OPENLAB’s ‘White Canvas’ sessions

white canvas copy

The way OPENLAB works, in part at least, is that sessions can be facilitated by any participant. If any person – given that this one has come to OPENAB before – would like to facilitate one (or more) of the sessions they just need to get in touch with a proposal (or proposals).

But… what happens if nobody has a proposal, or if nobody is up to facilitate? Most of the time I take over and facilitate the sessions without facilitator, whether I have a clear concept or not. However, even myself sometimes need to work from a state of silence instead of a vocal state. Or else, I simply can’t make it to the lab on a particular Friday morning at Chisenhale Dance Space.

But then, should the lab stop altogether?

I think that even without a guide, even without having much of a clue about where it is that we may be going with something, working and sharing the space and the time of work with others is really key in our development as performance and performing artists.

This is the reason why from time to time the OPENLAB session of the week is called a ‘White Canvas’ – an open session. At a White Canvas session there will be no outspoken facilitator. This means that each person is responsible and free for their own facilitation. The idea is: don’t be shy and do your own thing, put in practice your own performing and let your idiosyncrasy dictate your own work… or not. Don’t be shy and if you don’t know what to do just follow the next person in the room, or give up everything and just let something happen (or nothing) if you dare to do so.

At an OPENLAB White Canvas there will be no rights or wrongs, just the joy of coming to the room and sharing the space with others, both influenced and yet unaffected by them… or is that impossible? 

[If you have been following this archive you may have probably noticed that this applies to any other OPENLAB session too.]

After the session participants will need just to clean after themselves, leaving the studio the same way it was found (if not better) at the beginning of the session. In the event of needing anything, anyone can ask in the office to see whether they can help. Likewise, participants should remember to leave your pay-what-you-can contribution with the people in the office too. They will deal with it.

Pay-what-you-can means exactly that. The money is used to cover for the studio hire and to continue making OPENLAB at Chisenhale Dance Space possible.