In this video interview Fred McVittie talks about relation and participation.
"I hate participating in anything really....I don't like participatory theatre ... if somebody asks me to do something I look away and make sure I don't get involved. I don't enjoy doing that. I like to maintain the boundaries that an audience kind of has a right to ... At the same time I enjoy the idea of a participatory practice - following Ranciere - which allows for a different kind of reflection."
Ranciere's Emancipated Spectator provides a way of thinking about participation as something that doesn't necessarily require the spectator to be immersed physically within the action. Spectators are cognitively active regardless, and attempts to get spectators to participate can have outcomes that contradict the artist's participatory intentions. Along with Nicolas Bourriaud's Relational Aesthetics, Grant Kester's Conversation Pieces and Claire Bishop's Participations and The Social Turn: Collaboration and its Discontents, Ranciere's essay is one of the key texts in discussions about participatory art practices.
This interview is interesting because in it Fred describes his own dialogic/participatory arts practice entitled The Conference Report. His video based practice takes the social network Youtube as the primary site of it enquiry. Some of his comments provide interesting ways of thinking about Hydrocitizens. "Ephemerality is safe...."
In this video Jacob Gough talks about working as a production manager and technician with 'Freedom Theatre' in Jenin refugee camp on the northern West Bank.
This video was first broadcast as part of the 'Relation and Participation' symposium held at Aberystwyth Arts Centre May 2011