Call for Papers: Performance Matters 10.2: “Performing (in) Place: Space, Relation, Action”


Performance Matters is seeking submissions for its upcoming issue, “Performing (in) Place: Space, Relation, Action.” This issue will focus on artistic expressions that create renewed awareness of the networks of relations that create territory in the context of Indigenous sovereignties and decolonization. We seek artistic articulations, theoretical questionings, and critical engagement with notions of place making: ways in which our creative actions animate shared spaces as well as how place animates us. In this follow-up to Performing (in) Place: Moving on/with land, the editors (Jenn Cole and Melissa Poll) are interested in actions that exist in addition to/beyond spoken acknowledgments of territory and how these actions enable Indigenous people, other than human kin, and Settler collaborators to lift each other up in resurgent and decolonization efforts. Our questions include, but are not limited to:


  • Who do we ask and how do we learn about the places we occupy/arrive to/originate from?
  • What gifts do we bring to processes of getting to know?
  • How do we know where we are? What does it mean to self-situate?
  • What lies beyond acknowledgment of territory and what more is to be noticed? What relations underpin the very places we find ourselves in this moment? What urgent actions lie before us if we are to enact responsibilities towards Land, Water, original peoples; Territory?
  • What and which sovereignties inhabit with and alongside us? In what ways can we enact ancient protocols with lands and waters in the present, given our own giftings and multiple positionalities?
  • What are we learning about the connections between corporeal and social movements in relationship to lands and waters of Turtle Island?     
  • How can we work within Indigenous protocol in relation to place in performance practice?
  • How might roles of guest and host be creatively enacted?
  • Which spaces are considered alternate and how does and might place-making occur?
  • How do we negotiate relationships with land and people given our distinctive locations within settler colonialism?
  • What might be learned from Land-based pedagogies?
  • Which future-oriented practices offer models for ethical engagement with territory?
  • What does performance offer studies of place and relation?


We reflect on the following prompts from Métis writer Chelsea Vowel and Cherokee scholar Joseph M Pierce and welcome our potential contributors to do the same:


“What are the Indigenous protocols involved in being a guest, what are your responsibilities? What responsibilities do your hosts have towards you, and are you making space for those responsibilities to be exercised? To what extent are your events benefiting your hosts?”


“This is what settler institutions do not understand: Land does not require that you confirm it exists, but that you reciprocate the care it has given you... Land is not an object, not a thing. Land does not require recognition. It requires care. It requires presence.”


We are asking for scholarly essays (7,000-9,000 words), performance/movement scripts and/or artist manifestos, interviews, practitioner praxis reflections and reviews (1,000-3,000 words). We encourage you to consider contributing within your preferred media (audio, video, visual art etc.). Performance Matters supports multiple formats of sharing work and we are hoping to create an issue for the senses. We are asking for abstracts or expressions of interest from artists/scholars by July 15, 2023. Full submissions will be required by Nov. 15.


Please let us know your availability/interest via and We're open to new ideas and formats so please don't hesitate to be in touch with questions.