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Absolute, Abstract and Abject: Learning from the Event-Space of the Historical Avant-Garde


Hannah, D, Absolute, Abstract and Abject: Learning from the Event-Space of the Historical Avant-Garde, The Routledge Companion to Scenography, Routledge, A Aronson (ed), United Kingdom, pp. 119-134. ISBN 9780367509637 (2018) [Research Book Chapter]

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Considering the impact of evental thinking as spacing, this chapter focuses on the influence of Europe's historical avant-garde on theatre architecture: whereby scenography as spatial scripting could no longer be contained within geometrically constructed vistas on the prescribed stage, resulting in new spatial models that undermined architecture's will to fixity, stability, and endurance. In concentrating on modernism's philosophical, political, and perceptual revolutions the chapter identifies three distinctive attitudes to performance space loosely cohering around the avant-garde movements of symbolism, constructivism, and surrealism that emerged between 1872 and 1947. Termed absolute, abstract, and abject these revolutionary spatial models challenged the nineteenth-century auditorium, which could no longer house the theatrical and technological upheavals that were occurring. The well-constructed playhouse seemed as meaningless as the well-made bourgeois play; principally challenged by the avant-garde's writing and unbuilt proposals, out of which the absolute, abstract and abject spatiotemporal models emerged, which illuminate theatre history and inspire new approaches to contemporary performance space.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:event-space, Europe, avant-garde, constructed environment, theatre architecture
Research Division:Creative Arts and Writing
Research Group:Visual arts
Research Field:Performance art
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Arts
Objective Field:The creative arts
UTAS Author:Hannah, D (Professor Dorita Hannah)
ID Code:108670
Year Published:2018
Deposited By:School of Creative Arts and Media
Deposited On:2016-05-02
Last Modified:2021-07-21

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