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Where does Live Art sit in a world of lockdown? Redefining the role of the audience & Plastica Galactica: Get Involved

By Plastica Gals 

Activism has always been at the forefront of our practice. We began Plastica Gals to fight plastic pollution and help others learn how to live sustainably. But now we’re in an age where we’re forced to question our work’s position in the world. Live art has always questioned the definition of theatre but where does live art sit? How does theatre work? How do we as a company adapt? 


The audience holds a stereotypical passive role but in an age of lockdown and social distancing; that isn’t possible. Artists and performers across the globe aren’t able to be in rooms with audience members and perform thus, we’re forced to rediscover the audience’s role. 


We’re re-evaluating our practice. We want to create something that plays with the definition of theatre and live art, plays with social spaces and the role of the audience. We want to create this project WITH audiences because sometimes fighting for something can be lonely. We want to create a sense of togetherness and a place to make a difference. We want to create something that helps and inspires. We want to create something that positively impacts our Earth. 


We think we might be able to achieve this through active participation. Being an active participant allows you to experience live art rather than view it. Some of our most memorable experiences are works like Rosanna Cade’s Walking: Holding or FK Alexander’s I Could Go On Singing. 


We’re creating a piece called Plastica Galactica: Get Involved where the audience put the active in activist. Plastica Galactica: Get Involved is a street clean that takes you on an audio journey exploring plastic pollution, marine life and the importance of you. With this project we invite the audience to put the active in activist. You press play on the audio. You go on a clean wherever you want. A beach, a field, a park, your estate, round the block, through a village; absolutely anywhere.  When you go home take a picture of what you’ve collected and build something. Is it an eco-brick? A masterpiece? It can be absolutely anything. The point is to reuse/reimagine what these objects could be. Especially if they’re single-use! Take a picture of your new item and upload it to social media with the hashtags #plasticagalactica. If this isn’t accessible to you we welcome you to play the audio in your home and gather whatever plastic you have. You’d be surprised how much you’ve bought!


Activist Martin Dorey has inspired us to build our own ‘7 worst plastic offenders’ list. We will build our own portfolio of what plastic trash is washing up across the UK using the plastic you’ve collected.


We’re showcasing this piece at UnShut Festival between the 2-4 July 2020 and are really excited to see the results, begin our 7 worst offenders list but most importantly speak with our participants! We hope our participants will become co-creators in this piece. This is still all fairly new for us. It’s still in the making. And our practice is definitely still in the making but we want this to be a community piece, an experience, a breakdown of barriers between artist and audience. We hope this piece will be the start of making active audience projects. We hope you’ll join us on this journey.

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