I am seeking people who are free from dogma and yet willing to consider and become devil’s advocates and then seek the dialectical relationships that art can view.

A few essays and lots of discussion! Perhaps a caption or two from some timely photos! So who are these phantoms that might collaborate to infect a culture with a devil’s advocate to wrench the psyche from ingrained straitjackets of tunnel vision? Who are the phantoms from the shadows who dare crawl through the cracks in the edifice of cultural certainty?

Whoever they might be, they will need an attitude of mind that can produce work that is somehow reflective of the massive changes that are happening in our times. There is massive violence potentially and actually in our own midst. Yet we shirk the inevitable showdown.

It’s time for theatre and art to reassert its position at the crossroads; at the interchange; at the station … And so we call on the phantoms from some shadow vanguard to manifest and begin the discussion; the argument; the shaping of vicarious forms that might elicit some reaction. We call on voices, bodies and minds.

Phantoms of cultural fears

Artists are seen through their work. Writers, painters, photographers, actors, directors, designers all engage the spectator with visual or sound scapes. Sometimes there are visceral and perceptual associations that are suggested in the work. Like street signs, the work of artists point to directions rather than being the direction.

It is for the journeying participant in an event to see or even take on the path or ignore it. But the art never reaches its destination. That destination is not possible for the artist to define; at least in so far as the participant audience is concerned.

The artist provides an awareness of “gravitation” towards some idea or conclusion; but that conclusion is never fixed. The artist can never be absolutist in conviction or in practice. Rather, the artist is a phantom of cultural fears.

The artist as ephemeral substance or spectre

We might consider art as an ephemeral substance or a spectral form finding shape in artistic creation. While some artists succumb to ego and vanity, that is a separate concept. It is the reducing quality that plummets many practitioners of art to the petty sub-terrain of entrapment by self-conscious insecurity posing as bluster.

However, the ideal of art is one of invisible creativity giving form or shape to otherwise intangible ideas.

Shadow House PITS is looking for Phantoms; people who are interested in working on creating substantial theatre and challenging work largely from scratch or from sketchy ideas; people who can emerge through the cracks in cultural certainties like cockroaches at the table of smug dogmas while enjoying the research and the sculpting of theatre form. The projects will commence in July. There’s probably no money in it … except for the actual performances!

Working the ephemeral in negative capability

Have a look at the Shadow House PITS manifesto. I don’t expect many people to be interested in this kind of work or approach. However, I am seeking a team of passionate artists. People interested in the notion of becoming cultural phantoms from the shadows creating an energetic and challenging theatrical discourse. This is an historical time. I am seeking people who are free from dogma and yet willing to consider and become devil’s advocates and then seek the dialectical relationships that art can view. People with high skills levels who can work around paid commitments to mine the cultural

and personal psyche. This means a willingness to discuss and reflect on personal thought while then applying one’s findings into a theatrical form. It means being able to cope with “negative capability” and the disruptive nature of uncertainty.

If this intrigues or interests you and you feel you might like to be part of such a team that draws energy from thinking in this way, then email Joe Woodward at shadowhousepits@email.com

We begin referencing Ionesco and especially “Rhinoceros” …

Phantom determinate