Promiscuous Emplacements: Performing with Marginal Urban Places.
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Promiscuous Emplacements investigates more-than/human relationality through performance with outdoor urban environments across Tāmaki Makaurau. I encounter hidden, overlooked, and neglected crevices and corners of the city – marginal urban places that range from forgotten alleyways and uncared-for stairwells to unnoticed bushy corners of city parks. These places support my reimagination of anthropocentric habits and narratives in and through choreographic practice. I bring together discourse regarding transmateriality, queer concepts, and Indigenous materialities specific to Aotearoa. Developing a queer*trans/materialist approach, I position the tentacularity and promiscuity of queer and trans matters as central to a Choreoqueering of performance. The inquiry is based on a series of live works and collaborative processes, developing approaches for more-than/human kinship, intimacies and modes of communing. The methodology of Choreoqueering is comprised of five perverse techniques – scat-tending, flotsy, bttm//bottom, queer clean(s)ing and queer napping. Scat-tending is a somatic process of at-tending marginal urban places, whilst flotsy is a playful non-representational mode of performance documentation, and bttm//bottom centres a friendship-based take on collaborative practice. Collaborations activate everyday tasks in performance, such as cleaning, resting, and napping as queer*trans rituals of care and protection. Questions and propositions are generated through practice, enacting an affective and haptic, critical and sensuous research-creation. Key performance events explore the possibilities of intimacies with place in Queer Dating Sites (2018); the face-down-bum-up queer sensing of subterranean realities in Queer Failure Walk (2017) and Bttm Methodology (2019); the feltness and affect of queer*trans time in queer walk-naps (2020); and trans forms of human*plant communing in ill grow back (2020) and Songs with Birds (2022). A queer/ing of Somatics is key to my research, along with the development of modes of Pākehā response-ability through performance in the context of Aotearoa (Bell and Ream 2021). This research proposes a re/generative queer*trans practice that invites the connective reach of *, and the grounding effect of /, to uplift rainbowy lives and co-shimmer with marginal urban places.