movingthings movingthings

Éric Mangion: You define yourself as a sound artist, but also as a voice artist. Is there a difference between the two? Or not? Is music, which is your original training, the link between them? Or is it language? Or is it a synthesis of several things?

Violaine Lochu: When I talk about my work I don’t make a substantial difference between the words “sound artist” and “voice artist” –these categories tend to refer more to form.
In the field of contemporary art, “sound art” seems to refer to practices that explore the notion of sound (its nature, its spatialization, how it’s made or broadcast, etc.). Within this large group there is a “family” which is particularly concerned with voice: Dominique Petitgand, Camille Norment, Janet Cardiff…
“Voice artist” I think refers more specifically to practices where the artist’s voice is the main media: Meredith Monk, Diamanda Gallas, Phil Minton...
One might consider that I belong to the “sound artist” category when I produce installations, and to the “vocal artist” category when I perform. However it seems artificial to me to separate these approaches which are in a continual dialogue, which nourish each other, and relate to each other in multiple ways.
For instance, the performance Animal Mimesis was about adding voice to sound works, works which had also been created from recordings of art students and artists being questioned about their practice. The sound installation Signal Mouvement tries to render the physical effects of my own voice during performances. This relation to the voice is precisely what creates a link between the various practices and categories in my work.
My interest in the many aspects of the voice (its emission, its reception, its transcription, etc.) comes from my double training in the visual arts and in music. During this training I sometimes ran into difficulties that forced me to invent my own language, step by step. For instance my rejection of classical music training led me to become interested in other repertoires and modes of transmission; in the same way, the unease I felt at the school of fine arts, where part of the teaching staff questioned the artistic nature of my work, led me to invent a certain type of performance. One could extend this interpretation (becoming inventive because of a kind of incompatibility) to my personal journey as a whole; the language issues I encountered during my childhood probably feed my interest in voice and linguistic games today.

É.M.: Your work is based on immersion in very different contexts: in Lapland to discover Sami culture, in a day nursery to explore the babbling of small children, learning Yiddish, songs derived from Tarentella folk dances in Apulia (southern Italy), birdsongs… How do these various cultures and trainings coexist? You were speaking of “junctions” between all these elements. If this is the case, how do these junctions work?

V.L.: When examined separately, these experiences can give the impression of a kind of dispersion. But each one, I think, nourishes a coherent project. As I said before, it’s probably the relation to the voice which creates the major link. More generally, each experience -through my research, the people I meet, the discoveries it leads to- gradually brings me closer to another field of exploration, like with anadiplosis in literature, where you start a sentence or a clause with the last word of the previous sentence or clause. In effect, each project contains the beginning of the next one, whether the link be formal or thematic.
For about ten years, while I was still a student, I was interested in specific musical idioms, particularly in Salento music (southern Apulia in Italy) and in Yiddish songs. During my various travels I tried to learn more about the language and cultural codes belonging to the musical repertoires I was exploring, so that I could be as “accurate” as possible in their interpretation.
Starting in 2014 I extended this method of immersion and collecting to my artistic work. The idea was to dive into given milieus and contexts, during residencies in France (for example the day nurseries of Seine-Saint-Denis for Babel Babel) or abroad (Swedish Lapland for Hybird, Johtolat or Saddat), in order to create specific forms for each project from the collected material.
Each of these experiences, undergone with a similar protocol, and the resulting forms, make me up as a subject and as an artist. They create a sort of network, which expands with each new project.

É.M.: Concerning the scores for your performances, you say that “I need to experience the idea in order to draw its form.” What does this mean practically?

V.L.: This refers to the way that I write or jot down my performances, usually after the fact; the vocal, sound or gestural experiment comes first.
Traditionally in music the composer writes the score, and then the musicians interpret it.
In my practice the notation usually happens after. Practically, this means that an idea (for instance a vocal, or gestural idea) comes first, a formal intuition from which I begin to experiment and improvise while recording and/or filming myself. Then I let this material “rest”. I always start my sessions by listening or looking at what I did the previous day. Then I take notes –in a form which is somewhere between drawing and writing– so that I can assimilate but also analyze these experiences; this enables me for example to decompose a spontaneous gesture, whose accuracy would be difficult to restore without such a method. These annotations create a specific vocabulary for each project. When the performance reaches its final form, I use these notes to create a score that can also be seen as an autonomous graphic form.
This process of writing in the after, which goes through the body first, is the same for collective performances; unlike a stage director who watches the actors from outside the stage, I need to be on the stage myself to experience what is being played, before I can transcribe it.

É.M.: You are mostly known for your performances, but you also produce lasting installations for exhibitions. How does the link between the two function? How do these different forms and temporalities operate?

V.L.: This question gives me the opportunity to expand on what I was referring to at the beginning of the interview, which is the continuity between two apparently distinct forms.
It’s true that performance is the most easily identified form in my projects. However, as early on as my first residency at the 116 in Montreuil (near Paris) in 2014-15, the performance Mémoire Palace was already based on sound pieces composed from recordings of vocal fragments collected from 200 residents of Montreuil. These sound pieces were broadcast as such on radio R22.
Later on, my experience at the Salon de Montrouge helped me understand, concerning my sound pieces, that I had to envisage specific listening systems; without such a system, visitors didn’t take the time to settle down to listen to the works I was presenting.
In order to develop these issues of spatializing and “showcasing” sound –I was pretty at ease with the stage, but intimidated by the exhibition space– during my residency at the CAC (Contemporary Art Center?) la Synagogue de Delme in 2016 I invited artist and curator Guillaume Constantin to create a space for some of the sound pieces from the Abécédaire Vocal (Vocal Alphabet). Our collaboration continued in 2018 for my first solo exhibition at the CAC Albert Chanot in Clamart, for which Guillaume created the display for the sound and light installation Hypnorama.
OrganOpera is the first immersive installation that I created entirely for my solo exhibition Hinterland at the Dohyang Lee Gallery in fall of 2018. Like all of my following installations, OrganOpera was conceived in situ, according to the specific aspects of the space. The exhibition, at the center of which this piece was presented, dealt with the theme of interiority; but the works featured were placed at a distance from one another: the installation OrganOpera was in the cellar, the video tryptich C’est la peau (It’s the Skin) and the series of drawings BioGraphie(s) were upstairs, the performance Magnetic Song was only featured on opening night… This experience was necessary for me to understand the importance of a strong formal link (even if this link is disruptive) between the various works in an exhibition, capable of making each one of these works stronger in itself.
Signal Mouvement, a solo exhibition conceived at the Ateliers Vortex summer of 2019, is a continuation of this reflection. The different works, created as an extension of my own vocal performer’s body, compose a single ensemble.
Modular K, which was shown at the contemporary art center CAC La Traverse in Alfortville, was a further step in my research concerning the different temporalities and relations between installation and performance. One of the videos shows a group of performers activating the display, playing with its narrative dimension and its uncertain status, somewhere between sculpture, decor, and series of props.
moving things, a duo show with choreographer João Fiadeiro at the Villa Arson in Nice, is conceived as an installation which is continuously activated by several performers during the entire duration of the exhibition.
Thinking of installation as a prolongation, extension, diversion of the performative form, opens up a great space for freedom and experimentation for me. A performed installation is similar to a "synesthetic opera" which brings into play hearing, sight and touch, and probably taste and smell in future projects.

É.M.: In a conversation with Nastassja Martin and Bruno Latour in 2018, you talked about “the pitfall of imitation”. You see yourself more as “a soundbox, an echo chamber with its own specific tone”. What do you mean exactly? I’m asking you this because when one listens to you (and sees you of course) during your performances the feeling one has is that you would like to “ruin” things and “tear them apart” (these expressions were used by two art critics about your work).

V.L.: “Pitfall of imitation”, “echo chamber”, “tear apart”, “ruin”… Your question brings to mind my relation with the material I use to create my pieces (sound material, vocal and language material…). It seems to me that these notions –which in my opinion refer to poetic processes– generally coexist in my work. Depending on the performance some of them are more or less present or highlighted.
The performance Hybird –which we talk about with Bruno Latour and Nasstasja Martin– uses and diverts birdsongs that I collected during my walks in Lapland (while I was in residency at the Ricklundgarden Museum in Saxnas, in Sweden, in 2017). Writing the performance enabled me to establish a certain distance from my subject, precisely to avoid the temptation of imitation, and to avoid being inhibited by fascination; formal research makes it possible to free oneself from the original material, and to have a different grasp on it. The notion of hybridization is very important: the relation (with a given material, or a context…) is what makes the emergence of what I call a third voice possible.
Other performances, which always come from my relation with a subject or specific context, are based more on my uneasiness in certain situations (often containing symbolic violence). In this sense, perhaps their subversive dimension is more immediately perceptible. The collective performance Wunder K produced in September 2019 at the Fonds Leclerc in Landerneau, belongs to this category. It is composed of several micro-performances played out by the art center guides of the exhibition. One of them particularly echoes the words “ruin” or “tear apart”. A performer-guide introduces the exhibition Cabinets de curiosités (Curiosity Cabinets) to the visitors; her/his speech becomes “warped”, more and more intrusive grimaces prevent her/him from speaking intelligibly. The process was particularly cruel to the names of collectors whose works were on loan, to the names of the curators of the exhibition, of the venue’s director. This rather irreverent piece highlighted the alienation from the institution which was expressed in the guide’s speech, and the complexity of hierarchical relations.

É.M.: In this same conversation (with B. Latour and N. Martin), you use the word “micropolitics” to define the relations you wish to establish during the encounters that occur in and around your work.

V.L. : I use the word “micropolitics” (which I borrowed from philosophes Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari) to describe a network of interindividual relations, inscribed within the everyday life and the ecosystem of a project -both during the formal research stage (for example in my work with the people I meet whom I record or turn into performers) and around it (for example in the relationship with an institution’s staff).
Any artistic practice can be thought out socially, politically, economically, ecologically… In my case, the forms interact with the environment around them, in which they participate. When the environment is particularly difficult, it can sometimes become the subject of a piece, like Sweet Idol. Because I work with the staff of various venues, it’s essential for my practice to remain a space where there is respect and dialogue –which doesn’t necessary mean excluding conflict, which can sometimes be fertile. I’m lucky that I was able to build long term collaborative relations around me (Christophe Hamery, graphic design, Céline Régnard, make-up, Cécile Friedmann, video, Baptiste Joxe, sound…). The goal is to create a setting of reciprocal trust, where each person can find her/his own space for freedom. It is very important that this symbolic recognition also be economic (which is not always obvious in a milieu where we have a tendency to think that artistic practice should be free).
What I’m saying might seem rather banal, but unfortunately such an attitude is not at all self-evident. We have all encountered situations where artists or curators, sometimes famous ones, present an “irreproachable” attitude in public, while mistreating their staffs. The notions of conviviality, of sharing, etc., in some cases are just “cosmetic” marketing attitudes designed to “sell” a work or an exhibition more efficiently. In my opinion, to use a feminist slogan, “what is private is political”. It is important that one should think of artistic practice concretely, in its relation to the world and to others, and that we should think about how it can reproduce forms of symbolic violence at any moment. I’m not at all being a moralizer, I’m trying to answer your question about “micropolitics”, which in my opinion are equally at play in the forms themselves, their modes of fabrication, their broadcasting, and their asides.
This micropolitical dimension is all the more present in collective projects, which necessarily put into play respective places, relationships, feelings of alienation…
Wunder K, that I was talking about previously, is an example of an artistic form which has, on its own scale, social and (micro)political consequences. In the same way as the dynamics of a carnival –which throws down the social game and inverses one-another’s roles-, this work reveals each person’s place within the institutional hierarchy. When playing this kind of game, the artist often finds herself/himself in an uncomfortable and unstable situation: as mediator between the various members of the team, sometimes as psychologist, she/he must always keep in mind the form she/he wishes to unfold. Subverting the institutional mechanism is only allowed, tolerated, encouraged, if it is underpinned by the creation of a work of art.

É.M.: You’ve worked with fortune tellers, you’ve asked children to talk about how they see the future… Why are you attracted to a desired or dreamed future?

V.L.: My practice stretches out towards two poles: a “documentary” pole if you like, and a fictional one; for instance in 2017 I simultaneously created Superformer(s) (a collaborative project with la Maison des Solidarités and Contemporary Art Center la Galerie in Noisy-le-Sec -banlieue de Paris) and HypnoQueen (a dreamlike performance, linked to my research on hypnosis, in collaboration with guitarist Julien Desprez).
“Récit du futur” (“Tale of the future”) is on this fine line between documentary and fiction. Imagining the future calls forth both science and the imagination (which is what the term science-fiction combines); projecting ourselves forward is necessary to individual and collective psychological balance (such a notion echoes the crisis of today’s western world). However, even if it is based on concrete or quantified data, projection remains a fantasy.
Orpheus Collective, an installation which was made during lockdown based on conversations with fifty or so children who were asked how they imagined the future, testifies to this tension between veracity and fiction. The way that children in the 2020s see the future is different from the way that I saw it when I was their age (for example environmental awareness wasn’t as strong as it is today), or from the way G. Orwell described it in 1984 just after World War II, or yet again from the way religious texts represent the future of Man (Apocalypse, Paradise/Hell), etc… The future is a place where we project our fears and our aspirations. However there are recurring themes: the conquest of space, the advent of technology, the return to a golden age, the end of the world… The future is a myth. Mythology, storytelling, famous collective tales, are at the heart of many of my projects (Léthé, Aoïde, Vestiges de Roncevaux, Fabula…) : in fact what interests me in the relation to the future is the link with stories and language.
My performances Madame V. and L'Office des Présages (The Bureau of Omens) dealt with predictions. The first was based on a session with a fortuneteller whom I had asked to predict the future of my work, at a time when I was experiencing doubts. From this session I created a performance which focused more on the performative and narrative aspects of divinatory speech rather than on the actual answers. For the second performance I questioned a hundred residents of Arcueil and Gentilly (banlieu de Paris) on how they saw their future (anxieties, wishes, premonitory dreams, apocalyptic or futuristic visions…) In both performances the idea was to reinterpret their answers. Madame V., my “psychic double”, performed actions inspired from one or several types of mancies, through sound (for example ornithomancy, divination based on birdsongs, played here by a flute), or sight – manipulating objects that were filmed and screened live (acutomancy, divination based on nails falling on a metal surface, hydromancy, based on ink swirling in water…)

É.M.: Ever since you were sixteen you’ve been filming very short fragments (fifteen seconds) of your daily routine. It’s literally a diary which functions with vision and sound. Julie Crenn describes it as a “story without chronology, as ‘life strata’ coexisting with one another”. How did this idea come to you and how did the project evolve with time? And most of all, how does it pertain to your work?

V.L.: For years, my practice was mostly oriented towards the outside. As I said before, the idea was to develop forms based on encounters, on my immersion into specific environments (literary, geographical, social...)
In 2018 I discovered I had cancer. The video Hinterland was made during my convalescence. It came from a desire to “take stock” of what my life had been up until then. By editing these fragments of films from my every day life between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five, I tried to render the feeling of a near-death experience that happened during one of the medical examinations I went through at the time. For several minutes, like a dream, memories succeed each other in a way that is both precise and chaotic. More than a strictly autobiographical piece, Hinterland is an exploration of how memory functions, how time and space are dilated, how recollections of places, people, events, move about and recompose. This project will probably continue and be expanded, as I have only made use so far of a very small part of the existing rushes.
The video Hinterland, like all the other works that were featured in the homonymous solo exhibition at the Dohyang Lee Gallery in Paris in 2018, is at the same time a break in my practice, and a continuation. A break because this looking back was unusual in my work at the time - I continued to explore it in various projects linked to my own body (Signal Mouvement) and to my personal life (Lighthouse, Modular K). And a continuation because of my strong interest in life stories, in memory, in the subconscious… and on a more practical level because of the use of video and editing as a medium.
Video has always been present in my practice. Hinterland is part of a series of works (Saddat, C'est la peau (It’s the Skin)…) for which I produced the images myself. This approach differs from videos documenting a performance, usually filmed by someone else (for the last three years they’ve been filmed by video artist and director Cécile Friedmann) ; however, in both cases I always do the editing, which is central to my work – Hinterland is a good example, it plays with the visual and sound potential of the medium: repetition, overlapping, slow motion, fast motion… The way I edit a video piece is similar to the construction of a performance: they are both composed in a fairly intuitive and yet meticulous way, from the materials that make them up (images/sounds on one hand, gestures/voices on the other).

É.M.: For years you’ve been working in close collaboration with graphic designer Christophe Hamery. Apart from your bond in life and in art, how is this collaboration useful to you? One has the impression that you are looking for a third form, or at any rate for a visual language that could be the translation, or maybe the interpretation, of your sound work.

V.L.: Christophe Hamery is my life companion, and my work companion. For eight years our discussions have nourished, supported, accompanied our respective reflections and preoccupations. Without this encounter, I’m not sure I would have continued in the field of contemporary art, or at any rate, my practice would have gone down a very different path.
Because he is in permanent contact with my work, but from a vantage point that allows him to stand back, Christophe often grasps what I’m trying to say in a more synthetic way than I do myself. This is why he’s the one who mostly finds the titles for my pieces, and to whom I entrust the re-reading of my texts (like this interview for instance). His is also the outside/inside gaze that I trust the most: uncompromising, benevolent, but never indulgent.
We first collaborated with discussions about the production of my first scores/documents (Vestiges de Roncevaux, Aoïde, Fabula). Later on, I entrusted him directly with the graphic material linked to my projects: scores, photos, notes, sketches… He bases himself on my initial indications and on our exchanges throughout the process, and he composes the editions according to his own sensitivity. It’s really an artistic collaboration.
We share a common interest in the relation between text and drawing: on my side this interest is apparent through the scores, on his side through typographical invention and his own practice of writing and drawing. Most of the time, the titles for the projects are semantic and typographical creations, which indeed could be seen as “translations”, to use your own word, or maybe as “precipitates” of meaning.
Nonetheless we don’t just try to interpret my sound works visually. As I explained before, my works arise from a play with the connections between vocal, corporeal, graphic, and written practices.
An edition isn’t just an “add-on” to the performance, or a document, it’s actually part of the creative process. The editions that we produce express this play between writing and composing, this tension between the various dimensions of a work. They aren’t archives, but actual works. In their own mode and through their own specific features, they enter into a dialogue with the other aspects of the project (performance, video, sound installation…).

É.M.: When you are “on stage” one feels that you could do anything, any kind of metamorphosis, expression or experimentation. In your interviews and texts you talk a lot about improvisation. But having worked with you on this issue, I know that improvising bothers you, that you feel it’s outdated, related to another era, the 1950s and 60s, to other generations.

V.L.: Since we first met concerning these notions, I need to develop my answer.
Improvisation has always existed in music, even though it hasn’t always been called or identified as such. In traditional Romani music for instance, improvisation is developed within a framework, and it follows very precise codes; many of Chopin’s pieces are transcriptions of improvisations, in baroque music musicians sometimes improvised, etc…
This aspect was strongly highlighted in the 1950s-60s by free jazz. At the time the gesture of improvising was intimately linked to a political and revolutionary dimension; it implied a hierarchical reversal between composer and interpreter: the improviser became the author. When you speak with classical musicians, such as Joëlle Léandre for example, you can feel how important and emancipating this was in their development; what we call “free” improvisation has profoundly modified their conception of music and of their own status as a creator, and opened up huge possibilities.
What disturbs me, is the institutional appropriation of the word improvisation, not always devoid of clichés. For example, some musical programmers think that all you have to do for something interesting to arise is to put two musicians who don’t know each other on the same stage. This can be a way of seizing control (by organizing these more or less successful encounters, the programmer feels that he is also a creator in a way), or it can be an economic decision which rather conveniently allows to do without the cost of rehearsals, residencies, etc. However, for an improvisation between two or several artists to happen (I mean, while really taking risks), it takes a lot of work, for each artist in her/his own practice, and during the encounter. First they need to spend time together. I’m just as annoyed by the cliché of the improvisation genius who invents it all ex nihilo. Even in free jazz or in improvised experimental music, there are codes: going against the rhythmic structure, against the key, producing sounds that are unusual for a certain instrument, etc… In truth the improviser comes with her/his personal vocabulary, no matter how deconstructed it may seem from the outside.
In spite of these doubts, improvisation holds a very important place in my personal journey.
When I was eighteen, I put an end to my classical piano training: I no longer wanted to play from a score, isolated from the world in a living room or a studio. I bought an accordion, and started traveling around Europe to discover musical idioms that were different from those of scholarly western music, and to discover oral modes of transmission (at the time playing by ear was something entirely new to me) and especially collective ones. Some powerful discoveries, for instance Bulgarian polyphony, gradually led me to singing.
At the same time as this musical apprenticeship, I enrolled at the Fine Arts University in Rennes, and then at the Beaux-Arts (School of Fine Arts) in Cergy. In neither one of these schools did they transmit techniques, but rather they transmitted tools for reflecting on various practices (sculpture, painting, photography, video, etc.).
These two parallel paths provoked a kind of schizophrenia: on one side a strong commitment was necessary to learn what we call traditional music, on the other side I had to keep a certain distance in order to approach contemporary creation, which is caught in language play. This tension proved to be sometimes quite problematic, notably when I enrolled at the Beaux-Arts in Cergy.
After I gained my degree, I dove into traditional music from central Europe. But in that milieu I felt hemmed in. In a way my training in contemporary art “contaminated” (or “ruined”, to use this word again) my way of approaching music – in fact some people who favored a rather orthodox repertoire held this against me.
After one of my concerts, a friend of mine who is a composer and a guitar player, Pierrick Hardy, advised me to meet singer and teacher Valérie Philippin, and to participate in an improvisation workshop with her. From the onset of the workshop I felt “at home” with her: what we were doing there was very similar to what I had been doing on my own. This experience enabled me to situate myself, to see my experiments as legitimate and meaningful, and it encouraged me to develop my own artistic universe based on improvisation.
My first performance, Vestiges de Roncevaux was created at this time. For hours I focused my improvisation on the notion of ruin, by imposing a series of linguistic alterations on the Chanson de Roland (The Song of Roland), which is a « monument » of French literature.
So improvisation enabled me to transition from musical practice to performative practice. Improvising is not about submitting to “inspiration”, it means analyzing, deconstructing, playing with what you know in order to discover something else.
It took me several years to understand the specific role of improvisation in my practice. I was often invited to improvise with other musicians, and it didn’t always feel “right”. My strength doesn’t lie in musical improvisation in front of an audience, probably because my technical credentials are inadequate compared to some of the musicians I was lucky enough to play with (Joëlle Léandre, Julien Desprez, Jean-Luc Guionnet, Alexandra Grimal, Bruno Chevillon...). It seems to me that my work is more interesting when I add a poetic framework, a kind of “name of the game” – which comes after hours of practice – in which I invite other artists, or just for myself. In fact my most recent solo performances (Meat Me and Babel Babel) were composed in this way: some parts were written, but most were improvised along pre-established grids.
I probably needed to go through this long process in order to conceive and develop the project for moving things – which deals with the notions of improvisation and indetermination – with choreographer João Fiadeiro, at your invitation at the Villa Arson. Starting with the theme and the context (time-lines, means, pedagogical expectations…), I tried to create an organization where there could be improvisation. This organization is a kind of extension of my scores: it takes on the appearance of a vast display made of materials that I chose for their “transformability” (fabric, aluminum, gelatin, glue…), and it has to be activated following a precise protocol. As I said, in my practice, the more constraint there is in the framework, the greater the freedom of improvisation. This balance is delicate and changeable, I don’t know if one can actually speak of improvisation, or if one should speak of “pure” indetermination. This aspect of moving things makes it a very stimulating field for exploration.

É.M.: Lastly, and this is very personal, I see you first and foremost as a sound poet. You are rarely defined in this way. Does the expression seem restrictive to you? If so, I on the other hand think that poetry opens up thousands of visual fields, which are locked in by art and the stranglehold of academic representation. At any rate in my opinion this is one of the most important things that we are taught by the past century’s avant-gardes. For me the freedom of poetry is still relevant.

V.L.: My work explores the voice, which is a sensitive instrument and also carries language, the signified. When as an artist you work with this medium, a more or less direct relation to poetry necessarily arises, especially with sound poetry.
Even though my training is mostly musical and visual, I’ve always been interested in poetry; one could probably find links (although I don’t compare myself to any of these poets whom I admire, each one for different reasons) between my work and that of Tarkos, Gherasim Luca, Charles Pennequin, Nathalie Quintane…
You were the first person to call me a sound poet, in the context of my exhibition Poésie sonore, Voix libérée (Sound Poetry, Liberated Voice) at the Contemporary Art Center Palais de Tokyo in Paris in April 2019. This event gave me the opportunity to meet other artists with common interests (it notably led to a duo with Japanese poet Tomomi Adachi) and to make myself known in a circle which I hadn't yet been able to access.
Nonetheless I prefer the word performer which seems to me to be extremely open. The term sound poetry gives us more clues and probably creates more aesthetic expectations, linked as you said to last century’s avant-gardes. As for me I like the indeterminate dimension of performance, which constantly travels between different fields; it seems to me that this movement is what gives it its specificity and its strength.