"PERFORMANCE | PORTRAIT", 2017 - WNDR Studios at WNDR Museum Chicago
"PERFORMANCE | PORTRAIT", 2017 - WNDR Studios at WNDR Museum Chicago



Performance | Portrait is a responsive video installation that invites you to an encounter with a distinguished performer. They were recorded for a four-hour period maintaining their focus on a future audience.

As you approach the lit pedestal, one of the four performers emerges. The performer
maintains eye contact and mirrors your movements, including unconscious gestures and shifts
of weight. The exchange is subtle and unpredictable: not every movement elicits a response,
and the mapping between movements and responses are complex.

During this experience, you become the installation’s key second component, engaging in a
duet with the projected image as they behold a unique iteration of the recorded performance.
No experience of the piece is the same. For us, it is this mirrored connection that is
transformative and meaningful. In a time where live and virtual space are collapsing, the
search for an intimate connection to performance is at the core of Performance | Portrait.

About the Artist

a canary torsi is a Bessie-award-winning, interdisciplinary group of artists formed by Puerto
Rican artist Yanira Castro. Largely rooted in performance, their work examines the encounter
between spectator and event and investigates questions related to public convergence, the
nature of proximity and space, as well as the cultural, social, historical, and personal dynamics that influence how meaning is formed and how power is structured. Ranging from immersive performance environments to responsive video installations and online archives, a canary torsi develops scenarios where the work is built as a communal act.


Original concept by Yanira Castro
Created by Yanira Castro, Kathy Couch, Stephan Moore, Julie Wyman
Performed by Anna Azrieli, Leslie Cuyjet, Peter B. Schmitz, David Thomson