9 Beginnings

Premiere 2012
Bristol/Chicago

9 Beginnings was commissioned as part of Performing Documents, a major collaborative venture with The University of Bristol and Arnolfini Gallery in the United Kingdom. Performing Documents is a year-long project investigating creative approaches to archives, and Every house has a door was asked to create a new performance work in response to the Live Art Archives housed in Bristol. The Live Art Archives include the Record of Live Art Practice, the National Review of Live Art Archive, the Digital Performance Archive, the Arts Council England Live Art and Performance Archive, and the original tapes from the queerupnorth Video Archive, among other holdings.

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9 Beginnings: Bristol restages the beginnings of nine historical performances by nine different artists or companies found in the archive, and reimagines them as a new composition. Director Lin Hixson and dramaturg Matthew Goulish travelled to Bristol for a month-long residency in August 2012, and developed the first iteration of this work together with Selma Banich (Croatia) and Sebastián Calderón Bentin (Panama) and three UK-based participants.

With an award from the MacArthur Foundation International Connections Fund, Every house has a door has expanded 9 beginnings to include a second section based on material in the Randolph Street Gallery (RSG) Archives, held at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Randolph Street Gallery was a seminal artist-run exhibition and performance space in Chicago from 1979-1998, and supported the work of hundreds of artists in Chicago and internationally.

9 beginnings: Chicago takes a similar approach to the RSG archives, selecting the beginnings of nine separate pieces and knitting them into one, which is performed by Selma Banich (Croatia) and Sebastián Calderón Bentin (Panama) and three UK-based participants. In January 2014, Every house will be in residence at the Richard and Mary L. Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry at the University of Chicago, and will present the Bristol and Chicago performances together.