(Image courtesy Imogen Keen via You Are Here)
– by Elizabeth Abbott
As far as installation art goes, The Near and How is the shit. Located in a shopfront nestled in the centre of the city, The Near and How explores closeness and reality and encourages everyone to get involved. Its central location — YAH venue ‘The Watchhouse’ — means you can pop by on your way to get dinner and scope out the diverse hybrid of live theatre that the site hosts.
The Near and How puts on a live theatre show just for you: there is a handful of live performances done one-on-one with the audience, making for some hilarious situations. The diversity of performances elicits a range of emotions from the observer as you are forced into an intimate relationship with the performer before you. Some, including one where a man waltzes through Garema Place just for you, will make you laugh. Another of the performances makes you feel very uncomfortable as you sit only a metre away from a girl, forced to look directly into her eyes while she speaks to you. Thankfully, the volunteers are very friendly and guide you through the exhibition so you’re never too confused or lost about when a performance has started or finished.
It’s clear that much time and effort has been devoted to the creation of this collection and the audience has been kept close in mind throughout the process. It’s best to head to this exhibition not knowing too much about what to expect, as the surprise is one of its strongest elements. Each performance only takes a few minutes, so pop down to The Watch House when you have a spare moment for a dose of awkwardness and a good laugh.
Also taking place:
Tuesday 19 March, 5-7pm, The Watch House
Thursday 21 March, 5-7pm, The Watch House
Elizabeth has previously published reviews of bars, nightclubs and art exhibitions online. She currently writes reviews and essays for TheSemicircle.wordpress.com and tweets from @elizabethivy_