‘In the concrete reality of today’s world, places and spaces, places and non-places intertwine and tangle together. The possibility of non-place is never absent from any place.’ (Auge 1995: 14)
This is the space where I tell you something personal. I worked with Gabriele Reuter as a dramaturg on Inventory/(Räumung) and we talked a lot about space. The space between her hands. The space between her and the audience. The space between her in the studio making the piece and her in the performance space now. The space between the process and the product.
Räumung translates into English as something like a house clearance and this is a fitting analogy for the way in which Gabriele empties the space for us. Unpacking and demystifying the preconceptions of performance codes we sometimes bring with us into the seats in which we sit. ‘Before I start I want to talk a little bit about the spatial arrangements here’ she says when we arrive.
Props, themes, political and cultural thinking are all laid bare in the same way Peter Brook did in the seventies – except they are not there. Brook said ‘I can take any empty space and call it a bare stage’ (Brook 1968). What Gabriele does is take a bare stage and call it an empty space. In doing so, she excels in problematising and itemising a space’s extraordinary potential as material.
This is a space for the dance that talked about the thing she just said. This is a space where the dance talks and the space understands. This is the space between me and you. This is the space where I tell you something personal. This is the space where there is a distance between her work and my words.