Bestiaire of Tonguelets
2017 / 2018 (in progress)
film, installation, live work,
sound pieces, scores
Pernod Ricard Fellowship 2017
Villa Vassilieff, Paris
During the first part of her residency in April 2017, Mercedes developed a research into several artistic figures and trajectories, through meetings with art historians and critics, visits to museums and archive, and long strolls through the city and its underground — which she perceived as a place of collective resistance, where bodies perform differently from overground. She wrote a diary, hells, smells & shame, which served both as a draft script.
During the second part of her residency in January & February 2018, Mercedes developed a script for a filmed performance, based on a series of working sessions with choreographer Pauline Simon, Jean-Baptiste Veyret-Logerias (performer and performance maker, and a practitioner of perceptive somatic-psychoeducation), performer Emmanuelle Lafon, theorist Myriam Suchet and curator Virginie Bobin (Villa Vassilieff) ; as well as on collective workshops with students from Paris 8 University, Paris 3 – Sorbonne Nouvelle University, and Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme. Additional workshops took place at Cité Internationale des Arts on February 2 & 3 as part of We Are Not the Number that We Think We Are, a 36-hour event produced by Bétonsalon – Center for Art and Research & Villa Vassilieff.
Mercedes also produced a series of props and « visual mnemonics » in collaboration with artist and designer Lucile Sauzet.
Parts of these activities were recorded in collaboration with film-maker Hélène Harder, with the aim of producing a film in the course of the year 2018.
About Hells, Smells & Shame
Notes from April 2017
“(…) we feel intoxicated. our bodies feel intoxicated. our parisian bodies, tourist bodies, homeless bodies, european bodies, african bodies, foreign bodies, digital bodies, latino bodies, heteronormative bodies, old bodies, soft bodies, hard bodies, young bodies, queer bodies, worked-out bodies, fancy bodies, dirty bodies, sweaty bodies, all these different and individual bodies feel intoxicated. we start to vibrate. maybe not all of them do, but i want to imagine that all of them do. and they do. all kinds of different bodies down here are being shaken at the same time.”
“about hell, smells & shame is a diary that I wrote during the first part of my residency at Villa Vassilieff in April 2017. The diary addresses different thoughts related to the body and affects, the senses and the underground as a place for resistance. Referencing the work by Argentine-French performance artist Lea Lublin, the series of enigmatic tapestries La dame à la licorne, the literary aesthetics of the Neobarroso Rioplatense, Chilean reggaeton, imaginary characters and vagabonds from the infra-world, and terms such as anthropophagic subjectivity and auto-historias – coined by Suely Rolnik and Gloria Anzaldúa respectively -, the project unfolds during the second part of the residency -in January and February 2018- in a group of works that develops in different stages. The different stages include a performance, a series of scripts, video/s and sound pieces. First, the diary is a starting point for making the scripts that accompanied by images and symbols, will become spatial modules or props for the performance, as well as ayuda-memorias (or visual mnemonics) for the choreography and the dramaturgy of the work. Second, the scripts and performance will inform the development of the rest of the works, the video/s and sound pieces, to be produced in a later stage. A group of collaborators including a choreographer, a vocalist, a video-editor and performance artists will also be part of the process.”
Bestiaire of Tonguelets is part of the exhibition A Fleshly School of Poetry curated by Daniela Brunand and Christain Falsnaes at D21 Kunstraum Leipzig. 12 April – 21 May, 2018. For more information please visit this link.