Domestic Decadence | Reading troupe with Emma Haugh

May 13, 2020 9:42 am
District Spaces

Market Gallery is excited to host Reading Troupe #14: Domestic Decadence – Furniture erotica & bedroom salon slash fiction in the time of Corona. This distanced workshop will be conducted by post and over zoom in the first week of June. Please read on for more info and how to sign up.

“It seems to me to be part of the human that there is something in us that desperately desires to be clean and there is something in us that desperately desires to bathe in filth. And that is an irresolvable dilemma. There is no way to think yourself out from that dilemma. One way that culture has tried to resolve the dilemma is to valorise one of those desires, the desire to be clean, and then to insist that the other desire be brutally repressed. And whole systems of thought and feeling and legislation have been predicated on that idea of repressing. Well it is clear to me that repression is always a recipe for disaster.

When we become over attached to our own sense of cleanness, moral purity, righteousness, it’s the most dangerous thing in the world.”

Garth Grenwell

This Reading Troupe workshop will happen across seas, oceans, neighbourhoods and bedrooms via post and the internet. Queer-feminist modernist chairs, closets, screens and cut up texts will be starting points for the writing of queer erotica or slash fiction that hosts furniture as its object.

We will work with excerpts from texts by queer-feminist architecture historians that deal with queerness in the work of self-taught architect and designer Eileen Gray. The texts pitch Gray’s work as a counterpoint to the central Modernist drive towards an architecture and design that would cleanse the nation and ‘restore order’ in-between the wars. It’s a bit about thinking of how to be filthy and decadent during this time of domestic-isolation and hygiene and looking at historical examples as a starting point.

The workshop will involve materials delivered by post, an introductory online meeting where participants will gather in disguise and a final bedroom salon session where we will share written texts, images, collage or whatever else has been made. It’s an experiment!

There is also the possibility of collating the group’s work in a zine…more about that in the workshop.

The workshop might interest queer, feminist and queer-feminist folks interested in experimenting with writing queer erotica. If this is you write us a few lines of why you would like to take part along with your postal address to by Monday 18/5. There will be space for eight participants offered on a first come basis aimed predominantly at Scotland-based folks with a couple of seats for people from further afield who are keen to partake. The zoom gatherings will take place the first and second weeks of June.

THE READING TROUPE (RT) is a nomadic and mutating practice of performative and theatrical reading techniques. Incorporating improvisation, collage, fortune telling, psychogeography and collective cut-ups, RT workshops are contingent on time, place and people. In general RT workshops happen with a group of six or more but the techniques are also effective in pairs and can be adapted for working alone or with disembodied collaborators. RTs can happen in a single session or across multiple meetings, like a reading group. In RT sessions “readers” are invited to participate in an active embodiment of knowledge dissemination and production. This collaborative practice is an attempt to collectively enter the body of a chosen text through improvisation and amateur dramatics rather than analytic and academic language.

Previous RT’s include: CCA, Glasgow as part of Katherine McBride’ s exhibition ‘patriarchy over and out’, Gasworks, London, National College of Art & Design, Dublin and District, Berlin, amongst many others.

More RT info here:

Emma is co-founder of the artist collective The Many Headed Hydra together with co-director of District Berlin Suza Husse.

Emma has worked as visiting lecturer at: National College of Art & Design, Dublin (2020), The Academy of Fine Arts Vienna (2017), The Universität der Künste Berlin (2017), IADT Dún Laoghaire (2017), NCAD, Dublin (2015), and has given workshops at: Hamburger Bahnhof Museum of Modern Art, Berlin (2018), Akademie der Künste der Welt, Cologne (2018) and IMMA, Dublin (2015).

Recent & upcoming projects include: Domestic Optimism Scene 1 & 2 at Grazer Kunstverein, Graz (2020) & Project Arts Centre, Dublin (2021), Seized by the Left Hand at Dundee Contemporary Arts (2019), Is it Possible to Exist Outside of Language, curated by Aziz Sohail, at Indus Valley School of Art & Architecture, Karachi, Pakistan, I SLIPPED INTO MY FIRST METAMORPHOSIS SO QUIETLY THAT NO ONE NOTICED, Curated by Gitte Villesen, Den Frie Center Of Contemporary Art, Copenhagen (2019), Colomboscope interdisciplinary arts festival, curated by Natasha Ginwala, with The Many Headed Hydra, Sri Lanka (2019).

Emma was artist in residence at the Irish Museum of Modern Art 2019/2020.