TAT VAM ASI – That is You, Budapest (HU)

In May 2012, selected in the program M4Mobility by the Pépinières Européennes pour Jeunes Artistes in residency in Budapest (Hungary),  and welcomed by the Workshop Foundation (WSF or Műhely Alapítvány) at Trafó theatre, I worked in a huge abandoned site called Tűzraktár in the 9th district of the city where many Gypsy people live and often have to deal with authorities. Having to collaborate with someone from the creative industry, I met the landscape designer Dominika Tihanyi from the Ujirany office (www.ujirany.hu/project/tat-vam-asi). We later invited Istvan Rimoczi and musicians from the Bélaműhely Sound Art musical project (http://belamuhely.com/en/) who took advantage of the place to create instruments out of tubes and trash objects. Creating a gestural cartography from and with this urban site led us to explore the concepts of Borders, Uncertainty and Bodies/Bridges/Birds.

TAT VAM ASI – PRESENTATION TEXT of the performance on May 29. 2012

Everyday we are confronted with borders. Everyday we also build borders. Borders that divide space, social classes, living beings…in order to create safety for our lives. Looking at the city and using it as a medium, these borders fluctuate between the picturesque image of an ideal world-city dressed as the mirror of globalisation, and its real cracks, gaps, conflicts and contradictions in the real world. These borders also speak about the way we move into the city.

Although always new types of digital technologies shake up the obstacles bound to time and space, they also dematerialize and distance the way we perceive what is close and concrete. Yet we are Earthlings and share the common ground. So reinventing or crossing borderlines has to deal with time and giving up a bit of safety. Time to watch a plant grow, a situation develop, to have a conversation with someone or to make experiences which would lead us to the unknown and redefine this protective bubble.

Voids in the city are places of uncertainty. Squares, streets, parks, abandoned areas, industrial wastelands are as undefined as we deeply are. All margins question our personal limits and strengths, fears and freedoms, which influence the way we connect with others. As termites deconstruct in order to reconstruct, this project would like to re-use and re-perceive our world. The daily process of walking, thinking, meeting people, connecting inhabitants, collecting: words, discarded objects, perceptions, situations, imprints, feelings, stories, desires, ideas … in Budapest would display myself as ‟I” but through this shared ‟eye” become a ‟we”. That is You, Tat Vam Asi, the famous expression of the relationship between the individual and the Absolute in Hinduism.

A poetic installation and choreographic palimpsest: an impromptu that works with reality and imagination, revealing one month of collaboration, amusements and experiences on where the community (Bodies, Bridges and Birds…) could, openly and insecurely, meet.