Manuela Infante

Kyoto Art Center × Kyoto Experiment
Artist in Residence Program 2018

Performance "Stepping stones"

A new theatrical speculation in the territory of the non-human

Following Zoo, which she wrote, directed, and presented at Kyoto Experiment 2016 Spring, Manuela Infante returns to Japan to conduct research for a new work. While Zoo dealt with the themes of colonization and “human exhibits,” Infante has shifted her theater work from anthropocentric attitudes to plants and objects. In response to recent theories that argue the possibility of intelligence and a soul residing even in the nonhuman, Infante has focused on communication between plants and subverting the positions of humans and objects.

For this project, Infante spent two months in Kyoto conducting research on intelligence that resides in the nonhuman, such as plants and objects. In Japan, people are familiar with the idea that intelligence can reside in nonhuman elements of nature, as epitomized by the way that the deities of the native animistic Shinto faith are described collectively as the “eight million gods.” Infante is exploring this concept of nonhuman intelligence in Japanese culture through exchange with artists and specialists in philosophy and botany. On the final day of Kyoto Experiment, she presents the results of her research as well as how it will connect with her next work.

[Debriefing Session]
10.28 (Sun)
Multi-purpose Hall, Kyoto Art Center
English (sequential interpretation)
Santiago, Chile

Manuela Infante

Born in 1980 Manuela Infante is a Chilean theater playwright, director, script writer and musician. Infante hold a BA in Arts from the University of Chile and a MA in Cultural Analysis from the University of Amsterdam. With her group Teatro de Chile (2002-2016) she wrote and directed numerous works with the support of the Chilean Funds for the Arts. Four of her plays have been published and translated into English and Italian and her work has toured internationally to the U.S., Argentina, Brazil, Perú, Mexico, Germany, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Singapore and Korea. She has produced work with Hebbel am Uffer, Festival de Modena, The Watermill Center, FIBA and FITAM. In 2015 she was the first woman to be appointed director of The National Festival for Dramaturgy (Muestra Nacional) in Chile. Following ZOO in 2016 SPRING, this will be the second time Infante participates in Kyoto Experiment.

PresenterManuela Infante
Research CollaboratorCamila Valladares (Sociologist, poet)
Production coordinatorMaiko Okumura (Kyoto Art Center), Kyoka Arisawa (Kyoto Experiment)
Supported bythe Agency for Cultural Affairs Government of Japan in the fiscal 2018
Presented byKYOTO EXPERIMENT, Kyoto Art Center, KYOTO STEAM—World cultural exchange festival—Executive Committee


  • Manuela Infante CHI-SEI. Opening Event

  • Manuela Infante CHI-SEI. Workshops

  • Talk: Dialogue on Technique (Sessions 1-3)

  • Manuela Infante / Teatro de Chile


  • Chiharu Shinoda, ZOO, 2016, Kyoto Art Center. Photo by Takuya Matsumi

    Chiharu Shinoda