We reach our final ‘Strindberg Club’ and so end our little meetings at The Lair of the Emerald Peacock. We prepare to charter new territory at Basingstoke alternative arts venue ‘The Shop’.
But we’ll get to that.
We start by marking some of the key milestones in the life of Strindberg and Co. reducing their lives to a few notes on scraps of paper taped together.
Then we discuss rebellion – after all, wasn’t Strindberg’s surrealism a rebellion against naturalism? Wasn’t Frida Uhl’s Golden Calf founded to rebel against starchy Victorian ideals?
So what does rebellion mean to our little artist-group? And if we haven’t built our foundations in rebellion, then what have we built them in? Do we fear rebellion now? Or do we just feel that our own personal rebellion has little impact during a time when we have rebelled against rebellion and then some? Or perhaps rebellion is not a savoury term – would we rather not be the rebel at all?
We find we have more questions than answers, but the idea of rebellion definitely hits a nerve.
The government, the environment, University fees, feminism - all these come up but, it is the personal that is mentioned most – the way that these social issues press in upon our lives and affect the way we are identified, categorised and labelled that requires the majority of our rebellious energies.
As a group of young people, it seems the world is ours to rebel against, and indeed we say ‘enough is enough’ to as many things as we can, but it is difficult to feel that this has wider impact, or to avoid being carried downstream by the very current we are trying to resist.
With this in mind, we begin to think about the experimental lab that our sessions will culminate in on the Strindberg Centenary Day on the 14th May. How can we use time and space to access the themes we have been discussing? How can we rebel?
These are a few of our thoughts:
The space is caving in
Our relationship with society and the physical barrier of the shop window
The organised vs disorganised
Gender and voyeurism – being viewed in a shop window
The selling of ideas as commodities
The Ex-wives Club
Strindberg’s ex-husbands – Freda, Harriett and Siri become Fredric, Harry and Sirius
And so we think on them…