The Research Room (2017 – )

“By artists – for artists”

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The Research Room artists: Shinbal Company (Kyuja Bae, Katarina Lisa, Sarah F. Jahn, S. Barth), Stine Olstad, INO Teater (Eirin Hunnes Øverås, S. Barth), Ane Thon Knutsen, Kristin Nango, Shahrzad Malekian & Roza Moshtaghi, Katja Schia Henriksen, Hild Borchgrevink

The Research Room was created after running études for half a year, with the idea that the étude should be explore more in-depth and over a longer period of time. Yet, it is not defined as regular pre-project process as there is a sense of immediacy that necessary to realize this work format. As always, Schouskollektivet has the ambition of offering research rooms to all artists, but one condition is that they want to do interdisciplinary work. Schouskollektivet’s intention is to open up each artist’s work to new influences and ideas, and not only from artists in their own field, but from others. I believe that there is more to gain in different approaches, than in trying to agree upon a single one.

The artists apply and are given a weekend according to their wishes if possible, or according to the season programming. Each season is curated in a way where there is a sense of diversity, and the topics are also different. There is thus “no red thread” other than the idea of a well balanced program that is aimed at a large group of artists. In continuing this work, I hope to reach out to even more artists, and eventually cover all art fields. A tendency is that artists who work in the field that is represented in the research room are the majority, however, they also come with different practices. This is an exchange between artists, and everyone are encouraged to bring their own personal expressions and ideas into the room. The point is not to shape the participants into doing exactly the same as the artist conducting the research, however they should  also listen to the artist and let that person lead the overall course of the workshop.

The preparation before a research room is crucial: I meet with the artists separately and talk to them about their projects and what they would like to focus on during the research room. Some have a very clear idea, and just need the practical information while others need to discuss some of the ideas. No matter what their needs are, it is important for me to establish a relationship with them and get to know what they want to achieve before we enter the research space together. In this way I will know how I can be of support during the weekend, and contribute if I’m needed. From time to time I contribute with some suggestions based on my knowledge as a director. Most of the time I stay in a coordinator position where I don’t interfere with the process other than being one of the participants. My main work under the weekend itself is to make sure that we keep to time, and that the practical needs of everyone is covered. That also means supplying some food and beverage both working days. In some cases I also help find materials for the artists, and it varies if they ask help to find these in advance or after the first day of research.

As one of my criteria is that there has be some sort of work presentation on day 2 in front of an audience. This has a good effect on the work, and it sort of forces people to think very concretely about how they should present the material. It is also a very good opportunity to receive feedback from an audience who are aware of that they are watching work in progress. The feedback after the research rooms have been very positive, and I believe that there is need for an open research space where you can work on the details rather than the finished product. The work presentation/perfomance is thus just one entry to the next stage of the process, yet it is a crucial step that also clarifies the potential.

This is an example of an Open Call (2018):

During spring 2017 Schouskollektivet started collaborating with Oslo Teatersenter on creating a new arena where artists could do an artistic research for a weekend. For spring 2018 we are continuing our work together, and are happy to announce a new open call. This is for artists working in any field, but with an interest in sharing their work in a talk/performance setting.

This form of artistic research is done through a workshop organised by the artists, on the topic they choose. It is open what material the artists choose to bring and how they would like to work with it. However, the structure of the weekend is that there will be an open event at the end for an audience to attend. At the end there will be room for feedback from both the audience and the workshop participants.

During the past research rooms all artists have included their work from Schouskollektivet in their final projects. It has proved to be a good way of testing new ideas and let them flourish in the work of the participants who also have different backgrounds from the art field.

The Research Room is also open for people who are still in education, but on a master’s level.

There are currently just two dates available, so cease the opportunity!

17th & 18th February

14th & 15th April

Please send an email with the following:
A description of your work as an artist
Your current project and why you would like to do an artistic research
Ideas for how you would like to organise your workshop
Include photos from your work

Maximum 2 pages.

Send to:
DEADLINE: 28th January at 12 noon

Practical issues: We do not cover any costs (working fees, materials, or travel)
Schouskollektivet will help with all organisational matters, along with promoting the research and finding participants. There will be coffee, tea and snacks provided by Schouskollektivet, and in some cases help with getting materials (depending on the costs).

Please visit the web-page to view past Research Rooms:

Schouskollektivet thanks Oslo teatersenter for their kind support.

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