April 27, 1957

Series: 
Identité
Description: 
Preparation:

a small theater with a stage, a stairway on each side of the stage, rows of old seats on the same level. The performances followed one another in controlled improvisation. Ben had a list of names, and named each performer before the action. The same ingredients as in a Fluxus concert. I was called out "Elizabeth Morellet", unrelated to the famous painter. The microphone was moved around... the stage was almost empty. A bouquet of red roses in a vase placed by Jacques Miège for his performance immediately after. It was “used” symbolically for my birthday. An audio tape (of apparently poor quality) had been prepared, as well as the instruction "lights". Artistic disorder and good mood in the audience. Ben was officiating: he started the timer, placed at the front of the stage. Get set, go!

Action: the soundtrack was started. My voice quickly read the family booklet given to my parents on their wedding day: dates, names, relation, until the names of the children appeared... but...

I was wearing simple “unisex” denim overalls with a breast pocket containing all the props for the action. As the voice read the text, I followed a precise path starting from the back of the stage, slow and systematic, the whole length, from left to right, from right to left and finally from left to right again. In this way, I reached the front of the stage at the center. During the short lapse of time two minutes and 33 seconds, I stopped 24 times to put down 24 white pieces of cardboard on the floor. Each one bore a year, from 1958 to 1981. 24 years of my life which happened thanks to the meeting of my parents. Third unexpected daughter, but the result of love! The audience did not find out my rank in this feminine trio because at the word "CHILD" the audio cassette stopped... permanently... an amused murmur in the audience. Movement of surprise on my part, but I started again: the pieces of cardboard were now being placed on the stage in silence. I stood still at the center of the stage and took a candle out of my secret pocket, and a lighter. In the production room, the "panic" caused by the interruption of the audiotape postponed the desired "darkness" effect. Ben's voice called out "turn down the lights". This was corrected too quickly. A small vacillating flame was left, barely lighting a woman's face. I blew the candle of my 24th birthday... darkness... applause... lights. The end.
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Elisabeth Morcellet | photographie de la performance "27 avril 1957", 1981 | © Elisabeth Morcellet - ADAGP, Paris 2012 | photographie : © DR | courtesy de l'artiste
Creator: 
Elisabeth Morcellet
Performer: 
Elisabeth Morcellet
Theoretical background: 
critique:

a short unpretentious performance in a context of "serious" sharing and entertainment. No one is a star. Anyone can participate. Even non-artists. An unforgettable evening.

My little action tried to symbolically follow an entire life in a given and limited time span. For me, a suggested constraint becomes the rule of the game and stimulates questions on creation and the medium we are using. The subject answers. Here time questions identity and social integration. Filing information about every human being from birth, and compulsory affiliation with a sub group: sex, nation, age... it also implicitly raises the philosophical question of life itself, of being in the world. The one-who-is-born doesn't seem to have any choice. He must follow the cultural model. No choice and, an obligation: living. Giving life... childless woman... when art constantly echoes the real choices of life.
Occurence: 

2 minutes 33 de création | Soirée organisée par Ben, 1981

Synopsis / Description: 

Capture vidéo couleur montée de la Soirée "2 minutes 33 de création" organisée par Ben en 1981 au Théâtre de l'Artistique à Nice avec entre autres : Christian Arthaud, Robert Érébo, Pierre Le Pillouër, Jean Mas, David Medalla, Élisabeth Morcellet, René Pietropaoli et Serge III.
© DR
Courtesy Ben
Portage sur le web réalisé par la Villa Arson

Performances: 
Objets: 

UN BRIQUET

Technique description référence: 
UN BRIQUET
Documents: 

TITRE ACTION sur papier Canson

Type: 
Manuscrit
Technique description référence: 
TITRE ACTION sur papier Canson
58 x 78 cmMORCEL
Elisabeth Morcellet | trace de la performance "Sanctuaire", 1979 | © DR | courtesy Elisabeth Morcellet

« TEXTES GENERAUX »<br /> a - « Globalement, Travail artistique » encre bleue, manuscrit, 10 pages.<br /> b - « Lignes générales », 5 pages manuscrites. c - « Répertoire », 8 pages manuscrites.<br /> d - « Normalisation » 9 juin 81, 1 pa...

Type: 
Manuscrit
Technique description référence: 
« TEXTES GENERAUX »<br /> a - « Globalement, Travail artistique » encre bleue, manuscrit, 10 pages.<br /> b - « Lignes générales », 5 pages manuscrites. c - « Répertoire », 8 pages manuscrites.<br /> d - « Normalisation » 9 juin 81, 1 page manuscrite.<br /> e - « Notes sur la performance » 24 avril 81, 4 pages manuscrites.<br /> f - « L'art est un alibi » 20 Octobre 80, 6 pages manuscrites.<br /> g - « Situation personnelle par rapport aux autres pratiques » 7 pages manuscrites.<br /> h - « 3 Points » : 4 pages manuscrites.
MORCEL

« RECONSTITUTION »<br /> a - COLLAGE COUPURES Faits divers justice « Au service de la justice » « Pendant le jugement » Individu pendant le jugement » « moyens d’enquête » « sanction infligée » « nature du délit » « individu penda...

Type: 
Manuscrit
Technique description référence: 
« RECONSTITUTION »<br /> a - COLLAGE COUPURES Faits divers justice « Au service de la justice » « Pendant le jugement » Individu pendant le jugement » « moyens d’enquête » « sanction infligée » « nature du délit » « individu pendant le délit »<br /> b - COLONNES BLEUES : 2 pages manu classées : « Structure » « Acteurs de la structure » « termes employés pendant le jugement » « enquête » « sanction » « acte du délit » acteur du délit » « accusé »
MORCEL