Artist Uri Levy on upcoming Live Draft about gaslighting, inauthencity and autonomy.
Describe your Live Draft in 3 words.
Fake, forced & fragile
Tell us a bit more about your idea and what led you to make it.
I was interested in releasing any self-doubt I had projected onto myself and concentrate less on thinking and more on doing. Suddenly I had an image of myself in a bath, in front of an audience. I saw this installation in my mind’s eye. I closed my eyes and picked up a purple pencil. I tried to recreate the image I envisioned as accurately as I could and it ended up being a blueprint. A friend made an illustration of it on his computer. Suddenly I had everything I needed and I started putting it all together. A platform, wheels, scaffolding, electricity and lights. Learned techniques to deal with it all. I got the bath from this guy on Gumtree who bought it and suddenly didn’t like its style anymore.
Then I had a bath installation in my living room. I filled it with plants. I hadn’t yet written one single word. I had no idea what would happen and then… it happened. There was something quite mystical about the way the things I was interested in tried to squeeze themselves in a bath.
A bath that had nothing to do with anything.
Tell us bit about yourself as an artist.
My philosophy as an artist is that a good piece of art is worthy of either a 5 or 1-star review.
Anything between the two makes me anxious. A piece of art can develop into its most irrelevant form when it doesn’t challenge itself. I prefer taking risks.
I am a trained actor. I even have a BA, but I have always found only being an actor limiting. I want to explore taking full ownership and responsibility of my creation. In this performance, I have taken this to an extreme working as the sole writer, performer, producer, director, editor, designer and builder of the piece. I received a lot of help and support throughout its creation but I am at the centre of every aspect of it and I take full responsibility for every aspect.
I want to create theatre that doesn’t imitate films, as films just do films better. I never want to deny my audience. I want to acknowledge them and let them know they are seen. If they want to be hidden they should watch TV at home and rest, and most people do and it’s valid and fair. I believe that coming to the theatre requires commitment and openness. I want to create theatre that “uncomforts” the comfortable.
What about Live Drafts are you most excited about and what other shows are you most looking forward to?
I am privileged to have this opportunity. I wrote this piece with The Yard in mind, knowing it’s one of the most daring theatres in London. I am excited to witness freedom in the making. I know how much I was given, so can only bite my nails excitedly looking to see what other people have made.
I am particularly excited to see CODE SILVER CODE SILVER by YESYESNONO as I find Elliot Rodger (the man in the show’s image) so subtle, crude and terrifying at the same time. Like the best worst actor in the world. I am also really looking forward to FXXX BXXXXX’s (such a great name) show HERPES.
Catch Gaslighting: A Bath Piece on the 11 of October at 7.30pm.
Watch the trailer.