PLI Public Workshop 01 – Finalist 2019

Team « Les Echaffaudeurs » with Roland Fontaine.

« De l’autre côté du miroir, dialogue sur l’échafaud »

DFrom the outside it looked like a scaffold. The structure made of wood and canvas from which two elements emerged was shrouded in a manner similar to a boat. Intrigued, Roger and Léa turned around and saw a halo of light emanating from the end of the installation between two sections of fabric, they snuck inside. At first dazzled, Roger reopened his eyes until he could see a shimmering metal blade pierced in several places reminding him vaguely of a confessional or a moucharabieh. He looked through his fragmented reflection and noticed a strap hanging at the end of a cable on his right. Grabbing him, he shot him. A noise, an effort, but nothing happened. Cautiously looking, Roger examined the patterns of the wall as he approached it. Suddenly a thumping sound was heard. The blade was lifting. Perplexed, he knew he hadn't activated anything. It was then that he saw through the moving interstices a silhouette that was taking shape: "Léa?! "he exclaimed.
Without waiting for an answer, taking possession of the mechanism, he grabbed its handle, activated the blade on Leah's side, responding to her in rhythm by playing with the patterns of the blade, the light and the shadow.
Ils inauguraient un nouveau mode de langage où chacun dialoguait avec l’autre et son propre reflet.

The installation proposes to question the way everyone looks at themselves and on others through a device that is as much a part of the stage as it is of a fitting room.

The guyed wooden structure features two metal perforated slats that slide vertically between two frames. Once inside one of the two cabins, the visitor is illuminated by a light source installed on either side of the wall. By pulling on a strap, a set of pulleys allows the panels of the other cabin to move from bottom to top. Thus the visitor takes the role of actor under the spotlight and stage master. By activating the wall of his interlocutor, he then manipulates his gaze. By pulling on their respective straps, the two protagonists then become dependent on each other through the cross pulley system. The holes in the metal slats literally give depth to the action and make it possible to discover frames on the visitor on the other side of the structure. A dialogue is then established between the two protagonists, looking for each other's eyes in a rhythmic dance between rhythmic movements and contemplative breaks using multiple openings as a vocabulary where the view of the other is intertwined, manipulation of the look and the reflections of oneself.

The dialogue must be able to take place with frontal light projected on the actors to avoid backlighting. This is why the structure is designed to be installed in two contexts. One is bright, where the fabric envelope provides adequate interior lighting and privacy for the actors. In the event of a dark space, the scenic device can remain visible to all visitors, making the installation a real stage

Technical drawings and illustrations by team "les Echaffaudeurs"

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