Tótem and Madre Mezcal Present PANDEMONIUM
Pandemonium is an art series created in order to support artists and to create a dialogue and continuity around art, its shared concepts, experiences and ideas.
VOL II: Quad (In Reverse) by Renata Pereira Lima
Quad is a tv play made by Samuel Beckett in 1981. The play’s initial conception was to have characters walking along Quadrants, through all the possible paths, starting from a central origin and finally returning to it. But twenty years later, in its final realization, the performance begins and ends in the void (empty quad), with the performers avoiding the central origin.
Quad (In Reverse) is the mirror image of Beckett’s original production: by reversing the direction of the choreography so that all bodies move to the right as opposed to the left, a fundamental, if unnoticeable, law of the play is isolated. Simply put, all things go right.
A certain chaos is organized into the leftward choreography that contradicts our more common inclination to perceive the right as the obvious directional mode (ie. reading and writing, staying to the right on the sidewalk, right side of the road, etc.). Reversing Quad brings chaos into question as the viewer does or doesn’t perceive this thematic shift– what difference does it make?
The Friday evening performance lasted 40 minutes: 12 loops in total with 6 calibrated to the left (as in Beckett’s original Quad,) and 6 calibrated to the right ( Quad (In Reverse) ).
Without ever saying the word COVID, Quad (In Reverse) was performed before an intimate audience with some very specific COVID guidelines: beginning at 8:05, viewers arrived at five-minute intervals and had to provide a password at the door. Temperatures were taken and each audience member given a number at random. The bar was open for 30 minutes before the host explained protocols and COVID concerns and the directive that anybody who felt compelled to leave mid-performance would have to consider that the play is being taped, and do so discreetly. By 9pm the performance was underway and the host called numbers 1 - 12 in two-minute intervals to assume a viewing position.
The Saturday evening performance was open to a limited public audience. 18 people in total were accepted with the same designated time and password protocols to enter the space. Unlike the Friday show where filming narrowed the viewing space to one designated position, the Saturday evening show opened all three doors to the space and welcomed the audience to be positioned around the square of performance.
Mezcal from San Luis Potosí was provided.
Director: Renata Pereira Lime
Performers: Renata Pereira Lima, Ana G. Zambrano, Dalia Xuhcoatl, Camila Arroyo
Photography and lighting: Tania Diego
Production and Post Production: Renata Pereira Lima
Writer: Addison Bale
Studio: Zopilote Inc., Mexico City