Stele – 2006

„The first time I visited the Palanque Ruins, I met a nearly 80 year old Mayan Researcher, who had dedicated most of his life to studying the ancient and contemporary Mayan culture. He was living close to the ruins, in the woods, in the self-made Panchan (a retreat center built of bamboo, grove), where anthropologists, linguists, and artists studied and analyzed the writings and drawings found on the pyramids. Before going to see the ruins, he called me aside and gave me some useful advice. He said: – Don’t listen to the presentations of the tour guides. Go inside, touch the stones, watch, smell, dream. Let the place speak to you. Find out the story of this place for yourself. And that will be the true story for you. Later, there will be enough time to listen to all the other lies or truths. Remember, that the story you discovered for yourself is the best of all. For, after all, it is not the truth that is important, but the reality.

And the reality lies within you at the moment. I took his advice and this is what I experienced: There are two types of time: now and not now. The activity of Now: the rite of human sacrifice – Warning! The meekness hidden behind the veil of our refined education is actually nothing but the ritual cautiousness developed over centuries. We are aware and afraid of the fact, that every single action, no matter how small, has a consequence.” /G.G./

In March 2006, the company of Artus spent a whole month in Mexico working on the project entitled „Mayan time and shadow,” in the collaboration with the American based Thunder Bay company and the Romanian Toaca theatre, which formed the first stage of the working process, followed by the new production to be premiered in Fall 2006 with the title “Stele”.

In our approach, the Mayan present is the concrete, stable point. Everything, including all the images and scenes, is an analogy to the central theme, and in form of concentric circles it comprises all the future possibilities, as well as all the interpretations of the past. These analogies are not detached from each other, but add up to the present, in order to show the phenomenon. Time is a mere illusion born out of the line of our different states of mind. It does not exist. Hence, the present is only a point on the line of non-existent imaginary time which separates the eternity from what we call past and future.

The starting point of the performance entitled Stele was seeking the connection and conjunction points between time and outer and inner reality, in the ancient Mayan culture and the contemporary artistic language and approach of Artus.

Contrary to the modern western cultures and languages, in which the past, present and future can be expressed in a number of precise, complex linguistic structures, in the language of Mayan peoples, there exists only the present and non – present. The present comprises all that
we perceive as – outer, or inner – reality, happening here and now, in the present moment. The non – present is all that was, will be, could have been or is born in our imagination.

We study synchronicity, i.e. the simultaneous conception of events. The events take place chronologically, one after the other only in our perception, for actually, they happen simultaneously. There is no past or future. Our task lies in visually presenting these simultaneous stories and happenings.

We intend to get hold of the moment and study the various sides of the given moment. Theatre as genre, is also based in the present moment. The moment that we see on its own, enwraps a number of different worlds within it. It’s not the past or present that dwells in it, only. It’s the pinnacle of a spiral, or funnel. The Mayan culture, so distant from us geographically, thinks of time, the inner and outer reality, in a very similar way, as we do. In the course of our work, we look for inspiration in our personal myths and experiences, so that the work process can lead us to the world of phenomena. Myth is a stable point, in which the individual life stories can connect to each other. We continue making the scenes based on our
own personal experiences denser and denser, until they gain universal value by their growing inner energy and power. The momentary situation presents the phenomenon, which means much more than what it is on its own. We need to dig deep enough for finding the root of everybody’s faith. We are looking for timeless forms. The main point is not to search for something new, but to discover true forms of thinking.“

/Gábor Goda/

Photo gallery



Debreczeni Márton, Goda Gábor, Kocsis Gábor, Mózes Zoltán, Nagy Ágoston

Creator co:    

Gold Bea, Téri Gáspár


Goda Gábor

Supported by EMMI, NKA