Unearthing colonial violence below our feet by following the scratches in our wooden stage floors

Toni Kritzer & Lou J. Seidel 

Location: Frascati 4, Theater Bellevue, Paloni zaal


duration of the performance: 45 min

There are no empty spaces: the wooden floor we perform on in most performance venues in the Netherlands is made of Keruing wood. Keruing is native to Indonesia, and is now, through illegal deforestation, a critically endangered species. Where this tree comes from, a whirlwind of life and death entangles their roots. The floor of our stages is blood-stained. What does it mean to stand on this no-more-tree, but not-yet-soil, on this body killed by colonial violence? We think of these trees as ghosts. Their presence haunts this space, whispering stories of the rainforest under your feet. In the wake of these botanic evidences of genocide, our movement becomes unsettled, innocence becomes impossible. The ghosts haunt us in traces of wooden memories: scars, scratches, markings, cuts. We hold a seance for these ghosts to stay with their relentless remembering: to invoke the sound of a tree falling in a forest. 


Lou J. Seidel is a visual artist & scenographer with a background in carpentry and prop mastery that understands her own body as part of the work. 

Lou likes to call herself a compassionate trespasser. Her work is mostly spatial, often interdisciplinary and means to blur the lines between installation, performance, and experience. Her landscapes aim to take over where words come to their limits. In her practice she starts from refusing the empty-space premise and thus, pays attention to the knowledge of every space having a certain history, time and materials that were once part of something else. 

Toni Kritzer is a trans* nonbinary performance artist, born in rural Germany and now based in a forest in the Netherlands. With a background in theater and theater directing, their work is interdisciplinary and hybridzing: from performance, writing, herbalism, to communal gardening. In all their works, there flows an undercurrent of utopian thinking. Their artistic practice is committed to queer ecology, to wild artistic responses to the climate crisis. Toni holds a degree in Theater Directing from the Academy of Theater and Dance Amsterdam, but is more interested in providing tools for collective navigation than giving directions.  


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