within the boundaries and framework of the workshop intents and goals. I will also offer individual assessments aimed at seeing how the person can work afterwards, what tools they can explore, to help further expand their process.