Yael Caravan, From the Earth, A Memory

Review in Issue 11-3 | Autumn 1999

From the outset this is a piece that totally grips the attention. There's a low spotlight, a mottled lumpy canvas centre left, and an atmosphere full of anticipation. The first stirrings of life begin to the music of Arvo Part, and a mythological birth is taking place in front of us. Reminiscent of the more esoteric moments of Derevo's Red Zone, the audience watch fascinated as Yael Caravan sets out on a journey of growth and transition

With elements of Butoh and dance, Caravan's physical discipline is extraordinary. Every pulse and movement counts as she lets us into the intimate womb she inhabits. As the creature grows, Caravan plays with her audience – layer upon layer of material fall away from her costume, only to find each time that her face remains shrouded in a veil of secrecy – a kind of spiritual striptease which keeps the audience glued.

The extraordinary thing about this performer is that with all the layers of costume, light, sound and potential masks that she works with, she still manages to maintain a simple level of awareness, openness and vulnerability, that allow a communication and intimacy that is highly uncommon. The journey is a primal one that touches at an intuitive level, without addressing the confusing complications of intellect. During this very sensual piece, we are never left in doubt as to how we are to feel all is communicated.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Aug 1999

This article in the magazine

Issue 11-3
p. 21