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Joel Anderson,

Theatre Photography between Theatre and Performance

À partir de l'analyse approfondie de deux corpus d’images – quelques photographies de théâtre prises par le photographe tchécoslovaque Josef Koudelka, et une photographie-performance de l’artiste chinois Ai Weiwei – cet article propose d'envisager la photographie de théâtre non seulement comme la simple reproduction d'une œuvre d’art théâtral, mais aussi comme l'enregistrement d’un événement.

Focusing on two bodies of images: selected theatre photographs by the Czechoslovakian photographer Josef Koudelka, and a performance-photograph by the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, we consider photography both as the reproduction of a theatre artwork and as a recording of an event.


documentation, théâtre, performance, destruction, reproduction.
documentation, performance, destruction, reproduction, theatre.


Texte intégral go_to_top

01We seek here to examine the relationships between theatre, performance, and photography. At stake is an encounter of representational modes, an encounter that tends to reveal similarities and differences, and which can both render problematic and elucidate the assembled elements. While the relationships between theatre, performance, and photography are numerous, practices of theatre photography and performance photography can, at least provisionally, be separated along conceptual, as well as institutional and historical lines. Although it emerges from diverse contexts and for differing reasons, from the studio portraits of actors, to marketing and press images promoting a forthcoming production, theatre photography tends to be understood in scholarship in terms corresponding to Walter Benjamin’s notion of the mechanical reproducibility of a work of art1: a process whereby theatre might be conveyed and circulated, and a record of work onstage preserved.

02In the context of performance art, photography has frequently asserted itself in terms of notions of documentation: the capturing of events conceived as fleeting and missable, necessarily specific to a time and a place, and predicated on an encounter with a specific audience. But any examination relationship of performance and photography will necessarily also turn to performances – often portraits or self-portraits – created for the camera. The photograph of and the photograph as performance cannot, however, be kept entirely separate for long, and the distinction between theatre photography and whichever performance photography can often rest on their respective institutional imperatives and their uses, and dissolves when tested in relation to particular examples.

03First, we will consider a set of theatre photographs taken by photographer Josef Koudelka, which constitutes some of the photographer’s earliest work, preceding the work for which he is known and celebrated: these are images of theatre productions in 1960s Prague. Second, we address a photographic triptych by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, one instance of the artist’s sustained recruitment of photography as a means of documentation and a means of performance: a self-portrait in its own right, but also an image used within one of the artist’s gallery installations. Koudelka’s work nuances conceptions of theatre photographs as reproductions of theatre; Ai’s photographic work seems located between the capturing of an event and photographic performance. Both examples offer an opportunity to reconsider the relationship between performance and photography and perhaps more generally of the relationship between the photograph and what is photographed.

04Before discussing the two sets of images in turn, we can highlight one possible meeting point between the two artists. A series of images by Ai Weiwei can be considered a homage, deliberate or not, to a photograph by Josef Koudelka. Koudelka’s photograph Prague2 shows a deserted Wenceslas Square taken at the moment when Warsaw Pact troops invaded Prague in 1968. In the foreground, on an arm extending from the left of the frame, a wristwatch shows the time3. This time-stamping, with the watch telling (us) the time and reflecting the time-fractioning mechanism by means of which the photograph is being produced, invites a pause upon the moment, a historical point between two eras; the photographer’s arm points to photographing as an action, and to the relationship between the experience and the observer.

05The photographs in Ai Weiwei’s Study of Perspective series each features an object or site of history and heritage (the Eiffel Tower, the Mona Lisa, etc., images in the series dated 1995-2003)4. In the foreground of each of the images, the photographer’s left hand and extended middle finger are appear on the left side of the image, the gesture directed towards the subject in the background behind it. The hand and gesture, more or less blurred, partially obscure these sites and objects already very familiar, from photographs, and the photographs bear witness to the photographer’s gesture and indeed to the gesture of photographing. Both Koudelka’s and Ai’s images see the photographer reach into the foreground from behind the lens, attesting to the photographer’s presence and gesturing to the portentous backdrop.

06Although initially circulated without any photographer being credited, Koudelka’s images of the Prague Spring would necessitate his departure from Czechoslovakia5, and would prompt his itinerant photographic career. The events of 1968 brought to a halt Koudelka’s work in the theatre, and the photographer would never return to photographing the stage after this point, even when invited to do so by fellow exiles, theatre artists with whom he had worked during the 1960s6. Scholars and critics consider Koudelka’s theatre photography a prelude to and prehistory of his subsequent work7, and find significance in his resolute abandoning of theatre, suggesting that 1968 was a point after which theatre could no longer hold much importance for a photographer overtaken by world events. Indeed, Otomar Krejča, a theatre director with whom Koudelka worked extensively, describes this as a moment when drama spilled over into life and the world became a theatre8.

07Koudelka’s theatre works can serve to reinforce or even explain “theatrical” characteristics of the photographs for which he is best known: Kozloff refers to a “theatre of exile” in the title of one essay, and quotes Robert Delpire identifying in Koudelka’s work a “theatrical organisation of reality9”, Chalifour points Koudelka’s drawing on the theatrical aspects of everyday life in an account of one exhibition10, and, in an article highlighting the theatrical character of his work, Koudelka is quoted describing his images as a “theater of the real11”, something echoed in the title of one of his exhibitions and books, Théâtre du Temps12.

08Koudelka’s practice as a theatre photographer has been described in terms of preparation for what would follow, notably in an account from the book Koudelka13, which emphasises the physical training and the development of spatial capacities enable by working with theatre companies: experimentation with angles, awareness of perspective, and consideration of the relationship between background and foreground. Koudelka himself stated in a 2007 interview that theatre taught him how to position himself14, and any examination of the sets of images for specific productions confirms that he operated with a great deal of freedom, viewing the performance from all sides and a range of distances, often positioning himself onstage to take his pictures15.

09The notion of a roving photographer is a cliché in accounts of reportage or “street” photography. But the variety of different approaches discernible in Koudelka's theatre work is not necessarily the result of the photographer angling for every possible vantage point, seeking to cover the situation in its entirety, or wishing to be objective. Koudelka seems averse to any notion of accurately rendering the work unfolding onstage: he has suggested that he never sought to “record” or to create “documentation”, and rejects this conception of this function of a theatre photographer in favour of treating the performance “as an initial reality”, in order to “make something different out of it16”. He further explains this approach in a later interview: photographing theatre, he claims, “you deal with something that’s already done17”; he seemingly refuses the task of reproducing the work, emphasising creating over capturing. Thus, for Koudelka, theatre is not something to be transferred via photographs, but is a provocation: the work onstage can be re-purposed as raw material for creating images. If the images created in this process are ultimately faithful to the hidden meaning of the theatre work, as one critic proposes18, this is achieved without necessarily replicating the visual appearance of the stage work; rather than seeking to be exhaustive or faithful to the work, the photographer must “destroy what was done to create something new out of it19”.

10This destruction and creation operates by way of the photographer’s dynamic framing practices: selecting awkward angles and perspectives, and getting close, within the frame of the stage, and even bracketing out sections of the performers’ bodies, with close-ups of body parts, refusing to conserve the coherence of particular dramatic configurations or gestures; what remains is magnified, isolated, and highlighted. Two accounts of viewing Koudelka’s theatre images describe the motion and circulation of these fragments and traces. Each account suggests that the images risk disturbing theatre temporality and summon a dyschronia.

11The first is from director Otomar Krejča, who seems to suggest that something rather strange, even spooky, might be afoot. Krejča recounts how Koudelka’s photographs of one particular production gave rise to “a deceptive feeling of reversal”, “as if” Koudelka “did not take these pictures of our performances but rather that we performed for his pictures20”. The chronological confusion and disorganisation renders the work unfamiliar (even to its director), and the images might be mistaken for the basis, rather than the reflection, of what happened onstage, preceding the performance rather than housing its trace as might be expected. Drawing on the work of philosopher Vilém Flusser, a Czechoslovakian exile like Koudelka and Krejča, we might refer to the “magical” character of many photographs, which function in a temporal mode distinct from cause and effect and linear historical time21.

12Next, a quotation from theater scholar Georges Banu, writing about his experience of an Amsterdam production of The Three Sisters directed by Krejča, from the vantage point of having previously seen Koudelka’s images of the production’s 1966 Prague staging: “I still remember it well, even today, particularly the last scene – the one I had seen in the photographs, and which was performed for me, live, before my eyes, in the time and space of scenes22”.

Image 100000000000029B000002CEE38004D1.jpg

Josef Koudelka, “Czechoslovakia, Prague, 1966”. Theatre Divadlo Za Branou
(Beyond the Gate). The Three Sisters, a play written by Chekhov
and directed by Otomar Krejča. Magnum Photos.

13The sense of inversion recalls Krejča’s comments: photographs precede the show, prompting the impression that the stage might host scenes from photographs, that photographs might be performed, rather than the reverse. Banu continues, noting a photographic logic at play in the theatre performance, and proposing that photography might have shaped his reception of the play: “The experience of theatre was for me synonymous with the astounding impression of photography: those graphic and timeless summations of Chekhov by Koudelka. I could never have imagined such graphic and timeless summations of those scenes23.”

14While neither the theatre scholar nor the theatre director is suggesting any supernatural occurrence, the temporal rupture operating in both accounts summons the notion of the spectral. This is not merely a question of spookiness (although one might identify such a quality in elements within Koudelka’s theatre corpus), but of presence being undermined in the interaction of photographic materials and theatre acts. We might consider this in relation to the haunting described by Marvin Carlson as characterising theatre24, but Jacques Derrida’s notion of “hauntology” seems particularly relevant25. Although the political context of the photographs might seem to resonate with the hauntological as outlined in Spectres of Marx, and the “out-of-joint”, temporality already sensed in the context of Koudelka, Derrida’s neologism, and particularly its adoption by the critic Mark Fisher26, is perhaps most instructive here if considered in terms of the upsetting or reversal of the relationship between foreground and background, signal and noise, how the materiality of recording might be foregrounded through the persistence (since here we surely cannot refer to the presence) of grain and artefacts in many of Koudelka’s images, a haunting of the surfaces where the photographic materials come to the fore, allowing little certainty about what was or is there.

15With some images, the photographer goes beyond the cropping and framing already described, and turns to cutting the photographic material itself, thus transforming it irreversibly (Koudelka describes cutting his 6x6 film stock to leave negatives of different, non-standard formats and shapes)27. The consequence of this is not only the elimination of elements of the image, of its contents, but also a reduction in the saturation of what remains, whereby (with a smaller negative as the basis of a print) detail is obliterated and tonal range is reduced. The enlargement and isolation of elements abstracts the image, stylising by way of reduction and not embellishment.

16Faced with an image from The Three Sisters, Banu limit himself to listing and identifying elements (epaulettes, spectacles)28. The discernible “contents” of the high-contrast image seem fragmentary, displaced, out of context, mere shapes or disembodied parts reduced to stark highlight or shadow. But other images from the production host forms that can barely be distinguished from the photographic material: the photographic grain is visible, coating the image29. All of this means it is sometimes difficult both to identify what is apparent in the image and to situate these spatially in terms of a performance onstage (are we seeing a backdrop, a shadow, a performer?). Koudelka’s theatre photographs collapse framing and staging, by means of mobility, cutting, cropping, close-up, or the obliteration of detail traces and artefacts are produced, and this summons a reconsideration of habitual understandings of the interrelation of stage and photograph.

17Ai Weiwei’s work assumes numerous forms and recruits various media, and has consistently engaged with performance and with photography. The introduction to a collection of Ai’s writings describes how the artist compulsively documented his life in as early as the 1980s, when he was living in New York: “he captured his life in self-imposed exile on hundreds of rolls of film30”, but the photographic documentation of performance, and the performance potential of photography is particularly apparent in Ai’s work in the 1990s, as part of a collective of avant garde artists living and working in the Dashanzhuang district of Beijing, which was eventually nicknamed Dongcun, “The Beijing East Village31”. This name was, as is obvious, a homage to the New York East Village where Ai had lived in the previous years, and a reference to that area’s artistic scene32. Photographer Rong Rong is perhaps the best known of the photographers who documented the artists’ lives in Dongcun, as well as their performance works, and Ai recounts the photographer “recording life and death in the artists’ colony”, stating that his photographs “became rare documentation of Chinese contemporary art; they became a segment of the physical reality that was the East Village33”. Rong Rong defines his photographs as “pieces of evidence, memories, and everything34”, highlighting a concern with archiving and documenting, a preoccupation that goes beyond his extensive work with performers to projects photographing the changing landscapes of China, including series on ruined buildings. In this context, photographs represent past performances attended by spectators as well as performances for the camera.

18Ai Weiwei seems to engage both with the potential of photography to document and with the possibility of creating photographic performances, figuring as photographer and as the subject of photographs in his works. Here, consider his triptych Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn (1995)35, a set of black-and-white photographs. In the first image, against a background of bricks, and standing on a textured concrete ground, Ai is holding an urn, tilted to one side, at shoulder level. In the next, his hands remain up, and he has dropped the urn, which is caught mid-air. He retains his position in the third image, in which the vase has hit the ground and shattered, with the pieces scattered around his feet. Each of the three photographs is framed identically, and in each Ai is looking directly into the camera lens.

Image 100000000000029B0000010CCE6D2453.jpg

Ai Weiwei, Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, 2015, LEGO bricks (from the original 1995 photographic triptych by the artist),
230 x 192 x 3 cm. Courtesy Lisson Gallery.

19Sequential photographs tend to recall chronophotography. Concerned with the mechanical decomposition of motion or an action, and emerging in the 19th century, chronophotography was a scientific endeavour, but must also be considered an aesthetic discourse, a practice constructing narratives using still images36. Here, the title’s word “dropping”, depending perhaps on whether it is taken as a participle or a gerund, might emphasise the either performer or act; suggesting the camera is capturing an event, a singular moment, an unrepeatable action (affecting an irreplaceable and irreparable object), or designating the “dropping” as performance done for the camera. Critical responses to the triptych have focused on its representing the stages of the deliberate destruction of an artwork, with its chronophotographic quality perhaps reinforcing its status as evidence, and have focused on iconoclasm, whether this is deemed to impact upon conceptions of value in art or to the status of ancient relics tasked with representing national heritage and history.

20As well as being sold and exhibited as an artwork in its own right, Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn has also formed part of a gallery installation entitled Coloured Vases37, in which the triptych is used as the backdrop to a collection of vessels which Ai has dripped in two contrasting colours of paint (the work recalls several from the artist, including painted Neolithic vases and a series bearing a painted Coca Cola logo; the act of painting has itself been photographed). Painting onto the vases has been criticised as vandalism, characterised in similar terms to the photographic triptych, but the artist has been keen to identify instead a process of modification through which the ancient objects are recontextualised and recirculated, rather than destroyed. The co-presence of the sequential photographic backdrop and the painted vessels in Coloured Vases seems to stage the constituent works’ play on temporality, and the stakes of this were perhaps revealed and complicated in one notorious response to the exhibited work.

21On 16 February 2014, a visitor to Ai’s retrospective exhibition, According to What?, taking place at the Perez Art Museum in Miami, Florida, smashed one of the Coloured Vases. A video clip, apparently amateur footage, shows a man, identified in the press as Maximo Caminero, selecting a green-and-peach vase from a collection on the plinth. A woman, presumably a security guard, is heard saying, “Don’t touch!” just before Caminero drops the vase on the floor, breaking it. He then stands for a moment, hands in pockets, looking up at Ai’s triptych hanging on the wall.

22Accounts in the press suggest that Caminero, who is himself an artist, was unaware of the provenance of the destroyed item (the Museum initially declared its value as $1M), assuming it was a contemporary piece of decoration, of the kind available at Home Depot38, rather than an antique. For later reports, Caminero claimed that his action was a performative protest against the hierarchical nature and commercialism of galleries and the art world, and particularly with regard to the relative treatment of local and “international” artists. He later wrote to Ai, and described his act of “solidarity” with the artist, also suggesting that his action might be instructive, and could deter Ai and others from damaging historically significant items39, a reference to the triptych. Considering the damaged item less in terms of its symbolic value, and more as a piece of private property, Ai, in a BBC interview, condemned Caminero’s act in terms of his having deliberately broken something that did not belong to him, also pointing out that his own destructive artistic acts took place “a long time ago40”.

23Offering yet another angle on his act, Caminero described “Coloured Vases” as a having been a “provocation41”, suggesting that his act might be understood as a performance that was continuous with, and indeed prompted by, the installation. This seems a compelling point, if not legally then in terms of our concerns here, since it suggests that his interaction with the piece was consistent with the work on display, and that he was guilty of seeing the triptych as a step-by-step set of instructions, corresponding as such to an ambiguity in the notion of “documentation” itself, which is etymologically related to the ideas of instruction, teaching, proof and warning, and thus seems to point to something future as much as something past. Photographs and video footage of the incident - which served as evidence in the successful case brought against the perpetrator – show Caminero stepping into the installation, adopting the pose of Ai on the wall behind him, then copying his action, and constitute a next step, and another fragment of the performance.

24In these two brief instances of intersection between theatre, performance, and photography, nothing remains intact, and the encounter reveals the complexity and porosity of each – if, that is, one can even say where, and when, one begins and the other ends.

Notes go_to_top

1 Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of Its Reproducibility”, in Howard Eiland et Michael W. Jennings dir., Selected Writings: 1935-1938, Cambridge, MA, The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1936, volume 4/3, p. 101-133.

2 All of the Koudelka photographs discussed in this paper are held in the Magnum Photos archive, and can be viewed at < http://pro.magnumphotos.com/ >.

3 Accounts vary as to whether this is the photographer’s arm and wristwatch, as has often been assumed, or that of “a man whose arm Koudelka had positioned”. Sean O'hagan, “Sean O’Hagan meets photographer Josef Koudelka who captured the 1968 Soviet invasion of Prague”: < http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2008/aug/24/photography >.

4 Ai Weiwei, Study of Perspective - Berne, 1995-2003; Study of Perspective - Eiffel Tower, 1995-2003; Study of Perspective - Eiffel Tower, 1995-2003; Study of Perspective - Hong Kong, 1995-2003; Study of Perspective - Mona Lisa, 1995-2003; Study of Perspective - San Marco, 1995-2003, MoMA, < http://www.moma.org/collection/works/ >.

5 He would not return to Prague until the 1990s, by which time it was belonged to a new state created from the division of Czechoslovakia.

6 Karel Hvížd’ala and Josef Koudelka, “The Maximum, That’s What’s Always Interested Me: Notes from discussions between Josef Koudelka and Karel Hvížd’ala in Prague, 1990-2001”, in Josef Koudelka, Prague, Torst, 2003, p. 125.

7 For example, Koudelka himself makes this point, describing theatre photography as having been instructive in Josef Koudelka and Vicki Goldberg, “Josef Koudelka interviewed by Vicki Goldberg”, Aperture, New York, NY 2007: < http://maxpasion.com/koudelka_talk.mp3 >.

8 Otomar Krejča, “Theater: The Experience of Theater”, in Koudelka, London, Thames and Hudson, 2006, p. 43.

9 Max Kozloff, “Koudelka’s Theatre of Exile”, in Lone Visions, Crowded Frames, Albuquerque, NM, University of New Mexico Press, 1994.

10 Bruno Chalifour, “Modern Sublime: the world of Josef Koudelka at the Rencontres d’Arles”, Afterimage, avril 2003, volume 30, n° 5, p. 2.

11 John L. Tran, “Josef Koudelka: the theatrics of Life”: < http://www.japantimes.co.jp/culture/2013/12/18/arts/josef-koudelka-the-theatrics-of-life/ >.

12 Josef Koudelka, Théâtre du Temps, Paris, Actes Sud, 2003.

13 Robert Delpire, Koudelka, Paris, Delpire, 2006.

14 Josef Koudelka and Vicki Goldberg, “Josef Koudelka interviewed by Vicki Goldberg”, art.cit.

15 Mobility while photographing is something Koudelka apparently retained from his work in the theatre, later giving the advice that photographers should invest in good footwear: “Josef Koudelka the theatrics of life”, art. cit.

16 Karel Hvížd’ala and Josef Koudelka, “The Maximum, That’s What’s Always Interested Me: Notes from discussions between Josef Koudelka and Karel Hvížd’ala in Prague, 1990-2001”, art. cit., p. 125.

17 Josef Koudelka and Vicki Goldberg, “Josef Koudelka interviewed by Vicki Goldberg”, art. cit.

18 Anna fárová, “Forty Years of Observing the Work of Josef Koudelka: Themes, Methods, and Stages, 1961-2001”, in Josef Koudelka, Prague, Torst, 2002, p. 6-7.

19 Josef Koudelka and Vicki Goldberg, “Josef Koudelka interviewed by Vicki Goldberg”, art. cit.

20 In Josef Koudelka: Fotografie Divadlo za Branou 1965-1970, Czech Republic, Divadlo za Branou II, 1993, p. 7.

21 Vilém Flusser, Towards a Philosophy of Photography, London, Reaktion Books, 2000, p. 9. Flusser proposes that photography’s temporality might be seen in terms of the Democritean temporality of repetition and rupture than in the Heraclitean notion of flow.

22 Banu, in Otomar Krejča, “Theater: The Experience of Theater”, art. cit., p. 42.

23 Ibid., p. 43.

24 Marvin Carlson, The Haunted Stage: The Theatre as Memory Machine, Ann Arbor, University of Michigan Press, 2001.

25 Jacques Derrida, Specters of Marx: The State of the Debt, the Work of Mourning and the New International, New York, Routledge, 1994.

26 Mark Fisher, Ghosts of my Life: Writings on Depression, Hauntology and Lost Futures, Winchester, Zero Books, 2014.

27 Josef Koudelka and Vicki Goldberg, “Josef Koudelka interviewed by Vicki Goldberg”, art. cit.

28 Otomar Krejča, “Theater: The Experience of Theater”, art. cit.

29 Krejča describes Koudelka’s photographs as seeming to be “covered in a dreamy and contrast-filled mist”: ibid., p. 42.

30 Ai Weiwei, Ai Weiwei’s Blog: Writings, Interviews, and Digital Rants 2006-2009, Cambridge, MIT Press, 2011, p. 20.

31 See Wu Hung, Rong Rong’s East Village, 1993-1998, New York, Chambers Fine Art, 2003.

32 Indeed, in part as a result of the existence of photographs of work, the Beijing artists and their work was, in a way that mirrors events in the East Village in the 1990s, attacked by the authorities on the grounds of its alleged obscenity. See ibid., p. 9. On Beijing and Tim Miller, 1001 Beds: Performances, Essays, and Travels, Madison, University of Wisconsin Press, 2006, p. 99-115 on the New York events. I consider the Beijing East Village and the legal and quasi-legal consequences of photography that conveys live performances beyond the specific and limited context in which they initially took place in my book Theatre and Photography, Palgrave Macmillan, 2014, p. 65.

33 Ai Weiwei, Ai Weiwei’s Blog: Writings, Interviews, and Digital Rants 2006-2009, op. cit., p. 104.

34 Rong Rong, quoted in Britta Erickson, “Rongrong and Inri: Photographs in the River of Time”, Camerawork, Fall/Winter 2008, volume 35, n° 2, p. 17.

35 Ai Weiwei, Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, < http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/lot.42.html/2016/contemporary-art-evening-auction-l16020 >. The title of the work elsewhere sometimes uses “Vase” in place of “Urn”.

36 For a brief account of the contested objective or scientific status of chronophotography, and its relationship with theatre photography, see my “Theatrical Photography, Photographic Theatre and the Still: The Photography of Sophie Moscoso at the Théâtre du Soleil”, About Performance, 2008, volume 8, p. 170-171.

37 The gesture of breaking a pottery object also features in Howard Brenton's play #Aiww: the arrest of Ai Weiwei, London, Nick Hern Books, 2013.

38 Michael E. Miller, “Miami Artist Destroyed $1M Ai Weiwei Vase Because PAMM ‘Only Displays International Artists’ ”: < http://www.miaminewtimes.com/news/miami-artist-destroyed-1m-ai-weiwei-vase-because-pamm-only-displays-international-artists-6524159 >.

39 Nick Madigan, “Man Gets Probation in Attack on Ai Weiwei Vase”, < http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/14/arts/design/man-gets-probation-in-attack-on-ai-weiweivase.html >.

40 One article interrogates the Miami events and points to the possible contradictions of Ai’s position, also referring to another incident in which an art collector, the owner of one of Ai’s Coca Cola vases, created a photograph of the vase being smashed, in apparent homage to Ai’s triptych. The author notes that this did not cause a stir simply because it was undertaken by the legal owner of the work, and challenges the apparent claim that only artists and art collectors can engage in iconoclasm unpunished: Jonathan Jones, “Who’s the vandal: Ai Weiwei or the man who smashed his Han urn?”: < https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/jonathanjonesblog/2014/feb/18/ai-weiwei-han-urn-smash-miami-art >.

41 Michael E. Miller, “Miami Artist Destroyed $1M Ai Weiwei Vase Because PAMM ‘Only Displays International Artists’ ”, art. cit.

go_to_top L'auteur

Joel  Anderson

Auteur de Theatre & Photography (Palgrave, 2015), Joel Anderson est chercheur et maître de conférences au Central School of Speech and Drama, à l'université de Londres, et professeur associé à l’université de Londres Paris. Ses recherches actuelles portent sur les rapports entre la photographie et le spectacle vivant.

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Joel Anderson, « Theatre Photography between Theatre and Performance », Focales n° 3 : Photographie & Arts de la scène, mis à jour le 12/06/2019.
URL : http://focales.univ-st-etienne.fr/index.php?id=2497