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Rencontres Sociales du Désespoir / Social Encounters of Despair

Performance at Art Nomade -International Performance Art Meeting, Saguenay, Canada, 2015


Text By Cindy Dumais. Translation by Michelle Lacombe. Photos by Valérie Lavoie and Art Nomade.



And the release. The water: we are outside with Tomasz Szrama, third performance of the evening.


A red speck moves in the distance, TS is on the other side of the river, connected to us by a very long rope. He keeps us in suspense during a long performance, which initially appears to be a series of spontaneous and totally improvised decisions. We are entirely with him. It is not TS that performs, but rather all of us, all of the objects, and all of the architecture. Stage director, omniscient narrator, giant eye, guiding hand. Some of us are selected. We are in the pocket of his trousers and transported by him, with the private impression that these actions serve a useless purpose. And here we are tricked. After about forty minutes, everything falls into place like a puzzle; each piece fits, covering even the gaps left at the beginning. Everything holds together, smiles replace quizzical looks. TS needs. TS needs everything, everyone, and thus he sets his stage, and thus he shifts the centers of attention to move from one to the other. This carries us, without leaving us the time to get impatient.  Control and nonchalance make TS a bemusing artist who completely masters his playing field. And, throughout all this staging, which is our personal failure revealing our inability to foresee what will come, he uses false risk. As a finale, we will see the sleeves of his shirt come off to the revving of a motor on the other side of the river, leaving our eyes clinging, thrilled to have been tricked.


Spectacular turn of events. We were strung along; he rewound the thread. We carried out a temporal loop, we return to theatre. Before the deluge.

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