Doctoral studies

Indrė Liškauskaitė

Creative part: "Human Behaviour". Supervisor Aurelija Maknytė

Theoretical part: "Human Behaviour". Supervisor dr. Lina Michelkevičė

Photo credits Vitalij Červiakov

Human Behaviour is a research that investigates the complexity of human and non-human animal relations in 21s century, while following the unusual and ironic narrative about an artist, who is trying to teach her dog to sing.

Through the format of a script, the artist tells the story of the process of accomplishing one of her utopic artwork ideas - teaching her poodle to sing Björk’s song Human Behaviour. The artist finds a dog trainer, who joins the project and through many lessons, fails and success, she and her dog are preparing for the final performance at the contemporary art gallery.

Through the interactions with animal species and attempts to make them speak and sing, the research draws attention, re- thinks and criticises the human perception of nature and anthropocentristic intent to direct everything around. The project raises ethical questions about the animal involvement in the artistic practice; human and non-human language aspects, including spoken/woofen and body language; and how certain animal species are shaped and culturalized.

How playing with a dog can become a method of artistic research? How can it produce new knowledge about multi- species coexistence? How to play with a dog, in order to analyze social, cultural and philosophical influences that shape our relation and understanding of each other? How can the games, the sports and the sounds we play can be directed, in order to open up new contexts and create new meanings?

Through the project, human being is shown as a strange and unpredictable animal. Björk's Human Behaviour, which illustrates their behaviour, becomes a reason to look at the encoded meanings of the communication between a humom being and her furry, four-legged companion.

The script combines the real, likely and imaginary situations. They are based on the personal and overheard experiences of being actively involved in the canine sports and training community, as well as observing various environments with the non-human presence on the other side of the leash.

The scenes described in the script become a series of various media artworks, in which the artist plays and re-plays various situations, where human and non-human encounters with each other, plays, communicates and miscommunicates.