La Carniceria Teatro @ The Space
9:00pm, Thu 11 Mar 2004
Short Review: Food-mangling anti-consumerism avant garde performance art theatre
Spanish company La Carniceria Teatro (“The Butchery of Theatre”) present a, quite frankly, messy statement on modern life with Ikea. Spanish dialouge is translated onto a screen behind the stage for the duration of the performance, and occasionally short video clips are also displayed there too.
Opening with a list of common societal grievances, confronting the audience with a controversial list of Top 40 All-Time Motherfuckers (Lennon & Ghandi?), and closing with performer Juan Loriente shaving using a wreath-decorated mirror, Ikea was a bleak and absurd rant that, almost inexplicably, used the mangling of food at almost every turn. Cornflakes and milk served with a huge knife? Drowning a boy in gravy?
Creator Rodrigo Garcia’s anti-Argentinian (why?) message is given a good airing, too. There’s a disturbing role-reversal paedophile scene, a movie that literally gave societal icons the finger (especially death), and a great “masking tape logo” scene.
Sure, there was a general overwhelming feeling of anti-consumerism, but was there any finer point to it all? Was the spewing of unfrozen lasagna a comment on the gluttony that pervades our society? Why were exactly six bottles of sauce and mustard emptied onto hotdogs held by a near-naked man? Was Christmas really that bad that they had to explode both a tree and a turkey? Was there any significant social comment behind shoving food up their own arses?
In short, was there any more subtle meaning to this? More questions were asked than answered in Ikea, though this may not have been the intention of La Carniceria Teatro.