Station 12 | Kathryn Ricketts
Meet in the Middle Symposium
MacKenzie Art Gallery
regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
November 4-5, 2016
Meet me in the middle:
An exploration of Beckett through poetic narratives
Kathryn Ricketts works with an array of images and poetic narratives that resonate with issues and experiences of displacement, and notions of belonging and its relationship to identity, self and other. This has been integrated into a series of multi-layered interdisciplinary explorations inspired by the work of Samuel Beckett and resulting in performance solos called Lugs.
Each Lug traverses an arc in narrative and structure traveling from one point of Departure to another of Arrival with crisis points in-between. This crisis could focus on critical and profound moments of loss, or the everydayness of our cultural embeddedness, or a mere childhood memory. Ricketts often works with artifacts, such as onions, which may trigger memories and narrative through a metaphoric evocation.
Ricketts writes: “My Beckettesque character tells stories that fragment meaning and blast chronology, logic and sequencing into space. The pieces fall where they may and are read differently by each person who witness them, outlining the catalytic nature of this method as it moves from the specificity of source material to broader thematics, which resonate profoundly within a diverse and sometimes disparate audience. In the case of the Meet in the Middle symposium, we will move together from invocations of Waiting for Godot to notions of liminality and migration and finally to the idea of meeting in the middle from disparate locations.”
Ricketts’ work for Meet in the Middle is part of a larger project called Project Sam which invites a collection of local artists, as well as the students of the Faculty of Media-Art-Performance (University of Regina), to explore the themes of Beckett’s work through the method of Embodied Poetic Narrative.
Embodied Poetic Narrative Workshop
During the Meet in the Middle symposium, Ricketts will engage participants in an “embodied poetic narrative workshop,” in which they will gain a better understanding of the transference of metaphor through prop and costume manipulation as well as how fractured narratives can bring a range of meanings to existing text through improvisational structures. Ricketts’ work places great value in fostering an environment where participants share untold stories with courage and confidence that they will be heard, and she is pleasantly surprised that the title of this symposium, Meet in the Middle: Stations of Migration and Memory, echoes a theme that is embedded in her research and continues to be a driving force for her performative characters—characters that seem to be continually dancing between arrivals and departures. “This workshop,” she says, will attempt to “exemplify this through a playful exploration with the monologue of Lucky from Waiting for Godot, coupled with rope, and oversized overcoats. Through this process we meet in the middle, searching for the place where humanity lives.”
Kathryn Ricketts has been working for the past 35 years in the field of movement, theatre and visual arts, presenting throughout Europe, South America, Africa and Canada. Her work in schools, galleries and community centers focuses on social/political issues with movement, theatre, creative writing and visual art as the languages. Her Doctoral research furthered this into areas of literacy, embodiment and cultural studies with a method she has coined Embodied Poetic Narrative. She is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Education in the University of Regina and Chair of the Dance area. She runs The Listening Lab, a visual and performing arts ‘incubator’ and presents exhibitions and performances in her loft in the John Deere Tractor Building in Regina’s Warehouse District.