Magickal Realism 2013

Performance lecture

Promotional woodcut handbill for the live presentation of Magickal Realism, 2009-2010.
John Dee, c. 1594.

Magickal Realism uses live integration of video, animation, readings and performance to recreate the life and work of Dr John Dee, the proto-scientist, court magician and fortune-teller to Queen Elizabeth I. It sits somewhere near the centre of a Venn diagram comprising equal parts of:

1. The performance lecture format from my previous Nowhere Plains.

2. The hands-on, lowbrow intimacy of Elizabethan theatre.

3. The Japanese formal rakugo (a long and ridiculous story by a seated storyteller), specifically kaidanbashi (ghost stories that are old-fashioned but nonetheless intended to scare).

This page has photos of me performing Magickal Realism at MUSAC, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León in Spain during October 2013. The accompanying exhibition was called Lecture-Performance: New Artistic Formats, Places, Practices and Behaviours, it ran from the 18th October 2013 to July 6th 2014 and had about 44,000 visitors. It included video and prop material from Magickal Realism. Even if I may be somewhat biased, it was a great show. I particularly liked Paco Cao’s documentary/performance film and costumes, and Chiara Fumai’s readings from Valerie Solanas’ SCUM manifesto which were at the same time sincerely terrifying and uncomfortably hilarious.

All photos of the performance and exhibition below are by Imagen MAS, courtesy of MUSAC.


Original information, image and video page for Magickal Realism.

Magickal Realism on Vimeo.

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