Attending to the Glitch: Sand in the Eyes
Rabih Mroué in Interview with Lynette Hunter
Rabih Mroué is a Lebanese performer who lives in both the Lebanon and in Berlin, Germany. Rabih Mroué and Lynette Hunter met twice in Berlin, February 2018, to discuss the lecture performance Sand in the Eyes. Lynette Hunter subsequently watched the performance at the conference of the Interweaving Performance Cultures Centre, held in June 2018. In the interview, Mroué points out the direct similarity between the way that film techniques are co-opted for political purposes in videos of execution and the way that governments co-opt alternative strategies generated by artists, so that much artmaking either has to create techniques difficult to co-opt or build in a process by which they can be un-co-opted. The commentary that introduces Mroué’s text of Sand in the Eyes selects points from the interview that focus on the form that his critical analysis takes—the glitched “lecture.” Performers are usually aware of the ease with which the materiality of their work becomes appropriated, reduced to predictable material, and loses its ability to unsettle social, aesthetic, and political conventions. Mroué’s comments on his lecture form unfold how it incorporates a critical analysis of the artwork that is made into the artwork itself, and can delay, re-direct, elude, and glitch attempts to normalize its political impact; therefore, it can insist on the materiality of the artmaking and resist co-optation.
Copyright (c) 2020 Rabih Mroué, Lynette Hunter
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