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The art of leftovers: Memory, matter and decay

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This article contests the notion of performance as always disappearing and argues for an approach that considers performance as a material practice with material remains. In so doing, the article posits that conceptualizing performance through its matter reveals processes of remaining and transformation of substance. Saini's discussion of performance's material remains focuses on decay and ruins in order to challenge the notion that time is linear and singular within performance. She suggests that performance is instead always constituted by several different interweaving operations of time. In order to examine these questions, the article discusses three examples of work which evidence notions of material remains through decay, transformation of substance and resistance to forgetting.

Keywords: archive; decay; liveness; matter; performance; remains

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/jmpr.12.3.245_1

Affiliations: Queen Mary, University of London

Publication date: February 16, 2012

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  • The Journal of Media Practice is a peer-reviewed publication addressing practical work in media teaching and research. To this end, the editorial board and consultative panels comprise prominent academics and practitioners from a range of disciplines committed to the achievement of academic and professional ends through means centred on practical work.
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