In a radical break from U.S. national exhibits of the past decades, including the encyclopedic survey approach used for recent editions of the PQ, the committee of five U.S. curators appointed by the Syracuse, N.Y.-based United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) -- which has funded and realized the project since 1983 -- will rally around a specific theme for 2011: "Courage from the Edge."
USITT's new theme -- an exploration of non-traditional approaches to theatre in the U.S -- reflects PQ 2011's request that national pavilions present a strong curatorial concept and that explore the field of scenography as a discipline in-between the visual and performing arts.
Specifically, the curators, headed by Susan Tsu, aim to represent the U.S. through works that forge definitive or life-altering paths, incorporate practices for social and artistic change, and empower designers in the collaboration process.
Working with Tsu are Christopher Akerlind, curator for lighting design; Chris Barreca, for scenic design; Linda Cho, for costume design; Don Tindall, for sound. William Bloodgood has been tapped to design the exposition itself, with support from the designer Eric Stone.
Organized by the Arts and Theatre Institute of Prague, PQ recently changed its official name to Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space. The new name, it is believed, will break down the "often imaginary differences between the performance fields," explains Sodja Zupanc Lotker, PQ artistic director.
A PQ 2007 winner from Slovakia, the scenographer Boris Kudlika, was appointed to be the new general commissioner. Visit http://www.pq.cz/. About 57 countries have officially signed up to exhibit in PQ 2011. See the list of countries and regions that have applied for the PQ.