Call for artists/performers: Oyster Readings

In the Eddy of the Stream

  • An exhibition by Cooking Sections & Sakiya

    Inverleith House, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

    The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is casting freelance artists/performers to take part in a live performance-installation piece conceived by art collective Cooking Sections, which will run from 1 July to 18 September 2022 in Inverleith House as part of our summer exhibition. This opportunity is perfect for artists/performers looking to further and/or gain experience in performing in a visual arts context, engaging with a diversity of audiences.

    Oysters have populated the waters of Scotland for millennia, nourishing people living on its coasts. Like a modern palimpsest, oysters record time and events. Similar to tree rings, every season an oyster grows a shell around their lip. As the shell grows it encases the environmental conditions in which they live. Oysters tell stories about storms and droughts, the health of oyster beds in the Firth of Forth, the proliferation of Edinburgh’s oyster cellars and the infamous Oyster Club; they also remember oil spills, and more recently, the effects of global pandemics. Like fortune tellers reading the palm of the hand, performers will be doing one-on-one “oyster readings,” foreseeing the future of the coast through the surface of an oyster shell. The performances will take place within Climate House, allowing visitors to read into our common oyster futures.

    What does this role entail?

    The performance is part of Cooking Sections’ site-specific work titled Oyster Readings, a project to better understand the role of oysters in the North Sea in relation to coastal inhabitation, sedimentation, offshore drilling, and human-induced climatic changes.

    Ideal artists/performers will have experience in acting in a contemporary art context, and interest in non-traditional performance in a gallery or non-theatre setting. Those with no formal experience in performance are also encouraged to apply. The right candidate must have a good sense of humour, good voice projection and vocalisation skills, and be comfortable performing while sitting at a table with one or two audience members. Interest in social struggles, ecology, astrology, tarot and cosmology is an advantage. Experience in oyster shucking is ideal but not essential; basic training will be provided.

    Rehearsals will take place during June. Performance times will run in 4-hour time slots, weekly, from 1 July to 18 September 2022.

    Fee: £250 per performance day; £150 per rehearsal day.

    How do I apply?

    To apply, please send a cover letter and CV, plus photographs and/or 2-3 video links of previous projects, to creativeprogrammes@rbge.org.uk

    Application deadline: 10am, Wednesday 18 May 2022
    Casting for shortlisted candidates in person at RBGE: Thursday 26 May 2022

    We encourage applications from candidates from diverse backgrounds, and value the positive impact that this has on our team. RBGE is committed to ensuring that everyone is treated equally irrespective of their age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, marriage or civil partnership, and pregnancy or maternity.

    If you have any access requirements or questions relating to this opportunity, please do not hesitate to get in touch with RBGE Creative Programmes at creativeprogrammes@rbge.org.uk