life of everyday objects as seen through
Howard Barker's intriguing play investigates the often profound and intimate connection people can make with objects that, although familiar and mundane in themselves, resonate with memory or inspire powerful emotional feelings.
Even the simplest artefact can acquire enormous psychological and social significance. Here a series of simple items inspire extreme feelings of sorrow, joy, pain, anger, become a site for struggle, a means of independence and servitude, even a substitute for the identity of a human being.
In 13 short self contained plays, powerful poetic language, provocative ideas and rich, dark humour build a compelling and fascinating exploration of the secret lives of everyday objects.
With these simple points of departure, Howard Barker's rich, rewarding text portrays not just a transaction between a person and a thing, the basis of so many brilliant theatrical moments, but describes a culture as seen through the results of an archaeological excavation, and asks what these things meant to people.
13 Objects was directed by Howard Barker. It opened at Birmingham Rep in October 2003 and toured the UK including two weeks in London at Riverside Studios.
13 Objects; Studies in
Photos on this page by Robert Workman www.robertworkman.demon.co.uk