‘Throughout summer 2009 Rachel Lois Clapham, Alex Eisenberg and David Berridge are reading Richard Kostelanetz’s (RK) 1975 anthology Essaying Essays. Its abundance of forms - drawing on performance scripts, conceptual art, concrete poetry, experimental fiction and critical prose - feed into various individual and collective projects.
This personal, almost hopeful, sense of the diagram as a writerly form and endeavour - which, as a recently awoken and angry David is keen to point out, retains a sense of space that is distinct from that of drawing - is countered and extended by two diagram pieces inserted outside A Script About Fantastic Diagrams proper, which appear unannounced amongst the remaining journal content.
Both these diagrammatic moments point outside themselves, pivoting away from the proposition set out by the main script and activate material that lies adjacent to them in the journal (as well as reflecting back onto the diagrams themselves when folded closed) to create new meanings. It is perhaps this sense of activation that pinpoints how exactly diagrams might frustrate - as both process and product. The script ends with David commenting on the confounding nature of the diagram. ‘It lacks the commonality that language brokenly attains. Its possibilities remain resistant, its sociality is, well, odd. It tantalizes with its ambition, yet must be rationed. I say farewell to the diagram here.’
INSIDE PERFORMANCE is a serialised writing project developed by Rachel Lois Clapham for Dance Theatre Journal. Taking the form of a regular newspaper or magazine ‘column’ INSIDE PERFORMANCE is a periodic journey into the practice of writing from or as performance.