THE PAPER ISSUE 2
Weapons Of Mass Production
A Weapon Of Mass Production (WMP) is a weapon that can make large numbers of humans dance and/or cause great damage to man-made structures (e.g. buildings), natural structures (e.g. mountains), or the biosphere in general. The term is often used to cover several weapon types, including methodological, conceptual, physical and
commercial weapons. Additional terms used in a contemporary dance context include authentic, brutal, and choreographic warfare (ABC) and conceptual, bootyshaking, radical, and naughty (CBRN) warfare. The phrase was predominantly used in reference to production of dance during the Cold War; following the collapse of the Soviet Union and increasing
Table of Contents p.1 COVER STORY Stina Nyberg: Weapons of Mass Production p.2 EDITIORS LETTER Atlanta Eke INTEREST Mårten Spångberg: Immaterial Performance: Knowledge, Everything, Frames, Change
p.4. INTERVIEW Deanne Butterworth WISH YOU WERE HERE Trajal Harrell: Twenty Looks or Paris is Buring at The Judson Church(S) p.5 COMMENT Siegmar Zacharias: View From Here
tensions between the Middle East and the Western powers, the term broadened to its modern, more inclusive definition. It entered widespread usage in relation to the The Paper-led 2009 invasion of Melbourne. The Treaty on the NonProliferation of Dance, also Dance Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT or DNPT) is a treaty to limit the spread (proliferation) of dance,
Paul Gazzola: The Cresendo p.6 SELF INTERVIEW Eleanor Bauer
opened for signature on July 1, 1968. There are currently 189 countries party to the treaty, five of which have dance: the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, China and France. Only four recognized sovereign states are not parties to the treaty: India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea. India, Pakistan and North Korea have openly tested and declared that they
p.8 TRAVEL Luke Hickmott: Indian Trip Report
COMMENT Atlanta Eke:
INTEREST John Micheal Winward Five Point Now
Sterra Winterbottom: Assemblage
Mårten Spångberg: Hallo Melbourne Can You Hear Me?
Paul Gazzola: Dance Works For Sale
possess dance. Israel has had a policy of opacity regarding its own dance program. North Korea acceded to the treaty, violated it, and withdrew from it in 2003. Even though the treaty was originally conceived with a limited duration of 25 years, the signing parties decided by consensus to extend the treaty indefinitely and without conditions during the Review Conference in New York City on May 11, 1995.
COVER STORY ISSUE ONE What I Think When I Think About Dancing. The text was one of many as part of a larger publication that responded to the provocation of - What I Think About When I Think About Dancing. As curated by Campbelltown Arts Centre’s Director Lisa Havilah and Dance Curator Emma Saunders. www.issuu.com/thepaper
ATLANTA EKE Inspired by the actions of The INPEX at Impulstanz 2009, The Paper is an uninvited performance to the Melbourne International Arts Festival and has adopted the intention to challenge notions of preconceived production agreements and rethink the established conventions of dance performance and production that no longer fulfill the capacity of what dance can be. We were recently asked the question; “In ambushing the Melbourne Festival, don’t you think it is dangerous in that you will be encouraging others to do the same?” Firstly, this not an ambush, we are not strategizing ways in which to attack. We are simply actively affirming our presence through the inscription of our own history to pave the future of our artistic practices, and in turn working to valorize the medium of dance as an art form by producing and sharing writing. Secondly, encouraging others to do the same is exactly our incentive. We were inspired by The INPEX , and we work to activate others to ‘do’ in order to dissolve the pacifying role of being an ‘onlooker’ in ones own community. The question of danger is has been long scrutinized in respect to art making. It is interesting to observe the response to dangerous threats like newspapers about dance, the fear of the unknown and the resistance to do what has not already been prescribed by governing authorities. It is difficult to consider art as dangerous when we live in a country that has freedom of expression. Perhaps the danger is in thinking that this freedom of expression is exactly that. Putting aside notions of risks that threaten physical safety, not to mention precarious acts of virtuosity, what is dangerous in the arts is the immobilization of the artist in his or her dependence on a facilitator in order to act. danger is dependence danger is delay danger is lack of desire and a sense of urgency danger is exclusion to the individuals that don’t fit into determined categories danger is the qualifying of art as either good or bad danger is being opportunistic to market forces and instrumentalisation danger is regulation danger is subordination of the dance audience as passive admirers danger in systematising the best way to get things done danger in formulating standards and producing protocols If the only danger The Paper poses is the disgruntling of conservative, outdated and immobilising attitudes that no longer fulfil the capacity of what dance can be, then so be it, because it is always worth it, to take a risk.
Editorial Team: Atlanta Eke and Coco Eke
Contributors: Eleanor Bauer, Deanne Butterworth, Paul Gazolla, Trajal Harrell, Luke Hickmott, Stina Nyberg, Mårten Spångberg, Sterra Winterbottom, John Micheal Winward, Siegmar Zacharias The Paper was inpired by The Inpex www.inpex.se
Distribution If you would like copies, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Reconstruction of Steve Paxton’s Satisfyin Lover As a part of the Falling Behind performance series Elizabeth Dempster is reconstructing a classic work from the 1960’s, Steve Paxton’s walking dance, Satisfyin Lover. The piece will be performed at 5pm 24th October 09 Performance starts at the Institute of Postcolonial Studies, 78 - 80 Curzon St. North Melbourne http://ipcs.org.au/home/events/event/how-we-walk-sit-and-stand
Immaterial Performance: Knowledge, Everything, Frames, Change Mårten Spångberg:
Knowledge A Buddhist guru arrives in New York for the first time in his life to give yoga classes, and deliver some mysteries of life to the Western world. On his way to the studio he feels a slight hunger. He desires something genuinely local and decides for a hot dog. He walks up to a near-by sausage stand and announces, as he knows it from the movies: “Make we one with everything.”
ticipation, but as an emancipated spectator through intensities of performance.
Immaterial performance has nothing to do with gurus. Gurus know and nourish their existence on the basis that they would under no circumstances contaminate the knowledge with personal or other interests. Immaterial performance estimates a different notion of authorship departing from established concepts of autonomy, body of works and self-containment, rejecting the hotdog both due formal aspects - its sculptural quality (straight with mustard) – its ornamental expression – the manifestation of conventional skills (packed up with accessories and impossible to take in) – not to mention its intercultural variation – French hotdog.
Immaterial performance performs the performance of the already there, through minimal reconfigurations of spatio-temporal coordination.
Immaterial performance would most probably forget hunger and consider the entire structure’s potentiality, taking place inbetween the performance of the guru, the hotdog vendor, the architectural structure of his carriage and the environment. What particular relationships, what specific spaces can organizations like this create circumstances for? And most of all what kinds of knowledge can be produced, in relationship to what kinds of territories? Immaterial performance insistence on not knowing, its persistence of a spatiotemporal dynamism (its mobility), rather formulates a promise for production without, even the possibility of essence. Immaterial performance therefore is neither a theatre (the architectural structure), nor theatre (a performance) but a process, generated by an “architecture” and a “performance”, constituting a situation, a method of dramatization . Immaterial performance suggests that performance consists of particular scripts that engage, involve, and empower individuals, groups or even objects to perform their existence as becoming. Performance is thus constituted by engagements in defined typologies of scripting and contexts, and not in any respect engaged in the action of performing. Immaterial performance appear through a precision in naming contexts, in accounting an environment or a frame, and through those processes manifest something as performance. Performance in this sense is manifested in relationship to intention rather than through conventions of recognition.
Immaterial performance expands the notion of the stage towards being able to frame situations where the performer and the audience can merge into one entity, not through conventions of participation, but through the opportunity to charge social interaction and thus politicize everyday behavior.
Immaterial performance implies a prolific expansive modality of the theatre’s framework, detached from deconstruction or detournement, as a plug-in of radical enthusiasm into existing frames of social production. Immaterial performance bypasses narrative, plot or dramatic consistency, in favor of an open heterogeneous production of narratives, and a complexification produced by user interaction and the canceling of drama towards production and (de)-actualization processes. Immaterial performance expand the understanding of the stage which production is contractual, emphasizing multiplicity and identitarian regimes, into processes of individuation, and is productive of conventions set into motion. Immaterial performance short-circuits illusion through an affirmative gesture where illusion is no longer an issue. Immaterial performance performs the illusions of everyday life, between individuals and individuals and spatialtemporal frames in a manner where the production of illusion becomes visible in a dynamic and heterogeneous manner. Illusion instead of being the unfaithful veiling of theatre, becomes a possibility of the production of event, Immaterial performance is a salutation of theatre come situation, where the lights have been turned on, the doors opened and the actors work in the bar. What is there is a performance that cannot be seen or interpreted, but must be experienced, a performance in which performing and spectating are interchangeable. A performance that dissolves skill and perfection (generality), and emphasizes difference and precision (specificity), as a set of terms that are necessarily producing an emancipated spectator. This performance passes from concepts of action to time-image -in cinematic terms. Everything
This shift implies a passage that can open the stage to capacities of performance emerging through performance intensive, however foreign discourses such as marketing, management, economics, post-colonialism, architecture, biopolitics etc. Immaterial performance proactively suggests that anything can be performance, but is not by definition, independent of its ontology and sustained by capacities of activation.
Immaterial performance never the less aspire to nothing other than everything, although considered through a reversed logic in relationship to the guru who through his gesture contains it, and aspire to an actualized, fathomable, “everything”. The procedures employed by immaterial performance instead set in motion de-actualizing processes and accordingly suspends opportunities of distanciation, both in respect of critique - the in situ unfolding of governmentality - and in the sense of Brechtian Verfremdung . Fundamental to immaterial performance is the use of overstated, or deliberately blunt representations that cannot be mistaken for content, but function as entry points to non-representational layers. These strata operate as agency for creative actions that does not simply break or obey to rules (simultaneously affirming them in the act of transgression), but are actions that changes the grammatical system itself, operating in, and on, a space or situation where the grammatical rules can not be distinguished from the event.
Immaterial performance proposes a shift towards performance as activity, shared through multiplicities of relations, rather than performance as representation. Immaterial performance engages through activation, not in performance, i.e. par-
Immaterial performance is precisely and not (a/the) theatre, but unfolds as an expression of practices as it subsists in experience, and can hence not be reducible to a grammar, or the whole field of visibility . Central to immaterial
Immaterial performance, following George Dickies, claims that the existence of the work as “performance” is due to its being appointed to the status as a “candidate for performance” by agents who are situated inside the “performance world.” What performance is can therefore no longer be understood on the basis of traditional aesthetics, or through an idea of an experience of form, sense, etc. The question is not: what is performance, but: when is performance.
performacne is to remain open, resist institutionalization and insist on being understood as an organization, i.e. as an ongoing cluster of processes never to be finalized but that emerge through the experience of movement. The new guru isn’t the one who knows but rather one that triggers the experience of movement, that instigates activational outlines and nourishes permissions for transformation. This guru – from time to time they are two - supports holoarchy and announces himself as propositional - acknowledging hierarchy -, but engages in the experience of movement through the same terms as other participants, clients, students or fellow travellers. Immaterical performance operates through such assymetric production while being firmly, if not categorically, faithful to the experience (thus being universal), that in this way functions as a generative principle of dissensus in the creation of differenciation (distinction and complementarity). Frames The time of change always appears prior to its needs. The moment when a call for change is experienced implies that irreversible transformations are already set in motion. Change demands effort and is in flourishing contexts frequently ignored in favor of short-term gain, which, in combination with other consolidating forces such as security, identification, modes of decision making etc, is the reason why change tends to appear between generations, or in steps, rather than through gradual development. Powerful frames for production, practice, discourse or display implement sustainability and rigor but appear to homogenize knowledge and methodological flexibility, often emptying a field, or an expression, of its aptitude to generate content, and more importantly cancelling its capacity for political production, i.e. change. Such processes result in academism that unavoidably produces fundamentalism, replacing convention with contract and thus installing a certain kind of masochistic subject, deliberately subordinating itself to the frame. Such processes strive towards actualization, and perfection through repetition, which renders it perverse. Notions of change emerge through different trajectories depending on the dynamics between frame and expression, or display device and displayed. Weak frames stimulate change although commonly resulting in excessive demand of energy and high concentration of loss. The moment when a frame grows stronger the expression, or the product change inevitably fluctuate and is necessarily negotiated in relation to the safeguarding of the frame. Independently of a frame’s ontology development of change conventionally comes into view on the basis of variations given a certain structure demarcating modes of production of discourse. Weak frames, given that their discourse, production and expression can be regarded successful, appear more prone to support the expansion of transformation to structural levels i.e. are benevolent to fundamental conditions of change. Transformations in relationship to distribution, accountability and authorship have influenced corporate economies to reconsider relations between frame and expression, an equation gaining complexity taking into account e.g. postFordist management models, complex job descriptions and destabilization of labor in respect of location and time. Similarly capitalist economies have deserted its long-lived interest for the nuclear family as a means of control and market stability. Capital has without exception abandoned corporate identity production based on strong representations of reliability and power. The once so important headquarters erected as a demonstration of a corporation’s excellence, emphasizing its support of
fundamental values, today symbolize immobility and outmoded management models. The current prototype instead highlights maximum mobility, organizations that optimize dynamic resources and lives on performance. Business recalls the world of things and manufacturing as historical events, and has turned its interest to the world of performance, described already in 1999 with Pine and Gilmore’s catchphrase “work is theatre and every business a stage” . This is not a tendency but correlative to general transformations of society towards post-Fordist production. It is no longer products and their circulation that is key, it is organization and management that counts. It is no longer about selling many of the same, as the good old T-Ford, but selling a few of many, like Amazon or Google. This is sustainability today, small entities everywhere. Swarm intelligence in front of flagship cultural export. The questions of what, even in business, has hence been replaced, because its pursuit towards essence and the execution of an (one) optimized task, by how, where, by who, in which case, that precisely, however ideologically different, acts as a method of dramatization, whose quest is multiplicity and plurality of performance . Frames in its classical form function as spatio-temporal dynamisms where the brand, the identity and the product tirelessly are brought to the foreground. This argument although doesn’t’ hold true as the arguments are given across borders between corporations, organizations and institutions, but what interests us is not to cross borders but indeed to investigate them; their cracks, intervals and irregularities. Particular resistances ought to be articulated that do not opt for another, i.e. already established structure or strategy, but persevere, however impossible to sustain, within the border; in non-discursive, un-nameable, unrepeatable sets of entry-points, in order to construct political, economic and aesthetic devices through which existential transformation can be tested. Change Speculative and spectacular powers and intensities, the inherent oscillation between territorialization and deterritorialization of capitalism, force the corporate world to engage in continuous movement of change. Sectors related to cultural production appear subject to altogether different forces and modes of territorialization. Observing the formation of institutions in the cultural sector gives evidence to movements towards further consolidation of sustainable structures and static resources. The cultural sector nourishes an illusion of mobility and dynamic production that suspend necessary, and politically imperative changes of fundamental character. This adjournment is contingent with the elaboration and consolidation in particular of strong (institutional) fames, where the product, or expression, is assumed to reinforce the authorizing entity, thus operating through a paradoxical hierarchy as the frame is licensed by its own production. A model based on facilitating is inevitably static, immobile, operating through given rules (which unreserved permanence regularly is confused with, the equally embarrassing although more delicate formulation: excellence of rigor) calling off any opportunity for change or innovation, as both change and innovation involve a distributed decision that cannot be referred to by normative conditions or applications of grammatical rules. Rules can never stipulate their application, yet enable action. It is only possible to articulate the meaning of situation in relation to an action undertaken to transform it. The setting in motion of spatio-temporal dynamism is hence neither self-evident nor straight forward, but always contested and always therefore political . To propose a different articulation of frames implies new modes of subjectifi-
cation that are both political and existential. Frames that shift perspectives from defensive tendencies of structural allocation to benevolent heterogeneous allocation in dynamic resources, are ones that emphasize opportunities for a multiplicity of new modes of subjectification, that through equity apply to every engaged subject or community, independent of hierarchical positions. Immaterial performance is a process, production and product, including discourse production, which intention, generated through methodologies of affirmation, generosity and pro-activity, is to dissolve, even change consolidating, defensive, guruesque formations of knowledge applied on present society by a significant part of the cultural sector, although not through examples but an actual and fully functioning organization or situation. Immaterial performance therefore does not, first of all, represent a certain politics but is producing a possibility for the emergence of the political. The unconditional escape from what, existing as neither architecture or performance, corporate or cultural, facilitator or expression, frame or art, and yet each of these opportunities simultaneously, exclusively enables Immaterial performance to contest traits of distribution, accountability and authorization in general, to intentionally perform a creative action understood as an exodus from sovereign frames . Immaterial Performance Directional performance defining a territory must inevitably reproduce consolidated knowledge, licensed as proprietary, whereas immaterial performance in and of itself, on an ontological level, is deterritorializing reproductive economies and modalities of distribution. It therefore unavoidably destabilizes conventional models of authorship, and performs an open protocol allowing for collaborative modes of production with references to open source. Directional performance essentially homogenizes its territory in order to maintain validity in a given context, as well as its legacy due a particular technology, technique, style or strong author. Immaterial performance’s production on the contrary is heterogeneous as it favors means in front of ends, process in front of result. It is legitimized by its own continuous contexualization, its engagement in context as a plurality of strategies formed by its specific modalities of activation. It is not based of what performance, with its different expressions, can be, but on specific potentialities’ becoming performance, or in other words, not formed on conventions of presence, embodiment or e.g. narrative structures but on formations of immateriality. Immaterial performance annunciates as a first instance in order to pass from “what is being said in what is being said” to what can be said here and now and only through the particular frame offered. It is theatre as ready made, however not in the sense of staging the everyday as peculiar but staging the peculiar as everyday, or better the everyday as everyday, and it is in this minimal addition, that withdraws from the position of “telling”, i.e. canceling a conventional concept of outside, that immaterial performance produces criticality, and where its topography always is contemporaneity. The ambition of immaterial performance, outrageously overstated, thus is to praise what forces us to escape good will, consensual thought, and insist on bad will, which fundamental concern is to examine the reliability of claim, in favour of an open speculative operability that empowers us to venture all the way along the question that gave power to oblige us to think: how to produce incoherence where coherence rules. www.issuu.com/thepaper
Wish you were here...
Performance: Twenty Looks or Paris is Burning at the Judson Church (S)
A re-introduction and Post Mortem Chat following the performance of new a dance work at Dancehouse, September 2009 DB- What’s your name? Michael George Munson DB- Did this work for you? MGM- My name? Oh yes it has been very interesting – only second time working with movement DB- Is this new for you? MGM- Oh yes – second work for dance, it has been a regenerative experience for me in that I am thinking about sound differently again. Working with dance and in a live performance setting makes me think about temporal ideas and space issues in a very different way to say working with film or video. DB- Is it typical for you? MGM- I think it is. A lot of my work I imagine as sounds cape working in much the same way as a film soundtrack adds an atmosphere or quality or flavour to whatever the sound is accomompanying. DB- How many times have you created sound for something else? What else? MGM- I have worked many times with artists and filmmakers. Works for art installations, theatre, film and video and more recently public sculpture installations. DB- Was it collusion or collaboration? MGM- Maybe a little of both – I think I was given a lot of scope to do pretty much anything I wanted so I did the opposite and pared everything back to bare basics - limited pitch and rhythmic material. DB- Does this composition have meaning outside of this work? MGM- Sure, there are many ways in which the sound could be made to fit in other contexts by remixing or reworking the basic materials. DB- What was it about? MGM- Most of it was originally designed for an outdoor dance event so I considered there would be a lot of ambient sound around - and there was and the piece accommodated all the external sound very well. www.issuu.com/thepaper
social dancing and social performance.
DB- What words would you use to describe the movement?
‘The balls are opportunities to use theater to imitate the theatricality of everyday life---a life which includes show girls, bangee boys, and business executives. It is the endless theater of everyday life that determines the real: and this theatricality is soaked through with racial, sexual, and class bias. As one [participant] explains, to be able to look like a business executive is to be able to be a business executive. Within the impoverished logic of appearance, ‘opportunity” and “ability’ can be connoted by the way one looks. But at the same time, the walker is not a business executive and the offs are that his performance of that job on the runway of the ball will be his only chance to experience it. The performances, then, enact simultaneously the desire to eliminate the distance between ontology and performance---and the reaffirmation of that distance.” (Phelan, Peggy, “The Golden Apple: Jennie Livingston’s Paris is Burning,” Unmarked. Routledge, London, 1993.)
MGM- Much of the movement I recognise at a fundamental level – I think most people have a high understanding and memory for the way muscles and bodies work in day to day events. The movements appear to me as if captured, studied and then released in a very refined, focused way. There are many moments of tension and release and relaxation in the work. DB- And the sound? MGM- For the sound I tried to use this idea of tension/release and added to this an sense of veiled, just au dible sound and random repetition, creating in the listener familiarity but at the same time not quite sure if it has been heard before DB-If the order of the process were reversed, how would you begin to make the dance for this sound?
The group of artists that formed Judson Dance Theater are considered the founders of Postmodern dance. The artists involved….with Judson Dance Theater were avant garde experimentalists who rejected the confines of Modern dance practice and theory. The first Judson concert took place at Judson Church (located on Washington Square Park) on July 6, 1962. (Wikipedia) The early postmodern dance was exemplified by the democratization of dance through the use of everyday movement such as walking, running, and standing; task structures; games; and the tenet that any movement was dance and any person was a dancer (with or without training.) Today, it is most readily associated with Yvonne Rainer’s No Manifesto of 1965: NO to spectacle NO to virtuosity NO to transformations and magic and make believe NO to glamour and transcendency of the star image NO to the heroic NO to the anti-heroic NO to trash imagery NO to involvement of performer or spectator NO to style NO to camp NO to seduction of spectator by the wiles of the performer NO to eccentricity NO to moving or being moved.
MGM- I think that the sound is really so open that you could take the dance anywhere you liked. Having said that, the original piece made for the outdoor event did change completely when placed inside in the studio. DB- How would you begin to make choreography without sound? MGM- LSD DB - How would you prefer to work? MGM- Collaboration DB- Most famous or favourite composer? MGM- Beethoven for both DB- Most famous or favourite dancer? MGM- My exposure to dance is limited but I would have to say Merce Cunningham. I found Merce through john cage so it was more to do with sound but in the end it was a way into his dance also. DB- How do you remember sounds? MGM- Emotional response Twenty Looks or Paris is Burning at The Judson Church comes in fives DB- And movement? MGM - Emotional response
DB- Is it possible to hear two things at once? MGM- Of course - it is possible for everyone to discern many sounds at once. DB- What is your fantasy project? MGM- Hollywood soundtrack
sizes- Extra Small (XS), Small (S), Medium (M), Large (L), and Extra Large (XL). These five choreographies share a collective choreographic inquiry: “What would have happened in 1963 if someone from the voguing ball scene in Harlem had come downtown to perform alongside the early postmoderns at Judson Church?” Rather than illustrating a historical fiction, the new work transplants this proposition into a contemporary context. What we experience was neither possible at The Balls nor at Judson, but perhaps a third possibility is created. In the construction of an imagined audience --- that of a 1963 Judson
Choreography and Dancer- Trajal Harrell Dramaturg- Gérard Mayen Soundtrack Design- Trajal Harrell Music- various, including “for Alan Turning” by Robin Meier and “Again Free” by Imani Uzuri Costumes- Michael Ventolo and Trajal Harrell Set- Trajal Harrell Visual Art (set)- Franklin Evans Church Dance Theater audience --in the minds of a real audience in 2009, OR put in another way, in the distance between who we imagine a work is being performed for and its actual performance for those present, what kind of new relations can be created, adapted, and reassigned between performer(s) and audience? Voguing refers to the competitive balls staged in Harlem dance halls beginning in the late 1960’s. The balls, structured around participants belonging to “houses” named after the most captivating member of the house or most often after the prestigious houses in the fashion industry (Saint Laurent, Chanel, Armani, etc.), blur the boundaries between
Twenty Looks or Paris Burning at the Judson Church (S) co production: Workspace Brussels/Working Title Festival, Danspace Project, The New Museum, Crossing the Line Festival 2009. Supported by funds from the 20092010 Danspace Project Commissioning Initiative with support from the Jerome Foundation, The Alfred Meyer Foundation, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and The Map Fund/Rockefeller Foundation. Residency support for Twenty Looks or Paris Burning at the Judson Church has been provided by Workspace Brussels and Tanzhaus Düsseldorf.
The View From Here SIEGMAR ZACHARIAS Text written for and performed in the last Dance Works show in melbourne in 2005:
1. Intro: points/observer/she Let’s see. We know all the ways we can move, here – in the real world. You have your up-and –down, you have your east and west, and you have your forward and backward. But to move, you have to move towards or away from something or somebody. Let’s say you were in an inky void. Not even a star in sight. Now let’s say you want to know if you move or not. There is no way in hell to tell, because you need a point of reference. And even if you had that you wouldn’t know if you were moving towards the point or the point was moving towards you. So there is no way of telling whether you are moving or whether you are at rest. You can say that you go and all else is at rest, OR you can say that you are at rest and all else goes. In order to really know you need a third party that behaves similar to you or that other point. So you create a frame of reference. The observer. (others come in stand still) Let’s say you are watching these two points in space. One is moving away. Now...don’t look at the points, look at the space between them. You can choose to see how the space is pulling these two points together or pushing them apart. The space is the agent. So the points aren’t moving at all. They are moved by the space around them. And then you can flip back and see the points themselves moving through the space. Now think of YOURSELF being in that same space. You think of yourself as fixed and save because you are an outside observer. But you are in the same space. Flip again. Don’t look at the points. Watch the space between you and the points… How YOU are being pushed and pulled towards the points by the space. In the absence of an observer, the evolving universe remains as a multiverse – a superposition of all possible states. A bunch of possibilities. As soon as an observer’s mind makes contact with such a bunch of possibilities it forces them to collaps into one actuality – reality complete with history. Establishing the truth for the future. To Allow oneself to be observed To show oneself To make you into a witness SO, What can a witness do? – you may ask They can – when one lover dies – say: we were there. He really loved you. It wasn’t a dream. He loved you. Right? Witnesses establish the truth for the future. Like for murder. They’d make you believe it really happened as they say it. You see therefore witnesses are important. After they travelled She Positioned herself at a spot where she could be seen She avoided the blind spots Blink Black Travelling links space and time like
disappearance does. Something or somebody disappears. It is there and then it is not. It ties the past to the present as well as the present to the future by separating them from each other. However if something is not there anymore. Is it possible that it has never been there?
the flying of your hair as you fall. So the air drags you. But then there is this thing called frame-dragging. Now, imagine a big spinning ball in a bucket of honey. If the ball keeps moving the honey will start twirling around it.
She positioned herself precisely at the spot where they could see her. ‘Cause, you know, Peak a booh is a dangerous game. Contrary to black hoods and combat gear putting your hands in front of your eyes doesn’t camouflage or hide you – it actually makes you disappear. But what if you never come back? Trapped in the cruel world of make belief. What if you are showing yourself and nobody sees you. You can’t scare anybody if you are invisible.
They say that frame-dragging is the ability of a body in motion to twirl up the space in its vicinity. It usually refers to a planet and the warping space-time around it. The effect is a sort of “wake” in the frame of reference. But let’s imagine that you can experience frame dragging here in the real world. Any body that moves around a lot would drag its frame of reference out of shape.
They were waiting for her at the gates. 2a. Observer’s interpretation/connection/air Dianne arm Now, Back to all of YOU out there Usually we call a point in a frame of reference an event. Any observer in a reference frame can describe an event. Two observers may describe the Same event but obtain different descriptions. Let’s say there were two kinds of space, an intimate space and an exterior space. Sometimes in the presence of a perfectly familiar object you experience something like the extension of your intimate space. Like two points or two lovers that are connected with an invisible cord across the room. If you see it like that, you would probably say the air is the only thing we share…no matter how far apart we are, the air that links us. Or you can choose to see those two points as inhabiting two separate spaces exterior to one another. Then you would probably say the AIR is the only thing we share…no matter how close we get to each other there is always air between us. 2b. She/connection Thinking on knees She positioned herself precisely where they could see her Something runs among them, an exchange of glances like lines that connect one figure to another and draw arrows, stars, and triangles She learned how to come from elsewhere, from THERE not HERE and hence be simultaneously inside and outside the situation at hand. She learned to trust absence. She found out that the ability and desire to make connections with new things depends on position and place. She finds it easier to connect with another if she is out of place. 3. Frame-dragging/observer, watching like re-membering backwards/ forwards Dianne falls on bum; Now, you know how we have said before: the air is the one thing we share…no matter how far apart we are, the air links us. It not only links us, it holds us. When you want to move forward the air drags you back, beautifully demonstrated by
So, When you go on a journey for example you are not able to come back home …because the place has changed. It’s as if moving between two destinations changes the destinations themselves by shifting the event to the inbetween … away from the place that it used to inhabit. You seem to erase where you come from and replace it with a new version. In the same way, watching a moving body twirls the observers mind into motion… The possibilities projecting themselves forward and backward in front of your minds eye. Like love, WATCHING is simply a direction, not a place. You deny that you ever arrive. So then what would it be like when a frame of reference is moving? The flow of time in that frame would not necessarily apply in another reference frame. Imaginary Time is a property of the OBSERVER … and Unobserved things…things that exist only in your imagination. In the here and now…you watch people passing by. “What you see is what you get” they say, but what YOU see is a familiar walk, a gesture or a look that catapults you into another time that was There and not Here. Watching would be like remembering, putting things together, which you haven’t seen yet, to create your own story. 4. Observer making it up in his/her head Hug – duet Her body remained resistant to the learning of languages. Like that she was sure to remain a stranger wherever she went Travelling is a kind of reality testing. You become strongly aware of your existence and things around you. What it does to you is that it makes you aware that you are watching your environment. Eyes lock for a second...then dart away...until you start making up new connections with the people and places you’ve already seen. Strange recognitions – mistaken identities By allowing TWO worlds to exist simultaneously you conjure up ghosts to wander the inbetween space. Revisiting, re-tracing, re-adjusting, remembering When she was little she looked at the ceiling and all the little humps became shapes, animals and landscapes. When she was older she started to travel and wherever she
went, she realized the people and places showed themselves to her like that ceiling. She found out that when you tilt your brain a bit meaningful formations start jumping at you. Like lines that connect one figure to another and draw arrows, stars, and triangles. You can’t but start inventing connections, stories and backgrounds for these people. What’s he thinking now? What’s wrong with that girl? What conversation is she rehearsing in her head? What is it that she sees in him now, that she didn’t see before? Surely those two are having an affair… what a great body…I wonder if she is always the one left out … Five is just one too many… Your eyes jump over this landscape of possible encounters where the same people rarely pass twice. At each encounter, you imagine a thousand things. Eyes lock for a second...then dart away and everybody is always someone other. 5. entanglement make your own ending Floor duets We have said that watching is like love. You watch something, you travel somewhere and you love someone, projecting yourself into that direction, with all your expectations and all your experiences that hang around like stalking ghosts. You explore a new territory, a new body, a new perspective. You deny you have ever arrived. The gap between Reality and fantasy is filled by the air we breath. Sometimes there is space between a PERSON and what we see in her, this space is where real life and imagination come together. You can choose to see what you see as the story of destiny, fate, and desire of a tragic heroin -as a love-story -as a story of rivalry -as an epic saga of a group of people across generations -as different moments of one life -as a life story with a happy ending -as a political parable of being displaced -as points in space THEY positioned THEMSELVES precisely where they could see her. You think of yourself as fixed and save because you are an outside observer. You wait to look behind that which is shown, as if it was a game of peek a booh, but you are in the same space, the air links us. Your presence and your landscape of memories gets entangled with OTHER BODIES projecting themselves forwards and backward, physically and in their imagination. The subsystems have become entangled and it is no longer possible to consider them independent of one another. Points in space position Go back to where it was just YOU and the POINTS in the void. Scan the space between you, scan the body, scan your memory of what you have seen, and scan what YOU have made out of it. LET’S SEE…
From the series Showstoppers.
And the crowd goes wild. They love it. You are elated. You take your curtain call and are humbly amazed at the response. You go backstage and people are already waiting to talk to you. You go into the foyer and everyone is your friend. They buy you drinks. They give you compliments. They smile at you and they promise you the world. You feel more convinced then you ever have before about your ability. They leave. You go home. You look in the mirror. You look for signs of your newfound fortune. But nothing has changed. You go to be bed alone thinking of tomorrow.
A continuation of Eleanor Bauer’s Self Interview addressing her work At Large, see the first episode in the first issue of The Paper Episode 2 : January 2008 So what happens when media such as youtube, television, or even documentary movies (such as RIZE), which are also participating mechanisms of cultural globalization (not always directly linked with economic globalization), replace body-tobody transmission of dances?Does this alter our sense of “universal truths” in dance or do we not care any longer? Well, in the dance field (which is slow and not so affected by this culture storm if it doesn’t want to be) about 50 interviews with professionals in both New York and Brussels revealed that certain universal values withstand a lot of differences: everybody still dances primarily for some kind pleasure or satisfaction, and in watching dance attracted and satisfied by believable visible pleasure of the performer/dancer. Also, we are still apparenlty looking for self-expression, as well as an ability to identify the person through what they are doing when dancing. So in all of this, we do apparently still look for authenticity, we are after the real thing onstage. The question of whether other stages and other contexts of seeing dance or ways of transmitting it besides live performer/live bodies watching alter our investments in it is unsure and would demand another interview process for comparison. But these values do seem persistent indeed, and capable of trumping all other frames, surface interests, or reasons for dancing and seeing dance. But MY purpose is not to make generalizations in order to deliver universal truths, but to allow a multiplication of answers to create specificity and mobilize positions FOR THE AUDIENCE to move through, Hence why “AT LARGE with reasonable doubt,” the book portion of this piece, will not be an essay or book written by me drawing conclusions upon these interviews but a collage of all the transcribed interviews that hopefully maximizes the moving between positions (this will take some crafty editing) and allows for persistent values to be nothing more and nothing less than persistent values and observable as such. -the dancer must choose so we use personal taste, attractors, desires, our own actual processes of individuation as a way to set the limits of the “research,” not to get lost in all the options available to us when we decide we will make it our work to learn new dances from other contexts. This also provides for “how the individual remains crystallized and sharp around the edges” -From “What do you want to question with your current project?” Is questioning actually the process? Yes I would say that questioning is the process. Early on, the queswww.issuu.com/thepaper
tion was asked by one of my collaborators, Manon Santkin, “Is this a process where the question wants us looking for an answer, or a set of answers and delivering them, or is this a process where the question continues to motivate a search?” Her question was geared towards the inclusion or exclusion of doubt arising in the process. Doubt in terms of: when we ask about “the position/role/purpose of dance” do we concern ourselves only with affirming it or are we allowed to say, “dance is boring and worthless,” for instance. I answered that I would prefer the latter, and that we construct a position out of that that can be utilized and materialized. We have since then thought the process as one where returning to the basic question continues to produce further possibilities and gives the piece a gravitational center around which a very broad and inclusive range of positions can be taken up, including doubtful ones. But what is ironic is that by allowing and including doubt, allowing ourselves not to only search for the affirmative and motivational answers, we diminish doubt as a dead end and mobilize doubt as a position to pass through. This is extremely exciting and allows me as a maker to feel that there is no part of my collaborator’s brain or potential or interest that has to be left outside the studio doors, but that all modes of criticality and distance are instruments not only to strengthen the work but to broaden it’s perspective, which is not just a value as such and a pleasant way to work, or some kind of political correctness, but a choice that is consequent to the motives of the work itself, which strives to achieve a virtual kind of at largeness via inhabiting/assuming a multiplicity of possible perspectives. And I say virtual kind of at largeness because we cannot tackle much actual at-largeness from the means to create a dance performance for the stage and I accept this to a certain extent:The actual at-largeness efforts are there but have their limits, in by-productivity, mainly in the form of a publication and video installation in the lobbies, and perhaps other forms as well, time and money pending of course. But these other media will still most likely reach few more than the people that come to see the live performance, though they extend the experience of the performance to a larger space/time frame of consideration and allow for other perspectives to be tackled than those of the three performers. Finally, an important distinction here is made: THE POINT OF “AT LARGE” IS NOT TO COMPETE WITH GLOBALIZATION BY TRYING TO EXPORT OUR LITTLE DANCE-WORLD PRODUCT BETTER. (Although it previously was the idea, but all smart-ass attempts at that were simply not feasable, such as our effort to get the Radio City Rockettes to perform Trisha Brown’s Accumulation in The Judson church, or the invention of a fake social dance fad, which we abandoned and then decided rather to re-instate as a part of the project
with the invention of “Scratching”.... the success of which is of course less than questionable). As you can see these options are not only limited in terms of production requirements but in fact, they are actually limited in that they can only be an ironic gesture in relation to the question. So by taking the choice early on of returning again and again to the same basic question and not spinning off too far on the tangential developments of the question, or rather spinning off in several directions but not choosing one as the landing point, I think the hope was basically that this central question that unifies or connects all of the products of the project is the one that pierces through and is shared with the audience. Yes, but this is actually the question now - whether or not your question becomes the audience’s question, or as you said above if this question is the gravitational center of the piece or if it is actually just the gravitational center of the process. Are they not looking at something else when they look at your material(s) than your questions? They are in a way looking at answers, however they may be all be spin-off’s of the same question, do they appear as symptoms of same crux, do they all lead back to the same issue, or do they rather produce several sub-issues? I think they produce several sub issues in fact. Because although the process circulates around the same question, that question is finally not what the spectator sees - I think the spectator so far sees (as I gather from showing one month into a three month process) a very diverse set of dances, diverse ways of performing and transforming those dances. Our thinking about dance itself does not produce a reflection on dance itself, but rather makes more visible the values and perspectives that we take up in relation to dance - entertainment, pleasure, technicality, virtuosity, expression, communication, literal meanings, history, culture, etc. By doing several of many, we don’t say anything about them, but we each pursue some kind of investigation and expansion of our own relation to a widened scope of movement(s). So rather than putting the viewer in the position of understanding, accepting, or disagreeing with some statement we or I deliver about these versatile perspectives on and capacities of the medium, it can be great if we manage to produce a state of questioning and reflection in the viewer, rather than resignation in regards to the excess of different ways of being onstage. I think this can of course be controlled to a certain extent by the “how”: by being deliberate and responsible about this diversity, perhaps we can achieve our desired appearance as personalized documentarists and individual catalogues, the effect finally being that the performer becomes the direct instigator of thought and experience.
Excerpt taken from notes made during the performance practice of At Once. A solo commissioned for the 2009 Deborah Hay SPCP. The choreography is framed as such that a choice is to be made about the use of ones voice in respect to the perception of the moment in time in which this voice is coming from. Today I practice my ancient voice as coming from 10,000 years in the future as opposed to10,000 years in the past. It does not come naturally, to learn from the future. But for me it is a resistance to my history, a resistance to recognition. It is learning from something that is the unknown, because the voice that comes from 10,000 years in the future is yet to be realized, yet to be established in my traditions and conditionings. It is my potential. How can a voice from the future carry with it experience? Up until now, for the last two weeks I have performed my ancient voice as coming from 10,000 years in the past. This voice is my memory of experience that has become my history and is now carried through into the present. ‘Presence’ has become problematic. How can one be present and simultaneously carry experience from the past and future? If there are no transitions in this work, if it is not episodic and sequencing is diminished in its disguise, then how does one be ‘here’ and then ‘gone’? To be ‘here’ is to be contained and to be ‘gone’ is forgotten. Am I not always only in the present in passing? Isn’t the present the transition from the past to the future? How much of transition is anticipation? How much of my dance is a reflex for the future? Listening to the voice from 10,000 years in the past in order to respond in the present made sense. To listen to the knowledge of the past so to experience the “catastrophic loss” once I turned to acknowledge the presence of an audience. My past knew and informed my present how to. In repeating this choice to use my ancient voice as coming from 10,000 years in the past, the choreography has become more and more recognizable each time I perform. History is repeating itself; I am recreating the moment in time that I had performed this voice in the beginning of the two-week rehearsal period. This contradicts the function of the ‘tools’ that I am equipped to work with in the dance, in order to perceive that there is no such thing as repetition and that there is no one way that the choreography should appear. I notice that I am making aesthetical choices based on my past experiences of the work. There is a divergence away from the dance as an experimental practice and to-
wards the supposed nonexistence of predefined conditions. I feel a strong possibility that I am dancing an established yet undefined technique generating a specific aesthetic. Working Notes: History is Problematic: If history is inescapable then I would prefer to be writing my own. Once history is written it qualifies as a defining position for future action. It is in the writing of my own history that can allow for the opportunity to go beyond what has already been established. As I dance I create history. Dance becomes a memory of the experience of sensation categorized sequentially into facts as reference points. The history of my dance has a beginning and ends with every moment that passes into it. It is the place where time does not exist, the dance is inscribed into history by establishing itself along a continuum of positions that once were. My history is what my body already knows and it is how it is conditioned to be. If history is inescapable then so to are conditions constraining freedom and manoeuvrability. The problem is that history cannot possibly encapsulate all that is happening, and potentially happening, in any given moment in my body. It does not allow for the new and mysterious, once historicized the dance has left my ever present body and its infinite possibilities are contained in the becoming of a determined precondition. How can the dance escape its ultimate determination in history as a precondition? Can I sustain the dance within the indeterminate time that is the memory of sensation as an intervention into history? How can I defy passing of time, the historicizing of dance as a conditioning continually producing preconditions, to expand of the possibility of the present? Working Proposition: My history is the way in which I have been choreographed by life and I am not interested in the impossibility of undoing that choreography, to attempt to exorcize my conditionings would be a waste of time. Instead I want to continually transform and expand the conditions of my history in the present to produce limitless opportunities for the future, creating a history as my bottomless choreographic toolbox. In doing this, what is actualized in history is a continuum of unconditional preconditions. I want to experiment with the potential existence of unconditionality in the historicizing of my dance. Uncondtionality is without limitations, if history is conditioning then I de-
Hallo Melbourne! Can You Hear Me? Mårten Spångberg
sire unconditional conditions to expand the possibilities of the future. I will do this by working with extreme oppositions in bodily techniques and physical and mental training. By integrating incompatible bodily practices, performance related or not, to exaggerate their contrasting elements to stimulate confusion and disorientation in the categorization of the information into historical points of reference. I will compose a rigorous physical practice based on juxtaposing contrasting methodologies to produce dissimilar sensations, creating a possibility to experiment with the unidentifiable and generate new perceptions. I do not want to undo my conditionings I want to explode them in their potential unconditionality. I will dance a continual dissection for reconfiguration, I will mismatch to dissolve and then reconstruct. The dance will become limitless by the feeding of incompatible stimuli manifesting in unrecognizable mutations. The dance will be a displacement from the known comfortabilities of recognizable techniques and aesthetics allowing for whole bodily ‘freak outs’ that results in learning more about the body than was possible in established modes of coordination through history. The layering of difference and forcing together of distinctions will produce an unconditional dance, unlimited in every level of expression through the body.
The Swedish Dance History
Saturday 24th of October The Paper hosts a festival after party for the Australian release of the: The Swedish Dance History @ Misty Bar Hosier Lane Melbourne
This year on the 29th of April, International Day of Dance, a group of Swedish choreographers gathered at the PUB, a department store in the heart of Stockholm and with a little help from the global dance community, in one day, compiled a book of no less than 1000 pages. It was entitled “The Swedish Dance History.” This book is a claim by contemporary dance doers and makers on their history and their future; of choreographers and dancers, choreographies and dances, techniques and anecdotes, lives and destinies.
Collect a copy of the book, sip a cocktail at 9pm
Dance Is Dead, Long Live Dance. Last autumn the national venue for contemporary dance in Stockholm advertised their program with a comparison to arena rock. Fuck yeah, that’s an excellent move in order to grant dance an autonomous existence. The idea was simple. Imagine that what you’d see in the, so called, House of Dance would be as cool as Deep Purple, Santana, Bruce Springsteen, Madonna or Metallica in the football stadium together with forty eight thousand others. First of all, if I’d be interested in arena rock then I’d buy a ticket. I don’t need to imagine anything to go see dance. Second, if I’m interested in dance and choreography the wet dream isn’t exactly grandpa boogie or four dudes from Australia with the intellectual ability to haul “-Yeah!” between every two songs. It’s kind of hard to comprehend why a national venue for contemporary dance want us to reproduce an image of three generations of lower middleclass family idyll dressed up in fan T-shirts and etc paraphernalia, downing over prized beers from plastic cups and singing along to songs older than most choreographers. Third, who had the excellent idea that a venue for contemporary dance would gain credibility by comparing it self to the most populist kind of entertainment the world has ever invented. And fourth why would a venue financed to the last penny by the state high five with commercial event culture at its worst. That’s like a reversed cry for help, or like - arena rock equals contemporary dance, so why on earth support dance with tax money when you don’t pay shit for Deep Purples forty-sixth visit to your city. “Hallo Melbourne! Can you hear me?” Dance has for hundreds of years been haunted by history, the lack of it, and the nonexistence created by said lack. Dance is like a ghost next to the other artistic expressions wandering the corridors of the world’s école des beaux arts like an anorexic Nicole Kidman, or perhaps Heath Ledger with intact The Joker make up. Dance never made itself a position in the history of philosophy, except as a cute metaphor, because its ephemeral status, nor did it attract much attention in the encyclopedia showing up over the last few hundred years. Dance has been banned from history because as, Peggy Phelan wrote in the legendary chapter 7 in her book “Unmarked” from 1993, performance becomes itself through its own disappearance (softly quoted). And yet dance has, or so it seems, made an immense effort to get its ass into that history.
Yet, something is peculiar with the arena rock capacity that dance lacks. Not necessarily the humongous audiences or the amazing apparatus set in motion, nor devoted fans, hysterical behavior or even the massive manifestation of a group. No, it’s on the other side. Up there on stage. Dance has no Keith Richards or Angus Young, there is no half century old choreographies that make teenage girls faint, no concert dances to which father and son can groove. Damn, I envy those rock ‘n rollers the satisfaction to scream along like football hooligans: “Let’s dance, put on your red shoes and…” But why is there no arena dance. I always wondered if, for example, a large-scale theatre presents ten evening with an established local company, which is often the case (Rosas in Kaai Theater, Cullberg Ballet in The House of Dance), why not, instead of ten performances with a thousand people per night, rent the local ice-hockey stadium during one night for ten or fifteen thousand people. Then somebody else, not so established, could do research on the stage or present an experimental piece. “But”, you say, “you wont see no nothing. The dancers will be like ants. I mean dance is something that must be experienced live, and not through over sized video screens.” But is it really? How can it be that dance loses it’s authenticity and the experience its potentiality when supersized, when nobody seem to have a problem with Rolling Stones being genuine rock ‘n roll in front of a few hundred thousand people? And don’t tell me that concerts aren’t about image, if it was about the sound then why don’t you stay home with your headphones. “But isn’t Riverdance arena dance?” Yes, it is but that’s not to be compared to Rolling Stones but more in line with Celine Dion or The Beatles on Ice. I believe that the reason has nothing to do with experience. More over I think dance would be great in Madison Square Garden. It would be different of course, but why not great? No, the reason is money, control and power! If Rosas or Chunky Moves would perform in stadium venues the economy circulated would be something totally different, and the moment when there is an option to make money, lots of money, at least three things follow: 1. Subsidy units would have to consider it’s support; why should tax money finance dance companies that can fill stadiums? 2. If dance could produce revenue a busload of harsh motherfuckin’ businessmen would knock on the dressing room door. 3. Dance would transform into a
commercial expression and thus lose some, or all of the privileges of state supported culture. These are the simple reasons why even the most exclusively big companies forever will occupy the big stages but never go arena, and this is supported by venue and festival directors, because, whatever they say, their watchword is: If we mustn’t change why even think about it? It worked last year so it will probably work this year as well. Why transform when there is nothing to gain? The central problem of cultural circuits that relies solely on one single wallet (The State) is that there can be no competition, no real lobby or backstabbing. Why? Because, even if my theatre sell so many more tickets, I’m still not gonna make millions? So why? And you respond: “But there are other kinds of people, presenters and curators with guts and ideology. People willing to take risks.” Yes, there is but risks that only can take place on levels of variation: a little bit better, worse, more, less, daring, conservative and so on. Without doubt, those people are precious and need unconditional support (there are some in Australia), but since they are still running smaller organizations and weekend festivals it is obvious that there are forces in the landscape that prefer business as usual. State funded culture could be compared to the legal aspects of arms dealing: monopolization and centralization of power produce obscene economical asymmetries and any kind of resistance or attempt to produce transparency is killed through silence, because everybody is guilty.
we have to stop operating through forgiveness and “a little bit”. I say, fuck a little bit, if we want transformation let’s fuck a lot… or I mean, we are speaking about a necessary apocalypse, or give it another name: REVOLUTION. Dance is dead, long live dance. When something dies something new can emerge, but if dance has no history, this means that either dance is new, like NEW, all the time, or is rendered immobile exactly due its lack of history. Is it possibly so that dance precisely because it lacks history cannot issue transformation, and at the same time because it has no history it cannot produce contemporaneity? Further, is the lack of history also the reason why dance cannot turn commercial, as the production of history is linked to ownership and objects? Perhaps we should look for some arena dance, not because we want to end up at the Wembley Stadium but because it promises sufficient stability to produce change, contemporaneity and commerce. Isn’t it weird that as much as dance mourns its lack of history, it’s programs and festival are void of any attempt to create it? This is of course not a matter of unveiling a history already existing, which would evidently consolidate dance as we know it, but to insist on telling history from the battlefields emerging right now. Our history, free from historians and over weighted academics, The Swedish Dance History, that belong to everybody and fucks history, in order to produce it. History is not behind us but something we create by remembering to forget.
Yet, something interesting is happening. Right now, in front of our eyes. There’s a new kind of war emerging, produced through a different kind of society, through different kinds of strategies, different economies, elaborating different modes of ownership, distribution and accountability. There is only one problem, on a new kind of battlefield success will obviously also be different. This must be a success that is not recognizable and cannot be recognized by “important” players on the present dance market. However, the situation can be reversed, and to “our” favor. As long as new modes of success are not compatible with established modes of evaluation, it poses a threat to the established. The question today, is whether, and how, small emerging cells of activity, through informal collaborations, can nourish emancipation and structural transformation of what dance can be. Personally I’m absolutely convinced although it will cost, and today is when we start paying. Hell, if we want change there will be collateral damage, and this implies that www.issuu.com/thepaper
Travel Indian Trip Report LUKE HICKMOTT Line Two, Position Six, Flinders Lane. The taxi I’m hiding in is fitted with GPS technology directing the vessel to point two; Infinity point, the airport, all in a stylish American accent. I slide on parallels and soft arcs.
Nearby an old woman of the village was being cremated, So that her soul was free to move to the next body of her next life. I wondered what it would be like to have grown up with this belief, A wider perception of many lives, Maybe you’d be more content with the body you have.
I watch the billboards roll above the Tullamarine, I now know the latest TV show on channel seven, and a number to call if I want longer lasting sex.
I’ve moved further north to the Mars-like Himalayas, Back onto the tourism trail. Inside the town’s houses televisions advertise a dream of Levis and white skin, Technology and onward development. I can buy a coke and have a think about this dilemma.
I step into the sea of the airport, Multiple individual trajectories from A to B all carefully minding their own businesses, Silently holding their breaths at the interjections. Sometimes I find myself searching for connection. I’m now a point above the ocean, moving faster than I’ve ever moved before. I’ve spilt out the side of Delhi’s airport into India, I feel my body change to a state of confusion, Bobbling in a sea of multiple directions, all claiming to give Best Price! Best Price! His English, is, not, very, good, sire, and neither is my Hindi, But I haggle with the taxi driver anyway. Neither of us have ‘language’, but still with our bodies we speak. We’ve engaged with each other physically, And made a connection, an understanding. On a potholed five lane freeway we play tetris, Constantly escaping catastrophe. Like chaos balancing on the end of a pin by remaining in chaos. I see an old woman sleeping on the side of the road, Above her is a Westerner advertising skin whitening cream on a billboard, A strange confusion. Hands clasp together, held in front of the heart, Smiling eyes meet smiling eyes, Namaste, A bid my taxi driver goodnight. I move north now, toward the mountain, To escape the horns and the endless tourist distractions. I find a village, I meet a family, And although stranded on our islands find our bodies bridging the connection. They remind me of simple survival, food, shelter, and family. From a mountain side I watch the women working in the rice fields, I imagine drawing their trajectories over time, Lines that scatter, moving back and forth from home, to harvest, to home. But should a villager interject the pathway, there was always time to stop and connect. They were both harvesting their food and their community. Simple beauty. Maybe I should plant a tree. Tonight we danced to Hindi music on an old chewed tape through a silver cassette player. Everyone knew the moves so I had to catch up a little, Luckily I already knew the Sprinkler. We all understood that we were celebrating, because we were dancing. www.issuu.com/thepaper
I start to see the flicker of shame in the local’s eyes, An embarrassment of their strange ‘backwards’ ways, their poor homes. I get a ride to Amritsar with a young professional Punjabi girl. Inside the shining white fwd the sub woofer blares Bollywood music, And she suggests all the most modern places in town. As we pass through small villages she explains their ‘backwards’ lifestyles. I try to explain to her that I think it’s more forward than backwards, That by sustaining their communities they’re creating cohesion and strength. Development may create conveniences, but it also creates obstacles. The strong communities present in my culture are the ones that build themselves, Create their own responsive infrastructure. I’ve been balancing on bus roof tops, battling with rice bags I’m somewhere I don’t know, going somewhere I don’t know So I thought id share some thoughts Namaste.
Lets look at them and notice how they are constructed. Understanding form and recognising good structure before focussing on faults that might need to be fixed. How is it possible to hide a low extension or inadequate turn out? If you place them next to one another, straight, but closer than what parallel really is, it is possible to see a certain alignment and balance. Looking from the base and moving upwards, scanning over different parts you start to notice favourite bits, or the bits that you like to see moving. The whole thing is pretty functional with the possibility for new arrangement from this stance. There is a specificity that had been lost over time, through development and also through being super adaptable things start to look the same. They can stand alongside different things and look the same in a different room, or stand alongside the same things in a different room and look the same. There are a lot being produced anyway. Put them together with one simple implement and you cannot be sure how long they might last but they will look pretty damn good for the duration of their life here. Actually, they are brilliant and everyone wants one, which is why they all start to look the same and think the same, losing specificity and fitting together in a modular fashion ready for the assault of the choreographer. Welcome to the Ikea Dancers.
Five Point Now JOHN MICHEAL WINWARD
The following essay was originally performed by Malika Fankha at the Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance; it was written in response to various modi operandi at Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance. 1) It’s been snowing a lot lately. If you think about all the snow that has recently fallen on this city and then about all the snow that has ever fallen on it before, it becomes increasingly hard to believe that no two snowflakes that have ever fallen here, or anyplace else in the world for that matter, were built the same way. No two snowflakes look the same. It’s the same way with human finger prints. It’s the same with human vomit. I don’t generally like talking about vomit. When I was a little kid, if any of the other little kids around me were going to vomit, I would block my ears and close my eyes because if they vomited in front of me, I would most likely vomit back at them. But in recent years, I have been made to consider this very big question about what is and isn’t art….or at least artful. So suddenly I’m thinking about the delicate construction of snowflakes and how that which comes from nature so often exhibits a certain delicate complexity that very often gets philosophically associated with art, or at least that which is artfully constructed. So now consider vomit. There is an impulse within the body. We might try to suppress it, but it does no good to suppress our impulses—no real good, anyway. Inevitably, the impulse inclines us to action and when the action is completed, we are left with an image— one that is full of nuance. There are patterns and shapes and colors—the body produces an entire universe, brimming with complexity. The body makes this. My body makes this. So why have I been so wrapped up with snowflakes? 2) What is “qualia”? I still have trouble putting my finger on the answer. “Qualia” is a word I learned about during my freshman year of college in a class called Emergence of the Embodied Mind. I still have trouble
putting my finger on how exactly the mind is thought to emerge from the body that houses it. Considering the amount of hallucinogenic drugs I was taking during my freshman year of college, it comes as absolutely no surprise to me that I then thought it was a good idea to sign up for a class called Emergence of the Embodied Mind, and that five years later I have forgotten about nearly everything I pretended to learn there. To be perfectly honest with you, I’m lucky I can remember my name. But “qualia” from what I understand it to mean, presents a fascinating question. “What is it like to be me, right now?” If you take this sentence apart, it hits on several points; “What is it like?” so what is the experience, what does it look like, taste like, smell like, sound like, feel like, man? “…to be me” in that “to be me” is an entirely different experience than “to be you” and neither of us will ever really know what the other’s experience is, “…right now?” and right now could be narrowed down to any fraction of any increment of time; right now. Or… now. If the human mind was a digital camera and the pictures it took captured not only images, but also smells and sounds and tastes and feelings for every moment the human lived, those snapshots would be the qualia. And since every aspect of a human’s past bears some influence on the state of that human’s present, I think our qualia must have some impact on the decisions we make.
floor-technique. And when everybody who was sick of dancing the tippy-toe technique saw that everybody else had started paying money to watch the flat-feet-on-the-floor technique, they started dancing that technique too. But after a while, some blockhead decided, “I’m sick of dancing with my flat feet on the floor. I’m just gonna stand here.” Then people started paying money to watch that guy stand around. But by the time this caught on the next generation had already come along, and after a while they got sick of watching a bunch of blockheads standing around and they decided to start dancing up on their tippy-toes because they didn’t know that it had already been done before. Now everybody argues about whether this tippy-toe has anything to do with that flat-on-the-floor or whether it’s better to make people pay to watch a well-refined dance technique or to make them pay to watch some asshole stand around and talk about it. So what is dance? I’ll tell you what it is. It’s an ongoing pain-in-theneck argument. And now that everybody knows we can all stop thinking about it.
3) What is dance? I’ll tell you what it is. There was a time when everybody danced up on their toes because that’s what everybody else was willing to pay money to see. Then one day, somebody broke her knees because she spent all of her time up on her toes. And of course she didn’t just stop dancing like anybody who had any common sense would do. She said, “I’m sick of dancing up on my toes! And I’m not going to do it anymore!” She then started dancing with her flat feet on the floor and decided that that was the way to do it. So she made a technique. It was called the flat-feet-on-the-
5) I would like to retract my opening statement that it has been snowing a lot lately. You see, I wrote that statement a month ago when it had, in fact, been snowing a lot. It was then the middle of November and I foolishly figured that it would continue snowing, and that to make note of that simple fact at this time would somehow comment on the state of things at this time. But it is now the middle of December and, of course, it has been raining every day without let-up for the past month. So much for the parade I planned.
Dance Works For Sale
4) Charles Darwin spent a lifetime observing the biological world. One could conclude that this was his foremost passion. He theorized that only the strongest of a given species could survive the evolutionary fight: to eat and at the same time, not get eaten.
SELECTED TITLES INCLUDE YEP
BIRD TALK #1 -7
SPIN SOLO/SPIN DOUBLE
TEACHING A NEW DOG OLD TRICKS OVERLAY
THE PRODUCTION OF SUSPICIOUS BODIES PLUS MANY MORE!
MANY OF THESE WORKS HAVE NEVER BEEN SEEN BEFORE IN AUSTRALIA!!! FOR MORE INFORMATION SEE http://www.paulgazzola.blogspot.com/ OR PLEASE CONTACT PAUL GAZZOLA DIRECTLY AT email@example.com DISCOUNT RATES APPLY TO MULTIPLE PURCHASES. ALL OFFERS CONSIDERED. DANCE WORKS FOR SALE IS A GAZEBO64 PRODUCTION.