Catherine Sullivan

Catherine Sullivan believes that the body has capacity for significant translation. She began her acting career after she felt, at the age of seven and no prior theatre experience, that this was the right path to choose. The family had no interest theatre but rather interest in the visual arts, yet she still pursued it. Now, working with actors, she finds herself working on pure task and creating characters.
The ideas that Sullivan have are those that would be situated in the fine arts, but executed through theatre. The eyes would look where they want to look, giving the audience direct engagement . This is also seen in the attention seeking installation Sullivan created in a private house. Here, reflections in the numerous mirrors in the house, were used to place video on top of video without extra editing. Some rooms were used as a presentation space, and others were created to be very personal, such as an oval projection coming out of a wardrobe.
‘Five economies’ was a paradox of pleasure at the misfortune of others. Working with certain actors, Sullivan found that one person can transform through several roles as well as several styles from which the roles are filtered. She discovered that she enjoyed working with actors who didn’t necessarily need the written word. Numerical sequences were therefore used to transform the theatrical piece.
Many of her works seem like automation to the viewer. This gives a sense of mindlessness, which is scary as it is arbitrary. This mindlessness of the actions is also another form of humanity.
Sullivan also experiments with photography in order to use it as an experimentation and research tool. Through photography, she is also able to look at things that she has no direct contact with, creating a more convoluted political discussion. This led onto works in with Sullivan extracted pantomime movements and placed other quick movements between one gesture and another. This is also used in conjunction with the calculation of character and context from which the movements are taken from. Sullivan finds a heightened theatrical context in somewhere with a rationale.

Leave a Reply

Subscribe for the latest art updates in my newsletter