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La Biennale di Venezia

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Biennale College Teatro - Performance site specific - Antoine Neufmars

Length / Year:50', 2022, world premiere
Concept, dramatic writing and performance:Antoine Neufmars
Assistant director:Salvatore Calcagno
Olfactory dramaturgy:Cecile Doan, Olga Alexandra, Hubert Alexander
Produced by:La Biennale di Venezia
Thanks to:Garçongarçon Asbl
For the collaboration special thanks go to:De spoormakers / Sophie Sénécaut, Paul Pourveur / Rhizome, Jean-François Lejuene and Manon Faure
Winner:Biennale College Teatro Performance site-specific (2022)


“If I can smell, I exist.
If I exist, I can have desire.
If I have no desire, it is Death.”
Jean-Claude Ellena, Master Perfumer,
recorded during the radio programme L'embellie on France Inter

...a severe loss of smell. “Anosmia. The long form” confirmed my doctor over the phone. Isolated by force in my room, prey to cloistered dreams, where I was both the jailer and the captive, I had the vital need to remember.

The need to connect with the Other becomes even more urgent as the months of political management linked to the pandemic have officially deprived us of it: barrier gestures, safety distances, isolation, double masks, contact management, border closures... a whole lexicon of deprivation, estrangement, and total absence of alterity has been legalized. In the sanitary hell that we went through, our information flows constantly tell us about bodily deaths with diagrams. But no one talks to us about the olfactory crisis we are going through, about the death of collective identity that this pandemic’s loss of smell engenders.

It is also in this spirit of collective narration and healing that ODORAMA is woven. I will address the themes of lack, disappearance, and trace. I will give a special place to the spectator, who will become a witness, sometimes a voyeur of my exhibited intimacy, between fiction and autobiography, between anonymity and confidentiality. In this sensory and emotional ping-pong, ODORAMA will propel intimacy into the campo veneziano, into the public and civic sphere.

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Biennale Teatro
Biennale Teatro