Síncrono | do registro ao fluxo, by Flávio Rodrigues at Rua das Gaivotas 6

Síncrono | do registro ao fluxo connects drawing (register) and performance (body). All of this performance’s actions build an object or composition. The body’s performativity submits itself to its materiality and potentialities: here everything is drawing. Creation and interpretation by Flávio Rodrigues, gestural/movement support by Bruno Senune, co-production by ADA Gallery and Arte Total. It is also supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. Síncrono | do registro ao fluxo was presented between March 24 and 26 at Rua das Gaivotas 6.

The artistic object displayed depends on the performer’s constant activation. His movements always trigger a gesture. Flávio Rodrigues’ gestures are always born from the relationship with a certain object, adding a new becoming or potency to the object he relates to. The list of objects used is extremely varied: pigmented sand, a thread of lace, pieces of pigmented fabric, scraps of paper, wire, scraps of wood leftover from his father’s workshop.

The choreography is subdued to matter and materials. To borrow the performer’s words, the objects he presents us with have an “non-extractivist character, recycling, offering, collecting and gleaning in drifting processes”. The qualities of these objects are key to this piece. The performativity evoked comes from this rather than from movement or choreography. I would say that this piece’s performativity has something sculptural about it.

The artist says that the performance and the “architected devices” (in other words, the choreography) manifest themselves as “codices” or “ritualistic actions”. Again, the word ritual and ritualistic actions are a theme addressed by the performing arts. This trend is recurrent a bit everywhere. The performing arts have used the occult, magic and spirituality as part of their artistic object, whether on a conceptual or movement level. Consider the research of Artaud, Grotowski, The Living Theatre and the recent work of artists such as Mariana Tegner Barros, Mark Tompkins and Meg Stuart. The word ritual is often mentioned in a biased way or, at least, de-contextualized. Ritual or ritualised actions should not be invoked gratuitously. However, this does not mean that this performance is gratuitous: it is not. I just want to underline that these are specific areas of knowledge, which cannot be approached outside their ontology. We cannot have the presumption that doing an action with a certain intention is in itself something ritualistic.

The care and attention of the performer’s gestures stimulate the spectator, whom he calls “frequency”. The delay of his movement and temporal intervals stimulate the spectator’s curiosity. The analogy of the spectator as frequency is quite apt. If we think of the performative space as ephemeral, outside the common time, activated through singular and particular presuppositions, we can also imagine that the frequencies (the spectators) in the room are the food for the atmosphere being created. Flávio Rodrigues activates the performative space of Síncrono | do registro ao fluxo at the very beginning of the action, by hitting a cardboard cylinder with a stick. He moves around the room with this gesture, manipulating the sound’s intensities and resonances. The repetition of the beat, the loop, activates our senses, bringing us into a more attentive state. According to the creator, time in this performance “is a living, mutable and cosmic presence”. Its waves are spiralling and do not match the world of speed or straight lines.

Rodrigo Fonseca (1995, Sintra). He studied at António Arroio, has a degree in History of Art and a master in Performing Arts from FCSH/UNL. He was co-founder of the publishing house CusCus Discus and of the festival Dia Aberto às Artes. Besides Umbigo magazine, he writes music criticism for Rimas e Batidas. He is a sound technician specialized in concerts and shows and resident artist at the cultural association DARC.

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