Invisible Performance No. 29: To spy on someone or something from one’s window

From 07 July 2015 to 07 July 2016, Montreal-based artist Steve Giasson tasked himself with creating no less than 130 performances. Numbered consecutively, each of these completed performances, in Giasson’s own words, “will first take the form of performative statements: this is, ideas of works, recorded in writing which, although they can stand on their own, they call and describe so many minimal or enigmatic gestures – often taken from everyday life or the History of Art – which could be placed in the public space or private space.” Invisible Performance No. 29: To spy on someone or something from one’s window addressing the performative gesture of seeing and being seen within the space of the city. Referencing other works, such as Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window (1954), Michael Snow’s Souffle solaire (2005) and Chantal Akerman’s movie Là-bas (2006), this piece uses the angle of the surveillant gaze looking surreptitiously through a window frame to track and record movement and activities. The piece highlights an ambiguity to this form of looking: as a viewer we first ask whether the captured images are performed, staged, or not, which then provokes a second questions as to what these differences would provide to the interpretation to the piece. So too it juxtaposes modes of everyday looking, with the conscious and active capture of images of people and activities through increased surveillance structures within public—and private—spaces. The series Invisible Performances was realized as part of the ‘Micro Interventions in public space’ section from the DARE-DARE Center of Dissemination of Multidisciplinary Art, Montreal.

Client:Steve Giasson, Performance invisible No. 29 (Épier quelqu’un ou quelque chose de sa fenêtre), 2015-2016. Performeur: Daniel Roy. Photographe: Daniel Roy. 24 septembre 2015. Image courtesy of the artist. © Steve Giasson.
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