A Queer Phenomenology Movement Score 

Research action, 2017.

“Take a position in space. What you see depends on which way you are facing. What bodies and objects and forms are in front of you? What is of importance from this vantage point? What most draws your gaze? What would you rather not look at? Without moving your head, look at what is behind you.” 

A research action in collaboration with Edinburgh’s Reading Talking Performing group that turned language from feminist author and scholar Sara Ahmed’s 2006 book Queer Phenomenology: Orientations, Objects, Others into a movement score.

Participants moved through the Talbot Rice Gallery, responding to a series of cues read into a microphone, accompanied by music. Divided into three “positions” and three “movements”, the cues took inspiration from images and ideas in Ahmed’s text, emphasising what was in and out of view, foregrounds and backgrounds, as well as oblique and slanted ways of extending and retreating one’s body in space. 

This research was aimed to influence Nemer’s work with museum audio guides, expanding and reimagining the kinds of embodied encounters museums might foster. The language developed for A Queer Phenomenology Movement Score contributed to the scripts of Trees Are Fags and I Don’t Know Where Paradise Is