Iver Findlay talks about “fractured bones/let’s get lost” at Performing Garage

Findlay//Sandsmark is the Norway-based performance company created by acclaimed theatre and video artist and Collapsable Giraffe co-founder Iver Findlay and choreographer and dancer Marit Sandsmark (Artist of the Year, Stavanger, Norway, 2006).  With “fractured bones/ let’s get lost”, they conspire with performers Eric Dyer of Radiohole and video game modder Victor E. Morales, collecting and culling impulses about disappearing.  Culturebot emailed with Iver to get some insight into the collaboration and performance.

when and where did you start making work and how does this piece fit into your creative trajectory?

I started making work with dance artist Marit Sandsmark and music artist Pål Asle Pettersen 2 or 3 years ago in Norway, where we are all currently based for the most part. For me, it was a fresh start and new beginning,  and  it came out of a response to previous work I had done with Collapsable (sic) Giraffe, and the corner we as a collective had painted ourselves into that was inescapable.

I was interested in the freedom I perceived in the frame of movement based performance, that wasn’t stuck in the narrow context of experimental theater or whatever the kids are calling it these days, and found Marit and Pål Asle to be inspiring and wanted to make performative work with them. I believe with this piece we have started to figure out what we can all bring to the table, and have allowed ourselves the freedom to work outside the normal classifications and take on concepts that for me had normally been looked down upon.

We have also made it a point to ask other incredible artist to collaborate with us on a project by project basis and outside their normal settings, and it is great to get to work with Eric Dyer and Victor Morales on this one, Diane Madden on the last one, and Young Jean Lee on the next one.

how did you and Marit meet and begin collaborating?

We met at a bar in Norway while watching some kick-ass analog synth band that I can’t remember the name of, and for all I know maybe Pal Asle was in. (Its a little hazy that way). I saw her work, and thought she was an amazing presence and wanted to work with her further.

how does this work relate to the work you’ve done with Collapsable Giraffe and Radiohole?

I don’t know. It is a departure in my mind. Especially in reference to the Collapsable (sic) Giraffe, I think it it gets away from the trappings of collective based work, where egos and ownership aren’t on the line at every minute. I feel like we are trying to work in a way that is outside of contexts and typical labels while exploring things that interest us.

I think it relates in terms of where I come from, but it is also a big departure since I feel like I am equally working with several other ‘free’ collaborators. We have no commitment or trappings that we are making something that will last to become the next Wooster Group or what have you. We are a couple of individuals living in Norway, that are inviting other individuals in to make work with us on a project by project basis. No defined collective aesthetic. No trope to feel beholden to.  It feels much freer and looser than much of the work I have done previously and I like this aspect.

the performance is described as a “a slippery and nebulous take on futurism” – what do you mean by this? What is the relationship between this work and Marinetti? Or do you have a different reference point for the term “futurism”?

I was waiting for someone to ask me if by futurism, we were connecting to the futurist…italian or russian or otherwise. (The bs I wrote for the blurb/ press release makes mention of futurism, not futurist) And the answer would be no, at least not consciously…we are referencing the literal definition…. futurism |ˈfyoō ch əˌrizəm| noun: concern with events and trends of the future or which anticipate the future. And well, with that definition how could anyone have anything but a nebulous and slippery hold on it?

Your description sets up a number of dialectics: presence/absence, permanence/ephemerality, object/image, natural/synthetic, how does this relate to the films you reference and why those films in particular?

Well….let’s see……we were interested in some of these dialectics as concepts and inspirations as core proponents from specifically the flitcraft parable from the Hammett novel and alphaville. (just to note….the flitcraft parable isn’t in the Bogie movie version (Bogie’s got a boogey)…as I remember however it was in the first film adaptation…’satan was a lady’ or something.  Bizarrely enough we went to Oslo to have a residency and finish and premiere the show at Black Box theater 1.5 weeks after the terrible Brevik thing had happened there, and were a little unnerved by the fucked coincidence of the knights of the templar reference from maltese and brevik’s use of the same phrase to describe his brand of white power. Ohhh…relational aesthetics…

how does Chet Baker fit into all of this?

Well I love her work, and she wrote a great song for the band come, ‘let’s get lost…not like last time, when we got found, let’s get lost we can’t go back to anywhere’…..  15 years ago the Collapsable (sic) Giraffe made a show (damfino) at the performing garage that coincidentally Ruud and Eric worked on also in which Will Oldham came to see after I met him at Uncle Tony’s on Mulberry…so my big hope is that Thalia Zedik or Chris Brokaw will show up to this showing…seems right somehow.

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“fractured bones/ let’s get lost”
By: Iver Findlay//Marit Sandsmark with Eric Dyer and Victor E. Morales
Set design assistance and consultant: Ruud van den Akker
Marit Sandsmark’s costume by Mia Koch

Performances of “fractured bones/ let’s get lost” will take place Wednesday – Sunday, September 5 – 9 at 8:00 P.M., at The Performing Garage (33 Wooster Street, New York, NY 10013).  Running time: Exactly 60 minutes. All tickets are $20 and may be purchased by calling 212-966-3651 or emailing mail@thewoostergroup.org

Supported by Arts Council Norway, Fond for Lyd og Bilde, City of Stavanger-kulturbyfondet, FFUK, Rogaland Fylkeskommune, and STIKK. Co-produced by: Black Box Teater, Oslo, Tou Scene, Stavanger and RAS (Regional Arena for Samtidsdans), Sandnes

“fractured bones/ let’s get lost” was first performed and co-produced by Oslo’s Black Box Teater as part of the Ultima Festival in 2011.

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