FaceBooth : a series of encounters through maskPerformance
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This conference-demonstration is an introduction to the project FaceBooth, an artwork inspired by an exercise of the Clown through mask technique from Richard Pochinko (1945-1989), Canadian visionary nativefrom Manitoba, who grew passionate about theater and circus from an early age. In the 70’s, he birthed an approach to clowning with the objective of trying to develop a clowning technique that would combine the European, American and Indigenous visions of this art in order to respond to the sociocultural needs of the new Canadian generation.
The speaker-performer Catherine Cédilot, assisted by Maryline Fournier, will paint the picture of her vision and approach as well as present the particular Pochinko’s method of making and wearing the mask with the distinct goal of seeing one’s inner clown blossom. The origins of « FaceBooth : a series of encounters through mask », an artwork based on an exercise from Pochinko’s curriculum, will also be discussed and allow the public to experience it. It consists of an interactive performance device in which a member of the audience is invited to have his or her portrait taken, as used to be done in those photo booths (and still is) in subway stations or malls, or even like going to a tarot reader for predictions about the future, for simple enjoyment. Through touch, sound and physicality, an exchange develops deeper than visually, psychologically and even logically. A stunning transformation takes place and imparts the attitude of the person touched, to the person touching. A portrait with blurred, playful and poetic contours emerges. Like two fortune tellers, Marilyne and Catherine claim to be able to reveal hints of truth through an invented ritual act that is not scientific, but tickles the imagination.
This proposition is the result of Catherine Cédilot’s Master’s research work at UQAM École supérieure de théâtre. Marilyne Fournier had the opportunity to take part in her last phase of experimentation in April of 2019.
Biographies of performing artists
Catherine Cédilot is a researcher and practitioner of live arts. She studied the Meisner technique at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York in 2004-2005, and then became interested in different forms of expression: Decroux mime, clown, butoh, and art performance. Since 2009, she has accumulated collaborations in all these disciplines, among other with Parabolik Guérilla Théâtre, Pirata Théâtre, Peter James, Guillaume Van Roberge, Catherine Tardif, Nancy Belzile, Roxane Chamberland, Olivier Sylvestre, Rasili Botz, Catherine Lavoie-Marcus, Sébastien Cliche, Julie Favreau, Mobile Home, the TouVa collective, the Tôle collective and Cirque Éloize. She puts dialogue to game and clown exercises in order to develop a training curriculum for actors, creative interpreters and all live art artists.
Marilyne Fournier is a gardener and performing artist. Graduated in visual arts in 2012 and horticulture in 2018, she lives and works in Montreal. In her most recent production, she simultaneously developed the practice of corporal writing and the installation of evolving visual environments. Her research addresses the concept of persona and the flow of momentary landscapes. Her exploration of live arts (puppetry, mime, art performance and butoh), took her across Québec, to France and to the United States as part of training projects and creative residences. She has presented her work, among other places, at RIPA, the Fonderie Darling, the Eastern Bloc in Montreal, at Est-Nord-Est, at Vrille in the Lower Saint-Lawrence and more recently, at Majlis Art Garden in Toronto.