This course is dedicated to the history, aesthetics, and practice of performance art with a special focus on the politics of the body in contemporary society. Students will study the evolution of body aesthetics in the 20th century and its latest manifestations by looking at the most important international artists, movements, critics and scholars working and writing about performance art. Though a lecture course, there will also be two practical aspects to the course that students must complete. The first part consists of conceiving, planning and managing a performance as a means to understand the various implications of this specific piece. The second aspect consists of what is called ‘practice’. Practice consists of both collective and individual physical activity. This is aimed at experiencing the constitutive factors of performance art such as the body, time, space, sound, architecture and public place.
Note: Since some practical and physical lessons are scheduled, students have to be ready to do body warm-up exercises before class begins, and to engage in exercises involving physical activity and actions with other students. No experience in either dance or theater is required to attend this course.