You and Your Work – Tracy Harris

Q. Who are you and what form does your artistic practice take?

I’m a playwright and performance artist and I write, create and devise my own work

Q. Why and how did you start this sort of work?

I started this work after studying Drama at Lancaster Uni, taking a play-writing module and being exposed to experimental theatre companies. This led me to write my first play Past Away and from then on I knew this was the field I wanted to work in.

Q. What contexts do you tend to work in and with whom?

I normally work for theatre companies often working alone to write plays, but I also work with directors and other actors/ performance artists to create and devise my own work. I also enjoy collaborating and have collaborated with dancers, musicians and opera singers.

Q. What’s your most significant moment of inspiration or learning as an artist?

I am constantly inspired by images, dialogue and other writers. I am inspired by Simon Stephens as a playwright – Sea Wall is probably the play that has affected me most as a writer. I love companies such as Third Angel and Forced Entertainment and also performance artists such as Sophie Calle and Marina Abramovic. Fragments from these artists’ work inspire me constantly and I always refer back to their work when I hit a blank page.

Q.How do you feel your artistic practice fits within the bigger picture?

I feel that I have always wanted to collaborate with other artists, to bounce ideas around and to make something that brings a number of art forms together. I see myself moving more and more in this vein. I am interested in layers and how words and images can work together to create a whole new experience. I love devising my own work and juxtaposing film with live theatre. I am excited about the prospects of where this project can go and about working withTom Lumen [aka Newell] to share artistic practises.

Q. Can you give us a quotation, individual or piece of artistic work that you find inspiring, and why?

I find Marina Abramovic’s The Artist is Present really inspiring at the moment as I love the simplicity of putting two people in a room and seeing what happens. I love the way that even through silence so much can be said behind our eyes and how theatre really gives you that sense of being in a moment and sharing something with someone – whether that be a thought or emotional response that you never forget.