ART.Zip: It seems it is typical for individual artists to work on their owns, while theatre requires collaboration. did the collaborative work bring you any difficulties?
Wang: It is not quite much of a difficulty in general. But I did at the beginning find myself not getting used to this collaborative work, as I mainly did my personal work before. Therefore, I was often quite self-centred to pursue and keep pushing my own ideas. But for theatre, as I mentioned before, I had to work with other collaborators, and I did not expect a large amount of time having been spent in planning and communicating. Although
I am very familiar with visual art, the technical facilities and editing skills for creating theatre art visuals sound fresh to me. Therefore, I must communicate thoroughly with the technicians to understand the technical possibilities, so as to work out the best way to present the play, and also the best way to work with the director. The language for communication was a problem. Even though I have lived in America for many years, I still find some difficulties in communicating in English concerning the technical specialties and complicated concepts. For this reason, a lot of time has spent in communicating between the technicians and translators in order to convey the accurate information and feedbacks. Moreover, the production process was taking place in Beijing, London and Boston, three different places further away. Consequently, we had to sort out the difficulties of information transmitting and sharing. And any new ideas or small changes required an enormous amount of communication.
But in general, I am very impressed from this collaboration by the productivity of British theatre. This cross-country (China, the UK and the US) project has made a profound impact on me, to enable experience the specialized and internationally high standard of British theatre art, and their sophisticated project management skills.
ART.Zip: 作為藝術家,獨立而個人的工作方式 是顯著的特點,但是在劇場藝術中是一個集體 合作的工作方式。這樣的工作方式是否給您帶 來了不少的困惑?
Wang: 困擾倒談不上,但一開始確實不是很適 應,在以往的個人創作當中,我是會比較偏執, 追求把自己的想法發揮到極致,但在這劇的創 作過程中,我上面也說到了,必須和各個部分進 行溝通合作,讓我沒想到的是在合作過程中大 部分時間都花費在了協同和溝通上。我雖然是 從事影像藝術的創作,但舞臺影像的設備控制, 編輯方式對我是一個新的領域,必須與技術人 員進行大量的交流,瞭解技術上的可能性,才能 找到準確的表達方式,才能更好的和導演相互 配合,這其中又包括語言上的問題,雖然我在美 國生活很多年,但遇到專業性的技術問題和複 雜概念的交流的時候還是不如母語運用得得心 應手,因此,在技術人員,翻譯人員之間傳達準 確的信息及反饋都耗費了非常多的時間,而且, 這個劇創作的時候,我們是在中國北京、英國倫 敦還有美國波士頓幾個不同的地域進行,這期 間需要克服很多信息傳遞,分享的困難,這些因 素都導致了每一個很小的想法或者變化都會經 過非常複雜的交流和溝通才能實現。
這次的合作讓我感觸最深的也是英國劇院這 邊的製作能力,這次的團隊作業經常是中英美 跨地域的合作,這次全球跨時區協同合作對我 來說是一次非常有意義的體驗,而且通過這樣 的合作也體會到英國劇院藝術在製作方面的專 業化和國際化,對項目管理的管控和操作非常 的嚴謹細緻。
ART.Zip: How about your collaboration with the stage designer Miriam Buetherh. Did you have any influence on each other?
Wang: It is a great pleasure to work with Miriam. We have worked very well together. She was able to understand and accept most of my ideas. But the director Sacha mentioned at the beginning, she has worked with Miriam for many years. And many of her ideas have been turned down by Miriam, which brought her much trouble. However, Miriam and I have had a lot in common concerning the structure and visual presentation of theatre. Therefore, everything went quite smoothly between us. I assume it is quite a fate of luck.
ART.Zip: 您與《野天鵝》的舞臺設計米瑞安•布 希(Miriam Buetherh)合作的過程中,您們之 間產生了怎樣的相互影響?
Wang: 我和米瑞安在這次合作中配合的相當 愉快,也非常默契,我很多的想法她都能非常快 的理解並且接受,在合作之初,導演說她與米 瑞安合作了很多年,導演提出的想法有時候會 被米瑞安很直接的“槍斃”掉,給導演製造了所謂的很多麻煩,但是我們這次的合作過程中,在 探討劇的結構和影像表現形式的時候,我的想 法和米瑞安很契合,溝通非常順利,也是非常有 緣分。
ART.Zip: What is your inspiration for Wild Swans with respect to visual art?
Wang: Although I often watch theatre, I did not have the experience of being part in the production process. I was very excited when being offered this opportunity, hoping to bring my personal visual creation into the production. I had not been in this field before. Therefore, I was not restrained by any rules of theatre creation, and I was able to use my own way for the creativity. This probably is what the director was looking for, since she did not approach any theatre related experts, but an artist who is unfamiliar with this field. She seemed wanting to challenge and explore the possibilities of theatre with other art form creativity.
My inspiration is to expand the visual space of the stage and theatre. At the beginning, I was attempting to project the visuals on the audience when the play came to the end, and place sound systems under each audience seat in order to achieve the purpose of expanding the stage to cover the whole theatre. This was to make the whole theatre as a stage, to demolish the ‘fourth wall’, the wall that is between the stage and the audience.
Sacha, Miriam and I were all very excited about the idea, eager to make it come true. However, no matter how wonderful an idea is, there are always restrictions, such as budgets, regulations, etc. For example, by law, we are not allowed to project visual images on the audience. It is due to audience health and safety protection, since the projection might do harm to the eyes of the audience. And the director also concerned about the aspect of story narration and overall presentation. Therefore, we needed to compromise in the end, and knocked down the idea. It was quite a pity. But it is how thing happens sometimes. In this play,
I have applied many video language, such as ‘Stop’, or arranging performers into the visuals to create the effect of being in swapping existence between the real and the artificial creation.
ART.Zip: 能否談談您在《野天鵝》這部作品裡 影像藝術部分的創作構想?
Wang: 首先我覺得我沒做過戲劇,但經常看舞 臺劇,但沒親身參與過戲劇的創作,我接到這 個劇的時候我很興奮,希望將自己個人的影像 創作的方式帶入其中,雖然我是外行,但我正是 以這種沒有固定模式的法則來參與創作,而且 導演也正是希望這樣,他並沒有找個舞臺美術 專家,而是找到一個藝術家,也是希望藉由通 過舞臺以外其他的藝術形式的創造力來開拓這 個劇的結構。
我更多的構想是把舞臺和劇院空間的概念拓展 開,最初想法是在劇結束的時候將投影打到觀 眾的身上,而且將音響設備放到每一個座位下 面,然後讓舞臺擴大,把劇院作為整個展示空 間來運用,破掉所謂的“第四堵”牆,就是觀眾與 舞臺之間的牆。我希望在劇結束的時候運用影 像將舞臺擴展開來。
米瑞安、導演和我都很興奮,希望把這些想法 實現,但很多時候想法受到各方面的限制和制 約,比如預算,法規等,比如為了保護觀眾,法 律不允許把投影打到觀眾身上,怕傷害眼睛等 等,而且導演也要考慮到劇情和整體的表現效 果,後來就必須得妥協,雖然很無奈,但是沒有 辦法。在劇裡,我運用了很多影像語言本身的因 素,比如運用“暫停”這樣的錄影語言,或者是將 真實的演員疊加到影片之中,產生演員在虛擬 影像和現實之間互換的這種效果等等。