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Author Topic:   Massimo Guerrera
posted October 15, 2001 18:38     Click Here to See the Profile for Marie   Click Here to Email Marie     Edit/Delete Message

10.02.01 - Review
Massimo Guerrera [CANADA]
salle Beverley Webster Rolph, Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal
Festival International de Nouvelle Danse

Concept: Massimo Guerrera

Protagonists-performers: Massimo Guerrera, Myriam Lavoie, Corine Lemieux

Music: Herri Kopter

Massimo Guerrera's Darboral is being presented as both an installation and a performance. I haven't seen it in its installation form, but I hope it works better than the performance.

The audience moves into a large room and sits on cushions surrounding the taped squares of carpet which have are decorated with low, square pastel-coloured, tin-foil edged tables. The tables are littered with fruit, bottles of juice and rocks. Casts of bones and body parts are piled high. Guerrera and the other two performers vary sitting at one of the tables and chewing on the fruit in front of them with performing movement in the space.

The video on the large screen that accompanies the piece is initially interesting, even though it's basically the same thing that's happening in the space, because it's vivid and larger than life. The performers use chunks of bone to eat and sculpt mounds of neon-pink mashed potatoes and perform dance moves reminiscent of club dancing. They move outdoors where they use their mouths to pull at fruit hanging off of trees near a lake and snuffle at mushrooms on the ground. After awhile even that starts to wear thin. Sitting and waiting for them to do "something" becomes excruciating because it never really pans out.

Back in the space we watch a woman spike apples on to the end of a long stick that is being held by the other woman, and then feed herself the speared fruit. She slowly rubs an apple on her clothing while Guerra and the other woman dance their jerky trip-hop moves. At one point Guerrera dances with white plastic bags tied over his shoes and one that he puts over his head, inhaling until it's tight to his skull so that he appears to look like some kind of demented Japanese-animation version of "Caspar the Friendly Ghost."

There wasn't much to speak of in terms of choreography or structure in this show and the relationships between the three performers were never really defined. Some lighting might have been nice. It might have at least delineated the performers and the space somewhat, which all becomes too much (the objects) and too little (what the performers are doing) at the same time, leaving the audience feeling lacklustre about the entire experience.

Ultimately this is the kind of presentation you would expect art school students to produce, when they're young, egocentric and inexperienced and have no concept of anyone but themselves. And whether you are falling asleep during their expression of self is of little consequence to them.

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posted October 15, 2001 18:40     Click Here to See the Profile for Marie   Click Here to Email Marie     Edit/Delete Message
Alicia Novak - McGill Daily, 10.15.01:
Stick a Carrot Up Your Nose
Massimo Guerrera’s new show tackles themes of food and desire

There was something charming about Montreal performance artist Massimo Guerrera’s “Darboral.” The piece, based on eating and consuming, is a dance/installation which appeared last week in a ‘laboratory kitchen’ in the Musee d’Art Contemporain as part of the Festival Internationale de Nouvelle Danse. The installation itself was open to visitors as an exhibition during museum hours, and could at designated times, provide “high density moments.” I was not so privileged as to experience such a moment, but I was pleasantly surprised that Friday night’s performance was not as pretentious its description in the festival program.

The accompanying sounds began as minimal blips and bleeps and eventually built to some full-on techno, at which point Guerrara indulged in an impressive dance solo that would make any club-kid jealous.


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