‘On Form/Yet to Come’ is a joint editorial project of Performance Research, the Slovenian performing arts journal Maska (Ljubljana) and the Croatian performing arts magazine Frakcija (Zagreb). The form and contents of this joint issue are the result of a series of meetings, constructive (mis)understandings, discussions, arguments and productive (dis)agreements between myself, Emil Hrvatin (Maska), Bojana Kunst (Maska), Goran Sergej Pristaš (Frakcija) and others since the idea of a joint publication was first suggested in 2003. Its initial premise was to give visibility to the shared interests and differences between the three journals in our approaches to contemporary performance practice and research. The contents that follow here focus on discourses and practices in contemporary performance arts that impact on and relate to social, political and cultural forms and structures. They reflect on the positioning of aesthetic forms, of local and geographical differences, and on the re-mapping and reconfiguring of ‘east’ and ‘west’ Europe, and on the similarities and differences in assumptions about form and relational structures within apparently shared ‘European’ or ‘international’ frameworks. The three sets of contributions have been proposed and edited by Ric Allsopp, Emil Hrvatin and Goran Sergej Pristaš, and designed by Kevin Mount (De-Mo Design). ‘On Form/Yet to Come’ links thematically to recent issues of all three journals – in particular to the two recent issues of Maska on the ‘Unbearable Lightness of (Artistic) Freedom’; of Frakcija on ‘Production of the Common’ and ‘Save as . . . city.doc’ and Performance Research ‘On Civility’ (see www.performance-research.net) with their attention on performance, the political, radical intervention and strategy.
After many sometimes idealistic, sometimes pragmatic discussions on just how such a joint project should be produced – size, format, distribution and so forth – and a growing realization that the project was in danger of disappearing in the complexities of such negotiations, it was agreed that ‘On Form’ would be published as an issue of Performance Research that would incorporate the layouts, styles and formats of each of the three journals. We also felt that a simple division of the contents contributed by each journal into three sections would not reflect the inter-woven nature of the material and might suggest a far too spatialized and hierarchical view of the journals. The result is, we hope, a design that mixes the typographic particularities of each journal and places the contributions in a relationship to the whole that speaks to the placing of performance as a social, political and cultural force in contemporary Europe. The key to the provenance of each contribution to the issue is shown on page 155, above. A journal issue of such complexity in terms of its production owes its generation and realization to a wide network of committed individuals. On behalf of Performance Research, Frakcija and Maska I would like to thank all the contributors whose work is published here, and without whose interest and engagement in the field of contemporary performance research the issue would not have been possible. In particular I would like to acknowledge and thank our designer Kevin Mount, proof-reader Wayne Hill and typesetter John Beck for their detailed work and patience; the support of my co-editors at Performance Research for this project; and most especially Emil Hrvatin and Goran Sergej Pristaš, the editorial staff and designers of Maska and Frakcija for their collaboration and inspiration over the last two years.
Maska, Institute for Publishing, Production and Education
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