Lines in the Desert

Autralian Center for Contemporary Art

Peter King and his company, Going Through Stages, have developed a reputation during the last year or so for staging conceptually complex and challenging performance pieces. Recent productions include Axes Edge, 1990, which took on the relation between architecture and performance, and The Butterfly Effect, 1990, (staged at the Melbourne city baths), which attempted to wrap speech and gesture around the scientific theories of randomness.

The “lines in the desert” that name this production are notated in a double-edge x on the floor of the gallery space; under the supervision of codesigner Peter Corrigan, they are marked with tape onto the bodies of the seven performers before each show; and they are spoken and exchanged and gestured throughout an intense, often incantatory, performance that lasts some 80 minutes. The desert itself is present as both locus and a metaphor. Desert-places that

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