Performance space, an art collective produced the Sexes exhibition at Carriageworks as a festival exploring concepts of sexuality and gender identities through art installations, performances, talks, readings and dirty flicks. Reading through a catalogue a lot of it can seem a little confronting which is excellent because it shocks you into questioning your own sense of self...
Whelping box which was one of the performances is one extreme event where two actors pitted against each other act out our most primal desires whilst feeding off the screams, reactions of the audience. This is best said from the Carriageworks website:
"Two performers chain themselves to stakes, to test their limits and strip themselves of civility. With ritual, endurance, dancing and fighting they construct a self-made mythology. They are your guides, guinea pigs and preachers. They feed on your energy in a series of tasks that form a darkly humorous attempt to transcend the confines of normality. With the spectators seated around the action inside a 9 x 9 metre wooden box, nothing escapes the eye. Glorified acts of machismo, strange rituals and power games put on display our most primal desire"
How intense, generally the audience is forced to be a spectator, be passive simply trying to steal hidden meanings and contexts. Here it is so provocative, in your face it is hard to look away or separate yourself from the stage.
Also I was told by a staff member that someone had created a glory hole in one of the bathrooms where a member of staff had to stand guard to make sure it wasn't in use! I suppose a member of the audience became too inspired!