Circus and its Others
The Circus and its Others research project was launched in 2014 under the aegis of the Montréal Working Group on Circus Research to explore the ways in which contemporary circus artists and companies relate to difference in their practice. We have since hosted two successful international conferences and published a peer-reviewed double journal issue. What has resulted is an ever-blossoming inquiry that, along the way, has started to feel like a movement, in that the scholars and artist-researchers seem to be united by more than the same research interests. Circus and its Others participants share the desire to continue to establish circus studies as a field while at the same time resisting its full institutionalization, engaging in an ongoing reflexive inquiry that allows itself to query its own inclusions and exclusions.
The third Circus and its Others conference will be held at the University of California, Davis, on November 12-15, 2020. As with the previous two conferences (Montréal 2016, Prague 2018), the conference will run alongside a contemporary circus festival. The Davis festival involves two components: several indoor, ticketed shows organized by the Mondavi Center, UC Davis’s performing arts presenting organization and curated in collaboration with the CaiO 2020 team; and a free outdoor circus festival curated by CaiO 2020.
A particular focus of CaiO 2020 is the interdisciplinarity of circus research and practice, putting into play foci of openness and inclusion. How can our ongoing inquiry be enriched by engaging directly with scholars and practitioners working in a wide range of fields? To that end, confirmed keynote speakers include Bojana Kunst, Professor at the Institute for Applied Theatre Studies at the Justus-Liebig University in Gießen, Germany; André Lepecki, chair of New York University’s Department of Performance Studies; Jane Nicholas, associate professor of history at St. Jerome’s University, University of Waterloo; and Susan Nance, professor of history at the University of Guelph.
CaiO considers circus as a boundary object (as theorized by Susan Leigh Star and James R. Griesemer) with many and various entry points, welcoming a wide variety of spectatorial and theoretical approaches. Concretely, it is our aim to foster a place where we can address the aesthetic, ethical, and political potentiality of circus practices. We invite proposals for research talks that address questions of difference and otherness in the context of traditional, new, and contemporary circus. We further make explicit invitation for presentations from artists and practitioners who address such questions in their work, practice, and/or research-creation (our conference venue includes some space for performance).
Date: Nov. 12, 2020 -
Nov. 15, 2020
Location: 1 Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616
United States 1 Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616