When a snail falls asleep and dreams of being a mushroom


Herbarium is a dance performance which is, together with the City, panic workshop, the first activity of a three-year choreographic research and production process Labor of Panic by Zagreb’s performative collective BADco. with collaborators, produced in the framework of Dopolavoro flagship of the Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture project.

The premiere was held on June 29, 2018 in Zagreb, at Baths Diana, while the performance in Rijeka will be held on July 12, 2018 at 8pm in the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Krešimirova 26c).

Photo: Tanja Kanazir / Drugo more (Flickr gallery)

This Herbarium is a different kind of collection, one that instead of pressed plant matter maintains movement and forms that take place between two catastrophes, between two natural or other disasters. Herbarium emerged from a curiosity about ecology as “the science of planetary housekeeping” and from the idea of excess in dance as waste material, whereby this surplus becomes understood as a source of information and an archive of the processes recycled through dance. Herbarium employs a searching gaze that looks around instead of progressively forward, it focuses attention on what is already there, stays with the trouble we already live in. This gaze is a cut in relation to the idea of expansion and progress, and is rather interested in horizontal processes of work, in ways in which they are aligned with other elements of their environment, instead of means that place the human body in a hierarchically superior position. We explored movement outside our bodies, in the abundance of things where our bodies are just some among the many: amongst the organisms that arise after the catastrophe, the drying and rotting plants, the sedimented and melding lichens, the trees that can not get up and leave. The choreography of Herbarium activates principles of deficiency, lack, unproductiveness and deceleration in its relation to human and other than human bodies. Herbarium evokes a shelter that recognizes the idea of slow violence by investigating visibility regimes that break the relationship with spectacular depictions of environmental destruction. Instead, it articulates a curiosity for the kind of parasitism that affirms inhabiting of destroyed space, and waits.

Herbarium is interested in the interdependence of different forms of life and environment, it imagines a snail as it falls asleep and dreams of being a mushroom.

Informed by the work of authors such as André Lepecki, Rob Nixon, Donna Haraway, Anna Tsing, T.J. Demos, Paul Virilio and Werner Herzog.
Choreography and performance: Antonia Dorbić, Marta Krešić, Lana Šprajcer
Dramaturgy: Nina Gojić
Costume design: Katarina Perić
Music: Adam Lončar
Visual design: Antonia Dorbić and Roko Jurjević

Production: Romana Brajša (executive producer) and Ana Letunić (on behalf of the artistic organization Mašina)


The project Herbarium is a co-production of Artistic organization Mašina and BADco., one of the first activities of a three-year choreographic research and production process Labor of Panic produced in the framework of Dopolavoro flagship of the Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture project, with support from the City of Rijeka – Department of Culture and Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia.

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