In 2015 Virginia Barratt and Francesca da Rimini formed In Her Interior (IHI) to co-create and perform live works of spoken/sung and recorded text and video within site-specific installation environments. IHI’s work often involves accomplices – local land custodians, sound artists, birdwatchers, writers, philosophers, gleaners. To date they have performed in galleries, dedicated performance spaces, repurposed industrial settings, academic environments, and theatres – in Helsingør, London, Berlin, Adelaide, Byron Bay, Sydney, Melbourne, New York and Graz. Collaborations include B.A.B.S., The Darkening: Language lined with flesh lined with language, Songs for Skinwalking the Drone (a commissioned libretto), Hexing the Alien, echolalia: golden iterations, her eyes were as black as coal ..., Mxtrx Class: Mary had a Little Alembic, This Platform Life and Tell me what you see outside. As two of the four co-founders of cyberfeminist group VNS Matrix (est. 1991), da Rimini and Barratt have contributed to global critiques of gender and technology across three decades.

a mouth swallowing the storm

A fugue for uncountable voices

In this text three emergent accomplices — Krill, Spore and Terra — give voice to the anthropoetics of time-travelling fossil-becomings. They express an ‘animistic perception’ mirroring humans’ ‘default setting’ to ‘encounter ... sensorial surroundings as a field of sensitive and sentient powers’ (Abrams 2019, n.p.). These voices without organs, arising from an alembic transcribed with arcane symbols, had been channeled by In Her Interior (IHI) through field trips, programmatic word theft and the fugue-induced sympoiesis (Dempster 2000) of collaborative writing across timespace and collective production in open systems; inviting surprise, disappointment, destabilisation, crisis, fleeting resolution and homeostasis. The iterative conditions of making were creation-destruction-crisis-creation anew. And thus the results were generative and theoretically repeatable.

Keywords: speculative poetics; sympoieisis; ecolit; collaborative writing; generative text; performance text