Scenes from an Execution

Critic's Pick Release Date: 2010-07-14
Rather than celebrating the Battle of Lepanto’s Venetian heroes in the mural she’s been commissioned to paint, feisty Galactia (a character based on “bloodthirsty” 16th century painter Artemisia Gentileschi) decides to focus on the atrocities that helped secure the Mediterranean as a Christian sea. That’s the premise of Howard Barker’s postmodernist comedy — which opens Thursday as the Inception Theatre’s debut production. If you’re wondering where comedy fits into a play about art, war, and censorship, consider the fact that Scenes from an Execution revolves around characters with names like Lasagna and Dementia (as well as a Lepanto veteran who makes the most of having a hatchet imbedded in his skull by becoming a sideshow freak). And then there are the vivid descriptions of Galactia’s (never-seen) mural as it evolves into a nightmarish depiction, complete with a sea of bare bottoms — representing fallen soldiers — bobbing in the water. In a modern twist, artist Rebecca Buckley will be creating a site-specific art piece that will comment on war and continue to change throughout the play’s run.