Adrian Heathfield writes on, curates and creates performance. His books include Out of Now, a monograph on the Taiwanese-American artist Tehching Hsieh and the edited collections Perform, Repeat, Record, Live: Art and Performance, Small Acts and Shattered Anatomies. His numerous essays have been translated into eight languages.

He currently works on a creative research project – Curating the Ephemeral – funded by the European Union. He was co-director of Performance Matters, a four-year AHRC funded research project on the cultural value of performance (2009–2013).

He co-curated the Live Culture events at Tate Modern, London (2003) and a number of other performance and durational events in European cities over the last sixteen years. He was a curatorial adviser and attaché for the 20th Biennale of Sydney and was an artistic director with the collective freethought of the 2016 Bergen Assembly, Norway. He is curator of Taiwan’s exhibition at the Biennale Arte 2017, Venice.

Heathfield has worked with many artists and thinkers on critical and creative collaborations including film dialogues, performance-lectures, dramaturgy, writing and workshop projects. He was President of Performance Studies international (2004–2007) and is Professor of Performance and Visual Culture at the University of Roehampton, London.

 

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Writing Not Yet Thought

Hélène Cixous in Conversation with Adrian Heathfield. Paris, September 2010.

In this exchange the acclaimed and prolific author Hélène Cixous discusses the practice of writing – considering fiction, theatre, the essay and poetry – alongside its relation to painting, music and philosophy. As the dialogue with Adrian Heathfield evolves, writing emerges as a site and instrument for encounters with other voices and otherness, mortality and mystery, the infinite and the ‘not yet thought’.

Recorded in Cixous’ home in Paris, the conversation is punctuated by various interruptions and affinities (animal and familial) that are taken into the movement of her thought. Cixous’ discourse flies between subjects as diverse as the song of the poetic, the temporality of invention, the re-thinking of the tragic, and the word becoming flesh and air in theatre.

This engaging, eloquent and passionate exchange will be of interest to artists, writers, and readers in the fields of theatre and performance, literature and the visual arts.

Hélène Cixous is an eminent French thinker, writer, educator and theatre maker. Her experiments in writing, including the development of ‘l’écriture feminine’ for which she is renowned, have had a wide-ranging influence on the fields of feminism, cultural theory, philosophy, literary criticism and theatre practice. She is Professor Emerita of Literature and Women’s Studies at the Université Paris 8 and Andrew D. White Professor at Large at Cornell University, New York.

Direction, Camera and Editing: Hugo Glendinning

Duration: 58 minutes

DVD Design: David Caines

Writing Not Yet Thought is produced by Performance Matters

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Homepage image: Hugo Glendinning and Adrian Heathfield, Writing Not Yet Thought (video still), 2010. © the artists.

Read an edited transcript of the exchange below