Wordplay 7 (a) – 23rd Feb 2018 Newbridge Foyer – Mick and Amy/Amy and Emma.

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At last a new location, away from the studio and the back alley. I came across the foyer of NewBridge, it is a kind of Ballard office gone to seed kind of space. It has a mix of derelict grandeur. I thought it would be a good space to explore the game artwork in and see how it effects the space. Amy and Mick went first. I felt It gave me a chance to also begin to see how this works in different public spaces. The space, has a kind of grandeur a bit reminiscent architecturally of American office buildings. It has a Madmen the TV show texture. I had been searching for an interior space that had the character that would work with the WP structure. Wanted to move out of art specific space into everyday locations. It also allowed me to see the work operational in a larger space than I had before, was able to get further back from it. Working with Mick was interesting, as he is an artist I work with on projects but also he does audio description for theatres. It meant that the reading of the text had a gravitas that is nor normally present so far. His timbre did fill the space.

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Mick asked for permission to apply the text to Emma. This could be a part of the work, much like doffing the hat in the handshake one. The idea of game etiquette. It could be to sign that the placing has begun. Polite transgression, what would Brian Sutton Smith think. This was the first time I had different sexes play the game, and the placing of the text could be problematic in relation to boundaries. I had thought this, but now I could see this played out. At times Mick would fix one corner and then ask Emma to stick down the other corner if it was in a sensitive part of the body.

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Amy seemed to really enjoy challenging Mick, as she clapped and laughed when he said that it was hard to do because it was upside down the text. Placing the text upside down does make it harder obviously, but seems to be an enjoyable challenge. It is always so far commented on when the text is upside down.

The rules of the encounter are spoken by me to begin, but feel when running the game explains itself to those around who might want to join in. Though perhaps one part of the structure that isn’t explained it that the placing effects the outcome. Also there is a limit to the placing. So far a running theme of locations on the body are around the ankle, on the head, behind the neck, along the thigh and arm and often the final one across the chest, upside down, so though easy to find, it still presents a challenge.

Should I maybe make an instructional sheet, a rule system so that people are aware of how their placing of the text on the body effects the way the person then moves. What is the optimum number of lines, I tried 18 and 14 this time. It seemed to just play out at the end, the difficulty is decreased as the text is found. Also for the placing it isn’t necessarily harder if there is more text, as people loose imaginative places to put it.

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It was good watching if from further away as could start to see the choreographic element coming to the fore. Though the mirror, might try smaller ones, not sure it is having the effect I wanted, where it is the nexus of some transforming Magic circle effect. Seeing the work in a large space, the mirror is pretty small really and doesn’t really effect the environment in any way. It really just serves the purpose of revealing the words. So will look into maybe using even smaller mirrors in the next turn.
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Also need to consider logistics, are their easier and better adhesives. Also mustn’t effect peoples clothing. Mick was worried about his sheepskin jacket.
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Watching Mick and Amy go through it, the sticking bits on, that is kinda choreographic too, the way they move around each other, and interact with the placing, it is slightly contact impro. The placing is actually the part where they most interact with each other, while the reading in mirror separates them.
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