Moved by Gertrude Stein's idea that an acting subject is but one of many factors on the landscape of an event, Georgia Sagri’s ‘Owen’ perceives viewer and performer to be actor and spectacle at the same time.
The title of the performance refers to a soldier (not their real name) who having fought in Iraq, wished to talk about their experience in the form of a public speech through a third party, Sagri.
She invites the visitors to assist her in a durational learning by heart of the soldier's speech and sit together on benches at Arnolfini. Nearby, a manual - made to look like a vinyl record - offers the elements on how anyone can activate the piece again on a different occasion.
Sagri’s performances question the presupposed antagonistic social interactions and the exchange of ideas, which they produce; demanding possible breaks beyond the presupposed in many ways and levels. In this piece, the stage is not an antagonistic space, as she believes that each and everyone including herself is a contributing author, elements of the landscape, a communal setting on the sorts of benches typically found in a town square.
‘Owen’- the soldier, the text, the action and as she describes it: the oral monument- is open for interpretation and activation at any time, albeit with some short of instruction. One short of requirement for example is that the ‘performer’s’ movements during the presentation of the piece follow the diagram from Samuel Beckett's play ‘Footfalls’.