What Do You Want From Me?
(The Difference is Itself an Object)

 

What Do You Want From Me?
(The Difference is Itself an Object)

 

Premiered at the Biblioteca Nazionale, Florence, as part of the International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes (IFFTI) conference 2015, What Do You Want From Me? (Difference Is Itself An Object) is a live durational installation, which ran continuously over the 3-day event.

Through the use of chants, choreography, interaction with visitors, spoken word and group singing the 16 participants (who were all fashion students from Nottingham Trent University and Polimoda) enact 4 interconnected scenes that examine the organisational and libidinal dynamics of the fashion brand.

In the first scene, the participants slowly walk around the gallery singing a set of phrases in any order, frequency or volume of their choosing. As part of the instructions of the scene, participants operate under a trending logic, whereby if they feel a fellow participant is worth following then they will start mirroring their phrase and direction. As the ‘influencer’ becomes more and more powerful, more participants begin to follow such that a collective group is gradually formed. At this moment participants being dissipating into their own individual paths, before the trending process begins once again. 

At a moment of the collective choosing, the group then transition into the second scene in which they perform a set of individually choreographed phrases made up of a series of continuously moving poses taken directly from fashion magazine advertising. As the scene develops participants begin copying the movements of one another as well as integrating the poses of visitors into their own movements. Participants then slowly dissipate out of the gallery.

On their return, participants congregate in the saloon gallery and begin collectively reading a piece of text that discusses the internal logics of branding as if they themselves were a brand addressing an audience. As part of the enactment of this group monolog, participants read this text via a series of word and movement games. 

Once the reading has been completed the participants take out their phones select a song of their choosing from a playlist - made up of songs that deal with lust, desire, and obsession - and begin singing and dancing. As the songs begin to end one song remains, Lykke Li’s I Follow Rivers. Gradually all of the participants join together singing the song as they collectively move around and out of the gallery space. 

What Do You Want From Me? (Difference Is Itself An Object) is supported by Nottingham Trent University, Dance4, and Polimoda.

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