ALTRI / MENTI (2022)

ALTRIMENTI – ALTRE / MENTI (2022), PIA | Palazzina Indiano Arte
Live performance collaboration with Autumn Knight, Florence, Italy
Curator: Serena Trinchero, CANGO

Where do you end and I begin? How do we become “we”? ALTRI/MENTI is the first public performance of THEYFIRST (Autumn Knight and SA Smythe). The duo explores the experience of indeterminacy and nothingness as options for being together and thinking through the perils, pleasures, and possibilities of collaboration as a site of rupture and repair. ALTRI/MENTI is a fusion of two concepts and genders: “otherwise” (altrimenti)—that which is beyond currently perceived circumstances and realities—and “other minds” (altre menti)—the awareness of different perspectives and capacities exceeding the Self. In this entangled space of ungendered relation, ALTRI/MENTI explores cycles of coming together and falling apart/away. Knight reinvigorates sociopolitical conversation around Black interiority, placing specific imagery, video, and performance gestures in shared context with original and found text, live dialogue, and research material from a range of historic and contemporary sources. Smythe weaves live-loop sound installation archiving the embodied poetics of black kinship and loss to find the syncretic dissonance between textual form.

Concept, choreography, and direction: SA Smythe and Autumn Knight
Performers: Autumn Knight and SA Smythe
Sound designer: Tina Tallon
Co-production, found footage and videowork: THEYFXRST (Autumn Knight & SA Smythe)
Live score and composition: SA Smythe
Light design: Autumn Knight