All the Funny Men Have Gone Home

The ongoing series "All the Funny Men Have Gone Home” concentrates on the interaction between the performer and the audience, looking at stand-up comedy and other forms of performance as social practice and commentary. In an installation of the same name, an image of an empty stage is projected on a white screen, to suggest the delivery of a joke, but its stillness brings the opposite. In a school of comedy in Manhattan, a group of performers is learning how to "be funny" from an established comedian. The banging of a pair of doors signals a stage relief. A spotlight is shone on the floor of the gallery space, and a mirror captures the audience within the reflection of a wallpaper image at the site of discomfort and unease. In Bergson's words, "the first point to which attention should be called is that the comic does not exist outside the pale of what is strictly human." The psychological space analyzed here suggests the vulnerability and humanness of the performance, using photography, video, sound, and installation. The project aims to discuss the complexities of the stage performance where the space of friction between the audience and performance becomes the event. References: Simon Critchley, On Humour, Trevor Griffiths, Comedians, Henri Bergson, Laughter, An Essay on the Meaning of the Comic, and Sigmund Freud, Jokes and Their Relation to the Unconscious