Brian Fuata

During the Image Bank exhibition at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, Western Front will host Brian Fuata for an online residency to develop new work that enters into correspondence with Image Bank’s history and archive. Image Bank was a project initiated in 1970 by two of Western Front’s founders, Michael Morris and Vincent Trasov, and the artist Gary Lee-Nova, as a method for personal exchange of ideas, images, and information between artists through the postal system.

Brian Fuata is a performance artist who employs the properties and concepts of postdramatic theatre for his live works, physical environments, objects, and visual ephemera. Since 2012, Fuata has been producing a new form of mail art. In his “email performances,” Fuata appropriates the everyday format of the email as the site for an event. The body of the email becomes the stage, the scroll bar the rise and fall of a curtain, and the to: and bcc: fields rows for audience members to be seated with varying proximity and sight lines to the action. Through his email performances, Fuata brings together fragmentary references to trace an affective network of artistic communities, friends, and institutions.

To receive email performances sent during Fuata’s residency, please register to sit in the to: or bcc: fields below. By selecting the to: field, participants agree that they may be called to the stage and will be visible via name and email address to all audience members. Those who select the bcc: field will remain out of the cast of the theatrical light.

Register here.

The residency will conclude with a new live-streamed improvisational performance, in which Brian will use the form of the ghost as a structural device.

Presented in partnership with the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, at the University of British Columbia.

Artist Biography

Brian Fuata is an artist working in the improvisation of performance, text, language, film, and installation who has garnered international acclaim for his innovative interpolation of media. His work is underscored by a political ethos of horizontalism—a system of non-hierarchical relations—where objects and ephemera, and both real and imagined personal and public histories, are given equal value in producing content. He is trained in postdramatic theatre, a fusion of performance art and experimental theatre characterised by a non-linear narrative; the performer as theme and protagonist; multiple registers of presentation and points of reception; and reflexivity, accumulation and self-referentiality. Working with ad hoc scores, Brian employs these properties and concepts to orchestrate performance and consequently his physical environment to produce objects and visual ephemera.