Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Katharine Fry - All The King’s Men

All The King’s Men is a solo performance using routine and ritual to explore ideas of perfection and control in relationships.


It takes as a starting point the classic physics example of entropy, of no-one ever having seen a broken teacup jump from the floor and reassemble itself whole on a table, and combines it with the human spirit of perseverance in the face of adversity, of banging your head against a brick wall. 


A durational piece following a marked set of rules, All The King’s Men is the latest in a series of works exploring tea, its accoutrements and associated ceremonies.

All The King’s Men Rules of Engagement


1.       Prepare the tea and load the tray

2.       When load becomes too hard to bear offer up the tray to the nearest wall 

3.       Regain composure and prepare to re-assemble

4.       Three tries for a fit before the piece must be glued and the next one sought

5.       Prepare the tea and load the tray

Katharine Fry’s main concerns are those of identity, history and time. Of British descent but born and raised in Belgium, Katharine found her concept of Englishness to be based on a longing and nostalgia for a time that never was.


In her search to find her place in time and to place herself in history, she discovers another Katharine Fry, one who lived two hundred years ago. She finds her book, full of her words, but nothing about her, so she imagines her life, her thoughts, her dreams.


The words embedded in the damask canvases are the product of these imaginings. They offer fragments of a narrative, details of an imagined life. A constant play between the roles of narrator, character and subject, the canvases are imbued with the quality of a relic, a diary once etched in walls.

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