Today, in these early days of the 21st century, the most common observation is transformation itself: cultural, technological, social, political, ecological and economical. With every surface potentially: lens and mirror, every moment potential hinge and eclipse, every person potential actor and audience, the geographies we are navigating contain multiple forms of experience that at once: collapse and expand the spaces between us. We are in the midst of re-alignments and re-articulations of every aspect of our lives and there are people and institutions across all disciplines and across the globe that are increasingly confronted by the need for new models of asking the extraordinarily complex questions of our time.
Hinges, Mirrors & Eclipses was grounded in the idea that the spatial, poetic and material imaginations provide a unique means of registering and creating transformation, of engaging the world and making a contribution. Working from the principle that our capacity to act in the world is rooted in our capacity to recognize and comprehend transformation, the workshop covered a large arc of content, asking questions of our world, our disciplines and our humanity.
Though art, architecture, poetry, film, theater, music, science, technology, finance, politics, industry, biology and literature, we began with a close examination of the nature of transformation. Our initial discussions focused on turning points: from the innovations of the elevator, train and telegraph, to the invention of modern corporations, banking and electricity; from the Copernican turn, to Darwin and the transformations of Yoruba polytheism; from the birth of the Greek theatre to the emergence of photography and film. The conversations explored many forms of knowledge, agency, action and transformation.
From these initial conversations we began to create actions and interactions: physical and performative works, words and gestures, improvisations and inventions. These evolved and emerged as a field of inquiry and agency, a shared body of individual and collective works asking the questions: Hinges Mirrors & Eclipses.
Photos by Pedro Wainer and Natasha Holm. Anthony Staiti and David Gersten