Smashing boundaries! Defying categorisation!
Earlier this month, renowned arts critic and champion Lyn Gardner wrote an article for The Guardian entitled “Don’t box me in: why label art forms?”. Inspired in part by her enjoyment of Scary Little Girls’ Living Literature Walk Stage Rights!, which took place in London this April, Lyn argues that artistic and theatrical “[b]oundaries are being swept away and so are the expectations of audiences who are much more likely to be cultural nomads than they were just few years ago.”
Remarking on Stage Rights!, she asks: “Was it a literary walk, or was it a theatre show that simply used the city and buildings as a vast stage-history soaked backdrop[…]?” The answer in artistic terms is of course that it doesn’t matter. But reviewers and funders alike need to catch up and stop forcing art into rigid, outdated groupings – and thereby excluding those who cross or ignore existing genre boundaries.
She concludes: “In the 21st century much of the most interesting work being made completely defies categorisation.”
Big thanks to Lyn for coming to Stage Rights! and writing about SLG.