A Broadcast / Looping Pieces


Image: © Piet Janssens

A Broadcast / Looping Pieces is an improvised text and performance work by Tim Etchells. It has been presented in a number of different contexts – sometimes as an hour-long performance in theatre spaces to a seated audience, and sometimes as shorter fragments in a gallery or other settings, with more mobile or informally constituted audiences.

The improvised core of the work is a live remixing by Etchells of pages from his notebook – in fact a chaotic accumulating Word file in which the artist has, for many years, gathered fragments of text, ideas, overheard conversation, cut-and-paste-excerpts from newspaper articles and web pages, writings, drafts, quotations and other notes. Selecting passages from this textual scrapbook Etchells winds, intercuts, weaves and collides language – frequently looping and repeating on individual lines, at other times editing and re-writing on the fly, creating dialogues, juxtapositions and ambiguous collisions.

Exploring archive, the process of writing and gathering, A Broadcast / Looping Pieces is an improvised window on Etchells’ approaches to text, exploring creative process, and the transformative power of performance itself.


Here is a long article by Claire Swyzen on A Broadcast/Looping Pieces, in relation to the idea of databases, also looking in detail at related works by other artists.
Access to the article is free and open to all but you do need to create an account/log-in on the site in order to access it.