I happened to read an article by communication expert Raul Rebane recently, in which he describes today’s life in Estonia as not having the ability to dream. We have reached a crisis of dreaming, he says. True, at the first glance, everything seems to be achieved and once the summit of dreams has been reached, one does not really know what to want more.
The reason I am talking about this in the context of Iggy Lond Malmborg’s performance is the fact that the author’s objective is to investigate the mechanisms of fantasy in our lives. Dreaming is a sort of fantasising. The world changes so quickly that what we considered utopia yesterday and could only picture in our most fantastical dreams is today reality: 3D-printed houses, sneakers made of ocean trash, achievements in the field of the colonisation of Mars, development of artificial intelligence, and microchipping people and animals. To think that soon, when Estonia holds the presidency of the EU, self-driving buses will be moving around here! It is not as utopian anymore, which is why the question arises – how far and big can we dream from here? The wish to improve the living environment and solve social problems is what provides food for fantasies. How else would anyone think of developing a meal that can be prepared in a washing machine or meat that can be made in a 3D-printer? Is that the ceiling of our fantasies? Where could everything evolve?
Iggy Lond Malmborg says that fantasy is largely linguistically directed and influenced, which is why it is a verbal performance more than anything else. That is why Iggy Lond Malmborg ironically calls himself a performing artist who talks a lot. In my head, the performance started to live even before it started. Namely, right before the performance began, Iggy Lond Malmborg’s introduction could be heard from the hall, in which he emphasised that the play is not suitable for under 18-year-olds as it contains strong language. In my imagination, I was already disappointed, fearing a performance built on obscenities. I can say that it did contain obscenities. Some would even say, foulness and salacity. At the same time, it was not nearly as much as I pictured. The part of the performance that probably became unacceptable was the author’s reference to the trial concerning Kaur Kender’s “Untitled 12” and
transgressive art. For me, it was the moment after which I totally switched off. I cannot even say why. Perhaps it was a place where my fantasy did not want to go, or it was a part during which my thoughts digressed to my everyday problems, as this seemed to be an easier road to take… At the same time, Iggy Lond Malmborg had warned the audience. He must have imagined, based on his earlier experience, that people could not stay in the moment during a performance containing more words than usual.
During the performance, a journey in time between the past and the present moment takes place. At the same time, one could find oneself in the middle of events taking place over the course of 15 minutes in the performance hall. Going through the arrival at the venue by the description and guidance of Iggy Lond Malmborg over and over again, each time was a little different from the last. The reality and emerging images melted into one. The resultant illusions became my reality. I believe this is the sort of danger the performance wants to draw the audience’s attention to. The situations in which the fantasies of people are larger than life and different from life are rather ordinary. Holding onto a fantasy renders us unable and unwilling to understand the world in its diversity, as it is simply safer. Although the main activity of the performance takes place in our imagination, the viewers are brought back into the physical room several times using different technical devices. A change is also brought about by the clatter of high heels heralding the arrival on stage of a woman, who the audience could earlier only picture based on Iggy Lond Malmborg’s description. And now she was there, saying that she had been much happier in her envisions of future than she was in real life. I suppose that is how it tends to be, but I am still happy that I went to see this performance in real life.