About the Grant

$45,000  to support Holoscenes (MAP 2012), a new performance work by Lars Jan.

About the Project

Holoscenes, conceived and created by multimedia artist Lars Jan, is a hybrid of performance, visual installation, and public spectacle responding to humans’ urgently evolving relationship to water and global climate cataclysm. The performance space is three ten-foot-square cubes of transparent acrylic, proximate to one another and viewable from 360 degrees. A single performer occupies each cube while gazing outward and repeatedly conducting a choreographed ritual with attendant objects, costumes, and utterances. As water fills the aquariums, the actors swim to the top for air while attempting their rituals in a modified form. As it drains, they continue, soaked by these mini-floods.

During the performance, the actors rotate through the aquariums so that no triptych of rituals is ever seen twice. Water patterns in the aquariums, produced by a custom-programmed and controlled hydraulic system, respond in part to real-time environmental phenomena from the performance locale and from the origin point of the rituals. Headphones and hydrophones provide aural access to each aquarium, creating intimacy between the actor and listener—all of which references the privileged view afforded to spectators of mass-media disaster coverage.
In Holoscenes, the ebb and flow of water and the resulting modified behaviors conjure mythic, historical, and future environmental tragedies. Through repetition, they gain a poetry of motion—becoming complex portraits of adaptation, myopia, and persistence.

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