Lisa Anita Wegner

is creating Intangible Adorations Caravan

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Intangible Adorations Caravan (IAC) is an immersive, travelling theatrical & film experience presented on a flatbed truck. A diverse group of MAD, neuro-divergent and disabled artists will take to the streets, reclaiming the Freak Show and delivering astonishing mysterious magic in an hour-long spectacle suitable for all ages, fusing the playfulness of Carnival with science fantasy biography and performance ritual.

The Caravan's immediate audience is the Mad, disabled, neuro-divergent, Deaf, blind and low vision communities, who will be invited specifically and made to feel welcome with various accessibility features that will be seen as part of the show, not mere add-ons.These include the use of headsets to facilitate live audio description, ASL interpretation, and the use of multi-sensory methods to engage a range of the audience’s senses and immerse them fully in the performance.

My name is Lisa Anita Wegner. Welcome to Intangible Adorations Caravan. As a Mad and disabled artist, I am committed to the idea of public art that is truly accessible, and eliminating barriers of poverty and disability that too often get in the way of underserved communities experiencing art. IAC is the development of some of my earlier works that is now a mature project in a perfect place to aJach high-caliber collaborators, including Tangled Art + Disability, Other HeArts, and Art Of FesIvals, and launch as an exciting event in various locations across Toronto. IAC combines live performance, film, and an immersive environment for the audience that engages all of the senses. As a travelling event, it can appear in unexpected locales, adding the element of surprise; and its disappearance following the performance leaves the aJendees with a lingering sense of wonder.

My work as a Mad artist explores the possibiliIes of Madness as a source of communal activation; and IAC specifically aims to reclaim the performing caravan not as a site of display, but rather as a site of world-dismantling potenIality. This project boldly places disability arts centre stage, and animates disability as a difference that maJers through avant-garde inter-arts qualiIes. I am thrilled that it allows me to work with collaborators who are either Mad, disabled, or neuro-divergent; and that its immediate audience is the communiIes that are so underserved by the arts. Deaf, blind and low-vision people will be invited and welcomed to the performances with exciIng barrier-destroying elements, including ASL and live audio descripIon, that are incorporated into the experience, seamlessly creaIng a work that can be fully taken in by those who are often left out.

The IAC experience also incorporates a social media campaign with creative, narrative content, that will enable the communities to engage with the IAC project beyond the performance, including skill-sharing of some of the artistic techniques they will have experienced at the live event. As I have worked on developing IAC, I have found out an increasing amount about the underserved communiIes in Toronto, and this has turned the idea of providing public art into a passion. The concept of a public ‘arIst in residence’ for Toronto is one that I find incredibly exciting. I believe that IAC represents a first step in establishing this sort of relaIonship, and will lead to a further exploraIon of how art can be brought to every community in our city.

We are using this platform as a modern online "Pass The Hat". We want to be open for donation while keeping the show completely free for our MAD, Disabled, Blind/Low Vision and Deaf audiences. 

The Caravan is an hour-long presentation that is a synthesis of two previous art projects: Triangle: Ascension into Another Golden Age and Intangible Adorations: Experience The Icon .Triangle was performed at three locaIons for Nuit Blanche in 2014. A persona of arIst Lisa Anita Wegner’s, Mama Dada, created light- and wind-based portals and invited the audience into them with her. On the night, she performed in a morph suit for the very first Ime. This was the birth of the ÜbermarioneJe, which in Ime became the Icon. Experience The Icon is a mulI-year project that ran at several venues, including Rendezvous with Madness as a headliner in 2019. It is an immersive theatre & film experience, social experiment and performance piece that addresses celebrity and anonymity. The narraIve serves as an allegory about Wegner’s Madness and disability through a RealisIc ConfabulaIon of a mysterious art Icon who went missing with their entourage, the last Ime they performed in public.IAC posits that one of these portals opened up around the Icon’s last performance, and the missing folx have been taken off the space-Ime conInuum. One of The Icon’s followers, The Ringmaster, witnessed the disappearance and has become obsessed with it. This is their show about trying to get the Icon back home.

With the Ringmaster and a carnival theme, IAC will roll into neighbourhoods at sundown. The Ringmaster & their Sidekick will get the audience excited about the marvels to come. As carnival music and the smell of fresh popcorn swirl in the air, the side of the truck becomes a rear projecIon, and a short film gives a history of the arIst, grounding this story in reality and the history of the art projects.Then the portal on the truck is revealed, and a chilling wind rushes over the audience as the Ringmaster aJempts to pull the Icon back into this world. The MAD and disabled artists who perform in IAC reclaim the freak show, owning this storytelling and astonishing the audience as the mundane is transformed into the marvellous. Afterward, the audience is invited to leave their mark on the physical caravan, and they will receive Icon cards with information on connecting with the project online and continuing the experience. After clean-up, the truck rolls out, leaving the space as if IAC were never there, though the magic and wonder linger.The project will be developed, rehearsed and tested from October 2020 through May 2021. In June-September 2021, nine planned performances will be presented over this first summer in Toronto.

The performance also brings its own movable seating that will be arranged for social distancing to ensure the safety of all attendees.Wegner intends to take on a dedicated publicist to open conversation with the media; and a dedicated social media representative who will have advertising in place leading up to the project, and who will activate the project with the target audience through Instagram, twitter and Facebook. Working with community and local arts organizaIons, the team will acIvely engage underserved communiIes in each neighbourhood andinvite them. Further online content, focus on skill-sharing to pass on some of the arIsIc techniques featured in IAC, will also be created.The iniIal goal with IAC is to perform nine shows in various neighbourhoods across Toronto, working with arts organizaIons to find the opImal locaIons to bring this arIsIc experience to the target communiIes. As the show is built as a travelling carnival, it can appear in any appropriate public space or park throughout the city.For IAC, Wegner has aligned herself with Tangled Art + Disability, Other HeArts Collective, and Art Of FesIvals, to create and helm this vision with her. 

For more information on the previous projects mentioned:

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