The itinerary of our days here is as follows:
Between 12:00 and 13:30, is an informal event called Meet the Writers. Our invitation here has been funded by the MFA Fine Art department at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design at the University of Dundee and as such we are encouraged to involve the MFA students in our discourse. At 15:00 for an hour we join the open rehearsals for A cut A scratch A score to see the work in progress and at 17:00 there is a salon, a roundtable chat about the performance and project in general.
All events are open to the public and so far the reception has been good. In addition to the artists we have been joined by staff, curators, students and members of the public. This is part of a deliberate attempt by the curators, organisers and artists to enmesh among all participants (and as a public performance it is hoped that participation will extend beyond the artists and ourselves) a nature of collaboration; true collaboration where the process of creation is cyclical and no permanent outcomes have been intentionally fixed.
As writers, our invitation here has been with the implicit contract that we create a critical dialogue in response to the work and work-in-progress. Personally, it feels that we should retain (or at least strive to retain) a critical distance from the performance. To engage and evolve with the artists but not go native. The demarcation (or lack thereof) of roles is troubling though it feels that we writers are developing our own strategy to balance upon that thin red line. A question that remains unanswered currently though is 'Who is this for?'. A recurring motif for the trip so far has been the notion of failure, and it has been discreetly agreed that not only is failure an option but perhaps should be met head-on. The question of audience is a large one but one that at the moment feels peripheral to the situation that we have encountered here.