Oef The arousal of meaning

Language is a wonderful instrument. Language is terrible. Language helps us see and navigate the world. But language is also matter in itself, rooted in the world,  and when we think about language, we have to use language for the purpose.


Language is also always languages, even within the same language, because we play different roles and constantly switch in language use, even within the same sentence. Comme ca.


We exchange ideas and pass on knowledge through language. Language shapes feelings (just think of declarations of love and baby language). Language builds the politics that describes our entire work and life from cradle to grave: think of laws, instructions, promises, etc.


Language is a rain, a forest, a mountain of poetry and language is also manipulation, abuse of power, exclusion. And sometimes language is emptied by the negligence of daily habits and then it means nothing anymore. Language users often risk falling into the abyss of incomprehension. One word can suffice.




Oef! The arousal of meaning makes tangible how complex and playful language is, how language creates an experiential world and gives meaning, can connect or alienate. Oef! The arousal of meaning is a lecture performance and an artist book, and builds further on the material researched during Oertaal: oefeningen.


Lecture / for approx. 30 people - 30' - by and with Camporesi and Line Mertens


Around a blackboard/ping pong table, the two performers dialogue with major theories from ontology and language philosophy to finally summarize how we give meaning to the world and all its theories. They take notes and draw conceptual maps on the blackboard/ping pong table, as proof of a mathematical theorem. Here too, the central question is what exactly we want to pass on to the other person with whom we communicate. It is abundantly clear: after all, every system has a black hole no one wants to fall into.


Oef! as lecture/performance is an entr'acte for a small, adult audience.


Production-wise it is a very light format (fits on a tandem) that is aimed at festivals, colleges, ad hoc locations, living rooms or kitchen, as a playful, multilingual and absurdist entr'acte. Part of the performance is also the conversation with the audience that arises spontaneously after the lecture.


First version developed during a residency in hetpaleis (May/June '23, external eye: Sina Seifee).


The artist's book/paper object


Under the exciting motto the theater as a page and the page as a theater, Camporesi wonders how to capture the performativity of language on paper: in addition to plain readable texts, think of pop-up elements, holes, slits and typographical elements that shape the pages and consider it in all its dimensions.


Together with artists Line Mertens and Duraid Abbas Ghaieb as co-authors, and Sina Seifee (Maastricht Theater Academy) and Ulrike Scholte (ZUYD University of Applied Sciences) as contributors, they shape a story about what to do when you encounter a hole.


This paper object/art book is made in collaboration with Maastricht Theater Academy/ZUYD University of Applied Sciences, Platform 0090 and wpZimmer. The paper object/artist's book was born for a specific audience of peers, artistic researchers and students, but seeks ways to reach a broader audience.