SCENE VIII:  (Ex)genesis

pp. 126-end


“We are all compost.” - Donna Harraway. Death gives to life, leads to death, gives to life… To give life, “produce,” create, comes at a cost. Maggie’s delivery of Iggy is inter-cut with the death of Harry’s mother. Both events take them to the threshold, the Doorway, “the doorway of all worlds,” (p.131). Along the way there is pain, there is reluctance but, inevitably, there is surrender and its result is transcendence, new life, change.

“The trajectory of all architecture is in ruination, otherwise it is imbued with the hubris of immortality” - Vikram Prakash. All architecture will succumb to the biology of the earth. For Rachel Armstrong, architecture can embrace these processes: choreographed, denoting that there is a certain lack of control albeit with a desired outcome.


As Alexander McQueen’s Plato’s Atlantis - the (d)evolution of humankind to a species that can live in the (underwater?) future. Architecture can be grown or accreted through biological mechanisms. The fashion is an otherworldly creation - part alien/naiad/(whatever), part human - her dress grown through the accretion of new life, growing on the scaffold of what was originally. It is a representation of both decay as well as the new life growing on it, such as the mosses, lichens, barnacles, and so on, of the biome of the earth.

Stage Directions


“…She was in the doorway of all worlds… She seemed all at once to know where she was going and how to get there…” - p. 131

MAGGIE walks onto stage. Behind, video of Gould Hall in all its brutalist glory.


“What is good is always being destroyed…” - p. 140

MAGGIE approaches halfway to the middle of the room. Gould is transformed into its submerged, aquatic, it is nearly no longer, but a mere scaffold for the new accreted growth that has taken hold.


“Experiences that involve surrender…” - p. 134

At the apex of the walk, MAGGIE is now freer, her movement more otherworldly. She walks off.

“You will have touched death along the way…” - p. 134