(jiří macek) Even though Handa Gote is primarily an ensemble of incredible theatre performers (one should really see their performances such as Mushrooms, Rain Dance, and Metal Music), their work with light, staging, costumes and old technologies takes them more and more often into the world of design. At Designblok this year, they had a joint exhibition with the Institute of Lighting Design and a solo exhibition in the Window Gallery of Česká spořitelna. Both installations are definitely a must.
The group, which defines itself as a conceptual post-dramatic theatre, created an optical lighting play in the Designblok Superstudio, thanks to which lamps turned into cranes and old projectors took visitors for a walk through glimpses of the theatre group’s memory. As autumn was approaching, their chestnut figures shined with diodes like legendary cyber beetles. Mechanically interconnected projectors aimed forgotten images at our retinas; the sound reflected silence; one had a feeling as if he/she suddenly ended up in the seedbed of fundamental trains of thought. The diving suit in the Window Gallery of Česká spořitelna is an archetypal emblem of such examination and a play on the themes of water, Japanese knights, and the solitude in our hearts. It is both displayed and abandoned, timid and heroic.
Handa Gote brings us tenderness and fragility, which is unkempt, somewhat randomly found, overlooked, and movingly human. Thus, the world of epic and improper heroes lives on without showing its characters and teaches us to look at forgotten things, things that are seemingly of neither value nor beauty, yet things that we brought into the world once and experienced together.