Artist: Common Agency Projects (Shane Waltener & Laura Glaser)

Two people's hands twist long grass together, holding at each end.

Common Agency Projects, Rehearsing Commoning Actions At Wanstead Flats October 2020. (Photo: Felicity Crawshaw)

During COVID-19 restrictions, visual artist Shane and dance artist Laura met weekly in parks and commons. Public spaces developed a new function, more than safe spaces to socialise in, they became cultural centres where people went to be entertained, share ideas and experiences.

Witnessing this, the artists chose to work in green urban spaces and with nature: the weather, seasons, the site and all that grows in it. Through observation and play, they developed and rehearsed making and performance scores, exploring the idea of nature as a commons. They created work through movement improvisation, recording and discussing it with each other and interested park goers.

Common Agency Projects, Commoning Action #14: How to stand your ground generously

This video contains instructions to be re-inacted by visitors. Each time the works are remade, new knowledge is created amongst a growing community of performers. We ask ourselves how does this material feel? How does it behave? How do I connect with it and others? What can I do with it? How can it support me? How can I nurture it?

Common Agency Projects, Rehearsing Commoning Actions At Wanstead Flats October 2020.

(Photo: Felicity Crawshaw)

Rehearsing the dance. Two adults roll in the long grass, their legs and arms in the air.
The artist, a middle aged man, crouches in the very long grass.
Rehearsing. Two sets of legs lie across tree branches.


Where Next?

Learning resource: Healing

Thinking about how artists use materials and skills.

A leaf has been decorated with embroidery stitches.

Become a commoner

Learn more about commons.

Rehearsing the dance. Two adults roll in the long grass, their legs and arms in the air.

Artist: Alice McLean and Justine Boussard

Campaigning to protect community assets.

A silver token, like a big coin.

Artist: Rachael Colley

Using found natural materials.

A woman wears a large neckpiece made form cylinders of wood, some are natural and some are scorched.


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