AUDIENCING examines the role of the audience as a social arena, taking on formal aspects of spectacle found in live music and political speeches. Drawing from the architecture of the VW Dome, the work references similar domed structures and their relationship to narratives of spectatorship and survival—as biological experiments or as refuge for victims of natural disasters.
The core of the work is an original score, which takes cues from a wide range of audio genres including pop, political speeches, voice-overs, and experimental noise. AUDIENCING questions how technological innovations have created limitless potential for consumption of entertainment, complicated the dynamic between performers and their audiences, and placed unattainable demands on the biological body, sometimes with dire consequences as in the cases of Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, and Prince.
Responding to the aestheticization of performers’ labor, as well as the pain and exhaustion of performance and its visibility, there are no live performers in this work. Instead, the audience is seated beneath a vaulted stage in an arrangement that refuses any unified perspective, undermining the stage’s function as a frame for performance. A programmed and automated sound and lighting system transforms the dome into a multidimensional playback device.
General Admission: $15
MoMA Members: $13
VW Sunday Sessions highlights artists responding to contemporary social and political issues through a wide variety of creative and critical lenses. Encompassing performance, music, dance, conversation, and film, the series develops and presents projects by established and emerging artists, scholars, activists, and other cultural instigators.
VW Sunday Sessions is organized by Taja Cheek, Assistant Curator, and Alex Sloane, Assistant Curator, MoMA PS1 and is produced by Alexandra Rosenberg, Producer, with Chris Masullo, Production Coordinator, MoMA PS1.
VW Sunday Sessions and the VW Dome at MoMA PS1 are made possible by a partnership with Volkswagen of America, who have supported the program since its inception.
Dance programming as part of VW Sunday Sessions at MoMA PS1 is supported in part by the Mertz Gilmore Foundation.