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What has Love Got to do with It?

What has Love Got to do with It?

Performance, Intimacy, Affectivity

What has Love Got to do with It?

Performance, Intimacy, Affectivity

The boundaries between the public and the private sphere are gradually fading away. This sometimes implies a reduction in the active participation of citizens, who are transformed into mere spectators of other lives and intimacies amplified through the media. In turn, the media are creating new spaces for personal and collective expression by making these porous relations between the public and the intimate more visible, with a facility that was previously unimaginable.

Intimacy has become the centre of public performances, with all of its accompanying contradictions and paradoxes. This talk explores the ways in which contemporary performance both questions and reformulates our experiences and definitions of intimacy. How do artistic practices question the boundaries between the familiar and the unfamiliar, the individual and the collective? In what way do the media, the social networks and leading a life that is geared towards a global world affect our understanding of the spaces of intimacy? What are the new places of our affections and emotions?

For two days, artists and researchers will investigate the relationship between performance, intimacy and the affections from both an aesthetic and a political and sociological point of view.

More informations here.

Marina Abramovic/ Ulay: Light/Dark, 1977.

18 FEB 2019
MON 10:30–18:00

19 FEB 2019
TUE 10:30–18:00

Small Auditorium and Room 2
Free entry*

* Free entry (subject to availability), tickets available on the day from 10:00am at the ticket-office

Program What Has Love Got To Do With It

18th February 2019


Liliana Coutinho, Cláudia Madeira, Giulia Lamoni


10:45 – 11:30


The public, the private and the political in the performative works of young artists and students of fine arts: a case study

Teresa Furtado, artist, assistant professor, Department of Visual Arts and Design, School of the Arts, University of Évora, CHAIA/UÉ

chair: Bruno Marques, IHA-FCSH, UNL


11:30 – 13:00


Panel 1



chair: Giulia Lamoni, IHA-FCSH, UNL


Talking about Love, Publicization of intimate matters in contemporary dance plays

Claire Vionnet, anthropologist


Down and Dirty: Ecosex intimacies and the appeal of the ‘personal’

Jon Cairns, Critical Studies Leader, BA Fine Art, Central Saint Martins


Ropework: performing fragility

Daniel Cardoso, FCSH NOVA University

Telma João Santos, University of Évora



13:00 – 14:00




14:00 – 14:45

Radio Intimacy – a poadcast

Ana Pais, researcher in performative arts, FCT postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Theater Studies, FLUL, dramaturgist, curator


14:45 – 16:15


Panel 2



chair: Margarida Brito Alves


How Intimacy Disrupts Power

Claire Schneider, independent curator in Buffalo, New York, and founder and director of C.S.1 Curatorial Projects


From private archive to public discourse: Karol Radziszewki’s Kisieland

Flóra Gadó, PhD candidate at Eötvös Loránd University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Film, Media and Cultural Studies, Budapest, Hungary


16:15 – 16:30




16:30 – 18:00


Panel 3



chair: Cláudia Madeira


Love + Other Pressing Issues: Barbara T. Smith’s 21st Century Odyssey, 1991-1993

Pietro Rigolo, The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles

Proximity, emotions and technological mediation in Italian Performance Art of the origins

Francesca Gallo, Sapienza University of Rome

The Will of (Im) Possible: artistic lovers couples in the Art of Performance

Nelson Guerreiro, researcher




The Body Politic: the museum as a space of intimacy and action

Catherine Wood, senior curator of International art / Performance, TATE Modern

chair: Liliana Coutinho





19th February 2019


10:30 – 11:10


Tu & Eu | You & Me

Susana Mendes Silva, artist and assistant professor at University of Évora, DPAO, i2ADS, FBAUP


11:15 – 12:45

Panel 4



chair: Bruno Marques


All Together - Feedback Now - Total Access Inc. (on my personal Coca Cola memories and other globalised pop affects)

Paula Caspão, writer and artist, FCT postdoctoral research fellow, lecturer at the Centre for Theatre Studies (CET/FLUL - UL), associate researcher at the Institute for Contemporary History (IHC-UNL)


Intimacy and affectivity in cyberspace

Paula Varanda, PhD, researcher


The Act of Being ‘Together Alone’:Slow Cinema and the Re-Design of One’s Intimate Interaction with the Concept of Realness

Susana Bessa, writer


12:45 – 14:00



14:00 –14:30


Reading (room 2)

Community, by Luiz Pacheco

Directed by: Ana Palma
With: Ana Palma, André Simões, Constança Carvalho Neto, Diogo Lopes and Rita Monteiro
Creation: Teatro da Garagem



14:45 – 16:15


Panel 5



chair: Fernando Matos Oliveira


On female desire in poetic autobiographies

Ana Lúcia M. de Marsillac, psychologist and postdoctoral fellow at IC Nova - FCSH/UNL

Paulo Jesus, psychologist, assistant professor of psychology at Portucalense University, researcher at the Philosophy Centre - UL


Woman standing in front of the mirror. An intimate practice-as-research project

Sol Garre, Real Escuela Superior de Arte Dramático de Madrid


16:15 – 16:30



16:30 – 18:00

Panel 6



chair: Liliana Coutinho


Agape and Anthropocene

António Contador, Institut Acte, University of Paris 1/CNRS, artist


Performing the ‘I Care’

Kathryn Lawson Hughes, Swansea College of Art, University of Wales Trinity Saint David


Performative ‘Intraventions’ and Matters of Love, Care and Delay: Steps Towards Responsible ‘Worlding’

Alberto Altés Arlandis, Post-Doctoral Research Fellow / Chair of Methods and Analysis TU Delft, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment - Architecture




Performative Gestures

Rabbya Nasser, artist, curator and teacher at NCA, Lahore, Pakistan

chair: Giulia Lamoni, IHA-FCSH, UNL

Abstracts What Has Love Got To Do With It



The Body Politic: the museum as a space of intimacy and action

Catherine Wood, Senior Curator of International Art / Performance, Tate Modern


Taking the example of Tania Bruguera’s 2018 commission for the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern, 10,148,451, I will discuss questions of value in relation to the institution of the art museum, through the lens of performance.  Questions about care, intimacy, empathy are central to the journey that Bruguera’s practice represents, culminating in this work, and central to an attempt to critique the value system embodied by the museum.

Beginning with my experience of working as a curatorial assistant in the British Museum, and learning about the choreography of care around ancient artefacts, often displaced from cultural and ritual contexts, I take this formative experience as a kind of blueprint for the matrix of the museum and its values: material and human.

As a curator at Tate Modern specialising in performance, the imprint of that early experience and its relevance to the fundamental set-up of the Western art museum persists, and comes into often antagonistic dialogue with the attempt to commission, display and collect ‘live’ performance work, even – or especially – when it is entangled with practices in so-called traditional media of painting or sculpture.  

I will talk about how an artist such as Tania Bruguera, emblematic as someone working with ‘performance’ today in an expanded practice, emerged from work grounded in an intimate form of body art practice and protest that set itself clearly against material practices in art (collecting, selling etc) and has moved towards working on the ‘social body’ in ways that transforms the institutional and its set-up; but always working from a located, emotional perspective.

Walter Mignolo, who coined the concept of ‘decolonial aesthetics’, has written of the significance of the body’s presence in art in terms that resonate with Bruguera’s self-staging, and institution-shaping: proposing the importance of delinking from certain principles of civilisation via a return to one’s own, located and delimited reality.

Intervening in and interrupting the human infrastructure of the institution, from this starting point located in the artist’s own body, its status as a ‘keeper’ of objects or a space for gathering is probed, tested, and extended.


Catherine Wood (United Kingdom) is Performance Senior Curator at Tate Modern and curator of Cuban artist Tania Bruguera’s installation (2018) at Turbine Hall. She was the curator of Robert Rauschenberg’s retrospective (2017) and the co-curator of the 2017 and the 2018 editions of the Live Exhibition in the Tanks annual programme, with Fujiko Nakaya and Isabel Lewis (2017), and Joan Jonas and Jumana Emil Abboud (2018). She was also curator of the Yvonne Rainer Dance Works exhibition (London, 2013), among others. She is the author of the books Yvonne Rainer: The Mind is a Muscle (2007) and Performance in Contemporary Art (2018). She writes regularly for catalogues and for publications such as Afterall, Artforum and Mousse.



Performative Gestures

Rabbya Naseer, artist, curator and teacher at NCA, Lahore, Pakistan


Performative Gestures explores the ways in which ‘Performance’ becomes a tool for reconfiguring the status and function of art from passivity to active agency and direct confrontation. Naseer is an interdisciplinary artist, whose practice is informed by her immediate environment, producing a material entity only as a by-product of her lived experiences. She will be sharing examples from her artistic, curatorial and research practice to examine; if Performance Art’s resistance to definitions and the challenges of archiving the undefined experience, helps make it something more than the sum of its component parts? How rethinking spatial relations between ‘art-object’, ‘artist’ and ‘viewer/participant’ are integral to the structure of producing experiential art? How interdisciplinary practice through a conscious blurring of distinct ions between ‘Art’ and ‘everyday life’, helps question clearly defined categories to broaden the concept of art and its affect? How such works examine the everyday (both private and public) as a domain in which social values are asserted and contested? How attention to ‘situations’ highlights the close relationship between ‘performance’ and processes of ‘social organization’? How this investigation and appropriation of specific lived ‘experiences’ helps with analyzing the relationship between the ‘real’ and the ‘representational’? And lastly, what is the role of the witness in order to explore the notions of truth, perception and intimacy in archiving the undefined experience.


Rabbya Naseer (Pakistan) is an artist, curator, teacher and art critic. Using performance as an instrument, her work deals with private and public ‘day-to-day’ as if it were a place where social values are declared and challenged. In Promises to Keep (2017), Naseer examined the use of the body in actions of self-representation by twelve Pakistani female artists from three different generations, and the way their works reveal their proactive involvement with sociopolitical issues.


Special Guests


Title: Radio Intimacy – a podcast

Author: Ana Pais, Researcher in Performative Arts, FCT Post-doctoral Fellow at Centro Estudos de Teatro – FLUL/Universidade de Lisboa, dramaturge and curator

Looking at performances premièred in Portugal between 2017 and 2019 – Happy Show, by Miguel Pereira, Tristeza in English from Spanish, by Sónia Baptista, Cinderella, de Lígia Soares, e Every Brilliant Thing, de Ivo Canelas –, I will examine the social, cultural and political dimensions of public feelings (or public affect) as well as how they influence our affective experience.

Formulated by Lauren Berlant (2011), the concept public feelings defines public spheres as words of affect, collectively generated and negotiated. Although we experience intimately our emotions and feelings, the private sphere is conditioned and shaped by economic, political and cultural forces, fueling desires and fantasies that circulate in repeated cultural narratives.

Why did those Portuguese artists chose to pick happiness, sadness, depression and romantic love in the above mentioned productions in the current Portuguese political and social situation? How does this reflect, reinforce or subvert a post-Troika context with a Left Wing coalition government and a President of the Republic called, even before he took office, the “president of affection”?

Ana Pais (Portugal) is a FCT Post-doctoral fellow at CET – Centro de Estudos de Teatro at the University of Lisbon/FLUL, dramaturge and curator. She is the author of Discourse of Complicité. Contemporary Dramaturgies (Colibri 2004) and Affective Rhythms in the Performing Arts (Colibri 2018) as well as editor of Performance na Esfera Pública (2017, Orfeu Negro) and its online version in English available at She has worked as theatre critic in the most distinguished Portuguese newspapers (Público and Expresso), as a dramaturge in both theatre and dance projects in Portugal, and as curator of several discursive practices events, namely a one week event Projecto P!Performance in the Public Sphere, 2017).


Title: The public, the private and the political in the performative works of young artists and students of fine arts: a case study

Author: Teresa Furtado, artist, assistant professor in the Department of Visual Arts and Design of the School of Arts of the University of Évora, CHAIA/UÉ


This communication intends to emphasize the way in which the public and the private are treated at the present time by young artists and students of fine arts in their performative works, among others, in traditional or alternative spaces, in physical or digital platforms, that do not enclose the private in a box that nobody has access to. The refrain "the personal is political", which in the 1970s rallied attention to the fact that the inner sphere as much as the outer sphere is a space where power is exercised, namely the unequal power of the private relationship between woman and man, and which has been largely treated in performance since then, now takes on new forms in the current artistic field. This analysis, carried out from my speaking place as a teacher and researcher in the Department of Visual Arts and Design of the University of Évora School of Arts (UÉ), and in the Center of History of Art and Artistic Research of UÉ, intersects the visual arts, sociology and gender studies disciplines, with feminist, LGBTI and queer perspectives. Based on this knowledge, within the classroom, we created artistic projects in the form of exhibitions, performances and debates, presented to the academy and to the surrounding community, in a perspective of deconstruction of stereotypes and hierarchical gender dichotomies, seeking to contribute in a positive way for the social change in this area.


Teresa Veiga Furtado (Portugal) is an artist, assistant professor in the Department of Visual Arts and Design of the School of Arts of the University of Évora (CHAIA/UÉ), an integrated member of the Center for History of Art and Artistic Research of the UÉ and an associate member of the Interdisciplinary Center of the Nova School of Social Sciences and Humanities (CICS.NOVA / NOVA FCSH). Her areas of research are Art and Gender Studies. Graduated in Painting from the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Lisbon, Master in Printmaking from the Royal College of Art in London and PhD in Sociology from NOVA FCSH with the thesis "Women's Art: Our Bodies, Ourselves. Body, Identity and Self-Determination in the Works of Videoartists Influenced by Feminisms". She was curator and organizer of several projects, among them the "Video and Gender" exhibition within the scope of the "Gender Trouble" cycle, at the Maria Matos Theatre, and the exhibition "Gender in Art. Body, Sexuality, Identity, Resistance", with Aida Rechena, at the The National Museum of Contemporary Art - Chiado.


Title: You & Me

Author: Susana Mendes Silva, Artist and Professor at Universidade de Évora, DPAO ,i2ADS, FBAUP


Art is always public, because it is always made for others.

But as a visual artist and a performer I am interested in the way we can appropriate intimacy mechanisms. How can I really address myself to you, instead of addressing to a heterogeneous audience?

Departing from my artistic practice I will talk about the notion of intimacy and the methodologies to build my artwork.

How can we activate those mechanisms to create situations where life entangles with work, to build affective and critical tools, and to be able to create spaces of free and egalitarian thinking?

The performative conference will be in English.

The participants will be invited to wear a blindfold for a few minutes.


Susana Mendes Silva (Portugal) is a visual artist and a performer. Her work incorporates elements of research and archival practice that leads to the creation of works whose historical and political references become visible as exhibitions, actions and performances that employ a wide variety of media. Her universe considers and reframes different social contexts without ever losing track of the individual's uniqueness. Her psychological intimacy and her voice are often the means for the diffusion and reception of poetic and political messages that call upon them. Susana studied Sculpture at FBAUL (Lisbon, PT), and in the MPhil/PhD Fine Art (Studio Based Research) at Goldsmiths College for which she was awarded a Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation grant. She has a PhD based in her practice — "Performance as an Intimate Encounter" — by the College of the Arts of the University of Coimbra. Susana is an Assistant Professor at the University of Évora in the Landscape Architecture BA and MA.


Reading of Comunidade

Room 2 – 19 Feb., 14h30


I extend my foot and touch with the heel a cheek of soft and warm flesh; I turn to the left side, with my back to the light of the lamp, and a calm and soft breath baffles me; I make a random gesture in the dark, and the hand, involuntary pincers of fingers, wrist, throbbing blood, descends on a warm naked breast or on a little baby's head, like a tuft of black feathers on the top of a bald head, the throbbing little fontanelle; we breath into each other's mouths, we exchange arms and legs, smells, sweat with each other, for each other, so cosy, so wrapped and entangled in the same heat as if our veins and arteries carried the same blood spinning, palpitating rhythmically, silently, of a an equal life-giving sap.

Luiz Pacheco

Community (1964)


Technical and artistic information

Text Luiz Pacheco

Director Ana Palma

With Ana Palma, André Simões, Constança Carvalho Neto, Diogo Lopes e Rita Monteiro

Creation Teatro da Garagem

Partners Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas da Universidade Nova de Lisboa

Supported by Câmara Municipal de Lisboa, EGEAC, Junta de Freguesia de Santa Maria Maior

Financed by Governo de Portugal | Ministério da Cultura e Direção-Geral das Artes


Teatro da Garagem, a theatre company which celebrates 30 years of regular activity in 2019, dedicates its artistic work to research and experimentation, through the exploration of new forms of writing for theatre and new scenic forms that accompany it. Teatro da Garagem began its activity, as the name indicates, in a garage in the suburbs of Lisbon, a hybrid zone, of mixture of landscapes and references, that influenced in an indelible way the work of the Company and the writing of its playwright, director and artistic director, Carlos J. Pessoa. Teatro da Garagem´s itinerary is recognized by the national and international public, specialized critics, cultural institutions and government structures, adding to the project a responsibility to the local, national and international community. The Company's artistic and pedagogic project is, unequivocally, a Public Service project.

Since 2005/2006, Teatro da Garagem is the resident company at the Taborda Theater, at the invitation of EGEAC and the Lisbon City Council.





Title:  Performative ‘Intraventions’ and Matters of Love, Care and Delay: Steps Towards Responsible ‘Worlding’

Author: Alberto Altés Arlandis, Post-Doctoral Research Fellow / Chair of Methods and Analysis 

TU Delft, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment – Architecture


As architects, artists, designers and thinkers, as inhabitants and makers of the worlds we live in, we need responsible practices that make us aware of the things we care about and the ways in which such care matters: the impact it has in the mattering of the world. Responsible practices need to contribute to increasing the sheer amount of care and love in/on the planet: non-cynical love and care are our tools and energies, intensities and attentions, to resist cynicism and toxic irresponsibility.

I will approach the interplays of matter/care, as nouns and verbs, understanding care as a doing, as a situated ethics and as a politics of architecture, to explore the fragile power of the anarchic share: an active listening, a generous gifting, an open encounter based on accepting we are not single beings, and carefully enduring the waiting of becoming-with others in/through an amphibian, constituting practice.


Alberto Altés Arlandis studied architecture and urban planning in Valladolid, Barcelona and Delft, and critical theory at the Independent Studies Program in Barcelona (MACBA). He now holds a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at the Department of Architecture at TU Delft (NL), where he explores the relations of fragility, affinity and care, and the power of choreography, dance and love, to inform a sensitive and responsible approach to ‘worlding’ practices and pedagogy. He has been a guest lecturer at Konstfack in Stockholm (SE) and at the Academy of Landscape and Territorial Studies in Tromsø (NO). He was assistant professor at Umeå School of Architecture (2011-2017), where he co-founded and co-directed the Laboratory of Immediate Architectural Intervention; and a lecturer at the ETSAV School of Architecture in Barcelona (2006-2011), where he defended his PhD ‘Delaying the Image: Towards an Aesthetics of Encounter’.


Title : Agape and the Anthropocene
Author: António Contador, Artist, Institut Acte, Université Paris 1/CNRS 

Starting from the notions of "anartist" (Duchamp), "un-artist" (Kaprow) and "artist-without-work" (Jouannais), I became interested in the wave of the “Goodbye Man” (Senhor do Adeus), problematising it as an artistic gesture, although it has never been claimed as such by himself. A communicability (Benjamin) based on extreme politeness is what enables the reading of this nod as an artistic borderline gesture. "Artistic gesture" because, like others validated by art history, the communicability on which it stands defies the limits of the ordinary. And "borderline", because it allows to think about the limits of the artistic practice based on the work.
In 2015, in the context of an artistic residency in the Hangar artistic research center in Lisbon, the same issue (the limits of art) and the same response (politeness) were the impetus for a project titled "Matérias Baixás” (Baixás Matter), which consisted in collecting, taking care of and putting back in place objects found on the streets or, according to the prism adopted, left at the mercy of a possible caretaker.
The politeness of the Goodbye Man and his nod, caring for "unowned" objects are branches of the same tree: the agape. Distinct from passionate love (eros) and love-friendship (philia), agape is not an obvious and natural feeling, nor is it a kind of basic care with the other. Implying a radical conversion of being and looking at the world, agape demands that you love yourself, so that everything that is external to you is loved in the same way. Therefore, the other (human, animal, vegetal, object) is nothing more than an opportunity to love.
Based on these two experiences (Goodbye Man and Baixás Matter), I propose to unveil an agape, free from its humanistic and theological desideratum (Saint Augustine), which enhances a communicability-world made artistic expression.
Antonio Contador lives and works in Paris. He left Vitry-sur-Seine (suburbs of Paris) in the early 1990s to settle in Lisbon and become a sociologist there. His work as a researcher in sociology focused on Portuguese black youth. The return to Paris (mid-2000) and the PhD in aesthetics at the University Paris 1 unveil new questions that are still under consideration: the limits (désœuvrement) of the human body and language, and of the artistic practice. His interest in the Goodbye man is a symptom of this. At the border between different practices - artist, curator, author and theoretician - his achievements have been seen and heard in France (Palais de Tokyo, Ricard Foundation, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Villa Arson, etc.) and abroad (Serralves in Porto, Wiels in Brussels, Museum of the Republic in Rio de Janeiro, National Museum of Contemporary Art in Bucharest, among others).



Title: On female desire in poetic autobiographies

Authors: Ana Lúcia M. de Marsillac, Psychologist and Postdoc at IC Nova - FCSH/UNL and Paulo Jesus, Psychologist, Lecturer of Psychology at Portucalense University and researcher at the Philosophy Center of the University of Lisbon.


Poetic autobiographies articulate literary and visual autobiographies. They present themselves as ways of inhabiting and signifying incompleteness, in a dialogue with the other of the infinite and unknowable desire, revealing their daily life and their intimacy, breaking with the boundaries between the private and the public.

In an anachronistic encounter between three female artists who have developed autobiographies, Frida Kahlo, Sylvia Plath and Ana Casas Broda, we will pursue the undulations of desire in corporeality and female expressiveness, at the limits of borderline experiences of birth and mortality. The works of these artists construct fictions of the self and bring us closer to the concept of desire. We will attempt to analyse how the desire manifests itself in these poetics and to advance theoretically (with Freud, Winnicott and Lacan) in this field of intersection between intimacy, subjectivity and aesthetics.


Ana Lúcia M. de Marsillac - Psychologist (2000) (UFRGS/Brasil). Psychoanalyst, member of the Psychoanalytic Association of Porto Alegre (APPOA). Professor (2013) at the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC), in the Postgraduate Program in Psychology. She's currently doing a postdoctoral degree at IC Nova - FCSH/UNL (Portugal). PhD (2011) in Visual Arts - history, theory and criticism (UFRGS) and a Master's degree (2005) in Social and Institutional Psychology (UFRGS). Researcher in the fields of psychoanalysis, art and health, with publications in these areas. Since 2015, she's coordinator of the Research Laboratory of Psychoanalysis, Creative Processes and Political Interactions (UFSC/CNPQ). In 2018, she launched the book: "Aberturas Utópicas: arte, política e psicanálise", ed. Appris.    


Paulo Jesus, MA in Psychology (2000, Coimbra University, Portugal, and Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium) and PhD in Philosophy (2006, EHESS, Paris, France), was a post-doc researcher at Columbia University and NYU (2007-08) and at CREA (Paris, 2009-10). His research projects focus mainly on the narrative construction of selfhood, autobiographical memory and personal identity, from a phenomenological, psychodynamic and cognitive perspective. He has been the PI of an interdisciplinary project titled “Poetics of selfhood: Memory, imagination, and narrativity” (funded by the Portuguese Ministry of Higher Education and Science). Presently he is lecturer of Psychology at Portucalense University and researcher at the Philosophy Center of the University of Lisbon (Portugal).



Title: How Intimacy Disrupts Power

Author: Claire Schneider, independent curator in Buffalo, New York and Founder and Director of C.S.1 Curatorial Projects


Artists are increasingly employing intimacy as a means of critiquing power structures. Sharon Hayes is performing one-person protests that oscillate between expressing the longing for a lover and the rage about war. Antonio Vega Macotela is grieving for, dancing with, and hugging relatives for those in prison. And much like Martin Luther King, they are using love as a means to change hearts for a political end. This sense of closeness is deployed like a virus to infect all kinds of institutions, often ones that were once progressive, but have become rigid or stale. The history of performance art has always been about intimate and often uncomfortable experiences, but now it is about using the power of vulnerability to create connection – human connection through shared emotion as opposed to via a hand-held device.


Claire Schneider is an independent curator in Buffalo, New York and Founder and Director of C.S.1 Curatorial Projects, a commissioner and producer of art projects in unexpected spaces. Currently, C.S.1 is leading Nick Cave PLENTY with Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, University at Buffalo and Buffalo Public Schools. In 2013, Schneider organized the traveling exhibition More Love: Art, Politics and Sharing since the 1990s for the Ackland Art Museum, UNC-Chapel Hill. Accompanied by a 240-page catalogue, More Love won an AAMC Award for Best Exhibition. Schneider was Associate Curator of Contemporary Art, Albright-Knox, 1998-2008, and Senior Curator at Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, 2008-2010. A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Schneider received her MA in art history from Williams College.



Title: Talking about Love, Publicization of intimate matters in contemporary dance plays

Authors: Claire Vionnet, anthropologist, Bern University


What happens when choreographers bring intimate topics on a theater stage? In this paper, I will discuss the publicization of intimacy, departing from European contemporary dance plays that figure love, sexuality, pornography and gender issues (Mette Ingvartsen, Doris Uhlich). This externalisation of the private sphere into the public area leads performers and audience to share an intimate experience. How does it affect performers’ bodies to embody such intimacies? And what does it mean for the audience to be invited to testimony the intimacy of others? These questions will allow us to discuss the notion of intimacy on a more conceptual dimension, etymologically and historically. I argue that since an intimate zone is present in every culture, the boundaries of this sphere are flexible and negotiable, also within a culture.


Claire Vionnet studied social sciences at the University of Lausanne. She wrote a PhD on the gesture in contemporary dance, combining dance studies, anthropology and dance practice. She conducted fieldwork among professional dance companies in Switzerland, taking part in the production of dance plays. To expand her theoretical frame, she collaborated with the Institute of dance and theater studies in Bern (Prof. C. Thurner) and the Institute of anthropology in Aberdeen (Prof. T. Ingold). She has also worked for/with the dance scene, as an outside eye in plays production, as a social researcher and as a meeting assistant. Her writing is on the Swiss dance scene (2015), working conditions of companies (2016), collaboration between art and anthropology (2016) and interpretation of plays (2017). In her actual postdoc, she explores the intimacy of the dancing body.



Title: Ropework: performing fragility

Authors: Daniel Cardoso, ECATI-ULHT / NOVA FCSH, and Telma João Santos, University of Évora, dancer and performance artist


We propose a performance piece where academic narrative, ropework, gender and maths join to create a transdisciplinary landscape and provoke debate on how the categorization of specific objects allows us to think about the importance of intersectional thought in every direction. The de-stigmatization of symbols-actions as ropework, proposing the displacement of the context, where the strength lies within fragility and the fragility is embedded in strength. This will allow us to explore how gender and emotions and processed in and through flesh and to see in what other ways the flesh can be deployed and (re)styled, and that restyling can contribute to a broadening of the intelligibility of differently gendered lives and experiences.

(performance’s sound  by Gabriela Marramaque (Ergonoise))


Daniel Cardoso has a PhD in Communication Sciences, he teaches as an Assistant Professor at the ULHT and as a Guest Assistant Professor at the FCSH NOVA University. He does research on consensual non-monogamies, BDSM, gender and sexualities, especially around new media and cybercultures. He is an amateur photographer, rigger, performer, videographer and activist. His work is available at


Telma João Santos holds a PhD in Mathematics and a PhD in Arts, teaches at the University of Évora since 1999, is a researcher, focused on finding methodologies and relational models in artistic creation in restricted spaces as manifests, writes papers on journals as Performance Research, Liminalities, Leonardo, among others. Researches and documents several Portuguese dancers and performers’ artistic processes. 



Title: From private archive to public discourse: Karol Radziszewki’s Kisieland

Author:Flóra Gadó, PhD candidate at Eötvös Loránd University – Faculty of Humanities, Department of Film, Media and Cultural Studies, Budapest, Hungary


In my talk I would like to present the project Kisieland (2009) by Polish artist, Karol Radziszewski, who often deals with untold and marginalized stories in his works. His starting point here is the private archive of Ryszard Kisiel who in the 80’s documented several queer performances in private apartments. In the most interesting parts of the film, Kisiel together with a young model, re-enact some of these events based on the archive photos. The project raises the following questions: how could we rethink the changes in the status of performance art from the private apartments in the socialist era until today’s museum shows? What can we learn from Kisiel’s archive which merges the notion of privacy, intimacy, non-binary genders and from Radziszewski’s project which puts the archive out into the public discourse? I would like to point out the role of the artist as activist through which the notion of intimacy and affection becomes a political tool.


Flóra Gadó (1989) is curator, art critic and Ph.D. researcher based in Budapest. Currently, she is a PhD candidate at the Film, Media and Cultural Theory Department at Eötvös Loránd University. In her dissertation she examines the different kind of critical approaches and strategies that artists from the CEE region use when dealing with the past. Flóra Gadó has curated exhibitions in Hungary and the neighboring countries, such as Kisterem Gallery and Gallery 2B (Budapest), Tabačka Gallery (Košice) and Klubovna Gallery (Brno). From Fall 2018 she is a curator at Budapest Gallery, a contemporary art center in Hungary. She took part in several curatorial residency programs, like Meetfactory in Prague, or Generator in Rennes. She is the vice president of the Studio of Young Artists’ Association.



Title: Proximity, emotions and technological mediation in the Italian Performance Art of the origins

Author: Francesca Gallo, Sapienza University of Rome


This contribution is meant not only to put the focus on Italian artists’ performances, which have brought the themes of emotions and intimacy to the fore both in live exhibitions and in videorecorded and photographed actions, but also to reflect on the consequences of choosing one or the other medium, through Giuseppe Chiari, Ketty La Rocca, Michele Sambin works.

The artists focus on direct observers and employ video and photographic records to reach a wider audience and allow their work to survive beyond the hic et nunc. Photography, in fact, tends to freeze the instant and to build up a unique, ‘summary’ iconography whereas videotapes preserve those narrative elements often related to the autobiographical dimension of the performance. Paradoxically, however, it is photography that has extensively ensured greater visibility, penalizing those artists who have aimed at a more comprehensive and engaging record of their work by using videotapes.


Francesca Gallo (, Ph.D., has taught Contemporary Art History at Sapienza University of Rome since 2011. She studies Italian Neo-avant-gardes – artists, critics, journals and exhibitions – with a specific focus on videoart and performance (“Ricerche di Storia dell’Arte”, respectively 2006 and 2014). She also wrote on Ketty La Rocca (Postmediabooks 2015; Biennale Donna 2018), Videogiornali by 10th Quadriennale of Rome (“L’Uomo nero” 2018), art in the social context (Raccontare la città contemporanea, A. Bertone-L. Piccioni eds., Rome-Marseille 2018). She devoted her Ph.D. research to the exhibition Les Immatériaux (Centre Pompidou 1985), about which she published several essays and a book (Rome 2008).



Title: Down and Dirty: Ecosex intimacies and the appeal of the ‘personal’

Author: Jon Cairns, Critical Studies Leader, BA Fine Art, Central Saint Martins


Annie Sprinkle and Elizabeth Stephens’s Ecosex practice makes an erotic appeal to embrace a new version of environmental politics. Their various ecosex activities flirt with the ridiculous but are serious about getting us into a freshly perverted relationship with the otherwise ordinary and familiar that is both politically and sexually embodied. They exhort us to get intimate with the earth, to get down and dirty, in a way that re-engages with ‘the personal is political’. Suggestive ‘eco-intimacies’ are modelled by them to forge new eco-aware subjectivities. But as they roll naked in soil during one of their shows, they seem to compost themselves, symbolically disaggregating themselves, in an entropic anderotic unforming. What might be composed out of the new aggregate? And what about my intimate engagement with them? How do I gauge the correct distance from my personal attachments while it permits criticalcloseness?


Jon Cairns is a senior lecturer in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, where he is Critical Studies Leader. Recent research has explored the ambivalence of affect, specifically in the context of the work of Adrian Howells, and Annie Sprinkle and Elizabeth Stephens. This forms part of a broader project on emotion, intimate interaction and the critical encounter with art. Earlier work has looked at questions of value in the context of recession, while previous collaborative practice has included online and curatorial work, centering on explorations of the fictive and the fabulatory.



Title: Performing the ‘I Care’

Author: Kathryn Lawson Hughes, Swansea College of Art - University of Wales Trinity Saint David


This performative presentation takes up art-critic and cultural theorist Jan Verwoert’s proposition, from his essay entitled ‘Exhaustion and Exuberance: Ways to Defy the Pressure to Perform’ (2017), that to perform in the key of ‘I care’ is to undermine and problematize the narrowing parameters of possibilities for agency, in present-day global cultural economies. Attuning our bodies and embodied actions into the key of ‘I care’, adopting care as a strategy and methodology for performance, enables us to tap into an exuberantly abundant resource of unconditional potentialities for agency; an agency activated in us, ‘both from and through the other’ (Verwoert 2017: 231). In turn, the performative space becomes the charged transitional site of affections and intimacies, the location for provocation and mediation, in which radical shifts can take place.


Kathryn Lawson Hughes is a PhD researcher at Swansea College of Art (Wales, UK), whose research is enabled by a European Social Fund scholarship (Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarship II). Her performative practice is concerned with re-negotiating understandings of contemporary subjectivity, identity, and perceptions of movement and embodiment, in the post-digital age. As digital interfaces increasingly permeate our lives and understandings of embodiment, her practice seeks to nurture a space of negotiation, cultivating, through performative research methodologies, a lexicon, towards how we might better ‘speak’ our bodies in the current context of the contemporary ‘post-digital’ condition.



Title: The Will of (Im) Possible: artistic lovers couples in the Art of Performance

Author: Nelson Guerreiro, Researcher

This communication will explore the work of artistic couples, especially in the field of performance art, emphasizing aspects, dynamics, themes and issues, both in the private sphere and in the public sphere. We are interested in exploring the idiosyncrasies of some of artistic couples, real-life superheroes who defied the canons and reconfigured their world via relational self-modeling through the arts and above all performance, and in looking at how their work makes possible the creation of a fertile field of production of imaginaries based on love. This deep submersion in intimacy and in the creation of "artists-loves" will allow to highlight multiple themes, such as: romance out of parameters vs. traditional romance; eternal love stories vs. heartbreaks and their tragic biographies; love and disaffection, personal extension, passional and professional; jealousy and despair vs. acceptance and freedom; prohibitive social normativity and taboos, vulnerability, fragility, stupidity vs. vitality, rapture and wisdom in love; among others. We will see how these couples of artists work together to intentionally blur the boundaries of individual effort and of the ego, etc.

Nelson Guerreiro was, between 2004 and 2018, a professor at the Escola Superior de Artes e Design of Caldas da Rainha. From 2001, he turned to artistic creation: from this movement he developed several individual and collective projects in the fields of theatre, performance art and literature. From 2014, he formed with Filipa Brito the artistic duo Vaivém. They have developed a project on collecting in the Arts, titled "Private Collection", with Vasco Araújo as the first guest artist. This project seeks to explore public and private art collections, questioning their functional and subjective implications, but also their operability and display arrangement. At the moment, he researches and lectures on "The (Un)Format of the Performance-Conference as the Paradisiac Interstice between Thought and the Arts".



Title: All Together - Feedback Now - Total Access Inc. (on my personal Coca Cola memories and other globalised pop affects)

Author: Paula Caspão, writer and artist, postdoctoral research fellow and lecturer at the University of Lisbon (FCT), Centre for Theatre Studies (FLUL), associate researcher at the Institute for Contemporary History (IHC-UNL)


Take the image conveyed by the 1971 Coca Cola ad*. It epitomizes a formula that has been intensified with the Internet and its co-tech-products: get together, closer, (over)share, (hyper)socialise, intoxicate, let the magic operate, repeat, repeat, repeat. Satisfied with your toilet experience today? – is a question I recently read at an airport toilet, with ‘go to’: The coercion to interconnect, to be on(-the-)line (Harney & Moten 2015), and express our most intimate experiences now falls us to the toilet. There is an omnipresent injunction to share one’s own and follow everybody else’s, only to feed the wealth and power of “those who control the platforms on which all of us create, consume, connect” (Taylor, 2014). We: all banking instances (Rogoff 2017). This proposal addresses the almost complete extinction of non-surveilled – non-monetized – spaces for intimate (personal and/or collective) engagement and expression.



Paula Caspão, Writer and artist, is a postdoctoral research fellow and lecturer at the University of Lisbon (FCT), Centre for Theatre Studies (FLUL), and an associate researcher at the Institute for Contemporary History (IHC-UNL). She holds a PhD in Philosophy (epistemology and aesthetics) from the University of Paris-10, and was a Visiting Scholar at the Performance Studies, New York University (2018). Her current research tackles the ecologies, poetics, and gestures implicated in the specific practices and (im)material labour that constitute the Museum, the Archive, and History making at large. Having worked extensively on procedures of contamination between choreographic, documental and theoretical practices, Paula has been presenting work across Europe, Australia, and the USA since 2005. She is the author of Relations On Paper (2013), editor of The Page As a Dancing Site (2014) and Pièces Assemblées (2017).



Title: Intimacy and affectivity in cyberspace / Intimidade e afectividade no ciberespaço

Author: Paula Varanda, PhD, Researcher


In the presence of a reality of emotions, knowledge and social interaction mediated and augmented by information and communication technologies, aesthetics and human-computer interaction become interested in understanding how affectivity and intimacy determine our engagement with digital-born artworks. For the latent work-events, that require the audience voluntary action to be actualized, the quality of the experience is critical. In this context, three artworks that I catalogue as new media performance, will be presented to demonstrate how they instigate multi-sensorial engagement and self and social awareness. Affect, as an embodied practice of judgement that asserts rightness to the image-based work, contributes to loving the experience and staying connected in an intimate exchange that converges public and private space.


Paula Varanda received her PhD award from Middlesex University in January 2016, with the thesis entitled “Dance performance in cyberspace – transfer and transformation”. Her writing and research, has focused in performing arts and cultural projects, and has been presented in conferences and published in books, newspapers and catalogues in Portugal and Europe. She has been dance critic for Público newspaper (2004-2016); artistic director of a dance for the community regional project in the southeast of Portugal (2008-2015); and was Director of the General Directorate for the Arts in the Ministry of Culture (2016-2018).



Title: Love + Other Pressing Issues: Barbara T. Smith’s 21st Century Odyssey, 1991-1993.

Author: Pietro Rigolo, The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles


Barbara T. Smith (Pasadena, 1931) has been at the forefront of radical art in California for more than 50 years. Regarded as a pioneer of performance and feminist art in Los Angeles, her work has still to gain the attention it deserves outside of the region.

The 21st Century Odyssey is a durational performance made in collaboration with Roy Walford, Smith’s partner at that time. Walford, one of the participants in the Biosphere 2 experiment in Southern Arizona, spent two years inside the research facility, an ecological system completely independent from our planet. Meanwhile, Smith engaged in multiple travels around the world, during which she collaborated with local artists in performances, workshops and talks. For the whole duration of the piece, Smith documented her life on dozens of Hi8 videocassettes.

This work at its core has to do with the relationship between two radical individuals, who decided to challenge their own lives and feelings while facing crosscutting problematics of their time, such as ecology, the booming communication technology, and the raising global dimension of the art world.


Pietro Rigolo earned his PhD from Università degli Studi di Siena / Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane. In 2013 he joined the Getty Research Institute (GRI) as the subject expert in the team cataloging the Harald Szeemann archive. He is one of the editors of Selected Writings by Harald Szeemann (GRI 2018), the first English anthology of the curator’s writings, and one of the curators of Harald Szeemann: Museum of Obsessions, now on an international tour and opening on February 25th at Castello di Rivoli in Italy.

At the GRI he also worked on other contemporary art collections such as the Barbara T. Smith papers, the Maurice Tuchman papers, and the Margo Leavin Gallery records. His research focuses on modern and contemporary art, history of exhibitions and curatorial studies.



Title: Woman standing in front of the mirror. An intimate practice-as-research project

Author: Sol Garre, Real Escuela Superior de Arte Dramático de Madrid


Standing in front of a mirror is a performance that explores together with the audience the quality of attention and availability necessary to share our experience and sensitivity as human beings. Das Letzte, a short dance video performance will serve to present the elaboration process of the performance: a study of perception and the creative processes that regulate the behaviour and embodiment of the actor and her communication with the viewer. It explores the psychophysical processes that direct the presence and imagination of the actress on the stage as well as the openness, awareness and generosity necessary to tackle those processes.


Sol Garre trained as an actress in Spain and in the Michael Chekhov’s technique of acting since 1995. She is senior lecturer at the Real Escuela Superior de Arte Dramático de Madrid in acting in physical theatreHer research “Towards a Poetic Body: Michael Chekhov and the Psychophysiological Paradigm of Acting” was awarded an MA with Distinction in 2001 at Exeter University (UK). Her PhD further explored Chekhov’s teachings and techniques within the context of training professional actors in Spain (Practice-As-Research). She is member of MCE and collaborates in the International Training Program of this Association. Her research project A Certain Sense of Reality investigates actors’ processes of perceiving and imagining.



Title: The Act of Being ‘Together Alone’:
Slow Cinema and the Re-Design of One’s Intimate Interaction with the Concept of Realness

Author: Susana Bessa, writer


With the arrival of late-modernity’s ‘emotional culture’, defining intimacy or what it is to be intimate is beyond strenuous. Many are the scholars that have long been exploring the willful abolition of privacy in the display of affectivity within a public realm. Sherry Turkle’s insightful ‘Alone Together’ is a case in point. In it, Turkle questions why we’ve chosen to clean up the frailties from our relationships, in view of capitalising our innate sensibility to be emotionally close to someone, both physically as well as cognitively. That said, in search of an emotional space in which a mirrored act of intimacy could be perpetuated, we look at the experience of boredom provoked by slow cinema, hoping that by disclosing social media’s induced inward identity crisis, we may find our way into re-discovering the notion of realness at intimacy’s core. Being together alone, instead of alone together.


Susana Bessa is a writer. After completing a BA in film, she went on to intern at the BBC in London, where she got her MA in Film and Screen Studies at Goldsmiths College with a dissertation that sees cinema, an act of excavating memory, the definition for the social concept of ‘saudade’. Her research themes include memory, archive, saudade, post-colonialism and time. She also studies the intersection between social media and cinema, more particularly film criticism, about which she presented a paper at GLITS Conference - End Games in 2017: “Film Criticism in the Post-Truth Era of Emotional Capitalism: Social Media and the Eradication of the Authoritative Mediator.” She’s written for The Rumpus, Photogénie, Mubi Notebook, among other publications. She’s currently based in Lisbon.


Institute of Art History, ICNOVA – Nova Institute of Communication, Faculty of Social and Human Sciences of University Nova de Lisboa, CEIS20-UC – Centre of Interdisciplinary Studies from XX century, FLUC 



Teatro da Garagem

Scientific coordination

Bruno Marques, Cláudia Madeira, Fernando Matos Oliveira, Giulia Lamoni, Liliana Coutinho

special guests

Ana Pais, Luís Trindade, Manuel Lisboa, Susana Mendes Silva

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