How do we discuss difficult work that evades us? What is it about specific performance imagery that seems so hard to pin down? How could we respond to theatre work that demands its own vocabulary?

In this article, I seek to explore the performance work of British visual and theatre artist Julia Bardsley, whose theatrical spectacles, fantastical personae and fictional worlds resist being known, even as they speak to us intimately and directly.

I am proposing a re-purposed critical language drawing from literary studies, film and science fiction to address such difficult work and consider conceptual frameworks such as the weird, the monstrous, the perverse and the wild. These become tools with which not only to read the work but also to understand something of its making.

Read the article here 

Image 1: Fenia Kotsopoulou

Image 2: Simon Annand

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