Hervé Robbe and Richard Deacon, Factory

Review in Issue 7-4 | Winter 1995

A giant white anthropomorphic form was suspended from the ceiling. Lit around its base, it was mechanically raised and lowered throughout Robbe and Deacon’s vibrant dance and sculpture collaboration. Richard Deacon’s curvaceous objects were rocked, caressed, transported and manipulated by six dancers dressed almost identically in electric blue tight-fitting androgynous costumes. To enable a union between audience and performers, the seats were removed leaving ample space to create an atmosphere of energy and manipulation. Jostled and left to the individual’s choice, the audience followed the action, at times within arms reach of the dancers’ space. It was apparent that some spectators were intimidated by the closeness, whilst others seized the opportunities of intimacy by moving nearer the dancers and physically exploring the sculptures. At times the reactions and gestures of the audience were as eventful to watch as the action. The music was powerfully hypnotic and aided the action. Every inch of space was explored and filled with dance and movement which varied from rhythmic acrobatics to perfectly poised gymnastics.

The sculptures and dance formed a dynamic partnership with the focus being displaced and refocused by the dancer’s gestures. The performance lasted one hour and ten minutes which was only just enough time to totally fuse the whole event. Without a doubt Hervé Robbe and Richard Deacon created a spectacular collaboration with an atmosphere comparable to that of a human circus.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Oct 1995

This article in the magazine

Issue 7-4
p. 25