This article was posted on 20 May 2011, and is filed under e-Journal, Volume 1, Issue 1.

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The Edge of Writing: John Stezaker’s ‘Cinema 1 II’

Nathan Walker

Stezaker, John. 2005. Cinema 1 II [Collage] The Approach, London.

This article explores the use of poetic, language based protocols to deconstruct the collage and consider its performative and textual qualities. I am interested in collage as a form of writing, a form of writing that makes it difficult to produce clear readings. The reading of ‘Cinema 1 II’ (2005) by John Stezaker, and collages more broadly, are intrinsically linked to composition being both enriched and inhibited by juxtaposing and often hiding some of the works content. In ‘Cinema 1 II’ Stezaker demonstrates this erasure by cutting, repositioning materials without literally cutting the images but by writing meaning into the collage through erasure. Collage is considered as a writing event that performs disappearance, staged as appearance through the technique of Interruption. ‘The Edge of Writing’ proposes collage as writing where the event of its making and its viewing becomes a performance.

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Nathan Walker is an artist making performance actions, collage and installation, and has shown work both nationally and internationally, participating in festivals in United Kingdom and Europe including the National Review of Live Art (Glasgow) and Spill Festival (London). In 2008 he completed an MA in Performance Writing at Dartington College of Art. In 2010 Nathan co-founded O U I Performance with artist Victoria Gray and together they programme contemporary time-based performance art in York, North Yorkshire. Nathan currently teaches in the Faculty of Arts at York St John University, York.

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