Performative tactics between art and everyday life is a research study that reflects the relation and tension between public space, public sphere and performance. Considering that public space is in a constant construction process as a field of negotiation, and dealing with interpersonal relations as an integral part of experiencing space, the research explores performative strategies that blurry the boundaries between performance and everyday life. It deepens into the following questions: How can performative practices, that are manifested publicly, hijack concrete, dominant visible and invisible structures? What is the role of “camouflaged” performative interventions in public space? What qualities of engagement between bodies do they produce? and what is their relation with political action? The research is informed by interdisciplinary fields of architecture, political and social theory, performance studies and anthropology, extensions that find common ground in the human encounter with space. It looks for fields of active engagement and unforeseen interaction, dealing with the unexpected as a radical space of dis-order and confrontation.

Performative tactics between art and everyday life is structured in three chapters. Each chapter analyzes one selected performative practice as a case study, investigating the strategy of interaction and the quality of engagement that is generated between bodies. The first chapter explores the project “Catalysis Series” of the American performance-artist Adrian Piper. Critical issues concerning racism and xenophobia are dramatized through the artist's diverse presence in public spaces of New York City. In this chapter, the state of opposition as a quality of engagement between bodies is explored. The second chapter investigates the state of discourse through the case study of Augusto Boal's “Invisible Theater”. How can conditions for negotiation, conflict and exchange be encouraged through staged camouflaged public interactions?  The third chapter deals with an artistic practice that uses performative mechanisms for activist purposes. It analyzes the mechanism of “overidentification” and the culture-jamming strategy of the activist group “Yes Men” who operate in the field of Tactical Media. The three case studies are explored not only as artistic events, but also as social practices in which the human experience in the public domain plays the role of a performative component. Finally, all cases are explored as practices that aim to develop states and conditions of multiplicity, resistance and disobedience, revealing vague spaces of potentiality to appear.

Performative tactics between art and everyday life was completed in June 2013 and submitted as a thesis dissertation in the Architecture Department of the University of Patras, Greece.

Supervision: Prof. Panos Kouros.

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