The Word is the Murder of the Thing

Two excerpts from the GHP Lab Manual. Ideas for how to work during a “show” phase and then for a “recapitulate” phase.

TOOLS: Making a move out of the frying pan: acts and in(ter)ventions

When the group is working in the Clearing, anything can happen. Define anything? What follows are suggestions for how one might begin to show something or to participate in the work of others using a piece of text or through invention. These are terms to provoke thought and investigation. If a word does not lead you anywhere, the Oxford English Dictionary is an excellent help.

WATCHING

GIVING YOUR GAZE

BEARING WITNESS

WHO’S THERE?

LISTENING

MEANING AND MUSIC

SPEAK

READ

UTTER SOMETHING

DESCRIBE, IN TERMS OF TIME, PLACE, EVENT, OBJECT, INTERSUBJECTIVITY, BODY

MODES OF DISCOURSE: JOURNALISTIC, POLITICIAL, SCIENTIFIC, POETIC, RELIGIOUS, etc

ANTI-CONCEPTUAL CHARACTERIZATIONS

COUNTENACE

ENCOUNTER

ENCOURAGE

CONDEMN

LIST

MIRROR

INVERT

INTERROGATE

PARANOIAC UNDERSTANDING

CONSPIRE

IMPOSSIBLE QUESTIONS WITHOUT ANSWERS

POLARITIES

IDENTIFY THE LACK

PUNCTUATE

RE-PUNCTUATE

UNDERLINE

EMPHASIZE

DISMISS

CONDENSE AND COMBINE

DISPLACE

SUBSTITUE

REPRESS

TAKE OUT OF CONTEXT

FEAST OF THE SENSES

SYNESTHESIA

METAPHOR

METONOMY

OTHER RHETORICAL STRATEGIES

CHANGE YOUR PROXIMITY

FREE ASSOCIATION

NON-VERBAL REPRESENTATIONS: DRAW, MAP, SCULPT, MUSIC, CHART

NAME IT, BECOME IT, DESTROY IT: JUST THAT

FORM FITTING: DREAM, RITUAL, CEREMONY, GAME, MULTI-MEDIA

RIDICULE

SATIRE

TRIVIALIZE

DEEPEN

APPLY CONVENTIONAL WISDOM, LOCAL KNOWLEDGE, CURRENT EVENTS

TOOLS: a forge for the (demi)urge.

Now what follows are some suggestions for the Recapitulation, in which the group works over material with an eye to some future performed statement. “Material,” in this case, refers to text, improvised text, creations which have emerged in the group, personal agendas transmuted into creative expression, traumatic laboratory creations, shadows, objects, messages from beyond.

MAGIC IF

MAKE A SCENE

FIND A CHARACTER

REALIZE AN INTENTION

OBJECTIVES AND OBSTACLES

BUSINESS CALLED SHOW

THE OLD SONG AND DANCE

CABARET AND CARNIVAL

SUB-TEXT

STRANGE ACTIONS: TO MAKE ONESELF BE EATEN, TO MAKE ONESELF BE INFECTED, TO MAKE ONESELF BE SEEN, TO MAKE ONESELF INTO A LEFTOVER, TO FIND OUT WHAT THE OTHER WANTS AND BE IT

PLAIN ACTIONS

FRAGMENTATION

DEFAMILIARIZATION

REPETITION

COLLAGE

MONTAGE

JUXTAPOSE

CUT AND PASTE

MIX MODES

MIXED MESSAGES

DUPLICATION

DISPERSION

ECHO

PATTERNS OF MOVEMENT

COUNTERPOINT

MUSICAL QUALITIES

FOUND OBJECTS

CONSULT AN ORACLE

AUTOMATISM

STORYTELLING

WEAVE A TALE, TELL THE TALE, TELL A TALE ABOUT TELLING THE TALE

SUBVERT

RITES: INITIATION, SACRIFICE, PURIFICATION, PACT, JUDGEMENT, CONTEST, DANCE, GAMES, ETC.

THE SUBLIME

THE NAVEL OF THE DREAM

THE ACHING MYSTERY

These words are meant to prompt you to make your own definitions and strategies. Gaining understanding may involve consulting other fields (art, psychology, rhetoric, sewage treatment, cooking, etc.) Some of these procedures seem sterile as words on a page, cold, arbitrary. However, as you begin to propose ideas and to participate in shaping events in the Clearing, the imaginative and emotional dimensions of your work—your grappling with these words (and others) as ways of showing and doing and thinking—will lead you to experiences, palpable ones, which will become the truth of your life in the group performance.

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