The scene starts from scratch: a white room, a white board, and a performer. The performer begins to draw some lines. Then something happens, an interruption, a question maybe? He turns around and makes a vague gesture, before continuing his drawing. This is the moment in which the game starts.
Its participants: first of all, the performer and the observers in the scene, whose bodies are not visible, though the performer looks at them, and whose voices cannot be heard, though the performer reacts to them clearly. Then, the observers who are watching the scene now, like you: your perspective is defined by the camera frame, your voice is substituted by subtitles showing questions and comments that might come to your mind when watching the scene.
You might think now: “The observers in the scene are playing the game for me. I am not really a participant.”
Maybe you are right, but without them, the scene would go on forever, the performer would repeat his drawing in an eternal loop, and you would continue watching him without being able to end the game by giving the right answer. It is true that “the observer defines the status of the observed object”. But it is also true “that the observed object (which now should be called ‘subject’) defines the status of the observer”. So who is in power now? The game will go on as long as you continue playing it. Only by closing your eyes, or closing this page, you will be ‘out’. So please, spend some more time with us. Stay in the game.


3.29 min, video extract
Performance by Ramiro Guerreiro

* Video work in collaboration with Gonçalo Ferreira de Almeida and Ramiro Guerreiro.
Title referring to Adrian Piper’s work “This is Not the Documentation of a Performance (1976)”, Courtesy John Weber Gallery, collection of the artist, with the kind permission of Adrian Piper.