Matthew Reason

Archives and Documentation

Questions about the relationship between live performance and the various traces it leaves afterwards – in archives, in memories, in photographs – has been an interest of mine for a long time. One of my earliest articles (available here) formulated this relationship in terms of ideas of ‘detritus’, and asserted the need for overt forms of documentation, rather than attempts to efface the archivist and pretend the process was one of transparency.

I am interested in how photographs, memory, gossip, criticism, documents and other traces perform the archive of live theatre and dance. Most recently this research has merged into investigations into cultural memory and the personal archive in a project titled The Resurrection of Joyce Reason.

Some projects relating to archives and documentation are profiled here. Also see publications list for other discussions on this topic.

Archives, Documentation, Photography

Archive, Empathy, Memory

Archive, Empathy, Memory: The Resurrection of Joyce Reason   This paper uses the prism of archival, ancestral research to consider the nature of our relationship to the lives of the … Continue reading

Documentation, Disappearance and the Representation of Live Performance

Palgrave, 2006 The documentation of practice forms one of the principal concerns of performance studies, provding an ongoing dilemma for theorists and practitioners alike who at once celebrate the ephemerality … Continue reading

Photography & the Representation of Kinesthetic Empathy

Matthew Reason with photographs by Chris Nash Photography has long been utilised as a medium that allows us to capture, see and reflect upon the world around us. This is … Continue reading

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