As a contemporary circus company our daily rythm is defined by Movement: Be it the movement from one venue to an other or the body's movement on stage, we constantly (re-)negotiate spaces and meanings.

The research project with the title Circus Mobilities accounts for this reality and offers space for reflection.

During a three-year period Squarehead Productions will facilitate the following activities:

-interviews with contemporary circus artists
-artistic research laboratories
-journal publications

Squarehead Production will equally act as a producer for the planned book publication in 2019 and an upcoming video project related to the research.

The research project is headed by Elena Lydia Kreusch within the framework of her PhD studies at the Department of Theatre, Film and Media Studies at the University of Vienna and funded by a DOC Fellowship of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (2016 - 2019).

Circus Mobilities
Negotiations of Space and (Re)Production of Meaning

In continuity with earlier circus forms that persist today, the so called Contemporary Circus developed in the mid 90’s. The contemporary ‘label’ does not only refer to a change in content, form and aesthetics but also to a shift in socio-economic conditions.

Focussing on the interface between mobility and performance this practice-led research project is concerned with the production of space and meaning in the context of contemporary circus. It is assumed that the daily life of an artist cannot be separated from their artistic process. This appears particularly relevant in the case of circus, where the act of travelling blurs the line between personal and professional life. 

The research project therefore examines
-how space is produced and negotiated, both in a social and performance context
-if and how meaning is transferred and transformed from one context to another
-what role Performativity plays in theses processes

Applying a Grounded Theory approach the author engages a conversation between her practical training and experience in the contemporary circus field and her theoretical training as a scholar. She furthermore navigates between ethnographic and auto-ethnographic methods.

This transdisciplinary research project will provide new insights within the fields of Ethnography, Mobility Studies and Theatre Studies and aims to contribute to the further development, differentiation and emancipation of distinct Circus Theories.