PuSh 2014: Ryeberg Live
I was new to Ryeberg Live, a show which was a highlight of PuSh 2013 for some people I spoke to. In concept, it is similar to Trampoline Hall, in which performers speak on a subject they know nothing about.
Ryeberg usually happens online, where it is pretty much an essay with embedded video links. The live show offers many more possibilities, although performers are supposed to be inspired by YouTube videos (I think).
What is interesting is how different each piece is. Presentations can be personal, emotional, intellectual, literary, informative. The form taken tells us much more about the personality of the speaker than it does about their topic.
The host is Ryeberg editor-in-chief Erik Rutherford. For this evening, the speakers were authors Lee Henderson and Zsuzsi Gartner, artist Vjeko Sager and hipster art guy Sammy Chien. To be honest, Henderson's presentation on money laundering was baffling and dull - I felt like I was stuck in a work meeting. Gartner's piece on the allure of the typewriter (and the analogue life) was funny, lively and an intriguing investigation into the symbiosis between an artist and their tools.
Sager blew the form open by creating charcoal drawings for his whole set, accompanied by some truly entertaining videos about art (Andy Warhol ate a sandwich, an elephant did a self-portrait). Chien's very personal piece about dealing with his first experience of psychological disturbance was a little self-indulgent but still charming. He didn't exactly have a topic but somehow made the performance work and his use of video was the most experimental and creative.