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Performance Title: Pack, Unpack

Venue: Shannon Airport, Co Clare

Date: Thursday 19 December 2019 10- 1pm. 

Description: Pack, Unpack consisted of a 3 hour durational public performance by the performance artist Rachel Macmanus. The goal of Pack, Unpack as a performance was to  address contemporary challenges around consumerism, ownership, anxiety and how we manage our increasingly chaotic lives.

Someone kneeling on the floor surrounded by the contents of an open suitcase is not unusual at an airport. But why would someone pack and unpack a suitcase over and over again?

Pack, Unpack is a Sisyphean metaphor for all of us trying to organize our belongings and as such our increasingly chaotic lives into some order. It’s a reflection on how anxiety can manifest itself, and how consumerism has taken over our lives. Do we really need all this stuff? Being compelled to repeat the action over and over again,  unable to stop. Is there some comfort in the repeated action? Do we turn to mindless repetitive actions when overwhelmed? Airports are places of heightened emotion, especially around the holidays. Pack, Unpack reflects these emotions and invites the audience to consider what really matters to them at this time of year.

Short film of the performance courtesy of Paul Corey

Photographs of the performance. (Photos by Rachel Macmanus and Paul Corey)