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GUIDED BY Ar. Mandar Dhuri

A Dissertation submitted in partial fulfilment Of the requirements for SEM-IX The Degree







The following Under-Grad Design Dissertation Study is hereby approved as satisfactory work on the approved subject carried out and presented in a manner sufficiently satisfactory to warrant its acceptance as a pre-requisite and partial fulfilment of requirement to the 5th Year Semester IX of Bachelor Of Architecture Degree for which it has been submitted. This is to certify that this student Sukruti Kishor Jain is a bona fide Final Year student of our institute and has completed this Design Dissertation under the guidance of the Guide as undersigned, adhering to the norms of the Mumbai University & our Institute Thesis Committee. It is understood that by this approval and certification the Institute and the Thesis Guide do not necessarily endorse or approve any statement made, opinion expressed or conclusions drawn therein; but approves the study only for the purpose for which it has been submitted and satisfied the requirements laid down by our Thesis Committee.

Name of the Student:

Sukruti Kishor Jain


Tuesday 29th Nov’ 2016.

Approved By

Principal Ar. Prof. Rohit Shinkre

College Seal

Thesis Guide Ar. Prof Mandar Dhuri

Certified Seal

Certified By

Examined By

External Examiner-1 External Examiner-2

DECLARATION I hereby declare that this written submission entitled “Dance and Architecture – Choreographing engagement between body and space” represents my ideas in my own words and has not been taken from the work of others (as from books, articles, essays, dissertations, other media and online); and where others’ ideas or words have been included, I have adequately cited and referenced the original sources. Direct quotations from books, journal articles, internet sources, other texts, or any other source whatsoever are acknowledged and the source cited are identified in the dissertation references. No material other than that cited and listed has been used. I have read and know the meaning of plagiarism* and I understand that plagiarism, collusion, and copying are grave and serious offences in the university and accept the consequences should I engage in plagiarism, collusion or copying. I also declare that I have adhered to all principles of academic honesty and integrity and have not misrepresented or fabricated or falsified any idea/data/fact source in my submission. This work, or any part of it, has not been previously submitted by me or any other person for assessment on this or any other course of study.

Signature of the Student: Name of the Student: Sukruti Kishor Jain Exam Roll No: Date: Tuesday 29th Nov’ 2016.

Place: Mumbai, India

*The following defines plagiarism: “Plagiarism” occurs when a student misrepresents, as his/her own work, the work, written or otherwise, of any other person (including another student) or of any institution. Examples of forms of plagiarism include:  the verbatim (word for word) copying of another’s work without appropriate and correctly presented acknowledgement;  the close paraphrasing of another’s work by simply changing a few words or altering the order of presentation, without appropriate and correctly presented acknowledgement;  unacknowledged quotation of phrases from another’s work;  the deliberate and detailed presentation of another’s concept as one’s own.  “Another’s work” covers all material, including, for example, written work, diagrams, designs, charts, photographs, musical compositions and pictures, from all sources, including, for example, journals, books, dissertations and essays and online resources.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Working on this dissertation has been an extremely enthralling and rewarding experience for me. I am grateful to my mentor Professor Mandar Dhuri for being extremely encouraging and guiding me through this creative exploration. I hereby thank all my dance instructors for inspiring me and keeping my love for dance alive. I also wish to express my gratitude to my faculty and friends at Academy of Architecture for their help and to my lovely family for the constant care and support.

DANCE – A PASSION Dance has been my passion ever since I was five. This dissertation is born out of my interest in both dance and Architecture. And before getting into my research, here’s a piece written by me that speaks about my passion for dance, I dance, I feel this entire world is on a standstill just for me to dance and watch it pass by when I'm gliding through the floor. I haven't felt this ecstatic doing anything else. It transports me into another world, while leaving this one behind. Every turn, reminds me of everything I'm leaving, everything that bogs me down, everything that holds me back, everything that makes this world so much more complicated to live in. I think this is all I need, nothing but to get lost, nothing but to forget everything I've learnt. To unlearn the old, just to learn the new. To learn something different every day, a different move, a different step. To widen the horizons, wider than this world. To extend myself into a newer world, a world of creativity, a world of expression.

ABSTRACT A focus on architecture as a physical object rather than a space that provides lived in experiences to the user has led architects to concentrate more on the visual qualities of a building rather than the experience of the human body. The rejection of the body in architecture, fails to provide a meaningful engagement between body and space. Thus, searching for new ways and techniques in architectural design processes to enhance the bodily experience becomes indispensable. Dance is an art form that completely engages the body. It is the most creative channels for understanding the human body and its interaction with the spaces around. Thus, interdisciplinary studies between dance and architecture are worth exploring. The Dissertation is a theoretical and physical research of dance to inspire an engagement between a body and space. The chapters in this book explore some of the modern and post dances and choreographic approaches to understand how this engagement is brought about in dance. The intention is to use the explorations of this study as transferrable concepts in architecture to propose a design solution that provides a holistic visual, corporeal and sensory experience for the user and thus, promotes an engagement between the user and the architecture.

TABLE OF CONTENTS PART 1 1. DANCE AND ARCHITECTURE ….…………………………........................01 2. BODY – SPACE RELATIONSHI ………………..........................................22 3. ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCER’S BODIES AND SENSES .............27 4. CHOREOGRAPHERS AND ARCHITECTS ….………...............................48 5. ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCE AND AUDIENCE .............................53 6. ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCERS & ENVIRONMENT…………........91 7. ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN USER AND ARCHITECTURE ……………..115 8. CONCLUSION ………………………….………………………...…….…....135

PART 2 9. THESIS STATEMENT .…..……………………………………………….….136 10. DESIGN INTENT ….…………………………………….…………………....139 11. CASE STUDIES………………….…………….……………........................143 12. SITE ………….………………………………….…………….......................147 13. PROGRAM ………………………………………………..……….……..…..153

LIST OF TERMS ………………………………….……..………………………...154 LIST PROFILES ……………………….…………………………..……….……..155 REFERENCES…………………………….….…………..………..……….……..156

CHAPTER 1 DANCE AND ARCHITECTURE Dance and Architecture have always intrigued me. The two worlds that transport the users and the creators in a different world, a world of creativity. When I started studying architecture in 2012, Architecture and Dance where two very distinct worlds for me. I worked all day in college to design spaces that could largely affect the world around me, and I resorted to the latter only when I needed to let loose and forget the world, when I needed to unwind. However, that was just the naive architecture enthusiast in me speaking. In the process of these five years, after gaining a deeper understanding of architecture, I realised that these two worlds weren’t as distinct after all. Being two creative disciplines, they are correlated at several points and drawing inspirations from one creative process – dancing to another creative process that is designing spaces is the basis of my research. The architecture design pedagogy and practice today, refrains from describing architecture as a mere static built mass/ structure. The most truthful and simple description of architecture can be that it is an art form that works with and around space. Thus, architecture can be described primarily as a spatial art form. 1


One could also describe architecture as a temporal art form because an architectural space can truly be experienced only over time. Architect Bernard Tschumi describes architecture as, “a spatio-temporal form, interweaved of time, space and successive events within.” (Tshumi, B. cited in Ersoy, Z. 2011). Experiencing this spatio temporal art form is not just limited to visual interpretations, to completely understand an architectural space, one must engage with it. Such an engagement can occur only when one moves around in an architectural space over time. Thus, we can conclude that movement plays an important role in the process of understanding and engaging with architectural spaces. Therefore, better understanding of movement in space is a sure way of enhancing the experience of architectural spaces. Dance is nothing but the movement of a body in space. It is one of the most intense ways of experiencing and moving through space, so utilizing it as an asset for improving the dialogue between a moving body and space should be promising. Correlating dance and architecture may seem complex, but architecture professor Zehra Ersoy in her dance & architecture workshop called ‘Building Dancing’ said that, “We can all be dancers as long as we can develop an exquisite consciousness of our bodily experiences and movement in space.” Hence, a better understanding of bodily experiences and movement by studying dance, is an excellent way for designers to enhance spatial awareness and thus, the overall spatial experience. Architects need to design spaces that engage users in ways beyond the visual appeal of the building, and to pay more attention not just to a building’s function and aesthetics, but also to the user’s experience in a particular space. Ersoy put it aptly when she wrote, “Current day approaches in design pedagogy focus on personal and bodily experiences of the subject and the need for investigating new ways and methods to enhance awareness of spatial experiences is inevitable.” Hence, interdisciplinary studies at this point may prove to be extremely helpful for the process of architectural design. Through my dissertation, I want to study how dance and can be used to influence architectural design in order to enhance the way architecture is experienced. 2


1.2. HISTORY OF DANCES Dance is a very vast and diverse discipline and to be able to define the focus of the research on a specific dance style or period of dance, it is necessary to first understand the history and background of dance – both Indian and Western. This will help to understand dance as multi-layered and established art form better and will also help to understand the focus of the study better.

A. INDIAN CLASSICAL DANCE DANCE AND NATURE: In the Indian mythology and culture, dance has always been closely associated to nature. It is said to have originated from Lord Shiva, who represents the entire cosmos and performs the Tandava - symbolises wind, storm and earthquake – all forces of nature. The peacock dancing to suggest the arrival of rain has been a part of several Indian stories and literature. It dances to the tune of the whistling sound of the breeze teasing the leaves on the trees, and to the sound of thunder and lightning. When a child claps or hops with joy, his gestures are nothing less than dancing.7 All these examples bring out the strong relationship between nature and Indian dances. From these natural movements, Indian dance has evolved into established dance styles that have detailed and defined gestures and movements. The history of Indian Classical Dance pervades in all parts of India and extends from early civilisation to present day and can be divided into four periods –

FIRST PERIOD: UPTO 2ND CENTURY B.C. Dance has been a mode of expression for man since historic times. Man used movements to express his emotions even before languages and scripts were developed. This early period can be traced in the evidences found in cave paintings and carvings. Early traces of dance can be seen in the Jain temples of Udyogiri from 1st Century B.C. where carvings of dancing bodies with musicians are depicted on the walls of the caves.6



SECOND PERIOD: 2ND CENTURY B.C. TO 9TH CENTURY A.D. It was during this period that Dance from just being a mode of expression became a form of offering prayers. The temples and the courts maintained large number of dancers who danced to pray, the evidence of which can be seen in the temples in different parts of India, especially in Orissa. It was during this period that there was the first articulation of self-conscious understanding of this art which helped the compilation of the ‘Natyashastra’.

THIRD PERIOD: 10TH CENTURY B.C. TO 18TH CENTURY A.D. From the 13th century manuals on dance were found from every region of the country for example, ‘Ntrittaratnavali’ of Jaya Senapati from Andhra Pradesh. These subscribed to the basic principles of the ‘Natyashashtra’ but many distinctive regional styles evolved and each region ultimately evolved a distinctive vocab e.g. Kathakali, Manipuri, Odissi. Dance now from being a form of prayer had become an art form, form of education. Over the years, as dance evolved in India, so did the spaces for dance. With the increasing use of dance as a mode of worship, there came an increasing need to develop spaces to conduct/ perform this discipline. Hence, from dancing in the assembly hall of the temple, dance went on to acquire an architectural space specifically assigned to it – eg. Natamandapas (dance halls) in Indian temples. This made dance and the architecture for it an integral part of the culture and society.

FOURTH PERIOD: AFTER 18TH CENTURY A.D. Foreign invaders who claimed their colonies in India, looked at dance as a threat because it brought the people together and gave them a scope to unite against them. This lead to a ban on classical dances in most places. Although dance was banned from being performed in public, it was continued in homes and brothels. But this was a diluted, degenerated form called ‘Nautch’. However, after independence these lost dances were resurrected from



fragments to make a new artistic whole. For example, Odissi dancers looked at the Odissi sculptures in the temples of Orissa and revived all the stances of the dance style. The classical Indian dance styles of Contemporary India are largely reconstructions of these fragments of antiquity. Today, most of these classical dances are taught, learnt and performed in Gurukuls where students from different states of India and even international students live and acquire the knowledge and skills related to these classical dances. For e.g., Nityagram in Bangalore is a beautiful Gurukul for Odissi dancers. In cities, there are Nrityashalas that offer Classical Dance Training. Although these dances are extremely celebrated and appreciated in their authentic forms, many dancers and choreographers are looking for opportunities for collaborating with international dance forms and companies to expand the horizons of the art form. There are several other dance companies that teach modern dances. However, the dance community in cities such as Mumbai is extremely fragmented. Due to which dance in cities today does not manage to explore as much and bring the public together as it used to in the past. In spite of efforts made by initiatives such as ‘dance dialogues’, 2011 - to bind the gaps in the dance map of Mumbai and bring the community together by the fraternity11, there haven’t been great results due to the lack of infrastructure and resources.

1.2. B. FROM BALLET TO MODERN DANCE BEFORE THE 20TH CENTURY: CLASSICAL BALLET Dance in the western world, about a century ago was a completely obedient child brought up in the theatre to be presented in front of the Kings and Royalty. Dance before being presented to the Royalty, had its vulgarities removed so that the royalty might find it acceptable for both performing and viewing. Naturally, the extremely expressive folk dances performed at household and communal levels were rejected, and all dances took on the stylized attributes of regal society. Dance was a small part of theatricals and dramas that



displayed great technique and the themes of these dances were expected to be light, airy and charming. This display of technique and adherence to the strict rules of dance lead to the development of classical ballet – a typically stylised, formal and disciplined dance. This dance style was extremely celebrated and appreciated for a long time, by the society and the audiences that would leave the theatres extremely happy and enthralled by the pretty themes and dance pieces it had to offer. However, for several dancers and choreographers of this period, dance suffered from arrested development. Classical ballet was so well established that as the 20th century dawned with its flood of new ideas, there was considerable resistance to any change in this disciplined style. However, Choreographers and dancers with their fresh outlook on the art form, managed to get the audience to accept these new ideas which together were called ‘modern dance.’ Doris Humphrey, a pioneer of modern dance - in her book ‘The Art of Making Dances’ refers to dance before the 20 th Century as ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ that was awakened by modern dances and it’s ideas.

EARLY 20TH CENTURY: MODERN DANCE Beginning of the 1900, there were many fresh influences such as Isadora Duncan, an American dancer, who removed story from dance and said that dance shouldn’t just be about depicted a story (as a part of plays) but should be an emanation of the soul and the emotions. 4 Several other such ideas and thoughts introduced new ways of dealing with dance and its themes. After the advent of modern dance, ‘groups’ of dancers replaced the ‘Corps de Ballet’- a group of dancers who are not soloists (They are a permanent part of the ballet company and often work as a backdrop for the principal dancers). The implicit social difference within a ‘group’ of modern dancers and ‘Corps de Ballet’ was the key differentiating factor within the two. Rank in the ballet world was derived from the hierarchy of the court, beginning with the king and queen, the nobles and then the commoners, a ballet dancer went through all these stages right from school until one became a Prima Ballerina – the Queen (lead dancer).4 The other dancers in the Corps de Ballet had very little importance. 6


However with the change in social structure of the modern times, from a Kings rule to democracy, the Corps de Ballet was replaced with modern contemporary dance groups composed of dancers, each one of them had their individuality and importance and yet complemented the group. Therefore, with the rise of modern dance, choreographer’s sought to create dance that could be done by anyone and everyone, by eliminating exclusivity and hierarchy.

Plate 1.1. Corps De Ballet from Swan.

The style and form of dance transformed majorly from ballet to modern dance. Ballet was based entirely on geometry, in terms of the human body. The arms, legs, gaze, torso and feet are all directed in the same ‘line’, and if broken, the movement is incorrect. Modern dance was developed and perfected with the goal to reject everything that facilitated ballet movement. For example, for modern dance choreographer and dancer ‘Martha Graham’, the more body lines being broken, the more successful the dance.( Plate 1.2.) Thus, modern dance explored more ideas and concepts, and used the human body as a tool to express these ideas.



The themes of dance also underwent changes. Machinery, social problems and sometimes nature all influenced the themes of dance for example, due to the influence of the World War I a new form was explored called Mechanistic ballet. ‘Sleeping beauty’ as Humphry calls it, was now awakened by the muzzles of the guns of World War I. Her contacts with the other arts produced changes too, notably with architecture and literature that gave rise to new ideas about form and content. Thus, the twentieth Century dance can be described as a revolution against stylized, perfectionistic dance techniques and performances.

Plate 1.2. (Left Image) Contraction – Martha Graham Technique Plate. Plate. 1.4. (Right Image) First Arabesque in Ballet.

SECOND HALF OF THE 20TH CENTURY: POST-MODERN DANCE In the second half of the 20th century, a reaction to the compositional and presentation constraints of modern dance was seen amongst choreographers, which lead to the development of a new era in dance called postmodern dance. Postmodern dance made use of everyday movement as valid performance art and advocated novel methods of dance composition. Claiming that any movement was dance, and any person was a dancer. This resulted in an emancipated bodily awareness and a changed individual approach towards personal and artistic freedom. Free improvisation was discovered as a tool for choreography. The dance came from the body and not from the mind. Which resulted in several new dance styles such as Contact Improvisation and Site Specific dances.



Several changes came about in how dances were presented to the audience. Anna Halprin, one of the pioneers of postmodern dance, rejected the traditionally divided theatre space in her dance performances. She believed that the stage created a virtual divide between the dancer and the audience and brought the dances to the public by performing in public spaces such as parks. She said that “The contemporary performing arts want a relationship which will involve the audience as much as the dancer himself.” These dances later came out to be called ‘Site Specific dances’. (Plate 1.4.)

Plate 1.4. Site Specific dance - Spirit of Place by Anna Halprin.

In the 20th century, dance, the art form expanded and was explored in so many directions that brought about radical changes in the technique, style, form, content and most of all choreography. Only after the Choreographers and dancers got freedom to express themselves, they began to develop their individual styles and theories of choreography. These theories reflected each choreographer’s personal style as well as, looked at ways of engaging the dancer as well as the audience in the performance. Dance thus, became a medium for people to express themselves, their individualities and creativity. Dancers and choreographers started looking at different ways of engaging people. Hence, in my research I shall concentrate on modern and post- modern dance and choreography in order to take inspirations and attributes that can be transferred to architecture.



1.3. DANCE AND ARCHITECTURE - COLLABORATIONS There have been several collaborations in dance and architecture, whether it is dance sculptures that accentuate the beauty of the ancient temples or it is some of the great theatres designed for dance performances. It is necessary to study some of these to understand the correlations between dance and architecture and to know the zones and manner in which the two could influence each other.

DORIS HUMPHREY ON ARCHITECTURE AS INSPIRATION: Doris Humphrey, in her book ‘The Art of Making Dances’ speaks about architecture as one of her major sources of inspiration while selecting themes for her dance pieces. She says that, “Architecture, especially for those who live in the city, speaks to us and for us with the most insistent cry”. She further adds that, “In the extremely complex network of influences around, architecture impresses me the most as it not only provides for visual inspiration but also speaks about the social attributes and values of the city.” Doris explains how architecture also has a great influence on the dancers of today – “There is an inevitable relationship between the young dancer’s store of the accumulated visual and mental patterns dominant in our age (cities and architectural pieces), and what he will come up with in composition.”7 Thus, here Humphrey speaks about how the architecture around influences a dancer’s visual palette and at times even defines his style of dance. Surjit Nongmeikapam, renowned contemporary dancer & choreographer from North-East India is inspired by the life of his hometown which to a large extent is influenced by the terrain, architecture and planning of the region. While speaking about his work at his talk Chai biscuit #6 organised by Dance dialogues, Mumbai, 2016 he says that, “My place is always reflected in my body and moves.” His moves are nothing but a stylisation of the life in the north east. He says that, “There is a lot of physical activity in the north east – like everyday chores are going to the forest and cutting trees or farming your land. Every day is a performance and that is what is reflected in my style.”



Hence, some choreographers and dancers owe their specific style of dancing to the place they belong, to the environment that influenced them while growing up and to the architecture that helped them develop their visual and sensory palette. Thus, if the dance world has so much to take from architecture, it definitely has a lot of fresh ideas, approaches to offer in return and architects must make the most of these ideas.

ON ARCHITECTURE AND TANGO – LIDEA HAJJAR – TEDXLAU: Lidea Hajjar is an architect who loves dancing, takes inspiration from her favourite dance style Tango while designing her buildings. She tried to draw parallels between the two – Tango and Architecture in her TedX talk. And spoke about Foundation, Form, Space and Axis – certain factors that are common between the two. Foundation – The basic step of Tango and the foundation of a building both need to be extremely steady and are hence, both triangular. Form – She compared the forms of Zaha Hadid’s high rises and those in the city today, to the posture of tango dancers – both being tall and parallel. Space – She mentions how important space is in both the fields and if the space is not kept in mind while executing any work in either of the two fields, there could be chaos.

Plate 1.5. Plate showing the triangular isolated footing (left) and a the basic triangular step of Tango (right) (Edited - Author).



Axis – Axis is another factor that exists invariably in both the fields. Architects have to keep various axes in mind while designing buildings – whether it is the axis while walking into a building or the axes for the built form – walls, columns and beams. Even Tango dancers while performing have to keep in mind their own as well as the partners axes to avoid collisions. Hajjar keeps these factors along with rhythm in her mind while designing her projects. Here, we see that Lidea is taking inspiration from a particular dance style to apply it in her architectural practice.

RAPTURE, 2008 – NOEMIE LAFRANCE AND FRANK GEHRY Noémie Lafrance is a Canadian-born choreographer and working in New York since 1994. She is known for making large-scale site-specific dance performances that uses architecture as settings and inspiration for her work. She explores human movements in man-made landscapes, creating a performance language that interacts with the environment and the audience.

Plate 1.6. Rapture at Richard Fisher Centre, 2008.

“All the world's a stage”, wrote Shakespeare, and Lafrance has launched an international career making that theme central to her work.9 In 2008, she was commissioned to create ‘Rapture’ using the architecture of the Fisher Centre for the Performing Arts, New York. Her company’s performance Rapture gained a lot of publicity due to the unusual setting of the performance. Instead of dancing inside the building, she chose to place her dancers on the roof of this



Frank Gehry’s structure. Through her performance she emphasises on the scale of the built form versus the human scale and the way the human body reacts to the built form. Lafrance said that the curve forms gave her dancers an additional push to leap into the sky with their moves. The dance features dancers travelling across the roofs using custom rigging systems to reveal the dynamics of the architecture's curves in motion.9 Here, Lafrance not only takes inspiration for their dances from architecture, but literally uses the built form to enhance her dance. The Rapture series will travel to nine Gehry designs around the world over the next five years, including buildings in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, Spain, Germany and the United Arab Emirates.


Plate 1.7. Set of Magnanimous Cuckold, 1922 by Popova.

Choreographers have been collaborating with architects to design sets for their performances for more than a century now. These sets not only uplift the performance but at times even guide the entire performance. The set for the play ‘The Magnanimous Cuckold’ consisted of a steel framework, rotating wheels in the background to signify machinery, and a windmill to indicate the location.



The intention of the simplified scenery was to ‘organize a scenic space in the way most convenient for the performers’. In this piece, the set, as simple as it was, actually ended up being a guiding factor for the choreography – all the steps, movements and formations were designed around the set. The dancers experienced and explored each space of this set to the fullest. Popova’s set for Magnanimous cuckold brought in this glim of light for set designs for dances and several explorations were made in this field thereafter. Martha Graham was one of the first choreographers to fully use collaborations with other modern artists to create her dance theatre masterpieces. Her collaboration with Isamu Noguchi

in ‘Night Journey’, 1947 remains one of the dance's great


TESSERACTS OF TIME, 2015 – JESSICA LANG AND STEVEN HOLL There are comparatively more recent examples of collaborations as well Jessica Lang, an American choreographer along with her company performed a piece ‘Tesseracts of Time’. The entire piece was divided into different sequences in which her dancers where inside, on, under and over the spaces designed by Steven Holl. While speaking about what lead him into this collaboration was the fact that – “Architecture needs to be inspired by other art forms.” – Steven Holl quoted Lynch, P. (2016)

Plate 1.8. Steven Holl’s Sketches for the spaces indicate how he intended the dance to explore his spaces.



Plate 1.9. Tesseracts Of time, 2005.

Holl in an interview with Archinet explained, “Both Architecture and dance share a passion for space and light in time; however, they are on opposite ends of the spectrum with respect to time,” explained the designer. “Architecture is one of the arts of longest duration, while the realization of a dance piece can be a quick process and the work disappears as the performance of it unfolds. Here the two merge in a compression of time and space.” This congruity is expressed in the performance’s ‘four seasons’ depicted in the 4 sequences of the dance .10 This performance was intended to be an exploration of space and shows how a dancer, through his conscious and aware body can experience spaces through time by moving around.

SPIDER WEB – BY AUCKLAND UNIVERSITY Spider web was an explorative collaboration between the Dance School and Architecture Department of Auckland University. It was an experiment conducted on a stairway, wherein the two dancers tied a thread and a long piece of black cloth to themselves and danced through the stairs. This lead to the creation of a spider-web like installation along the staircase. Later, the architecture students walked through (on, under and above) this web. Thus, the dancers created the space and the architects danced through it. While speaking about their experience, the architecture students mentioned that they 15


noticed minute details of the staircase while dancing through the web – for e.g. the design of the railing. They said that their bodies had to gauge the space it had to pass through and while doing so, every cell, bone, muscle and sense was put to use. This helped them engage with the space. In this case, the dancers designed space and the architects danced through it.

Plate 1.10. Snapshots from Spider web.

From the above mentioned explorations, we can conclude that Dance and Architecture – the two art forms have been inspiring each other in myriad ways. We can see how the two disciplines collaborate to enhance the bodily and visual experience of the body whether it is of the audience, dancers or the user of a space. My research is nothing but an extension to the above explorations in the interdisciplinary studies between dance and architecture aimed to enhance the experience of the body in an architectural space.



1.4. INTENT In most parts of the world different dance traditions developed in the same way as different architectural styles.6 Dance from being a basic mode of expression and architecture the basic shelter developed into expansive art forms over the years. One can draw several parallels between these two such as – history, culture, proportions, forms, composition, emotion, structure, movement, space etc. Dance primarily involves the movement of a body in space and architecture requires the user to move around in space to experience it. Thus, out of all the correlating factors between dance and architecture, ‘Movement, Body and Space’ are primal to the experience of both the disciplines. Only when a dancer moves his body in the space around him, can he dance; and only when a user moves through a space, can he experience it completely. Thus, this dissertation primarily focuses on studying the experience of a body while moving through space. When a body is moving to perform a particular dance, it is completely aware of its physicality and the environment around it. While learning, practicing and performing dances, the body is entirely involved in the activity. Thus, dance as an art form is completely engaging, it engages the body with other bodies and the space around it. Dance allows a ‘whole body’ experiential exploration and understanding of spaces and can prompt architects to think through experience how space affects us, and how we affect space. Thus, while studying the movement of a body in space, it only makes sense to understand how a body engages with other bodies and the space around while dancing. To study engagement in dance, the research mainly focuses on modern and postmodern dances which broke free from the strict and confined rules of classical dances. Modern choreographers and dancers had artistic freedom to explore possibilities of the engagement between two bodies and a body and space. Hence, it would be apt to focus the study on this era of dance. Thus, my research aims at studying modern and postmodern dance as a medium to generate a holistic visual, corporeal and sensory experience



in Architecture. The Dissertation is a theoretical and physical research that binds architecture and dance as equal mediums to inspire an engagement between two bodies and a body and space. This dissertation finds answers to the following questions 1. How do two dancers engage with each other while dancing? 2. How does a choreographer compose dances to engage the dancer and audience in the performance? 3. How do choreographers establish an engagement between the dancer and the physical space around? 4. How have architects tried to create an engagement between two bodies and a body and physical space? The research is conducted by studying a some modern and postmodern dance styles, watching performances of the same and analysing them, reading theories and approaches of choreographers that have largely influenced the composition/ choreography of modern dances. This helps to understand how all of the above contribute to enhance the body-space engagement that dance is all about. The book is structured such that it explores each of the above questions in individual chapters. Chapter 2 aims at understanding the phenomenological theory by Gaston Bachelard given in his book. It also looks at studying the relation between body and physical space in some dance performances. Although entire dissertation is aimed at understanding and enhancing engagement between the human body and space, this chapter will help in grasping the other chapters. Chapter 3 deals with the study of how dance engages two dancers’ bodies and their senses with each other. To understand this, the chapter discusses a postmodern dance style – Contact Improvisation that aims at creating a strong engagement between two human bodies. It explores the possibilities of the use of senses while dancing and thus, might help architects to produce spaces that engage bodies and their senses.



Chapter 4 puts forwards some of the qualities that a good choreographer must possess as specified by Doris Humphrey. Dance and architecture - making both being creative processes that deal with the body and space some of these qualities hold good even for architects and understanding them will help architects improve the quality of their work and profession. The next Chapter looks at theories of two extraordinary modern choreographers – Dorris Humphrey and Martha Graham who contributed a lot to modern dance. Their choreographic approach like many other choreographers aimed at making dances exciting and engaging for the audience. An analysis of their dances based on their theory may help architects to create this sense of engagement with their audience (the user). Site Specific Dances – a postmodern approach in dance rather than a dance style is explored in Chapter 6. These dance performances mainly arise out of a response to an engagement that occurs between the choreographer and the dance. Here the approach adopted in the development of the dance right from site research to the engagement with the site is studied to adopt a similar process in architecture.

While looking at how dance creates an engagement between two humans and between the human body and the architecture around, it is also essential to understand how architects do the same. Chapter 6 looks at works and ideologies of Architects Tadao Ando and also looks at the criteria for designing spaces for engagement as defined by Himanshu Burte in his book.

An understanding and analysis of these performances, dance styles and choreographies might help to gain a better understanding of the deep bodyspace engagement dance manages to establish. This study can further be used to derive transferrable concepts in the process of architectural design to inspire an architecture that engages the user. Thus, by taking inspiration from dance and choreography, architects can aim to create and choreograph an entire body experience – in a holistic, user centric architectural design.



1.6. WHY ENGAGING SPACES? One major reason to study dance apart from inspiring architecture by another art forms is to study the engagement that dance manages to create between two people and between people and architecture (as mentioned in Chapter 1.5.). But what do I mean by engagement? Himanshu Burte (2008) refers to engagement as the ‘level of involvement’ that often springs up between people and between a person and a specific place.1 This is the most apt way of understanding the concept of engagement in a design discussion related to space. This involvement between places and people that Burte speaks about, is generally only restricted to our homes or may be workplaces in modern cities and is in contrast with our common indifference we feel towards most places in our towns and cities. Although architecture cannot determine the level of this involvement, it can definitely provide for the encounter from which the engagement can occur. However, the extent to which this mutual exchange occurs may vary greatly across people and places, the same place may offer a different level of engagement and experience every time. Thus, engagement is difficult to analyse and to understand its role in architecture in order to create engaging spaces is a complicated task. To make this task simpler and inspiring for architects, this research is dedicated at understanding the different levels of engagement that dance can bring about and to use that understanding in architecture. But the question still remains, why create engaging spaces at all? Burte (2008) suggests that the reason to provide for an engagement between people and between people and architecture is at the core of two important conditions – the psychological well-being of individuals on one hand, and the possibility of society on the other. Most cities today, whether Indian or not are facing a situation which is the shadow condition of engagement – ‘urban alienation’. “This condition is marked by the difficulty the individual faces in developing a simultaneous engagement with physical as well as the social space of the city – with the places (physical) and people (social) that make the city.” 1 To combat this situation, the engagement we have with the architecture is as significant as that we have with other people. The way our homes, offices, schools, colleges, art and religious places or other places we visit in our everyday lives are designed and the activities that these designs influence are 20


deeply involved in the way we engage with society at large. And if buildings today were engaging enough for people to be able to get themselves to involve and interact with these buildings and the people inside them then such problems of urban alienation and indifference towards architectural spaces would seem to be far away from the urban societies and cities. For example, the Central Perk café in the Television show friends with its cosy and homely atmosphere provided for the six friends to spend long hours in the large centre table of the café and thus, allowed for their friendship to flourish. And as Burte said, “Our deepest engagement with places and people in them usually develops when we are able to inhabit them over a period of time.” Their friendship that began with spending time at the café grew into becoming each other’s family in the city. We recognize today more than ever that an engagement between individuals or groups is necessary – through collaboration and negotiation. And architecture appears to play a significant role in this process as it provides with the physical and social common ground in which such engagement can occur. Hence, architecture needs to be oriented towards the objective of creating and engagement between the place and inhabitant.

Plate 1.11. Friends engaging at the Central Perk Café in the T.V. show Friends.

What makes such a conscious focus on engagement necessary in a discussion about space? It is the fact that an engagement between two people or between a place and people doesn’t not always occur automatically, very often it needs to be fostered by intention and design.1 It is important to confront architecture as a means to facilitate engagement between a designed space and people or between people. Taking inspiration from dance to do so, will help architects to get a creative and fresh outlook about the same and in turn help them to create engaging spaces. 21

CHAPTER 2 BODY – SPACE RELATIONSHIP After discussing how body, space and movement constitute the primary correlations between dance and architecture, it is important to understand the relationship established between physical space and the body while moving around – in both the disciplines. This understanding may not directly be translated into architectural concepts but will definitely help on a theoretical level.


2.1. ARCHITECTURE IS NOT A MERE FROZEN OBJECT Modern day architects are constantly being criticized about concentrating on architecture as physical objects. The focus on architecture as an object, most often puts a direct focus only on the visual qualities of the buildings. With the use of computer software and 3d rendering tools the focus is always on looking at buildings as printed images rather than experiential spaces. . “Instead of being a situational bodily encounter architecture has become an art of the printed image fixed by the hurried eyes of the camera.” – Pallasmaa, 2005:30 Buildings like Gherkin, London and the Bilbao Guggenheim Museum are so recognized and popular because of their visual appeal, without the perceived need to actually visit and experience the buildings first hand. While the attention to the eye is needed, completely relying on it has its pitfalls. “More than other senses, the eye objectifies and masters. It sees at a distance and maintains a distance.” – (Irigaray, 1978 in Hunter, 2015) Excessive attention on the eye denies the involvement of the rest of the body in the process of experiencing. “It denies the role of the user of the building in constructing its meaning, it denies the physical experiential understanding of a place and denies the potential for the building to change overtime.” – Rachel Sara in Hunter, 2015 Due to this neglect of the body in architectural experience, the most important and inevitable interaction of the body and space is also neglected. This is damaging for the discipline as, “we primarily experience architecture with our whole body – The feeling of light on our skin, the isolation of being in a large space alone, the texture of the floor surface, the warmth of the space and the smell of the new timber, the muffled sound of a small, carpeted space, or the echoes in a large hard- surfaced room.”2 Thus, architecture shouldn’t be experience only through the eyes but through the body, its senses, memory and imagination. How these physical and phenomenological experiences come together in a space are fundamental to the way in which we (our body) feel about architecture (the space) and our relationship with it.



2.2. THE POETICS OF SPACE Gaston Bachelard in his book, The Poetics of Space, brings about the phenomenological investigation of architecture and brings out the strong relationship between our body and space. (Here, body refers to our cognitive as well as corporeal being). In his book, Bachelard determines that space can be ‘Poetry’, by the phenomenological experiences we have in it. He speaks about the house – as one of the most intimate spaces we experience. He describes it as ‘our first universe’ – a place that holds several memories, provides for our imagination to grow and allows us to daydream. Bachelard determines that the house has both unity and complexity, it is made out of memories and experiences, its different parts arouse different sensations and yet it brings up a unitary, intimate experience of living.6 This is what manifests it into poetry. He offers a vertical image of the house which is created by the contrast of the attic and basement. The attic, according to him, is a metaphor for clarity of mind. The basement, on the contrary, is the darker, subterranean and irrational entity of the house and our mind. Both these sites appear in our dreams and produce varying kinds of them. However, he argues that urban homes, like his apartment in Paris do not have an attic nor basement, contrary to the countryside homes which he has in mind. The urban boxes, as Bachelard puts it, have neither roots nor a space around them. Our relations with this intimate space have become rather artificial.6 Therefore, he concludes that urban homes lack the quality of intimacy. This phenomenological investigation of the house by Bachelard throws light upon the idea that there is a strong relationship that exists between space and the body. The way we think, dream, imagine and experience the world is largely impacted by spaces around us and our thinking and imagination in turn impacts these spaces. Thus, this relationship between the body and space needs to be understood by most architects so that the spaces they design do not ignore this relationship just like how it is ignored in most urban apartments.



2.3. BODY-SPACE RELATIONSHIP IN DANCE PERFORMANCE The relationship between body and space is widely explored in the field of dance at several occasions. This Chapter explores this relationship in dance performances on a more physical rather than phenomenological level to understand the relationship between the two better. This relationship in dance performances







BODYSPACE5 as defined by Uysal, V. and Markus W. BODYspace is the realm of the sovereign body, in which the body establishes, defines, describes, and perceives space.5 In ‘Lamentation’, 1930 by Martha Graham, one can experience this BODYspace relationship. In this performance as the stage is lit with a single spotlight on the solo dance and the only space that is perceivable to the audience is the one that is formed by the movement of the performer’s body. As the dancer moves, she sets boundaries in linear and planar configurations, or creating volumes as she stands, twists, and bends within her flexible costume. The dancer is actually restructuring the space on stage and the space within her costume. Thus, as Kunst correctly puts it, “It is the body itself which through its premediated, well-designed movement and totally devotional form, reduces, and extends space, endowing with meaning through spatial relations.” 5

Plate 2.1. Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham.

I experienced this type of a relationship with space while walking in the caves of Mawsma, Meghalaya. It was completely dark and the only space that existed for me was the one that I could feel and perceive by stretching my hands out.



However, this didn’t let me experience the actual space to the fullest, as I wasn’t even aware of the space that existed beyond my body. This made me feel anxious and made me want to draw myself out of the space rather than engaging with it.

Plate 2.2. Mawsmai Caves, Meghalaya

bodySPACE on the contrary, is a realm where the primacy of space over the body is observed. The sovereignty of space that is acclaimed in this type of a relationship calls for a transformed body which is forced to assume an attitude towards the concept that is put forth by spatial constructs.5 In this type of a relationship, it is the space that completely dictates the movement of the body and the way it functions. This bodySPACE relationship was explored in the play ‘Magninimous Cuckold’, 1922. In this performance Popova did not paint a backdrop for the set, but he created an installation instead. Each performer had to mould themselves to dance around this set and thus the space completely defined his being. “…actors could forget the existence of a painted backdrop, but they could not help taking all the elements of the construction into account as its spaces and rhythms defined all of their movement possibilities.” (Kolesnikov 1991 in Uysal, V. and Markus W)

Although this bodySPACE exists in the dance performance, this relationship when established in architecture proves fatal for the discipline as the body is given a passive position in the construct of space. When established in 25


architecture the bodySPACE relationship doesn’t prove to be fruitful as it denies presence of the body, which is the primary user of the space.

Plate 2.3. Magnanimous Cuckold, Set by Popova.

BODYSPACE is a situation in which the body and the space are affirmatively related to each other, neither one imposing primacy over the other.



Newson’s piece ‘Strange fish’ effectively brings out this BODYSPACE relationship. The performance is a male-female duet which include the wall on stage literally as the third partner, as if the sequence was a trio. In this case, the body and the space are both of equal importance, neither one imposing primacy over the other. When the dancers dance with the wall, they introduce the idea of physical contact and interaction that can take place between the body and the space. In the above instance, body and space work in a mutually affirmative manner: both stand on their own feet, declaring their own primacy; however, neither one imposing its superiority over the other. “There is no movement without the wall and no wall without the movement” (Kunst 1995). 5 This type of a relationship if established in architectural spaces is ideal for designing engaging spaces as neither one dictates the other and the experience of the body and the quality of the space both redefine each other at every instance.



Plate 2.4. Strange Fish by Llyod Newson.

This chapter has helped to understand the strong relationship that exists between the human body and space. This study may not have direct implications in the design of a building but is a theoretical investigation between the relationship of body and space and will help to understand and grasp all the further chapters in this book better.


CHAPTER 3 ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCERS’ BODIES & SENSES In the previous chapter we understood the relationship between body and space. The interaction between these two is primary to the experience of architecture. This interaction between the body and space primarily happens through the human senses, however the human body does not only interact with the world around it but it interacts with the other bodies as well and hence, leads to an engagement between the two bodies. This chapter, looks at the engagement between bodies of dancers and their senses. For the same, a post-modern dance style - Contact Improvisation is studied and analysed in two categories – the experience and the structure of/in the dance.


3.1. BODY, SPACE AND SENSES “The human body is the centre of the experiential world” – Merleau Ponty in Pallasmaa, J. (1996) The human body consists close to 100 trillion cells, the basic unit of life. It is through each of these microscopic cells that our body perceives the magnanimous exterior universe. This forms the essence of human identity and experience. However, this existence of the body cannot be perceived in a void, it needs space to exist. Our bodies are incessantly communicating and reacting to the world around us through its sensory perceptions.7 Juhani Pallasmaa in his essay ‘The Eyes Of The Skin’ brings out the relationship between the body and space and says “Our bodies and movement are in constant interaction with the environment, the world and the self, inform and redefine each other constantly”. The complete sensory experience which is achieved by our whole body while moving around, opens up a world of interacting senses. It is only when all our senses (not only visual, but also auditory, taste, smell, touch and our muscles) are affected is when these experiences move us and are engraved within us. He also states that, “To some extent every place can be remembered, partly because it is unique, but partly because it has affected our bodies and generated enough association to hold it in our personal worlds.” One such experience that I will carry with me all my life in my senses and memories is my trip to Ziro, a small tribal town in Arunachal Pradesh. Paddy fields, lush green vegetation, mountains with the peaks hidden in fog, bamboo huts that smell of the burnt wood from the fireplace and the vast expanse of the blue skies are some of the memories I have of this village. However, the most memorable part of the trip was a walk in the forest adjoining the tribal village. The host at the homestay decided to take us to the forest. The rains made the roads and pathways mucky, making me extremely alert. With my eyes constantly on the road to hop over the puddles, I experienced the forest with all my senses along with my eyes (which were hooked onto the road).



I noticed footsteps of the animals that had walked through the path, the smell and colours of the leaves and fruits that had shed onto the path and the shadows of the leaves when light penetrated through the foliage. As we walked deeper into the forest, leaving behind the smells of the burning wood from the domestic fireplaces, the smell of the fresh wood and wet mud started growing onto me. The chattering of the people and barking of the dogs was replaced with the chirping of the birds and sounds of occasional winds that cantered around my head and rose to the trees. These sounds made me realise the sheer scale of the trees and the forest and made the space comprehendible. And in this moment I remembered what Walter Ong wrote about sound, “The cantering sense of sound affects man’s sense of cosmos.” 7 After walking for about ten minutes, the wet mud, the rains and the cold weather almost made my feet numb and I still remember the effort I had to make to walk each step, my muscles felt sore while walking over the hilly terrain. A sudden surprise in the walk towards darkness was a bamboo plantation. I felt liberated and relieved as I stepped into the bamboo forest, the large amount of light through the thin and tall bamboo shoots made me feel warm and I could feel my muscles release out all the tension as I stood there. The host offered us some fungus growing on the barks, something that the kids of the region loved eating, the rough textures reminded me of coarseness of the barks in my mouth when I ate it. After giving a little rest to our feet we stepped back into the wet pathway and the more we walked, the denser and darker it got, but my mind felt lighter and clearer. The dim light through the dense trees, emphasized the darkness and shadows and provided a realm from which my fantasies and dreams could arise. As Pallasmaa rightly says, “Thoughts travel with absent minded and unfocused gaze”. After spending a while in the forest, we walked back to the village and although I washed out the mud from my feet, the experience stayed. Memories of this walk floated in my brain while reading Pallasmaa’s essay and I felt as though the mud trickled down my feet every time I thought of it. “We remember through our body as much as through our nervous system and brain.” 7 28


The body is not a mere physical entity: it is enriched by both memory and dream, past and present. With each sense of our body, we experience the world and get a better understanding of it. Psychologist James J Gibson says “Senses are aggressively seeking mechanisms rather than mere passive receivers” – If these senses want to seek aggressively, do architects in the buildings they design, give them enough to seek? If architecture is meant to be an extension to the natural realm, why isn’t the walk through every building as memorable as a walk through the forest? Pallasmaa says “A walk through the forest is invigorating and healing due to the constant interaction of all sense modalities”.

Plate 3.1. A walk in the Forest, Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh. (Photograph Courtesy - Author)

Does architecture today provide such multisensory experiences? As discussed in Chapter 2.1. the dominance of the sense of sight over other senses has become the basis for the designs of most buildings. The user may be awestruck by the scale, proportions or aesthetics of a space but if it isn’t a complete body experience, then he may feel a sense of detachment and alienation from the space around him. Thus, there is strong relationship between the body and space and architecture needs to enhance this dialogue between the two. “The task is to create embodied and lived metaphors that concretise and structure our body around the world.”


One needs to engage the user with the designed

spaces just like the forest engages us in itself. 29


Fig.3.A. Analysis of ‘The Eyes of the Skin’ by Pallasmaa & ‘Poetics of Space’ by Bachelard. (Courtesy - Author)

3.2. DANCE AS A TOOL We can conclude that, there is an obvious need among designers for conceiving space with a multi-sensory engagement. Hence, searching for new ways and techniques for architectural design processes to enhance the bodily experience in space becomes essential and indispensable. Collaborative studies are of significant support for enhancing such an awareness of space. Interdisciplinary studies of architecture with cinema, photography and literature are most widely known, whereas those with dance are less frequent, yet dance is one of the most creative channels for understanding the human body and the nature of kinesics.2 If the aim is to enhance one’s experience in space, both architecture and dance focus on subjects in ‘space’, one focuses on the experience of the ‘perceiver/user’ whereas the other on the ‘dancer.’ Thus, such interdisciplinary studies between dance and architecture are worth exploring with the intention of enhancing the dialogue between architecture and body with all its senses. One such exploration in interdisciplinary design studies was ‘Building Dancing’, a workshop designed for architecture students in the year 2011.



3.3. BUILDING DANCING The workshop was a series of exercises designed to cultivate awareness of corporal experiences of space by using dance as a tool. The workshop was realised in a dance studio in Turkey, conducted by Zehra Ersoy, a professor of architectural design along with a dance instructor. Ersoy stated that, “In order to create holistic mind and body experiences for the user, the designer must first improve his or her sensuous awareness, to acquire greater consciousness of the possibilities of architectural space, body and the sensory perceptions.”, which is why she designed this workshop for architecture students.

Building Dancing was made to be a new practical framework composed of several dance-movement exercises designed to promote awareness of spatial and bodily experiences in space. The program’s regimen begins with ‘building self-conscious bodies’, an exercise whose goal was to establish the elementary associations between the body in motion and architectural space.3

Plate 3.2 -Building Dancing Workshop (Segment 2) Turkey, 2011.

The second segment, ‘space-making’ was focused on the understanding of the body’s role in perception of space. In order to elucidate on this point, the participants were introduced to the work of Frances Bronet and John Schumacher, who researched “two topologies of movement”: ‘one of the body’ 31


and ‘one of the eye.’ Space of the eye is what we immediately perceive when entering a space, the space that awaits interaction with our bodies, while space of the body is perpetually in the making, which is comprehended and perceived while we move around. With this in mind, students were asked to think of their bodies as “space-makers,” as they engaged each other in what the study called ‘dance constructions.’ As the students utilized their bodies as formers of space, not just occupiers of space, they began to make the transition from experiencing space through the topology of the eye to the topology of the body.


In this workshop dance helped build holistic bodily experiences within these students, that enhanced their understanding of how moving bodies perceive spaces and engage with it and other bodies, similar to the experience of Contact Improvisation dancers. In order to further understand this engagement between the two bodies, their senses and the space around them, we shall look at Contact Improvisation, a dance style that primarily involves two or more bodies constantly in contact with each other.

Plate 3.3 -Building Dancing Workshop (Segment 3) Turkey, 2011.



3. 4 CONTACT IMPROVISATION HISTORY Contact improvisation is a postmodern dance style developed by Steve Paxton and his group of dancers in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s at Oberlin College. They would get together every evening and explore ways of movement and athleticism including wrestling and falling, jumping and rolling and presented their first performance ‘Magnesium’, in 1972. Over the following summer, Paxton explored this movement vocabulary further and gave the first Contact Improvisation performances which reportedly had 'a powerful emotional and kinaesthetic effect on audiences.'

Plate 3.4. Contact Improvisation Dancers.

WHAT IS CONTACT IMPROVISATION? The improvised dance form is based on the communication between two moving bodies that are in physical contact. There are several definitions of contact improvisation as the dance does not have a stylized skillset or specific rule book, it had more to do with how the bodies interact with each other and react to different senses via movement. The body, in order to open to these sensations, learns to release excess muscular tension to experience the natural flow of movement.5 Some of the definitions are as follows –



“Contact Improvisation is an open-ended exploration of the kinaesthetic possibilities of bodies moving through contact… it is a form open to all bodies and enquiring minds.” — Ray Chung workshop, London, 2009 “Contact improvisations are spontaneous physical dialogues that range from stillness to highly energetic exchanges. Alertness is developed in order to work in an energetic state of physical disorientation, trusting in one's basic survival instincts.— Early Definition by Steve Paxton, Contact Quarterly Vol 5:1, Fall 1979. In the movie Fall After Newton, a documentary film on the development of this dance style, Paxton mentioned that it’s not just a physical dialogue but is, “A sensory dialogue between bodies and their reflexes, which form the basis of this dance.” He further adds, “Main focus of training Contact is to retune all the senses. It isn’t just the sense of touch which must be expanded but all the senses must become elastic enough to navigate through physical space” In the documentary, Paxton explains how the dance evolved and says, Contact Improvisation is nothing but a play of gravity, inertia and balance (STRUCTURE) combined with Human touch (which provokes other SENSATIONS in the body). As per Newtons law, every action has an equal and opposite reaction and since the sensations are provoked by an action their reaction is what forms this dance. Thus, it is the senses that cause these actions and reactions, which play a large role in the dance which is composed of balanced structures. To understand this framework of Contact Improvisation (Refer to Fig. 3.B.) Architecture is nothing but an amalgamation of STRUCTURE which forms the outer shell of the body and the EXPERIENCE within the structure, which most often is determined by the sense modalities it has to offer. The two basics of Contact Improvisation are actually the primary elements of Architecture as well. Thus, studying and analysing this dance form can help create architecture that has a holistic bodily experience to offer to the user, just like the experience of Contact dancers. The analysis is done in two parts as follows -



3.5. A. EXPERIENCE Danial Lepkoff, a dancer and dancer maker, who has played a central role in the early development of Contact Improvisation technique with Steve Paxton has written several papers on the same. He often discussed the idea of ‘one’s animal’ – a concept used by Steve in the early years. He says that the experience of ‘one’s animal’ which is “a physical intelligence composed of movement patterns, reflexes, both inherited and learned, that form our ability to survive and to play energetically with our environment” is brought out while dancing Contact Improvisation. While practicing or watching this dance, one develops an interest in physical experience and unique patterns of response to different sensations. It is not just the dancers but even the audiences could engage with dance and experience these sensations, this may also be largely due to the proximity of the audience to the dancers. The dances are more intimate because they aren’t usually performed in large auditoriums, but in the practice hall itself. “The sensations were transmitted to the audience as well. They would often come out of the performances flushed and sweating, and thrilled as if they had been doing it themselves.” – Nancy Stark Smith in Kaltenbrunner, T. (2004). This development of awareness of ‘one’s animal’ is important because that is what forms the basis of this dance. As dancers improvise movement, they are acting according to a sense of body, not just of the eye. In fact, it is not uncommon for dancers to be taught to keep ‘the gaze going with the head’ instead of focused on their partner or their surroundings. It is the unpredictable, naturally occurring collisions, reactions, and accidents that compose the dance itself, so it should come as no surprise that the eye should lose relevance.3 Shown in Fig. 3.C and Fig. 3.D. are moments from two Contact Improvisation dances. In both of the dances, one can see how the concept of one’s animal comes into play as dancers touch each other’s bodies, carry the partner using their muscle strength, look into each other’s eyes, feel the texture of the partner’s hair and skin and that of the ground below or the walls around, smell



the each other bodies, listen to each other’s pulse and heart beat and their reaction to these senses is what composes the beautiful dance. Kaltenbrunner in his book ‘Contact Improvisation: moving - dancing – interaction’ says, “This reaction is a bundle of different senses: temperature perception, tactile sense (pressure, touch, pain), auditory senses (the music, heart beat), visual senses. On top of this, information is added from their lungs, muscle tone, Rate of pulse etc. All this information of the state of the body is transformed into a holistic movement sense.”

The primacy of body over the eye in contact improvisation can be drawn to architectural design as well, just as the students in the ‘Building Dancing’ workshop learnt. In architecture, many designers tend to drift towards a primacy of the eye, an aesthetic that pleases but does not always engage the observer with the same passion that contact improvisational dancers engage with one another. By Taking inspiration from Contact Improvisation we can develop an architecture that combines the two experiences that of the eye and the body, an architecture that makes the user aware of ‘ones animal’.

Fig 3.B. Diagram of Steve Paxton’s core Idea of Contact Improvisation. (Courtesy - Author)



3.5. B. CASE STUDY – SONSBEEK SCULPTURE PAVILION Speaking of architectural spaces that use both the experience of the eye as well as the body, Aldo Evan Eyck’s Sonsbeek Pavilion (1966) is a great example of the same. The pavilion is a simple design with walls running parallel in plan forming alleys that widen at certain points with curved walls around. These alleys open cut open into each other throughout the plan, giving a labyrinth like feel to the space. The pavilion is open to the landscape on either ends, letting the user visually connect with the outside even while their body is experiencing the inside.

Plate 3.5. Plan Of The Rebuilt Pavilion, by Aldo Evan Eyck, 2006

Explaining the different spatial experiences, Warriner describes a tension between body and eye in the Pavilion. The eyes are led through and beyond the immediate confines of the tight channels of space, whereas the body is caught up in these streets, in a close and guarded attention that is periodically released into really free movement at the end of each street as it opens into the clearing.3 While the narrow corridors guide the eyes around the curved walls, the body is constantly kept busy by the ever-changing openness of the space and the sheer accessibility that the open plan provides. The labyrinth-like channels of 39


Sonsbeek Pavilion engage viewers in an almost playful way without being disorienting so visitors were still able to easily view the sculptures, and although the design of the pavilion itself was not derived from dance, it is still an illustration of the influential power of a design representative of a primacy of body, which is a mode of designing that architects can employ from the discipline of dance.3 Van Eyck’s pavilion successfully demonstrated that although simple, a design that gives primacy to the body can give its user a more engaging spatial experience, just like the viewers of this pavilion.

Plate 3.6. (Left) Alleys of Sonsbeek Pavilion. And Plate 3.7. Sonsbeek Pavilion. (Right Image)

3.5. C. STRUCTURE Contact improvisation investigates the laws of physics - such as mass of the body, gravity and inertia, which are used while a person is trying to attain balance over the partner’s body or while transitioning from one position to the other. Thus, a thorough knowledge of the connection between gravity and momentum for instance is important for the dancer.


After exploring the

experience aspect of the dance, this chapter explores the Structural aspect of Contact Improvisation, i.e. the laws of physics and the balanced structures created by the contact dancers using these laws.

WEIGHT - In physics, weight however, is defined as the downward acting force on an object due to gravitational attraction. To give weight, onto the back of the partner in this dance, means the giving of mass, gravitationally connected through your partner. The taking of weight means the ‘taker’ maintains enough



force to give resistance to the ‘giver’.5 This maintenance of force can be made by using one’s own physical weight, structural force (the skeleton) or muscular force. This situation is similar to the transfer of loads from one member to the other in architectural structures.

CENTRE OF GRAVITY - All the physical forces which affect a body are united in the centre of gravity. The exact position of the centre of gravity depends of course on stature, body type, alignment and spatial positioning. If one bends forward for instance, the centre of gravity lies outside of our body. The balance of a body/ structure depends on a centre of gravity. When standing, the centre of gravity is found to be directly above the supporting surfaces. If we lean forward slightly, the centre of gravity shifts in the same direction and up to a certain point, a return to centre is possible. This could be called a precarious balance. If this point is exceeded and the centre of gravity lies outside of our body, we fall down. 5 Thus, the centre of gravity is an important factor is defining the balance of a body/ structure.

SHARED CENTRE OF GRAVITY - During contact improvisation duets we often find situations where both bodies can be defined as one unit. There is a common centre of gravity and its exact position is dependent on the amount of shared weight and the position of the individual centres. Through two precarious balances a stable unity is created. 5 The concept of shared centre of gravity comes into play when several members of a structure or bodies come together to form one unit.

Understandings of these concepts of physics that are used in Contact Improvisation Dance, can be further applied in conceptualising and constructing architectural buildings to achieve stable structures. 41


3.7. DANCING IN THE DARK It is not just the contact improvisation dancers that give primacy to the body over the eye, several institutions and dance schools all over the world have come up with new approaches to teach dance to the visually impaired individuals by using their senses. “Mobility is a cornerstone of independence. For the visually impaired, mobility is more than clutching a white cane. It is the honing of an internal antenna to gauge physical hurdles and work their way around them. More importantly, it is the confidence to be unafraid of the unseen. Before a visually impaired child can walk down a corridor across a classroom to a desk, or reach out to a cup of milk, the individual must learn not to be afraid to move in his physical environment. Mobility is about familiarization and orientation of an individual to move about in any space. Only after he/she feels comfortable in physical space can he embark on a safe and fearless journey.“ 11 Several dance teachers come up with different ways of making the visually impaired aware of their surrounding by making them dance using their senses. Saisha Srivastava at her dance workshop ‘20 Days Of Rain’ at ‘Kolkata Blind School’ uses ‘Imagination combined with the sense of TOUCH’ in her approach. Her reference of a song from the movie Black, 2005 justifies her approach – “Yes, I’ve touched the wet colour of the rain drops, yes I have touched the red colour of an Indian brides prickly wedding dress” – the song with a visually impaired protagonist, speaks about how her world of imagination is primarily through the sense of touch and senses other than the eye. Hence, they design steps that require the students to imagine how the world is and how it feels on their skin, and for example, they ask them to imagine how rain drops feel on their hands and then do the sensation of rain falling on their hand with their fingers. They know that rain falls diagonally from left to right with drops randomly falling on the body – the imitation of the rain falling on their body creates a hand movement that when done on the beat of the music translates into a dance. They design steps out of objects and events that the students encounter with their touch in their daily life e.g. Rain, waves, wind etc. so it become easier for them to imagine the movements.



Plate 3.9. Saisha replicating the sensation of raindrop on her student’s hand (top Image). and Plate 3.10. (Bottome image) -Student trying to replicate rainfall.

‘Lighthouse International,’ a Manhatten non- profit organisation offers daily dance lessons to the blind. They follow an approach similar to that of Saisha Srivastava. They use the ‘IMAGINATION of the kids coupled with descriptive and specific language’ to produce dance, for example, instead of “close and open” – they choose to say “close and open the door.” This helps the students to grasp the movements faster and thus, understand and memorize them with ease. Pali Chandra, a Kathak dancer while teaching at ‘Acharya Sri Rakum School For the Blind,’ Bangalore has adopted an approach that relies a lot on the ‘Sense of RHYTHM and SOUND’ of the blind children. She uses bells, Ghunghrus and bangles while teaching dance. While speaking about the workshop, Chandra says “The idea was to govern the workshop with sound in a methodological way, so that they can respond to the sound” and thus, they could memorize the dance by sensing the sound. She uses movements that require a lot of clicking, stomping and clapping so that the rhythm of the steps are engraved in these little minds and the dance becomes easy for them.



Plate 3.11. Blind School for Ballet, Brazil. And Plate 3.12. Blind children learning Ballet, Brazil.

Some teachers choose to use the amazing MUSCLE memory that the visually impaired possess to their advantage. While some start with developing the motor skills of their students first so that their MOVEMENTS become more confidant. This is done especially by ballet teachers dealing with visually impaired ballerinas, because ballet as a dance requires one to move around on the entire stage space. ‘The Ballet Schol for Blind’ in Brazil, uses both of these while training their students. They make use of several props that the dancers are supposed to hold and move in a particular fashion repeatedly to etch these movements in their memory and muscles. Dancing has helped these blind children to imporve their movements, coordination and confidence. It helps them orient themselves better in the physical world and move around confidantly. Most importantly it helps them gain awareness about their own body and the space around it. If architects, just like the dance instructors were to explore different ways of making the user’s body experience the world around them with all their senses, it would definitely lead to the holistic multisensory experience that has been spoken of in this chapter. Choreography of/with sensations has been explored in dancing, but not as much by architects. However, there are some attempts in installations/ spaces, that choreograph spaces using elements like sound, color, texture, humidity etc. In these installations the environments are made dynamic and responsive with the use of smells, sound etc. One may consider these explorations with responsive environments as an attempt similar to that of the choreographers teaching the visually impaired – to make the user experience spaces with their senses. 44


3.6.A. CASE STUDY – SCENTS OF SPACE When we speak of architecture – we think of it as solid, static and permanent structures. Instead, let us start looking at architecture ‘as a more emphemeral concept - an architecture that can only exist in time, and an architecture that both changes over time and responds to changes in time’. - Haque, U. Rather than employing traditional architectural materials like stone, steel and glass (which imply permanent, inert structures) this approach to architecture employs more ephemeral materials like smell, sound, temperature. Such a conception can never be frozen: it is responsive, dynamic and emotive. It welcomes the interactions (and interruptions) of people who occupy such spaces.4

Plate 3.13. Scents of Space Installation

Scents of Space, a collaboration with Josephine Pletts and Dr. Luca Turin, is an interactive smell system that allows for three-dimensional placement of fragrances without dispersion, enabling the creation of dynamic olfactory zones and boundaries. 4 This is an attempt to use smell as an experiential element combined with the use to technology to create a sense responsive environment.

In Scents of Space several fragrances evoke a journey through a city, including: a subway, a garden, a coffee shop, a rubbish heap, a car tire, a laundromat; other implementations include the smells of a flower garden or collages of fragrances never smelt before. The installation is a simple translucent enclosure, 9 metres in length that glows inwardly during the day and outwardly 45


at night. Airflow within the space is generated by an array of fans. Moving air is then controlled by a series of diffusion screens to provide smooth and continuous laminar airflow. Computer-controlled fragrance dispensers and careful air control enable parts of the space to be selectively scented without dispersing through the entire space.

Visitors move around in the experience zone and smell the different scents recreated in the installation. They are often seen relating these scents to places/ moments that have occurred in their lives before. These scents make them imagine those spaces and thus, they experience this installation with their ‘memory, imagination and sense of smell.’

Plate 3.13. Scents of Space Installation

A secondary level of interaction occurs between the visitors and the smells themselves. Visitor’s movements mingle conjoining smells to create turbulent ‘third’ smells. In this way, the space is passively reacting to the visitors' movements. At the same time, visitors build up a pattern of associations and memories, because smell is so closely linked to the ability to recollect experiences of space. In the above images (Plate 3.12 and 3.13. ) visitors are scene enaging with the installation by moving around, sitting, squatting and thus, dancing in the space. Such installations can evoke ideas for buildings and spaces with sesnsory experiences in the real world to create a long lasting impact on the user.



3.7. CONCLUSION Architecture today, just like dance, should aim at creating a full body engagement with space whether it is the STRUCTURE of the building or the EXPERIENCE of walking through it - both must create an impact on the user, this will not only add value to the buildings but also have an impact on the users’ life. If spaces were to engage bodies as much as Contact Improvisation dance does, most of the spaces that city dwellers visit will automatically grow meaning to them whether it is the parks, schools, offices or other public spaces. This will help people to develop engagements with these places and the people that visit them. To take this study of Contact Improvisation forward, one may look at the sequences of senses formed in some of the contact performances and try to relate those to experiential sequences in architectural design. One may also further analyse the structures formed by bodies in the Contact Improvisation dances for a better undertsanding of stability. Thus, If architecture is tending to become extremely austere and functional, taking inspirations from other art forms just like dance can help inspire architecture that is visually appealing and multisensory.


CHAPTER 4 CHOREOGRAPHERS AND ARCHITECTS. After studying a dance style that doesn’t need any choreography, Let us now look at dances that are defined by their choreography. But first let’s understand choreographers and architects. ‘Choreographers Are Special People’ – Chapter 2 of the book, ‘The Art of Making Dances’ by Doris Humphrey speaks about all the characteristics that she thinks a good choreographer must possess. Choreography is designing the movement and experience of a human body while dancing and one can’t help but relate this to architecture. Hence, at many levels all the characteristics that she claims a choreographer must possess can be said to be necessary for an architect as well. Knowing these, can help architects to work on their skills and characteristics or improve the quality of work they produce. Some of the characteristics are listed below –


COMPLETE KNOWLEDGE OF THE HUMAN BODY “A choreographer must have Knowledge of or at least a great curiosity about, the body – not just his own but the heterogeneous mixture of bodies which is constituted of the people in his environment.” – Humphrey (1958) She further states that, “A dancer’s medium is the body which is extremely tangible that has a highly complex system of levers, limbs, nerves and muscles, plus a lived-in personality with entrenched ways of its own.” A choreographer must have a good understanding of this body while composing dances – keeping in mind the performer’s body proportions and ability. An understanding of the body will help the choreographer to bring the best out of the. Similarly, architects also need to have complete knowledge of the body. Merleau Ponty stated that, “human body is the centre of the experiential world” and as designers of the physical world, architects need to be extremely conscious of the human body – its composition, proportions, sensory perceptions etc. For designing something from a simple chair in a school to the entire school, he needs to consider the ergonomics of the users, the time that the body is going to use the end product for, the way the body will use it and the experience of the body etc. An understanding of the human body, will help in designing holistic user centric designs.

SENSITIVITY TOWARDS PEOPLE “In composing for other dancers, a choreographer must have a high regard for their individuality, remember that they are not like himself and bring all his intelligence to bear on the problem of understanding them physically, emotionally and psychologically.” 1 Although these points seem too obvious to mention, but many choreographic failures are due to a variety of causes and insensitivity towards dancers is one of them. For example, if a small and quick choreographer has three broad structures and slow moving individual dancers standing before her and she ignores this – she will end up showing them all as bad imitations of her. 48


By acknowledging the individual personality of his dancers, he will ensure that a dance doesn’t look forced. This holds true even in the case of architects. It is very important that an architect makes an effort to understanding his users, their habits, personality and needs. ‘Design through dialogues’ is one of the best ways of approaching a design, speaking to the user and resolving a design thereon can do wonders to it. Only when he is sensitive towards the user/ client can he design architecture that is functional and satisfies the needs of the user.

KEEPING AN OPEN MIND “The choreographer/ director who will diligently keep an open mind about his people is in for some surprises.”


The dancer’s body, personality and movement have a lot to offer to a choreographer’s creative process and keeping an open mind and accepting these inputs is like mining for gold in personalities and is one of the chief rewards of the choreographing dances. Keeping an open mind right from the beginning of the architectural education continuing all through one’s professional courier is one important characteristic that even an architect must have. Being open to ideas from the clients, colleagues, professors, masons and contractors allows for creative growth. An architect should be open to the inputs, and broaden the horizons of his knowledge, creativity and quality of work.

FASCINATED WITH ALL MANIFESTATIONS OF FORM AND SHAPE “This person is not just interested in people but is observant in general; he is not just interested in, but fascinated with all manifestations of form and shape. He notes the design in his everyday living, wherever he may be.” 1 Humphrey further states, “If he is one from the city? He sees architectural variations, the skyline, television and cable wires, ventilators, the congestion, the preponderance of rectilinear lines, the order and disorder in the city. In the 49


country side, nature offers a never ending panorama of wind and cloud, shapes of growing trees, animal life, mountains and rivers.” Here, she speaks about how a choreographer must learn and take inspiration from everything around him because there is design is in everything. (Refer to Chapter 1.3.) Even architects must observe seek inspiration from the world around because the form, shape, look and feel of each object he encounters with contributes to his sensory and visual palette and inspires him to design spaces better.

INTEREST IN PEOPLE “A choreographer’s greatest interest is in people because the world’s people are always putting up a show.” 1 A good choreographer always sees people in groups, as moving in a street in kaleidoscope patterns: or else as individuals – old, middle aged, young: meeting, parting, talking, walking, and working. These actions may help him in his choreographic movements. Observing people while performing these actions, gives the architect a better understanding of how they use spaces and interact with each other.

DETERMINATION TO HOLD ONTO AN OVERALL IDEA Humphrey emphasises on the courage and determination of a choreographer to keep the essence of his initial idea alive, through the entire process of creating a dance. The choreographer should keep check a check on his mind if his thoughts to run wildly undisciplined or blur the core idea that he started with. She says that, “There are several dances that begin with a stimulating idea… but then wander.” Such instances are very common in the field of architecture as well, an architect needs to have the determination and grit to bring his idea, whether small or big into reality. He should make sure that it comes across in his design and the essence of his idea is not diluted in the lengthy process of conceptualising, planning and executing a building.



INDIVIDUALITY Humphrey and several other choreographers have mentioned how originality is of utmost importance to the work that one does. She says that, “A choreographer should be aware that he is profoundly different from his respected teachers and role models and that mere imitations of them can lead to disaster.” To compose dances, he needs to make decisions that serve to his intent, and while doing so, he must put a stethoscope to his own heart and listen to those mysterious inner voices which are the guide to originality. Even architects for that matter, must ask themselves what they believe in and what they really want to say or do, for every decision they make. He must not just blindly stick to the trends of the day but instead look at what’s desirable for the day.

SPEED AND RESOURCEFULNESS “Speed and resourcefulness are two additional skills that are extremely helpful in the field of choreography, and might even make the difference between success and failure.”


Doris says that a choreographer who is fast and bursting with ideas has great advantage in the theatre world, where time schedules are seldom generous. The stage is full of unhappy stories of dances which were not finished in time. Even an architect’s life is full of deadlines and submissions that he needs to meet with full passion throughout his career. Not only the deadlines but the overall process of building requires him to take some quick, intelligent decisions – whether on site or at his desk, for which he needs to be extremely confident and resourceful.

POETIC LANGUAGE “If a choreographer has a mind full of vivid and poetic language, which he can use to convey his intentions is going to end up being more inspiring than an inarticulate one” – Doris Humphrey



Here, she says that if a choreography can articulately put his vision across to his dancers, there are better chances of him getting more cooperation and better quality from his dancers. Even architects should try to be articulate in terms of explaining their design intentions, visions for a particularly project. This is not only important in convincing the client about the idea but also to get it across very clearly to every single person working on the project. Understanding the needs for these characteristics will definitely improve a designer’s approach towards his work and thus, the quality of his work. It is not necessary that every architect or designer shall have the above mentioned qualities, however one can attempt to develop some of these over time to improve his/her craft.


CHAPTER 5 ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCE AND THE AUDIENCE In the above text, we discussed how most of the qualities that a choreographer and an architect must possess overlap. This may be because of the similarities in the process of dance choreography and architectural design i.e. both generally have a text/ program, a theme/concept, notation/drawings and final designs.2 Thus, drawing inspirations and ideas from the approaches adopted by choreographers, and adopting those to the process of architectural design may enhance the creative process. Every choreographer while composing his dances aims at achieving the best possible engagement that he/she can between his audience and the performance. Each choreographer has a different way and style of doing so. Some have written theories, some have their own techniques of dances, while some like to explore different means. A study of the theories or techniques of some choreographers can be analysed to be used as transferrable concepts in architecture in order to inspire engagement.


5.1. CHOREOGRAPHY AND ARCHITECTURE One of the most common definitions of choreography is that, ‘It is the arranging of movements’. But this chapter explores the definition of choreography that emerged with modern dance which says that, ‘It is an act of composing patterns of movement for the human body.’ However, this is not exclusive only to dance and can be frequently employed in the composition of architectural spaces as well. In the name of order and rhythm architects arrange spaces rather than thoughtfully composing them to develop a spatial sequence. A continuous participation in the same spatial sequence forms habitual patterns which in case of one single building affirms the intention of the spatial choreography, however, when applied to a building typology, this spatial sequence becomes monotonou.4 This falls true in the case of buildings that primarily rely on a ritual of procession of movement, eg. Churches and Banks. No matter how much the architectural form, external skin, scale may have evolved for church buildings over the past years, but the spatial choreography, and thus, the pattern of movement through these buildings has more or less remained constant. For example, one may not distinctly remember their experience through a specific church against their overall experience while walking through church buildings in general. As most of them have a similar experience to offer, which may allow one to pray and connect to good but somehow isn’t extremely impactful. One reason for this could be the fact that, the presence of vaulted ceilings, nave and aisles flanked by stained glass windows on either sides, the subdued light, materials and the linear walk towards the alter as part of the experience of most classical churches have somehow lead the users to get a homogenous experience through these spaces. However, there are some exceptions to these as well. For example, the Salvacao Church by Charles Correa located in Dadar is one church that had a completely different yet relatable experience to offer. Right from its unique form that catches one’s attention from the road itself, to the interlinked open and closed spaces captivate one’s body and senses. 53


Taking inspiration from early Christian churches, Correa organised his spaces based on the life of Christ – baptistery (preparation), Nave (public life), Sanctuary (crucifixion and enlightenment).

Plate 5.1. A. – View of the Nave. (Left Image) and Plate 5.1. B. Exterior view of Salvacao church. (Right Image)

The spatial choreography of this church is what makes the experience so impactful. Instead of entering an expansive double height narthex or foyer (as in most churches), one enters an open to sky courtyard that reminds you of the expanse of this diverse world. (Plate. 5.1.B.) One can see the nave straight ahead, which has all the elements of a traditional church but organised in a different fashion – a large stained glass opening, a high ceiling, aisles leading you to the alter. (Plate. 5.1.A.) The series of interlocking courtyards and close spaces, allow one to enjoy the sounds of the birds, feel the breeze pass through the nave from one courtyard to another on the opposite side and feel spiritual in spite of being surrounded by bustling city outside. Inside the nave, the echo of the bells that reverberates through the shell roof and lingers around for a while before disappearing into nothingness has a lasting impact on one’s experience of the space. The bright day light from the open courtyards on either sides of the nave along with the coloured light filtered through the stained glass in the ceiling, gives a dramatic yet refreshing mood to the space.



While observing the movement of the people in this church, one figures that it was in complete contrast to the extremely linear flow of movement in most church buildings. (Fig. 5.A.) Some people enter straight from the courtyard to the nave, while some deviate into the baptistery and enter the nave through the courtyard on the other side. Some choose to spend time walking through the pathways along the trees, while the rest choose to walk straight towards the altar. Thus, the statement that, “The true spatial choreography need not act as a means of precisely defining movement but as an invitation for movement.” 4

Fig 5.A. Movement patterns in the church

But how do we use spatial choreography not just to produce a precise and monotonous order of movement through buildings but to compose an enticing and dynamic participation in a building just like Correa did in his church? Reflecting on the role of choreography in modern dance, seems like an exciting and creative way to achieve engaging and dynamic spatial choreography in architecture. Thus, this chapter explores Doris Humphrey and Martha Graham’s techniques of choreography.



5.2. DORIS HUMPHREY Amongst the pioneers of modern dance, Doris Humphrey (1895 - 1958) is one such choreographer who argued that prior to modern dance, choreography was understood as arranging and assembly of patterns or known steps without great consideration of overall composition. She states that “Hundreds of dances have been made on the basis of recombining well known steps, but this, is arranging not creating.”1 However, modern dance gives great attention to composition. Humphrey required a practical theory of composition intended as a means of communicating the principles of movement and thus, went on to write about her theory in her a book - ‘The Art Of Making Dances’. All the clues for her theory come from life itself. Every movement made by a human being has a design in space. She categorises four elements elements of dance as – Design, Dynamics, Rhythm and motivation. These according to her are the raw materials which make a dance, and are so fundamental that without a balanced infusion of these, the dance is likely to be weakened.

5.2. A. Design Humphrey puts great emphasis on the design of movements and says, “Of all the four parts of movement, the design, especially that in space, will tell the intention, the mood and the meaning.” Thus, the designs of movements according to her are the defining factors of the dance. From an architectural perspective as well, it is extremely essential to study and concentrate on ‘the design’ aspect of her theory, for obvious reasons. Humphrey bifurcated design in dance into two aspects – Time and Space. 

DESIGN IN SPACE - One can speak of design in space as a static line, that is, a dance can be stopped at any minute and it will have a design in space. It can be imagined as still moments that are like photographs or drawings. 1

DESIGN IN TIME – This exists through any moving sequence. It ranges from a simple transition of one movement to another – which forms a relationship with time.



It is much more difficult to perceive design in time than in space. To understand design in time, the eye must remember how movements follow each other, and this takes practice and training which the dancer develops over time. To a lay audience it is the design in space (images of the performance) that lasts in his head. Humphrey further bifurcates designs of movements into two main categories, symmetrical and asymmetrical. According to her, careful consideration is given to the role of symmetry and asymmetry within a composition. SYMMETRY – She says that symmetry in a design suggests stability, but is subject to gradations of this feeling according to the purpose which it serves. This is true not only for design of dances but also for design of other products. For example, the arm chair promises comfort and support to the symmetrically formed body, The Arch de Triumph is a grand symmetrical structure inspiring courage, pride and safety of the country (how discomforting would it be, to see this Arch full of asymmetrical quirks), a Christopher Wren Church rises serenely to God with a promise of Spiritual safety.1 There are thousands of balanced designs, some to serve symmetrically proportioned people, some from an emotional demand for balance and security, some to fulfil a function, but all making an indelible connection in the mind of man between symmetry and stability. (Refer to Plate 5.4. to understand symmetry in dance)

Plate 5.2. Arch De Triumph and Plate 5.3. St. Bride’s Church, Christopher Wren

ASYMMETRY - According to Humphrey, too much use of symmetry will spell monotony and if audiences were looking for a soothing, unexciting evening, the 57


chances are little that they would resort to a dance theatre to watch a performance. Even in other aspects of design, asymmetry can help break the monotony of a space – the strictly symmetrical landscaping of parks and gardens is not as appreciated as the waywardness of naturally growing forests. Thus, asymmetry is equally important in design – as it stimulates the senses and brings a flavour of excitement. (Refer to Plate 5.5. to understand asymmetry in dance.) However, this does not mean that symmetry has no function in dance and design. Symmetrical design has its uses at the beginning of a sequence, to indicate a serenity of spirit, or again at the ending, when some conviction needs to be stated. In other words, symmetry can be used in moments of rest and repose which are often more soothing and satisfying when symmetrically designed.1 Doris further suggests that in each of these two divisions of design – symmetry and asymmetry there are further subdivisions of – opposition and succession – that is the lines are either opposed at right angles, or are flowing as in a curve respectively. Opposition suggest force: “energy moving in two directions dramatics and emphasized the very idea of energy. The close the opposition comes to a right angle, the more power is suggested.”


Thus, oppositional

designs strengthens and fortifies any mood which calls for aggression, energy or power.

Plate 5.4. Symmetry - Doris Humphrey and Charles Weidman and Plate 5.5 - AsymmetryDoris Humphrey and Charles Weidman



Plate 5.6. Opposition displayed in a dance by Paul Taylor and Plate 5.7. Succession displayed in a performance by Doris Humphrey.

Contrary to opposition is a successional design, which is always milder and gentler. (Refer to plate 5.6. and 5.7.) Whether in curves or straight lines: “the unobstructed shape, which flows pleasantly along its comfortable paths, offers no resistance to the eye. The most soothing design therefore is a symmetrical one with successional pattern. Considerably more stimulation is the asymmetrical succession” – Doris Humphrey, 1958. Fig 5.B. Explains Symmetry, Asymmetry, Opposition & Succession in design as given in ‘The Art of Making Dances’.

Fig 5.B. Explaining Symmetry, Asymmetry, Opposition & Succession from ‘The Art of Making Dances’ by Doris Humphrey. 59


Fig. 5.C. Analysis of Doris Humphrey’s Theory of Design in Space (Courtesy - Author)

Refer to Fig. 5.c to understand the analysis of Humphrey’s design of dances to be used as transferrable concepts. Thus, a balanced use of symmetry, asymmetry, opposition, succession to bring out soothing or stimulating moments or moments of rest and repose bring about a contrast in dance designs. These contrasts are used to compose a phrase. (Generally16 beats in a dance). A phrase contains rises and falls or an exchange between effort and rest. Reminiscent of the most basic human functions, "the heart beats and rests, the lungs fill and subside," a phrase creates a recognizable rhythm for a sequence of movement and make the dance engaging. While Humphrey's theory of choreography is translated into the performances for many years now, it may also be translated to architectural space to address the composition of spatial choreography. The understanding of symmetry, asymmetry and phrase in the composition of a dance can be adapted to the composition of spaces within a building creating a dynamic sequence of spaces for movement. Applying this understanding to the precise and rigid choreography of buildings would result in a shift from the habitual pattern of movement that currently exists towards an increasingly self-aware motion through space.



2. B. RHYTHM Rhythm is one of the key ingredients of dance and is one of the most persuasive and powerful elements. Rhythm permeates in every aspect of life – breathing, walking, speaking, and emoting. According to Humphrey, “Rhythm is a great organiser... Patterns of rhythmical shape lend sense and sensibility to life and the arhythmical mass of matter is chaotic and menace to all organisations.” As architects, we consciously or subconsciously device different rhythms in our buildings and thus, in peoples life. We organise the rhythm of movement in space, the rhythm in the spatial elements in the building etc. Where design is striking, rhythm is rousing.1 Hence, a good understanding of rhythm will help in the architectural design process. But what is rhythm? It is defined as a strong, regular repeated pattern of movement or sound. However, Humphrey suggests that apart from movement and sound dance must look at two more types of rhythm – the rhythms of functions in the body (heartbeat, contraction and relaxation of muscles, sensations etc.) and emotional rhythm - surges and ebbs of feelings in a dance. Rhythms in dance try to bring out a certain character or feel, for e.g. The more speed and bounce the rhythm of movement has, the more youth and vitality are suggested and the more weak and sparse the rhythm of movement is, the older it seems. Thus, we can see that the impressions of young and old arise rhythmically. Humphrey suggests that rhythms can have certain psychological impacts as well, “Movements slower than the normal pace is always more lethargic, even though it is thoughtful; faster is always more exciting, exhilarating.” Even architects can use rhythm to bring out certain emotions/ impressions or create a specific impact on the user. Understanding and organising the four rhythms can help in ordering movement and spatial elements in a building. Rhythm enhances the enjoyment of a space – as it makes the space legible, i.e. makes it easy for an individual to grasp a space. Man likes to understand things in terms of patterns, and is unaffected, or downright unhappy, when confronted with anything of which he does not understand the pattern.1



One of the use of rhythm in architecture can be the alteration between incident and travel, between solid and void. This is generally brought out by rhythmic organisation of spatial elements. For example, there is a pattern in the windows spaced in a wall or columns in a colonnade or arches in an arcade. This pattern in rhythm can be unvarying and continuous as in the case of Mies Van Der Rohe’s federal building in Chigaco and in an arcade. Or it can be varying and dynamic as in the case of Zaha Hadid’s buildings. Rhythm can be controlled by repeated use of a particular line, shape, colour, texture and pattern and can be regular, graduated or random.

Plate 5.13. (Left) Rhythm in an arcade. (Center) Unvarying rhythm in the façade of American Federal Building, Iowa. (Right) Rhythm in the Roof of Zaha Hadid’s Maxxi Museum, Italy.

Leland and Amanda Roth in their book ‘Understanding architecture: Its Elements, History and Meaning’ say that, “This, architectural rhythm is read by visually scanning the surface, much as one might scan, say, a musical score, reading the pattern the notes make through time.” Thus, by reading and analysing the rhythm of a musical symphony, one can develop rhythmic movements, forms, spaces in architecture as well. For example, in the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Daniel Libeskind had a philosophical vision behind applying an opera symphony Moses and Aaron to the design. He used the musical notes a reference to derive his plan. As discussed above there is an intrinsic rhythm in dance movements just like musical notes. Since, rhythm is so fundamental to dance, reading the pattern made by dancers in a dance over time can also help to better understand rhythm. (Fig. F.I.) The rhythm of dance movements as well, can later be explored in architectural designs to order the spatial elements and create a specific rhythm. 62


5.3. A. ANALYSIS – FOUR POINTS IN SPACE To further understand the use of Humphrey’s Theory that has influenced several choreographers and their works – 2 Modern Dance performances are selected and analysed diagrammatically. The performances are analysed for 20 seconds which are assumed to be absolute. 1. FOUR POINTS IN SPACE by Merce Cunningham, 1986 This performance was chosen by Cunningham is an apt dance to be analysed in terms of the ‘Design in Space’. In his dances Cunningham specifically emphasized his ability to devise stage pictures, especially in the dance he calls ''Pictures.'' He continues to use this even in this dance as at any point in the dance, if paused, it looks as though the dancers are posing for a picture. This makes it easy to analyse the design in space of the dance.

Plate 5.8. Snapshots from Four Points In Space by Merce Cunningham, 1986.

By diagrammatically mapping the movement of the dancers (in Fig. 5.D), one understands the design in space at any moment in the dance. The postures formed by the dancer’s body highlight the positive and negative spaces created in space while dancing. These can be further analysed on the basis of Humphrey’s theory of design in space – that of symmetry, asymmetry, opposition and succession.



In Fig.5.E. The coloured squares indicate the type of design used as per Humphrey’s Theory. When studied across the entire span of the dance, one can understand the sequence of design used in the choreography. The sizes of the squares vary from small to big, depending upon how subtly or boldly the design in used by the choreographer. Thus, Fig.5.E gives the sequence of the design in space for Cunningham’s performance and to understand this, one must consider each audience member as not just a ‘viewer’ but an ‘experiencer’ of the performance. Cunningham has started his choreography with a strong statement using asymmetrical oppositions, these have a powerful and long lasting impact on the experiencer, and he then makes the dance exciting by using asymmetrical designs. He tries to stimulate the performance further with the use of asymmetrical successions and it reaches the peak of powerful movements with asymmetrical opposition. Following which Cunningham introduces symmetrical designs which help him end the piece on a stable note, just as Humphrey suggests in her theory. When these movements are mapped across the 20 second span of the performance on the stage, we understand the performance’s design in time as shown in Fig. 5.F. The design in time is nothing but the rhythm of this dance, which is unvarying and continuous, as the dancers do not use the stage space, instead use one corner of the stage and follow a single beat. To understand the use of Humphrey’s theory better and to compare this dance with another, one more performance is analysed on similar lines:

5.3. B. ANALYSIS – DAY ON EARTH Since, this analysis of the choreography is based on Doris Humphrey’s theory, it only makes sense to select one of her performances for the same. Day on Earth, 1947 was choreographed by her towards the end of her courier. Humphrey had fully developed her theory and style of choreography and hence this dance is chosen. 67


Plate 5.9. Snapshots from Day on Earth, 1947 by Doris Humphrey

THEME AND MUSIC: Day on Earth is an objectified telling of man's brief passage on earth set to Aaron Copland's Piano Sonata. It shows life's joys and its trials--the warmth of love and family dependence, the joy of living and the anguish of death, with a repeating theme of man resorting to ‘work’- as a necessity or distraction at several occasions. To narrate this saga only four dancers are used.

John Mueller in his 1979 article for Dance magazine provides a very descriptive narration of the theme “As the curtain rises and the first to move is the man. He expresses the work theme--gestures suggesting ploughing, planting… However he is soon diverted by the young girl, his first love. At first, their movements are quite the opposite: his firm and toward the ground, hers flighty and effervescent. Finally he joins in her carefree hops and skittering jumps. But then she leaves, abruptly, and in bewilderment and grief he returns distractedly to work, exiting to the wings. The



new woman now moves forward and.. Conjures the man out of the wings. Their courtship is brief, their gestures complementary, and they lock hands as the first movement ends. The second movement portrays the family. The man and woman walk upstage and gently raise a sheet under which a child has been lying. Nurturing gestures by the woman urge the child into motion and the three play joyful games. The work theme returns, the man's gestures complemented now by those of the woman, while the child scampers around the two. Near the end of the movement the child seems to mature or to be responding to a distant call and… then she gently departs, leaving them along on the stage. The third movement opens with a lament for the woman over the loss of the child. The man tries to comfort her, but she collapses (dies) in grief. In refuge, he returns forcefully, anguished, to the work theme… but more weakly--his gestures become softer and less specific. The dance work ends as the three adults lie on the floor in a symmetrical formation pulling the sheet out to cover themselves (representing death) as they do so, while the child seats herself on the box, in the position occupied by the woman at the beginning. 5 Copland's music complements all the three phases of the man’s life perfectly the young and Chirpy Youth, the calm and secure family life and the intense phase of departure. For the sake of analysis of the design in space and design in time – 20 seconds (0.20 – 0.40 seconds) the man’s youth is chosen, where the dance is full of variations and freshness – and these 20 seconds are assumed to be absolute (the complete dance.) ANALYSIS By drawing diagrams of the movement of the dancers (in Fig. 5.G), the design in space of the dance becomes clear. In Fig. 5.G. we can understand the variations in postures choreographed by Humphrey as compared to the monotonous designs of Four Points in Space (Fig. 5.D.) By Analysing these diagrams on the basis Humphrey’s theory, the sequence of the design in space becomes clear (Fig. 5.H.). The performance starts with 69


a flash of excitement with the male dancer’s moves. Humphrey then introduces soothing designs with asymmetrical successions and provides symmetrical designs that offer moments of rest towards the middle. She then alternates between symmetrical successions and oppositions to provide soothing and exciting moves to add to the dramatic effect of the experience. (Refer to Fig. 5.C) continuing with the drama, the asymmetrical oppositions provide a punch of power and the phrase finally ends on a stable not with symmetrical designs. The contrast between symmetry-asymmetry and opposition-succession is exploited to its best in this performance Comparing the patterns of design in space for both the above performance one can see that Humphrey’s pattern is way from complex than that of Cunningham’s and that is experienced while watching both the performances – Day on Earth is way more gripping than Four Points in Space. What is most important in Humphrey’s choreography is the symmetrical designs in the middle of the performance – these moments of pause builds up the drama to the climax. The Importance of a pause is discussed in Chapter 5.3. Fig 5.I. explains the design in time for the performance – movements mapped across the stage for 20 seconds. This diagram explains how the performer’s movements on stage across time and thus also gives out the rhythm of movement. While comparing the rhythm for both the dances (5.F. and Fig. 5.I), one can conclude that the dancers use more of the stage space in Day on earth, they use different parts of the stage and even make use of levels, by jumps and leaps in the air. The rhythm of movements followed in four points in space is more regular and unvarying against that in Day on Earth which is more varying and dynamic. If studied and analysed carefully, these diagrams can help in the design and choreography of architectural spaces and also to choreograph movement of people through these spaces. Thus, a framework for a spatial organisation of spaces can arise out of these dances. Such a spatial composition no longer acts a means of precisely defining movement but as an invitation of movement by engaging the user. The transferable nature of architecture thus, can be used to find architecture within dance with the help of these diagrams. 70


5.2. D. ZONES AND PATHS While speaking about the use of the stage in her book, Humphrey regards the four corners of the stage being powerful points. She gives special importance to the two corners at the rear end as there are several stage lines converging at these two points. She says “There are lines racing to these two points from various parts of the stage to form right angles- always makers of power.” (Refer to Fig. 5.O. a.) Thus, she claims that a figure standing at any of the two of these would have a heroic significance and the path from the back corner to the diagonally opposite front corner is the most powerful path of the stage. As the figure, appears bigger and heroic as he moves forward. (Refer to Fig. 5.O. b.)

Fig. 5.O. a. (Left Image) Diagram for describing the architecture of the stage space, with maximum lines converging at the back corners (shown in red), making them the most powerful spots on the stage. And Fig. 5.O. b. (Right Image) Doris’ diagram showing the path from the back corner to the diagonally opposite front corner is the most powerful path of the stage.

While analysing the movement of dancers in Day on Earth (in Fig. 5.J. and 5.K), Humphrey’s understanding of stage space comes through. When the stills, walks, leaps and jumps of the dancers are mapped, one can see that Humphrey creates three zones of movement on the stage which are not centrally located in the space but are placed along the corners (and are equidistant from the centre). These zones are connected by two paths one radial and the other diagonal. The diagonal path that the dancers follow that consists of the strong leaps of the dance. Starting off in the back left corner, the dancers glide through the diagonal path with powerful leaps and jumps towards the opposite front corner. In the process, they move closer to the audience and can relate better with them. The role of the audience in experiencing the dance is only limited up to watching the performance from a stationery point, the audience doesn’t move around while watching the performance (as in the case of site specific dances). 74


Figure 5.P. – Spatial Analysis Of Day on Earth.





Zone A

The boy notices a young female.

Arms and legs wide open – swaying left to right and looking upwards. = appreciative gesture.

Swaying smoothly in one place (no path).

Frontal movements

Path 1

They get to know each other.

Start to hold hands and walk together a moderate pace with a bounce, with hands wide open – alternately looking front and back = Inviting gesture.

Side and Frontal movements

Zone B

They spend more time together.

Path 2

After getting acquainted with each other they start moving towards their respective focus.

Hold hands (opened wide), walking with a bounce – together looking left and right alternately = Collaborative, Combined gestures Individually Hop – Leap – Leap (1XRepeat), with hands pointing in diagonal direction and body moving in same direction. The hops are playful and leaps are focused = Focused gestures.

Defined nonlinear curved path, brings out ease in movement seamlessly moving from Zone A to Zone B Moving in a horizontal path.

Clear linear and diagonal path from zone A to Zone B but this time also using levels (jumps and leaps)

Diagonal Facing movements. (However the Zone C can be seen straight ahead.)

Zone C

The boy performs by himself while the other stands still. The girl dances alone while the boy kneels down.

Individual male dancer jumps, raising his hands and legs = Excited gesture.

Jumping in one sport (no horizontal path) but vertical levels. Jumping in one sport (no horizontal path) but vertical level.

Side facing movements.

Both meet and diverge into their respective paths.

Both the dancers move towards each other & hold hands = Conversive gesture

Horizontal path towards each other.

Side facing movements.

Zone D

Zone E

Individual female dancer hops thrice = Excited gesture



Back facing movements.

Side facing movements.


Figure 5.P. – Spatial Analysis Of Day on Earth.

TEXTURE (Emotion & Feel)




Smooth yet Energetic Feel.

Individual but not isolated (Mirroring each other).

Moving in one’s personal space but not completely isolated. Dancers look up thus, appreciating the volume.

Joyful and Inviting.

Partnering (coordinating with each other).

Beginning to share space and to know the partner. This space is inviting. Dancers look around indicating the openness of the space.

Lively and Inviting.

Partnering (Matching each other)

Shared space where they function in harmony and collaborate with each other.

This type of a spatial character indicates a space similar to a co working space, where people share space and collaborate. The atmosphere of such places is generally lively and inviting.

Focussed, watchful and Energetic.

Individual but not isolated (Mirroring each other).

This path gives a feeling of being in an enclosed space with a single view point at the end of it. The space directs the dancer towards that point.

This path seems to transport the user in a space that requires focus and attention.


Individual (sort of secluded).

Vibrant and Stimulating.

Individual (sort of secluded).

Zone C gives a feeling of seclusion. Of being in one’s own comfortable space where no one can distract you. It is similar to Zone C. The dancers in both cases are enjoying & experiencing the space to the fullest.

The spatial character is of a space that is vibrant yet secluded. Where an individual can work or contemplate in seclusion. Similar to that as Zone C. This space seems to be an engaging one, that has a great influence on the user


Coming together

A space for discussions & conversations. Where people can share opinions.

The character similar to that of discussion or meeting rooms.


This zone and its character could be translated into a private space such as a work space but around other work places. (Hence, not completely isolated). The pathway is like a path with public set ups on the way, which are open and inviting and give scope for chance encounters like an enjoyable public café or art gallery.


The 20 seconds analysed are from the portion of the dance, that depicts the man’s youth and hence, the overall character of the dance is lively, outgoing and youthful. In each of these zones and paths, have their distinct movements, gestures, relationship between dancers, and expressions etc. which bring out a certain character to these zones. These can analysed to understand the spatial characters that these zones offer. For further analysis the 3 zones are named A, B, C and the paths are names 1 and 2 respectively (Fig. 5.K.). The spatial analysis of Day on Earth is done as per the framework used to analyse and breakdown a creative dance taught to children as per guidelines laid down British Columbia by choreographers Breanne Duren and Laura. They analysed the dance by laying emphasis on the following categories – Actions, Gestures, Spatial, Relationships and Imagery. The spatial analysis of Humphrey’s dance is based on this basic framework but modified into the following categories – Imagery, Action & Gesture, Path, Facing direction, Social Relationships and Spatial Analysis. The analysis is taken a step forward by relating the spatial character to an architectural space. (Fig. 5.P.) Thus, from Fig. 5.P. we can see the clear spatial character of each zone and how they can be related to architectural spaces. To be able to clearly understand this analysis one must watch the performance not once but a couple of times. Since the dance is only 20 seconds the role of the foreground and background aren’t as noticeable and operative. However, all through the sequence, the lady squatting in the back – centre plays an important role in helping to locate oneself – she acts like a backdrop feature and although the attention never really goes on her, she gives a sense of orientation and location to the dancers and audience and thus, a sense of comfort. The costumes of the dancers are more or less neutral and the light quality throughout the performance is steady and constant throughout. Hence, the light quality and colours do not really contribute to the different spatial moods in Day on Earth. The zones and paths defined and analysed in Day on Earth, could become potential basis for zoning explorations and studies for architectural design as well. (The role and designs of Zones and paths for inspiring engagement in architectural spaces are discussed in Chapter 8.2)



5.2. E. PAUSE Humphrey speaks about introducing moments of Rest and Repose in her choreography by introducing symmetrical designs (as mentioned above). These give rest not only to the body of the dancers but also to the eyes and minds of the audience that has been watching the performance. These moments of rest generally introduced somewhere in the middle of the dance, also help the audience to comprehend the dance better. The extremely energetic phrases are broken down with pauses to highlight these phrases. Surjit Nongmeikapam, contemporary dancer & choreographer, while speaking about his choreography says that, being a contemporary dancer, dance for him is following his heart and doing what his body asks him to do. Even though he thinks of dance as a more instinctive process, he believes that there has to be a structure and a sequence to the choreography and that this structure must have pauses (breaks) and surprises17 similar to what Humphrey tries to do in her Choreography.

Plate. 5.10. Students contemplating in the Corridor at IIM Bangalore, by B.V. Doshi



Plate. 5.10. Students congregating in the Corridor at IIM Bangalore, by B.V. Doshi

This holds true even for the experience architectural spaces. If one imagines a user experiencing buildings by moving around, it is essential to provide pause spaces, not only for the user to rest but also to let him comprehend and engage with the space. Pauses act as spaces to relax, congregate and interact with people and the built form. Architect B.V. Doshi’s in his design for IIM, Bangalore has introduced long and unusually high (three storeyed) corridors with innumerable vistas and focal points for generating a dialogue with oneself. These corridors sometimes are open, sometimes closed and sometimes topped by a glazed skylight which create the Humphrey’s phrase-like highs and lows in the experience. However, the spatial experience of the corridor is further heightened as the width modulates at several occasions to become wide enough to accommodate a group of people, or to provide enough room for an individual to pause. These widened corridor spaces or ‘pause spaces’ are a highlight for the students of the campus. They get a chance to congregate, share ideas and engage with each other in these spaces which is essential for their minds and vistas to grow. Thus, pauses are important both in dance and architecture.




Martha Graham (1894 –1991) was an American dancer and choreographer whose influence on dance has been compared with the influence Picasso had on the modern visual arts, or Frank Lloyd Wright had on architecture. At the beginning of Graham's career, the movement she was developing was sought to be entirely opposite from tradition ballet, she rejected the austere and extremely stylized dance form that ballet was and came up with movements that were based upon the expressive quality of the human body, Thus, breaking the status quo of typical dance and reviving it as a modern dance form of art, which later served as the foundation for the ‘Graham technique’ largely involved the use of breath – ‘contraction and release, along with an increased use of floor, and the conceptual development behind pieces of movement.’ Graham’s work has inspired not only dancers but several artists, fashion designers and architects as well.

Plate 5.11. Contraction and Expansion in modern dance



5.4. A. ANALYSIS - LAMENTATION, 1930 ‘Lamentation,’ a modern dance choreographed by Graham and premiered in New York City in 1930 has prejudiced several artists, sculptors and designer all over the world due to its artistic and aesthetic value. THE DANCE - This dance was a solo performance, with the dancer sitting stationery on a bench and was based on Graham’s technique of use of breath - cycles between contractions and the subsequent release (as shown above). Her movement originated in the tension of a contracted muscle, and continued in the flow of energy released from the body as the muscle relaxed. This method of muscle and breath control formed the movements in her dance. During the early 1930s, her work was focused on emotional themes. Lamentation was a portrait of a grieving women, sitting alone on a bench and moving to Zoltán Kodály's anguished piano score. Lamentation is known as Grahams one of the

most engaging and touching performances..

Plate 5.12. Lamentation by Martha Graham 1930

THE SKIN AND FORM - Martha said that the main inspiration for the dance came from the Old Testament and more specifically from ‘The Book of Lamentations’ that opens with the sentence “How doth the city sit solitary, that was full of people! How is she become a widow” Thus, in the above statement Jerusalem is personified as a widow, in Graham's choreography the dancer represents this city in the form of a mourning woman. Apart from the emotional quotient of the dance, one very interesting aspect of this performance is the costume - a tube of elastic fabric wrapped around her body. She stretches inside the costume as if it were her ‘own skin’ – the ‘skin 83


of the city’ she represents. When she moves within this costume while expressing her grief, she also creates architectural figures, some angular, while some more fluid, altering and morphing, twisting and turning her body, The scholar Elizabeth Kendall has written that Lamentation is both a piece about the emotion of grief and ‘a visual homage to contemporary architecture’, most notably the new skyscrapers that were beginning to fill the New York skyline. She describes Graham's figure in the dance as "a skyscraper reeling," making a direct connection between the form and skin of the buildings of New York and Graham’s performance. Here, the skin of the city (dancer’s costume), although representational brings out an important aspect of the city and its buildings – ‘The skin’ and ‘The form’ Thus, a diagrammatical analysis of Graham’s dance can help us understand these forms and the structure behind the skin and this can be translated in creating architectural spaces or the skin of a building. The diagrams in Fig. 5.L. are created by noting Graham’s movement inside the skin throughout the dance, that started with subtle hand movements in the sitting position, and moved to vigorous body movements and twisting and ended with movements of hands and legs in the upright body position. By noting the edges and points of intersections of the different forms created by the skin in the dance, one can understand the structure behind the elastic skin of the dancer that creates these forms. (As shown in Fig.5.M.) The structural of the forms derived can be super imposed to create spaces that recreate such forms and engage the users just as Graham engages her audience. (Top graphic of Fig, 5.N.) The idea of the forms can be further explored by imagining these forms in a 3 dimensional space creating a dynamic enclosure for the space. (As shown in bottom graphic of Fig, 5.N.) One can explore these concepts of skin and form in models– using different materials, volumetric analysis of the spaces created, the light in these spaces and the emotions that they can evoke.



5.5. CASE STUDY - STEVIE ELLER DANCE THEATRE After studying dances, it is important to look at how the analysis can be used in a design. Stevie Eller Dance Theatre is a good example one of the buildings that takes dance as an inspiration. It is a 295-seater auditorium near the eastern gateway of the University of Arizona campus. Apart from the main auditorium it houses dance studio and facilities, a scene shop and costume shop. The building was initially conceived out of a father and daughter’s quest to find a distinguished college dance program, who ended up funding the project. Architects took inspiration from Balanchine’s ballet – ‘Serenade’ as it was to be performed in this auditorium by the daughter. The designers worked with the faculty to learn about dance and about movement — how the human body fills space and glides through it. They also learned about Labanotation, a method for graphically describing choreography. The designers acquired the Labanotation and score for Serenade. (Fig. 5.Q) They studied the notations, and overlaid the starting positions for each movement of the work. What emerged was a matrix of points that became the locations of the dancing columns that support the second-floor dance studio. Hence, the seemingly random rhythm was acquired from the dance choreography.

Fig. 5.Q. Labnotation for Serenade (Left) and the dancing columns on the level 1 plan acquired from the labnotation. (Right in red)

In the wire screens on the east elevation the architect has translated three dimensions of the human body into an architectural presence and form (Plate 5.14), as if the human were to waltz across the facade. Although the 88


screen may seem to be present only for aesthetical reasons but it also acts as a layer of buffer for the dance studios from the brutal desert sun. At night when the dance look, visible through the screen look like they are celebrating their art and animating the glass facade with their movement. The architectural language of the exterior is taken in the interiors of the theatre as well.

Plate 5.14. Concept of East Faรงade of Stevie Eller Dance Theatre.

Thus, the architects in this case approached the project with a creative approach of taking inspiration from dance. To accomplish this fusion of dance and architecture, Gould Evans has demonstrated form-making with purpose, not purely as an end in itself. The result is architecture and dance both inspiring each other.12 Although in this case the analysis of visual qualities of dance is used in terms of form and rhythm, but one can also look at the spatial qualities and the experience of the dancers (as studied in the case of Day on Earth) as inspiration to not only derive the form of the dance but also break down the experience of the dancer.

Plate 5.15. Exterior and Interior view of Stevie Eller Dance Theatre displaying the wire screen. 89


5.6. CONCLUSION A look at these choreographers’ approach towards their choreography and a study of their dances helps to understand the intent behind each decision they took, whether it was the designs of sequences of movements, rhythm of movements or use of different zones on the stage, or the use of a certain material to define their theme or to create forms. Consciously or subconsciously every architect makes decisions in similar respects while designing – he designs people’s movements through the building, ensures a well thought of zoning of all the spaces, decides a material/ skin/ fenestrations and form that would suit his design intent. Thus, if these choreographers were able to achieve a great level of engagement with their audience through their choreography, architects with the help of the concepts of RHYTHM, SEQUENCE, PATHS & ZONES AND FORMS derived out of the analysis of dance and also with the help of EXPERIENCE derived out of spatial analysis of dance, could try to produce spaces engaging spaces.


CHAPTER 6 ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN DANCER & THE PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT A look at some of the modern and postmodern dances and the choreographic techniques in Chapter 3 and 5 helped to understand how these provide for engagement at different levels. To take this understanding of engagement further, this Chapter looks at how dance composers make their dancers interact and respond to the physical world and thus, engage with it. To understand this, we shall look at the creative approaches adopted by some of them to create a dialogue between their dancer and the immediate physical environment. We shall also study a fairly recent approach in dance – Site specific dances – which are dances created out of an engagement with a specific site.


6.1. A. WAYNE MCGREGOR’S CREATIVE APRROACH We all use our body on a daily basis, and yet few of us think about our physicality. Most of us do not think of our bodies too much, unless we feel something, like pain when we’re hurt. Most of our movements are subconscious, for example, while picking up a glass, we aren’t fully aware of the presence of our hands, its strength and the activity it is performing. While dancing, the dancer is fully aware of his body, his physicality. Every step he takes, every move he makes embraces his body. This awareness helps the dancer to completely experience the space around him, it enables him to engage with it. Wayne McGregor, a British choreographer of contemporary modern dance, terms this sense of awareness about the body as ‘Physical thinking’ – the sense of the presence of our own body in space, in the real world. In his on- stage choreography, he makes dancers build phrases of dance, live and unscripted, on the TEDGlobal stage by making them imagine a space and then engage with it. He asks the dancers to imagine a space - the space created by the alphabet ‘T’ when written on the floor or the three dimensional form of the alphabet ‘E’. By asking them to dance around/ in/ over the imaginary space created by these shapes, he makes the dancer perceive and relate to this imaginary spaces / forms Their reactions to these forms is what composes the dance, they go around the vertical of the alphabet T or bend under both its branches

Fig. 6.A. Graphical Representation of dancers dancing around McGregor’s imagined 3D space with alphabet E.



He then asks the dancers to think how the body would react if one of the walls of the 3D alphabet E comes falling down or the entire alphabet was to be painted red? How would the body react to this space? Would they fall along with the wall? Or would the red colour all over the wall force them to come up with aggressive dance moves? (Fig. 6.A.) Here, McGregor tries to make his dancers aware and thus, feel and react to the space. Choreographer Anna Halprin in her Visual Design and Dance course in New Hampshire (1943) rightly said, “Space is to design what movement is to dance or sound is to music. Like movement, space is something that we use every day in all our activities... Our task is to first become consciously aware of space so that we may experiment ways of controlling it.” Architects, like McGregor and other dance choreographers have the power to make the bodies aware of its being, its physical existence in the world. And they must make the most of this power, to promote a dialogue between the body and the physical world and thus, provide for an enriching engagement between the two.

6.1.B. DIAVOLO – ARCHITECTURE IN MOTION Every choreographer when he choreographs a piece, he intentionally or unintentionally creates a space for his dancer within/around which his body moves. However, Jacques Hiem, the founder of an American dance company called Diavolo, 1992 provides his dancers with a physical architectural space to interact with - in the form of life sized props and sets and thus, starts his creative choreographic process. His dances are a result of an engagement between the architectural prop and the dancer’s body. Heim steers his team of dancers, designers, engineers and choreographers to create visceral and aweinspiring works that reveal how we are affected emotionally and socially by the spaces we inhabit.13 While describing his creative choreographic process he says, Diavolo pieces always start with a passionate idea – born out of artwork that moved me in a certain way, or an exchange I watched between two people on the street, for example. I immediately decide on an idea for a constructivist set piece. Whether 92


found or constructed, I choose the set because of its role in our lives – its architectural qualities, its geometric shapes and its mechanical functionality. In short, it must be something striking, as landscape or as object that compels exploration and the desire to understand the ways in which it influences human behaviour. Using a structured improvisation process, I engage dancers in a journey of working out with a new prop for at least six weeks – exploring the set’s possibilities, and cultivating the story behind the work. Sometimes the process takes more time, or goes off in an entirely new direction.” 13

Plate 6.1. Jacques Hiem’s Sketches (top), Life sized set (Bottom left), Model (Bottom right)

The six weeks given to the dancers to explore the space, is nothing but giving time to them to engage with it. Dancers, explore the possibilities of movement with this prop and the extent to which their bodies can interact with it. This engagement brings out a dialogue between the architecture and the dancer which eventually leads to the dance choreography. Hiem calls himself ‘an architect’ instead of a ‘choreographer’ because he doesn’t design the dance moves but designs spaces instead. If choreographers can design spaces that engage the body in all its aspects, architects should take inspiration from these choreographers to do the same. 93


6.2. A. SITE SPECIFIC DANCE - INTRODUCTION After looking at how choreographers bring about a dialogue between dancers and the spaces that they themselves have built or imagined, let us understand how they do the same with the existing architectural and natural environments. Site specific dance is a postmodern dance form that inspires a place-people engagement, more than any other dance. (Plate 6.2.) In the production and performance process of these dances, the choreographer, dancers and audience engage with the site (architectural building or a natural environment) at multiple occasions. Victoria Hunter, a researcher and choreographer of Site Specific Dance in her book ‘Moving Sites: Investigating Site specific Dance performance’ speaks about Site Specific dances as being extremely engaging and says that, “It is a distinct form of dance practice that, though its engagement with everyday rural and urban environments presents opportunities to explore space, place and environment through corporeal means.” Studying this dance form can not only help architects to enhance the place people relationship in the buildings they design but also, to answer for themselves the concerns relating to place and space and get new ways of approaching a site and project. While speaking about her fascination with this dance form Hunter says that, “It is a revelatory experience, one that reveals to the experiencer not only something about the site but also exposes their own processes of being-in-theworld.” Most architects look at architecture also as a process of revelation – one that reveals itself to the user while he inhabits it and one that allows the user to be exposed to himself. Thus, studying this dance form can help in various stages in the process of architectural design. “Site specific dance can be defined as a dance performance created and performed in response to a specific site or location.” (Hunter, 2016) This definition is the simplest way of describing the inevitable role that the site plays in such a dance so much so, that without the site, the dance ceases to exist. “To move the site-specific work is to re-place it, to make it something else,” writes Nick Kaye in Site-Specific Art: Performance, Place and Documentation, Routledge, 2013.



Conventionally, even buildings and architectural interventions are meant to be responses to a specific site. Architects must study, understand and analyse all the aspects of the site and its context - social, historical, economic, architectural and environmental. However, the modern day buildings that are often argued to look and feel placeless, in the sense that they do not belong to the context they are built in, displaying an architects’ insensitivity towards the site. Most of the commercial glass towers almost feel like they could be picked from the existing location and placed anywhere in the world which indicates that they aren’t truly connected to the location they are built in. Thus, understanding how choreographers approach and respond to the site will prove beneficial. Adding to Hunter’s understanding of Site specific dance as revelatory, she says that “It gives an opportunity to reveal the site in which it occurs in a new light, as a place of performance, This temporary act of transformation challenges perceptions of familiar places by moving them as sites of play, engagement and interaction as opposed to ‘background’ facades.3 Although in a performance, this intervention in the site is temporal, in case of architecture such interventions are permanent. Today, several architects take up projects that are interventions in already existing buildings either functional or redundant to continue its existing use or in the case of redundant buildings to incorporate new functions. Some projects even intend to intervene and revitalize age old buildings that contribute largely to the culture and heritage of that location. However, to understand the current day approaches in Site Specific dance it is important to first study its history and origin of this dance form.

Plate 6.2. Snapshots Stone and Form by Mairead Vaughan Shakram Dance Co. performed in 2013. Dancers are seen engaging with stone ruins.



6.3. BETWEEN DANCE AND ARCHITECTURE - PLACE AND EVENT Dance and architecture are the two disciplines that are explored in Site specific dances and it is necessary to understand the correlation of the two (i.e. at what points do the two meet) in this postmodern dance form. “Architecture is defined by the actions it witnesses as much as by the enclosures of its walls. Murder in the Street differs from Murder in the Cathedral.” – Bernard Tschumi, 1978. Tshumi says that architecture is constructed by its use and use is nothing but an activity or an action performed by the user. From everyday activities such as walking, cooking, sleeping to events such as fairs and festivals, construct architecture as much as the architect himself. Thus, there is a strong connection between the physical space and the action/ event that takes place in it. This relationship has been explored by several architects and theorists and Aldo Evan Eyck is one of them. The Dutch architect spoke about architecture as ‘place and event’ rather than ‘space and time’. “This signified a shift in focus: from understanding architecture as merely physical objects, which might age with time (independent of human activity): to understanding buildings as emotionally and personally significant places determined as much by the events that go on in them, as by the demarcation of their walls.” - Rachel Sara in Hunter, 2015 This determines that architecture is not just about the building as an object but also about the buildings as place which becomes so, due to the people that use it at several events. The shift in focus of architecture being an intersection between place and event begins to imply a commonality with dance, as an activity that is concerned with constructing event and place. This commonality of ‘place and event’ between the two domains is what Site Specific Dances tend to explore. When a Site Specific Dance is performed, it changes the site temporarily from being just a physical object to a place of performance that holds the event (the dance).



Thus, although dance and architecture are both concerned with ‘place and event’. Architects might typically be seen to produce the spaces that dancers might dance in (often heavily inspired by the kinds of activities that they predict might go on in that space). Dancers create events and activities within those spaces (often heavily inspired by the space for which they are creating those events). Therefore, one can say that dance and architecture lie on the continuum between space and event. 3 (Refer to Fig.6.3.)

Fig. 6.C. Architecture and Dance can be seen as locations on a share continuum between space and event. (Source – Hunter, 2015: 65)

Architecture being primarily concerned with the space end of the continuum and dance being typically concerned with the event end of the continuum. “However the continuum also implies, there are architects who are more concerned with the creation of event, or in other words what the architecture does, than the space itself, just as there are dancers and choreographers who are more concerned with the creation and interpretation of space, than the event itself” (E.g. Jack Hiem from Diavolo and most site choreographers.) In Site specific dances, the choreographer is more concerned with the site (space) from which the dance evolves. Thus, architects can incorporate this understanding of ‘event and place’ from Site Specific dances to create architecture that thinks of both the built form as well as the events that take place in it so that the buildings designed by them do not turn out to be objects of awe but rather experiences and memories that last with the user. After understanding how site specific dances are concerned with the concept of ‘place and event’, let us look at how choreographers approach the site to convert it into a place that holds the event in the following chapters.



6. 4. APPROACHES IN SITE SPECIFIC CHOREOGRAPHY Drawing upon the work of architectural philosophical theorists concerned with experiencing space, including Henri Lefebvre (1991), Bryan Lawson (2001), Tuan (1974, 1977) and Gaston Bachelard (1964), Victoria Hunter discusses how we experience perceive and interact with space. Hunter says that our kinaesthetic, sensory, cognitive, spatial, ideological and psychological understanding of space combine and contribute towards out experiences of space. And how all these contextual elements combine is the concern of a site specific choreographer. Thus, a site specific choreographer has to study and interact with the architecture (site) in all these respects to truly experience the site. To a great extent, architects are also concerned with how all these elements come together in the spaces they design to give a complete understanding and experience of it to the user. Let us briefly take a look at some of the approaches adopted by choreographers while dealing with the site. Site dance practitioners Melanie Khloetzel and Carolyn Palvik (2009) propose 4 categories to approach and experience a site in their publication ‘Site Dance: Choreographers and the lure of alternative spaces’ In Excavating Place: Memory and Spectacle they refer to processes that engage choreographers with researching historical information in an attempt to ‘unearth the memories linked to place’. Environmental dialogues: Sensing site involves the choreographers and performer’s sensory responses a means of developing dance content. Revering beauty: The essence of Place is a category that draws on phenomenological and aesthetic explorations of site as means of ‘restoring people’s communication with place by enhancing their admiration of it’. Civic interventions: Accessing Community refers to exploring the political and social issues of the location and using those as the basis of the performance. 3 Movement artists Miranda Tufnell and Chris Crickmay prefer to an embodied approach to experiencing space and place, an approach similar to that of movement artist Helen Poynor involving a process of listening, waiting and responding corporeally to a site. Hunter while speaking about Poynor’s work says that ‘The body’s immersion in the landscape constitutes the central core of their dance.’



6.6 Here and Now – beneath, 2004 Victoria Hunter created a Site Specific Dance called ‘Beneath’ in the year 2004. There were 6 dancers in the dance and it was performed in the basement of the Bretton Hall mansion building. (The mansion building dates back to the eighteenth century and housed the University of Leeds School of Performance and Cultural Industries until 2007). The following text studies and analyses the entire process of the dance.

Plate 6.6. Dancer’s engaging with the wall on site during ‘Beneath’, 2004. (Courtesy – P. Davies)

THE CONCEPT Throughout the process of the production, rehearsal and performance of the dance, Hunter explored a concept that was discussed by Doreen Massey in the 2005 seminar entitled ‘Making Space’, which is the concept of ‘here and nows’ akin to ‘being in the moment’. Hunter discussed Massey’s here and now in relation to the concept of dance embodiment informed by the phenomenological interaction with the genius loci8 or ‘spirit of place’. These basically implied that by being consciously present in the space, one can experience the spirit and the essence of it to the fullest.



Hunter understands “Phenomenology as an experiential phenomenon based on the conscious presence of the individual in space resulting in a human lived experience of that space.” She applied this understanding of phenomenology in her performance “as the body’s lived experiences and interactions with the site”, these experiences are embodied by the dancers and transformed and expressed through the medium of this dance. This process occurs due to the heightened awareness of the body in the space during which the body becomes porous, open and receptive. Thus, while speaking about her process, Hunter says “My research attempts to interrogate a conscious sense of connection with the site experienced by myself as choreographer and the performers throughout the creative process. This experience was informed and heightened by an awareness of being in the world comprising of an embodied experience derived from being in the space.” The bodily awareness and experiencing of the site is placed at the centre of most site specific dances, especially in the production of ‘Beneath’.


Fig. 6.B. Explains the engagement of the choreographer, dancer and audience with the site, in the process of the Site Specific Dance. (A detailed understand of the process is explained in Fig 6.E.) (Courtesy – Author)

The various phases involved in the pocess are– Experiencing the site, Expressing the site, Embodying the site and receiving the site in the form of a performance work. 100


6.5. A. EXPERIENCING THE SITE From the onset of the project her aim was to create a work that would exist in sympathy with the site. The creation process described below, throws light upon the interactive relationship between the site, choreographer, performer and audience. (Fig.6.1)

PRE-PRODUCTION RESEARCH Before engaging with the site Hunter carried out a pre-production research that went into the history and use/ occupation of this redundant site. Which revealed that the several rooms in the basement used to be a wine cellar fed by a long corridor. The space was unheated, packed with mosquitoes and clad in dust as it was abandoned for a long time. (Plate 6.7.) The pre-production research helped her relate to the way these spaces were used before and helped her connect to past stories and energies. “Disused or abandoned sites, however, inevitably carry with them a sense of the past pertaining to the lives of the previous occupants or the former usage of the site. These resonances may be informed by factual information discovered through pre-production research and at times by architectural and functional components remaining in situ.” This led her to the next stage of experiencing the site that is observing the architectural features and engaging with them phenomenologically.

Plate 6.7. The Basement Site (Courtesy – Victoria Hunter)







EXPERIENCES On visiting the site, Hunter couldn’t help but notice some interesting architectural features of the site which helped her to structure her choreography. In this respect Hunter said that, “The vaulted ceiling, partial dividing wall and a variety of doorways all of which served to fuel the choreographic imagination”. However, her interaction with the site didn’t merely end at observing it. She engaged with it at a corporeal level. Started to understand and absorb the environment of the site as well. This is where her understanding to Norberg-Schulz’s (1980) concept of the ‘essence of place’ comes into the picture. He asserts that ‘The environmental character of a space combines with more formal spatial and architectural features to produce lived space that can be experienced holistically’. Thus, by being consciously aware and present in the site – in the here and now of the site – she experienced it architecturally as well as phenomenologically in the sense that, ‘the basement site now appeared to leave a resonance of past lives, narratives and less explicitly, energies that began to inform her own subjective experiencing of the site in the here and now.’ In this process, theories of experiencing space drawn from Lawson (2001), Lefebvre (1974) and Tuan (1974) provided a theoretical framework for the practical investigation of the site.

FIRST RESPONSE Hunter began to use these observations and experiences in developing her choreography. “On an immediate, practical level the site presents the choreographer with a range of spatial information. Elements of which may serve to inform the creation of movement material and choreographic form.” – Hunter, 2015:99 Thus her initial investigation into the site led her to come up with a basic organisational structure for her performance. For this stage in the creative process she says, “The formal architectural and spatial information combined with historical and contextual information concerning the former inhabitants of



the building and the past function of the site to suggest an immediate choreographic response. This response consisted of the imagined creation of an organisation structure for the dance commencing with a solo introduction to the space, followed by a group dance section contained within the larger winecellar room. This resulted in the preparation of a ‘storyboard’.” (Refer to Fig. 6.3.)

Fig 6.D. Hunter’s Choreographic Diary entry, 14 July 2004 (Courtesy - Victoria Hunter). This entry speaks about her immediate response to the initial phases of the site research and study.

SENSING THE SITE While the formal site qualities allowed Hunter to structure her choreography and plan it out well. She says, “Any attempt to generate movement content appeared futile. Through a negotiation of the corporeal and phenomenological experiencing of the site I was in danger of overlooking a vital component in the creation of Site Specific dance performance. Clearly an embodied approach involving the body-in-space was required.” Thus, to experience the site with a less forced approach she let herself spend time at the site alone, just to be in the space in a series of moments. While describing this she says, “This involved me moving slowly through the space, touching, sensing and experiencing the space, or simply sitting quietly absorbing the atmosphere around me.”



“Abandoned, cold, shut down, an empty shell. Flickering-light beneath the surface, resonances, energies. “(Choreographic Project, diary entry, 20 July 2004) - Hunter, 2015. This approach of simply ‘being’ in the site invoked an awareness of the site’s true phenomenological essence that wasn’t influenced by any former study/ analysis/ interpretation of any data written about the site.3 When equated to architecture, architects must also engage with the site at several levels like Hunter did. And although pre-production research and the observing of the site are important steps in engaging with it, they shouldn’t form the only site research done for the project. A sensory and phenomenological engagement with the site is extremely essential to be able to come up with an architectural intervention that is a direct response to the site and its location. “The notion of intervention or disturbance becomes particularly pertinent when discussing the creation of work in disused or abandoned sites. As previously discussed, the site offers up a wealth of visual, spatial, historical and factual information for the explorer. But it is only through bodily interaction and intervention that the site’s phenomenology and genius loci are revealed.” 3

AN INTERPLAY OF RESPONSES As the choreography and dance developed, Hunter realised her responses to the site in the form of movements were an interplay between her experiences from her initial formal study as well as the sensory experiencing of the site. “Notions of the past-lives, energies, and resonances of the past began to appear as key themes serving to provide a framework and conceptual structure… However, the intention was never to attempt to recreate a snapshot of the past. Instead, the theme and the notions of the past were explored in relation to their impact upon the individuals experiencing of the site in the here and now.”



6.5. B. EXPRESSING THE SITE This process involved the formulation of the research data into dance responses to express the performer’s and choreographer’s responses. To retaining a sense of connectivity to the site, Hunter continued to hold rehearsals on site itself (Plate 6.6) with “the intention that the work would develop in a process of negotiation and collaboration with the site. However, at times Hunter faced difficulty to verbally describe her sensory and phenomenological interaction with the site to her dancer’s. Thus she used other mediums such as movement actions, imagery, sound utterances and physical demonstration along with verbal descriptions.”

However, Hunter did not always force her responses onto the bodies of her dancers. Instead she allowed them to improvise some of the movements based on their sensory, phenomenological and corporeal responses to the site. As a result, the dancers came up with a whole lot of dynamic movements, which were a response to the site in their own way.

Plate 6.8. Practice session for ‘Beneath’, 2004.



SITE AS CHOREOGRAPHER In this process of expressing her responses, Hunter realised that the site in a way had begun to choreograph her work. Sticking to her intention to ‘reveal’ the site, only movements that came out as a direct response to the site appeared to be effective in this sense. At every point in the choreographic process, she noticed that the site did most of the job for her. In this respect she says, “The dancer’s hand touched the air and played with its texture between the fingers. This movement resulted from my direct response to the dusty, damp atmosphere contained within the site.” 3 The architectural features also greatly influenced her movement. “My aesthetic and artistic attention was drawn towards particular architectural and spatial features that could not be ignored. These features included the presence of a central dividing wall which began to operate as a choreographic device in its own right, as movement sequences incorporating touching, leaning, running and rebounding into the wall began to develop.” 3 (Plate 6.6.) Like Hunter’s practice sessions, if architects actually considered to sketch, conceptualise and plan on site, the buildings they design would be a direct corporeal and sensory response to the conditions on the site and not to what the internet or other sources have to say about it. Like Victoria’s dancers, if an architect got his entire team to visit and engage with the site, the overall design solution wouldn’t be the placeless looking buildings of today, instead be a team effort at creating a meaningful place.

6.5. C. EMBODYING THE SITE If embodiment is referred to as process whereby the human body gives ‘tangible form to ideas’ (- Preston – Dunlop, 2002 in Hunter, 2015), then the intention of the dancers and the dance in the Beneath project was to give form to ideas and responses arising from an interaction with the site. This stage primarily involved the refining, formalisation and stylising the initial response movements into structured dance sequences. However, the most important part of this stage was allowing the dancer to ‘reconnect with the site’. “In



conventional creative performance processes contained within a studio setting the rehearsal and refining process with its necessary shift of focus towards the concretisation of an end product can result in the performance becoming distanced from their initial response to a particular stimulus.”3 However, in this case to prevent the initial responses from being diluted and to re-engage with the site. Thus, Hunter says, “The dancers were encouraged to consciously see the walls as they brushed past them, feel the floor as they touched it and sense the site’s atmosphere and its affect upon the skin receptors.” This stage of the process, could be equated to the refinement and detailing stage in the process of architectural design. It often happens that architects start of with a meaningful idea or notion but somehow in the process of designing and working out the logistical aspects of the process, he/she loses his grip over the initial starting point. In such situations revisiting the site or initial diagrams or sketches may help him to reconnect with his thoughts and reflect upon them.

6.5. D. RECEIVING THE SITE Theories written by Lefebvre (1974), Bachelard (1964) regarding experiencing of space, largely influenced Hunter’s understanding of the same and she says that, “The act of simply entering a space engages us in a process of interaction with our spatial environment.” Hence, the minute the audience enters the site for the performance, he/she has already begun a conversation with the site. In site specific performance, however, the audience does not experience the true site but instead experiences the ephemeral place of performance. This place of performance has artistic, social, spatial and contextual trajectories converging during the performance. For examples, in the Beneath performance, lighting, costume and music were used to enhance the performance as well as particular qualities and essences of the site. These were nothing but an attempt by the choreographer to carefully articulate the experience of the audience in the site.



ENGAGING THE AUDIENCE Hunter articulated the audience’s walk through the space as though it was a journey. She tried to engage the audience with the site even before the performance begun. The 15 audience members who were watching the performance live on site stepped into the world constructed and articulated by Hunter at every point in the subterranean site. They were made to pass through a pre-performance installation which was situated in a disused laundry room. The room contained a solo chair placed in the corner of the space lit by a single lamp, an old book was placed on the chair suggesting an absent presence. For the installation Hunter said, “The installation was to facilitate the audience’s transition from the everyday experience of the outside world to the world of the basement location, thereby assisting a gradual shift in consciousness and awareness.” The audience walked passed the installation to a staircase which took them into the main performance space, and a dripping tap situated within the disused laundry space provided the sound accompaniment for their journey. By physically moving through the space, the audience got time to absorb and experience the space at a corporeal level prior to any experiencing with the dance work itself. Once the performance began the audience experienced the site as a place of performance and engaged with it through the dance.

Plate 6.9. Pre-performance installation. (Courtesy – P. Davies)



The experiences and responses of the audience were recorded through post performance questionnaires and they varied from being emotional to sensorial and corporeal. Some of them are: “I felt I had gone back in time to another period. I saw beauty in the movement and various energies throughout the piece.” “The sensitivity of the dancers made me sensitive towards them and aware of their actions” (These responses are sourced from Hunter, 2015) Thus to sum it up and understand the whole of this process let us take look at the model of influence prepared by Hunter (Refer to Fig. 6.5.) – In Fig. 6.E. We can see how the site influences the dance, which in turn influences the site. At every point in the process there is an interaction between the site and the choreographer, performer or audience. This interaction between the site, performance and observer results in the creation of a conceptual, ‘new space’ - place of performance that lasts only temporarily and yet brings a new dimension to the architectural location. This model reflects a devised approach by Hunter in which the work is a dialogue with the existing site/ architecture rather than being an imposition on it.

Fig 6.E. Hunter’s model of influence, detailing the relationship between site and the creative process. (Source – Hunter: 2015)



6.6. CONCLUSION This approach adopted but Hunter to create her site specific dance allowed herself and the performers to engage with the site. “Through the dance’s embodiment of the site the audience member can experience the site on a corporeal level enabling the individual to access a different type of knowing based on whole-body experience.” 3 Thus, architects just like Hunter must aim at meticulously designing the audience’s (user’s) journey through the building, making his body aware of the space around and keeping in mind the sensory and corporeal interaction he has with the space along with a visual one. If architects were to adopt Hunter’s approach in their work and allow themselves and the team to become completely aware and present in the space (Genius Loci), and engage with the site in every possible aspect, then the buildings they design would automatically provide for a deep, meaningful interaction between the architecture and the user. The concept of ‘here and now’ – being consciously aware in the space in the moment- first discussed by Massey and then by Victoria Hunter could be explored through the various stages involved in the creation of architectural work as well. Then Just like Beneath, ‘the final resonances and experiences of the space and site would have an impact on the user and would be carried with him, consigned to his memory and surfacing occasionally as a remembered ‘there and then’ in a series of future ‘here and now’ moments.’ 3 And as discussed before like site specific dance performances, if the architecture work were to majorly be responses to the site rather than responses to the current day trends and demands, then the buildings designed would no longer be placeless looking static forms. These would be honest reactions for the specific site and location. Not just Hunter, but architects must take inspiration from all the choreographers discussed in this chapter, these choreographers are constantly making attempts to engage their dancers’ and audiences with spaces in their own way. This may not necessarily mean the adoption of each of their approaches but just understanding the reason behind their particular approach may also prove to be fruitful.



6.7. CASE STUDY – KOLUMBA MUSEUM, 2007 After understanding Hunter’s approach at dealing with a site that has several layers of history and stories attached to it, we must also look at an architectural building in which the architect has dealt with a similar site. The new Kolumba Museum by Peter Zumthor is located in Cologne which was almost completely destroyed in the bombings during the World War 2. The site of the museum had a former ruined gothic church of Saint Kolumba, the ruins from the Medieval as well as the Roman periods, a hexagonal chapel built in 1950 by Gottfried Böhm.

Plate 6.10 – View of Kolumba Museum by Peter Zumthor showing how the present day intervention is juxtaposed with the past.

With a site that has a stories of over centuries to tell to the world, Zumthor had to approach the project with extreme sensitivity towards it. After understanding the historical, social and archaeological value of the site Zumthor not only made an intervention that respects the layers of history attached to the site but also lets the visitors understand the same. Similar to Hunter’s approach, he didn’t intend his project to be a recreation of the past, but wanted to acknowledge the past and its importance in his present day building. His response to this was a simple double height nave with long and slender columns supporting it over the ruins, leaving the ruins untouched. A bridge built over the ruins in the nave allows the visitors to experience and imagine the history and the events that



took place, while literally walking over it. (Plate 6.14) The dimly lit nave with perforations in the wall allows the user to completely be in the moment and experience the space. Thus, Philip Ursprung, Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art rightly says, “The present-day intervention neither simulates nor interprets the absent past, rather it allows the visitors to emotionally and intellectually reconstruct the lost entity in their imagination and feel like archaeologists who are discovering the historic fabric under various layers of the past.“ Thus, The Kolumba Museum offers visitors a palimpsest of layers of history and allows them to inscribe themselves into the narrative to become part of the story.

Plate 6.11. View of the courtyard at Kolumba Museum.

While walking in from the street, the visitor is guided from the foyer into the courtyard which then takes him to the nave with ruins. This courtyard, a quiet place for reflection with its interplay of textures and materials helps the user to transition from the hustle and bustle of the city into a calm and serene ruins. (Plate 6.11.)



Plate 6.12. Ground level Plan (left) & 2nd floor plan (right) – Kolumba Museum

The entire project seems to have grown out from inwards i.e. from the ruins (the site). The ground floor housed the nave with the ruins and the Chapel built in 1950 (as an independent functional unit with a separate entry). Zumthor didn’t provide any specific window or large opening on this level except perforations in the wall as he wanted the visitors to completely reflect upon and engage with the history itself. “Articulated with perforations, the brick work allows diffused light to fill specific spaces of the museum. As the seasons change, the mottled light









peaceful ever-

changing environment.” (Karen Cilento, 2010). The visitor is strategically taken from this dimly lit floor to the exhibition galleries on the top floors that has huge windows opening up to the amazing views of the city of Cologne. Thus, the visitor in a way slowly transitions from the street into the serene courtyard leading him into the past of the city and then finally on the top floors revealing the current day situation of the city to him. Therefore, Zumthor like Hunters takes his visitor/ audience through a journey of experiencing the site.

Plate 6.13. Views of Kolumba museum, showing the seamless integration of the modern façade into the ruins of brick and Basalt. And Plate 6.14. The nave of the museum.



One very important thing that mediates the history to the visitor through the architecture is Zumthor’s mindful use of materials and detailing of the entire project. The subtle and mindful use of materials seamlessly brings the past and present together in this structure. Zumthor called for handcrafted charcoal fired bricks from Denmark to integrate the remnants of the church’s façade into a new façade for the contemporary museum. The visitors can not only imagine the history by looking at the ruins but actually touch and feel it by engaging with the walls retained in the new façade. This project strongly speaks about Zumthor’s approach to architecture as an experience for the user and not just an object. “For him, it is not only important how a floor, stair, wall, room or façade look, but also how they feel when one touches them with his or her finger tips, how they smell, how they resonate and sound, and what kind of associations, mental images, expectations and memories they evoke. His buildings always revolve around the relationship between the human body and its environment, and the way the individual subject experiences very specific situations.” (Ursprung, 2009). His approach towards this site and the project seems similar to that of Hunter’s as he lets the visitor experience, engage and embody the site and this is what every architect must intend to do.


CHAPTER 7 ARCHITECTS DESIGN ENGAGING SPACES After exploring how dances, dancers and choreographers create an engagement between the human body and the physical world, let us take a look at how architects do the same. It is essential to study how some architects try to tackle the dialogue of the body and the built environment in the spaces designed by them, in order to make them meaningful and engaging. Thus, this chapter explores some of the engaging spaces created by architect Tadao Ando. We shall even explore the criteria that make a space engaging as discussed by Himanshu Burte in his book ‘Spaces for Engagement.’ These will help to understand the approach/ concepts followed by these architects to create a holistic corporeal experience.


7.1. CORPOREAL EXPERIENCE TADAO ANDO’S ARCHITECTURE Kenneth Framptom in his essay in the book ‘Body and Building – Essays on changing relation of Body and Architecture’ speaks about the absence of embodied experiences from almost all contemporary architectural theories and buildings. While speaking about experience in a contemporary architecture he says that, “Experience, as it relates to understanding, seems reduced to a matter of the visual registration of coded messages – a function of the eye, which might as well rely on the printed page and dispense with the physical presence of architecture today…The body and its experience do not participate in the constitution and realisation of architectural meaning.” However, some of the works done by Architect Tadao Ando although seemingly austere, uncanny and minimal, has overcome these issues and have an appealing corporeal experience to offer. PROMENADE ARCHITECTURALE As discussed before, architecture can be fully experienced when a user moves through it. Le Corbusier exploited this understanding of architecture as a recurrent theme in his projects and calls it ‘The Promenade Architecturale.’ He believed that architecture can be appreciated by walking and thus, guides the visitor through his building along a carefully defined axis. The ramp in Corbusier’s Villa Savoye is an obvious example for Corbusier’s intent to make the user experience the space while walking through it like a journey from start to end. Ayers while speaking about Corbusier’s work writes that, “The building’s intent is gradually revealed over time, rather than at a single entrance.”

Although some may believe that this concept of defining the movement may prove effective for residential projects where there is an obvious movement pattern that comes out of the understanding of the client/ user, however, in the case of public buildings, this defined movement becomes more restrictive than experimental for the people to move and that people in public places should have the freedom to choose their movement path. However, Ando’s architecture adopts Corbusier’s concept of the Promenade Architecturale but 115


with a more intense attention paid to the experience of the ‘body’ in a way that the promenade seems to promote effortless movement rather than forced. The subject’s passage through his architecture invariably involves a carefully orchestrated spatial itinerary but with the subject (body) being the focus. “Ando is particularly concerned with the experiencing subject that he characterises through the term shintai, the Japanese word for body.” – Kenneth Frampton, 2005.

SHINTAI AND SPACE In his essay ‘Shintai and Space,’ 1988 he wrote, “When I perceive the concrete to be something cold and hard, I recognize the body as something warm and soft. In this way the body in its dynamic relationship with the world becomes the shintai. It is only the shintai in this sense that builds and understands architecture. The shintai is a sentient being that responds to the world.” Azuma Residence, 1976 With so much importance given to the body, the Promenade architectural takes a more phenomenological character in Ando’s work. This is particularly seen in the two story ‘Azuma Residence’, Sumiyoshi, 1976. Where he has defined the movement in the house such that no matter what route you take, one has to pass through a central open- air atrium, which necessarily implies being exposed to the elements of nature for most parts of the year. Although seemingly afunctional, the arrangement brings about the idea of architecture not as just an enclosure or a device for environmental control but as an ideal environment to live in that gives the habitant experiences that help him to grow. Ando describes his intent behind this project as follows, “I am interested in discovering what new life patterns can be extracted and developed from living under severe conditions. I believe in removing architecture from function after ensuring the observation of functional basis. In other words, I like to see how far architecture can pursue function and then, after the pursuit has been made, to see how far architecture can be removed from function. The significance of architecture is found in the distance between it and function”



This does not imply that architects start creating afunctional designs for the sake of experimenting with architecture but it surely does mean that while defining the users movement in the design one must consider the experiences that the user with be exposed to and in this case, the experiences will help the user engage with nature, and the exterior world. Thus, it is not exactly the movement that needs to be articulated but the experience while moving that needs to be defined.

Plate 7.1. & 7.2. Courtyard (Left) and Section (Right) of the Azuma Residence, Tadao Ando.

“Here, a courtyard becomes a space within which the ubiquitous void may be rendered perceivable, partly though changes of light and climate and partly through the changing percept of space itself. This seems close to concepts in Japanese poetry, wherein the ineffable presence of living nature is senses through such things as a faint drizzle or a sudden unexpected breeze, the onset of twilight or the premonition of dawn” – Kenneth Frampton, 2005. This courtyard in Azuma house and Ando’s other works although seemingly austere – with concrete walls, comes to life with the interplay of material and light. The experience of his structures amplified with his sensibility to use a dynamic play of light and winds as it affects the body. “I believe that the architectural materials do not end with wood and concrete that have tangible forms, but go beyond to include light and wind which appeal the senses” – Ando in his writing for Koshino house, 1981. Thus, light and wind are two elements that render his spaces with life. The courtyards and the massive concrete planes achieve a dynamic, ever changing character due to the changing light quality, shadows, wind speeds all through the day, month and year.



AWARENESS OF WATER, EARTH AND SKY The Corbusian promenade architecturale is transformed dynamically in Ando’s works by bringing about an intense awareness of the earth, sky and water. These elements along with a play of light and shadows formed the primary experiential quality of most of his projects from Azuma Residence to Church on Water. At every point, in the journey through his structures he lets the visitor connect with these elements of nature- elements that define one’s existence. “The inert concrete planes that invariably embody his work come to be animated by the presence of nature in subtle and diverse ways, from the movement of the wind to the fluctuation of water, from the sensuous presence of the subject to the constant modification of space under the impact of luminosity”- Kenneth Frampton

PAUSE Ando often remarked the role of continuity and discontinuity in the spatial organisation of his work based on the Japanese concept Ma, the idea of an interval or pause in the experience of space. “I wish to introduce a discontinuous movement into the total organisation of rooms and spaces. One may have the impression that the rooms are separated but thanks to the discontinuity of /ma they are even more closely linked. We have discussed the use of a pause in dance and architecture before (Chapter 5) to break the continuous movement in the structure/ dance and provide pauses at some intervals but Ando takes it a step further by making it in a pause in the experience of space rather than in the movement through space. This pause is a central idea in some of his projects. Mount Rokko Chapel, 1986 Spatial discontinuities played an important role to add a particularly dramatic character in his ecclesiastical architecture, especially in Mount Rokko Chapel overlooking Kobe. An ingeniously designed hiatus plays an important role in the experiential quality of this chapel. The visitor enters the structure through a frosted glass arcade (covered on three sides), before suddenly turning into a



concrete basilica. The ambient light and acoustical qualities of both of these spaces are starkly different. Kenneth Frampton while describing this discontinuity says, “The arcade, flooded with crystalline light resonates with

Plate 7.3. Aerial view of Mount Rokko Chapel, Tadao Ando.

Every footfall, the basilica, illuminated by a large side window that opens onto an embankment covered with ivy, a softly lit volume in which the acoustical tone, like the light, is subdued.�

Plate 7.4. & 7.5. Entrance (left) and Interior view (Right) of Mount Rokko Chapel, Tadao Ando

The spatial void that separates the glazed arcade from the basilica entrance proffers at the end of the approach the emptiness of the sky. This void apart from adding a dramatic effect to the Promenade Architecturale, provides a moment of pause for the visitor before one can enter the chapel. 119


TACTILITY AS THE BASIS OF EXPERIENCE According to Ando, “The world that appears to man’s senses and the state of man’s body are interdependent. The world articulated by the body is a vivid, lived in space.” This understanding of the relationship between the body and the world is what is reflected in the extremely engaging architecture of Tadao Ando. The issue of the alienation of the body from architectural experience is fully addressed in his work. He envisages our capacity to negotiate the ground as a primary depending factor for our experience of the world: “Since there has been life on earth it is our feet which remind us we are alive. We know we exist when we feel it in the soles of our feet and all of us in infancy begin by learning to walk. No matter how computerized the world may become we will probably keep on walking… If the world is determined to destroy itself the only thing architects can do is make sure we don’t lose our sense of touch” For Ando out last hope for experiencing the world is our tactile awareness rather than the power of vision. He looks at architecture as a tool to empower one’s senses, one’s spiritual being, just like Steve Paxton intended to do with Contact Improvisation. The aim of this chapter wasn’t to study multiple projects done by Tadao Ando but to understand some of the concepts he used in these projects and what these concepts did to his architecture, just like how we found transferrable concepts in dance and what implication did they have on that particular piece. After seeing how architecture can be made engaging by keeping the human body at the centre of the design especially that of residences and religious buildings (as in the case of Tadao Ando); In the following chapter, let us see how the engagement can be taken a step further by not only creating an engagement between architecture and the people but also providing for engagement between two people, especially in public and institutional buildings.



ENGAGING SPACES Architect Himanshu Burte in his book ‘Spaces for Engagement’ raised a concern regarding architecture today, especially that of public, institutional and art buildings in cities. Most of the designs for these buildings in India and other countries are functional and aesthetically appealing but to a very large extent fail to offer the much needed engagement with itself and other people. “They function in a dry transactional manner, stopping at a basic facilitation of the art and rarely becoming vibrant public places and institutions fulfilling more than a specialized functional role.” (Burte, 2008) ARCHITECTURE AS HABITATION According to Burte, “The fundamental problem hounding architectural practices is their lack of interest in the ordinary dweller and in the ordinary capacities, needs and desires that he or she comes bundled with.” The issue is that architecture is looked at as an object to house certain functions rather than a habitation that houses human beings. If architects were to design buildings looking at the everyday life of the people it would offer way more than just the required function. For example, while designing a college campus, if the architects would consider activities such as having a brief conversation with a friend or grabbing a small snack on the way (Refer to plate 7.7) to the lecture as important as designing for activities in the computer lab or classroom, it would provide for the encounters that later evolve into engagements between people. Thus, a lot of public architecture fails to engage with the basic habitational needs of the human beings who occupy it, whether for a place to sit, for shelter from the sun or in terms of coherent spatial organisation. Hence, modern architecture is often attacked for its impersonality and indifference to the humanity of the dweller.2 With the over emphasis on the visual qualities, form and function of a built form, architects forget that architecture in its most basic form is meant for people to live in. “We do no not have a system of thinking about and building places that is concerned with facilitating a wholesome habitation and therefore, a basic engagement with place” (Burte, 2008). This lack of system leads him to define a framework of one such system for engagement in his book. According to Burte, it is the ‘habitational approach’



towards architecture in which the everyday and basic habitational needs, potentials and interactions of the dweller form the basic matrix of architecture. This approach places the human body (and being), and its needs and capacities at the centre of the focus and as discussed in the previous chapter this focus on the human body in architecture needs to be understood and adopted by architects just like Tadao Ando does – to provide for an wholesome engagement between people and place. Thus, architecture rather than being an object of admiration that intends to be experienced from a distance, instead becomes an architecture that one can occupy, touch, feel, smell and use and thus, engage with. This approach will prevent architecture from turning the inhabitant into a mere abstract user/ viewer, and habitation into a set of precise functions. Burte suggests that ‘instead of focusing on the systematic qualities of a habitable space, architects need to focus on the affordances’2 it offers to a variety of habitational actions that promote engagement. Affordance in this case means the potential that an environment has to support various human actions that lead to a successful place – people engagement. However, since there could be an infinite variety of affordances that support a variety of actions that affect the habitability and engagement of a place. Burte identifies five types of such actions as – ‘pause, transition, cognition, social contact and a sense of taking possession of a place’ as basics for engagement. He further defines these actions into their respected affordances, but since we have been discussing the importance of human activities and actions in the habitational design approach, I shall discuss these as actions and not affordances. However, these actions suggested by him may not provide an indisputable formula to design and analysis engaging spaces, but it does provide one of the possible analytical frameworks that can help architects become sensitive towards the habitational experience in theory as well as practice. These affordances put forward by Burte are discussed further.



A. PAUSE We have discussed the importance of a pause in the process of experiencing a building in Chapter 5. However, here we shall discuss what an environment needs for people to be able to pause in it. (Here, pause is majorly defined as a physical one, where a body can stand, sit or rest.) Pause spaces provide for people to occupy a space for a longer duration and are important in order to develop a place- person engagement. “Repeated and durable occupation of a space is central to the process of establishing a relationship with an environment.” 2 We can interact with a space and the people in it better when we occupy it for a longer duration i.e. pause in it. Therefore, it is important to focus on a durable occupation in the process of experiencing a building, which is often influenced by the environmental conditions of the space. We pause in spaces that are comfortable and offer possibilities of shelter, rest or some meaningful activity. The following factors as put forward by Burte seem to be central to this durable occupation of a space: 1. Safety perception – Only if one feels safe to pause in a space, will he occupy it for a long duration for him to engage with the architecture and the people. This Perception of safety in public places is defined by several other factors such as scale of the space, placement of seating, entry and exits. For e.g. seating provided scale of spaces, organization of their seating, entry and exits. For example large parks should be of such a scale that a person does not feel intimidated by the space or doesn’t feel alienated in the space. “One primordial tendency of the human animal is to always keep areas of possible threat within the visual field.” – (Alexander et all. 1977 in Burte, 2008:130). 2. Environmental comfort – is mainly relating to climatic comfort. Burte writes, “paved open spaces without shade, stuffy rooms and foyers without adequate ventilation and poorly lit spaces will always be avoided by pause seeker.” Among all the factors affecting the micro climate of a space, the condition of shelter is most influential. In this respect he quoted William Whyte, “Trees ought to be related much more closely to sitting places than they usually are. This provides a satisfying enclosure People feel cuddled, protected.” 2 123


3. Physical comfort – Architects must offer the tired body spaces to pause and rest in. Desire to sit while moving through an environment is basic, especially in museums and pavilions. People can engage better with the space and other people while sitting. For e.g. most people sitting in local trains in Mumbai strike conversations with each other while travelling. (Refer to fig. 7.A.) Therefore, design, position and orientation of seatings are important aspects to be considered in the design of spaces for pause. 4. Perceptual comfort – The ease with which the environment may be perceived plays an important role in defining whether the people will occupy it or not. The configuration, form and shape of the space matter. This can be understood by the fact that convex spaces serve as spaces for pause and linear spaces serve as spaces for movement in most buildings.2 How the extension of space is controlled also matter. For e.g. in Indian towns, the linear streets would widen at intervals to provide for gathering and pause. B.V. Doshi used a similar concept for IIM Bangalore (Refer to Chapter 5). Speaking of Indian towns, the internal courtyards of town homes enclosed on all sides provide for great and intimate pause spaces. One more dominant factor in perceptual comfort is the condition of ‘enclosure’.

Fig. 7. A. Physical Comfort (Left Image). And Environmental and physical comfort (Right Image).

5. Possibility of a meaningful activity – For a pause to be sustained it is necessary for the space to provide for a meaningful activity like reading a notice board, looking at artworks or the possibility of engaging in a



conversation with someone. People like watching people, hence if pause spaces provide for activities such a public speeches, performances of just have a view to the people passing on the street, it makes it easy for people to pause there longer. “Watching people, as well as other kinds of activity and spectacle, is thus one of the most meaningful activities for us in public spaces.” – Burte, 2008:136. Although these are given as criteria by Burte to determine the occupiability of a space, I believe that the design of pauses spaces are largely dependent on several other factors related to the space such as climate, location, function, people etc. Hence, along with the above discussed factors, all the contextual factors also play a role in the design of pause spaces.

Plate 7.6. Smooth morphological texture of the National Art Museum Chandigrah.

The concept of ‘texture’ not necessarily a sensorial one but that of the feel of the space as a whole, is brought out by Burte in all the above points. He defines texture in this respect as “a morphological property of a physical environment and refers to the internal homogeneity and continuity of environmental surfaces, three dimensional built forms, their components and all spaces in general.” In simple words the texture of the space is defined by the nature, density and proximity of objects in it, the manner in which they are distributed and how they finally come together in a space as a whole. Modern buildings always go for a smooth texture for spaces – with clean facades, uninterrupted surfaces, minimal or no landscaping etc. which provide large open spaces which aren’t particularly occupiable. I noticed this in most of the buildings I visited in Chandigarh on a study trip. (Plate. 7.7.) 125


However all the above factors indicate a more rough texture for a space, more number of low lying seats interspersed with trees, pavings and shelters that break the uninterrupted large modern pause spaces that are highly unusable in all respects. (Refer to Fig.7.B.)

Fig. 7.B. Highlighting the difference between smooth texture and rough texture in pause space.

B. TRANSITION While we discussed the possibility of engagement offered by a pause, here we discuss the engagement offered by an environment through the movement or transition from one space to another. Transition is a very important action in the process of engagement with an environment as while moving from a place to another our body maps the space. Transition is “the way in which an environment allows itself, its spaces and barriers to be penetrated by the dweller” (Burte, 2008). Thus, transition doesn’t only involve the entry into the building but also the movement within the building. For a space to seem engaging and occupiable, one must first feel able to enter it and move through it. Transitions across spaces involve a kinaesthetic experience while moving in the inhabited space. “The delight of movement is essential to our bodily experience of the environment. This could be related to the texture of the floor, the swerve of the path or ups and downs of steps and ramps experienced while moving through/ into the space.” (Burte, 2008). Thus, we could conclude that the sensory experience through an environment is structured around the theme of transition or movement through the spaces. There are several factors and elements that may contribute to the quality of transitions through a space, some



of the obvious ones being – Entrance, Pathways, Barriers and Edges, Distance. 1. Entrances – The entrance is the first communication of the visitor with the environment. It is the first step towards setting up an engagement between the two. Thus, special attention needs to be given to the designs of entrances, their location and orientation especially in public and institutional buildings. For example, Prithvi theatre seems to have a seamless transition from the street into the premise. The absence of the gate, and the compound wall being porous draws people into the café area of the building. (Plate. 7.8.) 2. Paths – Since transition is all about movement, pathways seem to be the primary elements affecting the transition in a building. Certain factors that should be kept in mind while designing pathways is the axis from the entance, texture or material of the pathway, shape and width of the pathway. One must design the pathways keeping in mind the role of sequence in experiencing the space. 3. Barriers, Boundaries, Edges – “It is the movement through a barrier or boundary that truly brings the experience of penetration into consciousness.” – Burte, 2008. Barriers seem to heighten the experience of transition as they make us conscious of the fact that we are crossing a certain boundary and define the space for us. While designing these the penetratibilty of the barrier, the scale, material of the barrier are some of the determining factors. Barriers generally define the edges of most buildings in urban areas, while most art places have a massive stone compound walls that make the space seem isolated from the street, the one at Prithvi theatre (until the renovation was done) was a low height compound wall, that made the edge occupiable and thus, made it easy for people inside the café and on the street to have a visual connect as well as make the space seem easily accessible. 4. Distance – “The distance between where we are and where we would like to be has some bearing upon how penetrable the intervening space appears.” (Burte, 2008) Distance helps insulate a building from the noise and dust from the street and helps to make graded transitions from one



realm to another. And this distance is necessary in case of important functions of public buildings such as the exhibition gallery in a museum, however in case of the public spaces of the building such as cafes and discussion areas distance may not prove to be fruitful, these places generally benefit from a sense of connection with the street or other public zones. Burte also introduces the concept of ‘subjective distance’ which is perceived distance from the building. In case of public buildings that are set at a long distance from the entrance or street, this distance appears to seem lesser if it is interrupted by landscape elements, seats, fountains etc. (Rough texture)

Plate. 7.7. Porous entrance of Prithvi theatre, Mumbai.

It is clear now that the experience of movement through an environment is composed of varying transitions through spaces and the manner in which these transitions are designed to connect spaces with each other can influence one’s experience greatly. The idea of transitions is very important in the designs of campuses that need to have emphatic, graded and well thought out transitions.

C. SOCIAL CONTACT The possibility of social contact a building has to provide defines our engagement with the people within it and thus, our engagement with the built form. Here, social contact refers to the chances of people meeting, interacting or engaging with each other. The consideration of social contact is an important factor in the design of public and institutional buildings as they are expected to be the most sociable environments in the city. “The presence of people in an 128


environment can be a comforting and inviting sight or memory for most visitors. Time spent in enjoyable social contact with other people surely ranks as an extremely significant factor in this regard and a sociable environment makes such times and moments possible.”2 Thus, the task of public architecture is to provide for such sociability. While designing sociable places our aim should be to create a sense of co presence and provide for chance encounters for people to interact and further engage. The scope for these encounters in a building is largely affected by the configuration of spaces. Configuration here refers to the distribution/ arrangement of the built environment and can exist from the configuration of spaces in the building to a smaller scale such as that of furniture in these spaces. For e.g. certain spaces tend to bring people together in a space due to the configuration of seats. Thus, spatial configuration directly controls the movements of people and tends to define certain patterns of co-presence. Movement patterns according to Burte are the main focus as far as encounter opportunities. And some of the patterns that need to be controlled are 1. The movement pattern in a premise and the movement on the street. 2. Movement patterns within a building and those linking multiple buildings. 3. Movement patterns of ‘permanent’ occupants and those of visitors. At Prithvi theatre for example, the several movement patterns, especially of the visitors converge in the entrance are and the café and increases the possibility of accidental meetings. Also, the space is really tight which makes it all the more intimate. Thus, in case of Prithvi theatre, the movement axes are not treated just as a symbol but used as an instrument to promote public engagement. Also, for increasing the social contact it is important to keep the movement interface tight in public zones so that the people are in close proximity to each other and thus, acknowledge each other. This can help control the distance and dispersion of the people in the public zone. The idea of containment in such zones also plays an important role. Containment here refers to enclose of the space with trees, furniture, walls etc. This enclosure pushed people together and gives the public a sense of seclusion from other places, i.e. it helps them to create a new world ‘in here’ in seclusion from the ‘world out there’. Containment of spaces highlights the feeling of community in public zones such as cafes, food plazas etc. Thus, meticulously designing the 129


edges of these zones/ spaces is extremely important. Although, the design of sociable zones in a building a very important factor, the process of providing these must always begin with identifying the location of these zones, where greater encounter opportunities is appropriate. In general, the more occupiable spaces would be the more social ones. These should be located at points where all the movement patterns converge and should definitely provide some level visual connect from the other spaces, while also providing privacy to the people inside. However, having said that public and art buildings need to provide for social contact, one must also keep in mind that there must be gradations in the possibility of social contact available. The building must offer people the choice to be alone or open to contact. These variations in need is of course, very real, even with one person at different times.2

D. TAKING POSSESSION “Only when you can take possession of a space as well as belong to it, is a strong engagement possible.” (Burte, 2008) Here, the exchange of possession works both ways, the building taking possessing the people and the people taking possession over a place. The sense of possession lies in the idea that we are able to bond and belong with some places more easily than with others. Here taking of possession is largely understood and ephemeral and psychological in the sense that it happens in the moment of dwelling but persists beyond it. It stays in the visitor’s memory and in the person’s desire to go back to a place. Burte suggests, we begin to take possession of a place when we feel ‘at home’ in that environment – i.e. familiarity in an environment. This familiarity with an environment supports us to occupy it for a long duration, in occupation in the form of a pause help to heighten the idea of possession over a place. Thus, taking possession of a place depends of two factors – the design of the place (architecture) that provides for long occupation and the activity that supports such duration (Event). We have discussed in Chapter 6.3. that design of the space is as important as the use (event) that occurs in the place. Asserting the same Burte quotes Prem Chandavarkar, ‘we often indulge in reminisces such as, “Do you remember we sat out in the verandah until three in the morning talking about…” Here, the verandah is as important as the 130


conversation that took place in it. Thus, it becomes clear that possessibility of a place is significantly influenced by the environment as well as the practices with it. This is one of the reasons why cafes are enjoyable spaces for people, they allow people to take possession over them for long durations and and provide them with meaningful activities such as food, beverages, work tables etc and thus, make people feel like they belong. Another important aspect of possession is personalisation – that is allowing people to personalise the space, for e.g. by allowing people to move the furniture as per convenience. Burte says, allowing the people to engage with the built form also calls for an exchange of possession, for e.g. Graffiti on walls, calls for people to invest time and attention in it. The qualities of surprise and drama allows architecture to possess the visitor’s minds. Aldo Evan Eyck’s orphanage in Amsterdam designed in the late 1950’ has a sense of surprise and drama that calls for the children engage with the building. The kids are struck by their reflections in different surfaces that possess their mind. The children are often seen peeping into mirrors embedded in the walls at their height or looking at their own reflections in the water body and thus, they are in a constant dialogue with the architecture of the orphanage.

Plate 7.8. Children engaging with Aldo Evan Eyck’s orphanage in Amsterdam.

Of course, only drama and surprise aren’t enough, at times even the very structure of the architectural building can captivate the visitors mind. For example, the Srirangam temple, Tamil Nadu takes subtle possession over the visitor through the varying rhythms of enclosure experienced in the movement. Encounters with such buildings that offer different levels or delight and drama are invariable etched in our memories and may cause us to desire to return to a place or re-possess it. 131


7.2.A. CASE STUDY – PRITHVI THEATRE Thus, the actions of – pause, transition, social contact and taking possession discussed above compose the dimensional framework for analysing and designing engaging spaces as given by Burte. Burte used examples of Prithvi theatre as an engaging place at several points in his discussion and thus, to understand how all of the above actions come together in an architectural building to provide for successful place- people engagement, I decided to visit the theatre and analyse it using the above framework. Prithvi Theatre is a privately owned theatre designed by Ved Sagar located on the beachside neighbourhood of Juhu, Mumbai. It was conceived as a temporary theatre space for the site, however due to its success it was never dismantled. Fig. 7.C. Plan of Prithvi theatre showing spaces for pause.

The campus of Prithvi theatre can quite easily be divided in three main zonesthe forecourt, the café and the theatre building. The transition throughout the campus is a smooth affair. Although these spaces are recognized as separate zones, they are effortlessly stitched together to form a single experience. The transition from the street to the forecourt is mainly marked by the change in flooring and the absence of a gate (whether intentional or not) acts as a catalyst to draw people in as the forecourt seems just like an extension of the street. The forecourt connects to the theatre building as well as the café. The fact that both the entrance of the theatre is seen from the forecourt itself, makes the transition even more effortless. With only a low height seating wall dividing the café and the court (Plate 7.10.), provides for visual connectivity between the two and automatically draws people from the street to the court and then to the café. (Plate. 7.8) Although the building in this case may seem to be an object in the background, the case is not so. Because at no point can one see the entire building from the street or from the open spaces in the campus due to the trees, and the narrow width of the street. Thus the built form seamlessly wraps around the café and becomes a part of the experience rather than a backdrop.



The entire campus offers several opportunities for pause. One main reason for the comfortable atmosphere for pause is the abundance of trees that make the summer afternoons at the café seem comfortable. Right from the tree shaded forecourt with the notice boards that hold people for a short while and the occupiable walls between the café and forcourt that allow people to wait there until the show starts to the café space that provides for a long term pause with delicious food and comfortable seating to offer. The café space provides the perfect amount of enclosure to the people feel comfortable yet connected to the street. The entire campus is one of the most sociable art places in the city. The compactness of the plot, invariably reduces dispersion and distance between people and the converging movement patterns in the café – brings the people together and increases the scope for chance encounters. Apart from this, the people are often asked to share tables at the café at rush hours which in a sense helps them to meet new people. Its general seclusion from the city allows the people to build their own community inside – their own world ‘in here’ away from the world ‘out there’.

Plate 7.9. Café at Prithvi theatre. (Left Image) and Plate 7.10. Low height seating wall between the café and court. (Right Image) With such ease in pause, transition and making social contacts, Prithvi theatre is much more possessable than other art places in the city. The environment – the foliage, informal seating and simple finishes make the environment extremely familiar. While the campus doesn’t offer much to personalise, it does compensate by the vibrant activities within it for people to visit again. The lovely food at the café, the plays in the theatre, and outdoor live performances and workshops are events that liven up the space and make people want to visit



again and occupy it for long durations. The environment of the entire campus it has something to offer to everyone and thus, is such a popular art place. This visit to Prithvi helped me understand the role of Burte’s framework in designing engaging spaces. It also made me realise the expansive role that public and institutional buildings can play in the lives of city dwellers in bringing them together and bringing about successful engagements at several levels.

7.3. CONCLUSION Thus, while applying the study of dances into architecture one must also remember the approaches adopted by architects in their work. Ando’s corporeal approach to his designs with his reliance on the tactile and sensory experience of a being and Burte’s habitational approach to architecture have great potential, if explored further along with the dance studies done earlier to bring out a deep place – people engagement.



8. CONCLUSION Architects such as Steven Holl and Lawrence Halprin proposed that an architect must learn more than just the techniques of his own craft in order to creatively inspire the architectural design process. Therefore, the numerous aspects of the interdisciplinary design between dance and architecture addressed in this investigation could hold key concepts to advancing the experience of architecture.

Although it is not critical that we embrace this type of designing, we can still conclude that, it is valuable to learn characteristics of dance and how they could be applied to architectural design. This exploration has lead us to affirm that the body needs to be the focus of architectural design and not just the eye and the study of dance has helped this in several ways. Referring to dance in order to give attention to how the body along with the eye and other senses experiences space can lead to the creation of architecture that will greatly enhance the spatial awareness and overall experience of the user. Speaking of experience, after extensively studying modern choreography, we can attempt to choreograph spaces in buildings such that they do not provide for dictated homogenous experiences of walking through buildings, but instead invite a dynamic experience of movement through the spaces. The various diagrams and concepts of Sequence, Rhythm, Zones & Paths, Experience and Form derived from the analysis of dances, can be explored further through models and concepts to create these dynamic architectural experiences. The relationship between human body and the space it is experiencing can further be enhanced if architects took inspiration from the interaction that takes place between the human body and the site in the process of a site specific dance by being in the moment and experiencing the spirit of place (Genius Loci). We can also conclude that if architects made an attempt to engage with the site like Victoria Hunter in the entire process of design, buildings will not turn out to be alien structures on the site and will instead be honest responses to an engagement with the site. By adopting Burte’s habitational approach towards architecture, we can provide for the everyday activities of life that generally go unaddressed to create spaces that hold value for the people. And 135


if engagement is truly a concern in design, then it cannot be denied that dance is a fundamental and invaluable device to be explored due to the intensity with which it manages to engage the human body. Thus, there is great scope of developing meaningful engagement between two bodies and body and space in architectural buildings today and using dance as a tool can prove to be extremely beneficial.


PART 2 The research has helped to bring out transferrable concepts from dance that can be applied to architecture in order to design spaces that offer scope for engagement between people and place. The various dances and approaches that are studied have helped to understand the relationship between body and architecture and the next step is to demonstrate this understanding in the design of an architectural project.


9. THESIS STATEMENT The focus of the research all throughout has been to study dance in order to bring out creative processes in designing engaging spaces. Thus, it makes sense to explore this research in a design solution where the user seeks for a deep engagement with people and architecture and largely benefits from such engagement. The exploration of the different dance styles and choreographies, has helped to bring out various spatial and theoretical concepts that can be used in the architecture in a variety of ways. Thus, it is necessary to define which of these concepts would be the focus of exploration in the architectural design. In this case the analysis of the dance ‘Day on Earth’ by Doris Humphrey is the focus and will be explored further. The concepts derived out of the graphical and spatial analysis of the dance - Sequence, Rhythm and Form, Zoning and Paths, Texture (Emotional or Spatial), Pause and Gestures will be used as a framework for the architectural design process. Apart from this, Victoria Hunter’s process for her site specific dance ‘Beneath’ will be adopted to approach the site. The framework of the process laid down by her – Experiencing the site, Expressing the site, Embodying the site and Receiving the Site will be adopted with the intention to design a space that is as honest a response to the site like her dance and to create an engagement between the user and the architecture. Himanshu Burte’s Habitational approach to architecture that considers the everyday activities and needs of the user will also be kept in mind to enhance this engagement. Since the focus of the design is to explore the analysis of Day on Earth, the spatial analysis of this dance, could be used to suggest the spatial character of the architectural design. (Fig. 5.P.) The dance suggests a space with a young and lively vibe and some of the architectural spaces brought out in the analysis are a public café, an art gallery, co working spaces, meeting spaces, and spaces for seclusion and contemplation. This analysis led me to design for an Artist residency – A space for young artists to work in seclusion as well as to collaborate with each other and the local community.



ARTIST RESIDENCY An artist residency is an opportunity provided to the artist to work in a new environment, often away from the restrictions and pressures of their everyday lives.1 Artists’ residencies provide creative professionals with time, space and resources to work, individually or collectively, on areas of their practice that reward heightened reflection or focus.4 They provide a time of reflection, research, presentation and production. These residencies host artists for a short period of time and allow them to withdraw temporarily from a society which is considered bourgeois. They are set to create their own utopia to work in. 2 Although for some artists, a residency serves as retreat or refuge for solitude, some take it as an opportunity to interact with other people. Residencies allow an individual to explore his practice within another community; using new materials, knowing a new culture, experiencing life in a new location. Artists’ residencies are an invaluable adjunct to short-term cultural exchanges, as they permit artists to develop a deeper understanding of their host societies and cultures. At the same time they create opportunities for giving insights into the cultural background of each participating artist’s own background.4 For artists who are up for networking, residencies give them an opportunity to meet artists, curators, educators from their own as well as other art forms. It gives them opportunities to collaborate or take inspiration from other artists and learn new techniques and thus, widen the horizons of their work.

Thus, an artist at an art residency is seeking engagement with people as well as places in order to inspire his creative process. The architecture and environment of the residency can inspire him and help him to be at his creative best. The interactions with the new community, environment and landscapes can allow him to explore new themes, techniques and processes inspired by the local culture. By engaging with other artist residents, he can explore collaborations with different art forms and bring a new direction to his work. Thus, the artist is looking for opportunities to engage at different levels and can be positively impacted by this engagement.



As concluded from the research, to provide an engagement between two bodies and a body and physical space, apart from the visual experience, architecture must concentrate on the user’s bodily experience of space as well. The framework outlined from the study of dance can help to choreograph a visual and corporeal engagement of the user in a design such as an artist Residency, which desires a meaningful engagement with place and people.

Plate 8.1. Khoj – Artist Residency, Delhi.

The number of temporary live-work spaces in the world has grown phenomenally over the last two decades - from 60 known residencies in 1990 to over 1,500 worldwide in 2012, according to Wahnon C. (2012, 6) of the Alliance of Artists Communities.3 Artists all over the world have positively responded to this concept and are looking forward to such opportunities. In Mumbai however, one barely finds residencies to incubate art in the city. Hence, an artist residency can open up great opportunities for creative minds in the city and country and help them to engage, explore and experiment. It can also attract artists from over the globe and will thus help the (local) contemporary art scene to connect with the global art world. 138


10.1. INTENT FRAMEWORK FOR A RESIDENCY MODAL No two artist-in-residence programs are the same. Each program has its own background and atmosphere. Some focus on artists from only one discipline of the arts, most offer facilities for any discipline: visual arts, literature, music, culinary arts, creatives, innovators, philosophers, performing arts, architecture, design, dance. The settings vary greatly from urban spaces, rural villages, container ships to deep in nature. Working periods also differ enormously: from two weeks to six months. The scale of these residencies can vary enormously from nano residencies hosting a single artist to large scale ones hosting upto 50 artists at a time. The purpose and aim of each residency is also laid out differently. The relationship between the resident and the host community is often an important aspect of a residency program. Sometimes residents become quite involved in a community - giving presentations, workshops, or collaborating with local artists or the general public. At other times, they are quite secluded, with ample time to focus and investigate their own practice. There is a wide variety of reasons for artists to engage in residencies as well as a widening variety of artists who go on them. Many artists coming straight out of college and higher education see residencies as a first step into becoming an artist, other, more established artists take ‘time out’ to go on a residency or see the residency as a mid-career break. Hence, their expectations out of the program also differ largely. Thus, there is no single model of residency and it is necessary to elaborate on the above highlighted points to define a model of artist residency. The expectations of each residency out of artists also varies, some expect artists to produce outcomes such as exhibitions, performances etc. While some do not expect any such final product from the artist. Thus, all the above factors need to be addressed to define the modal of the residency to be proposed in order to decide the intent, user group and to formulate the program etc.



A. USER AS ‘EXPERIENCER’ “Displacing yourself, from time to time, from your comfort zone — by going somewhere else, changing your scenery and your set of working and living conditions — often functions like an eye wash; it triggers your imagination and lust for life.” - Artist and educator Wiersma, Y. (2011) It is this quest for change that has been driving artists to detach themselves from their everyday lives into a different environment to seek inspiration. This trend has been on for centuries now, right from the time of Michel de Montaigne, a French writer retired to his holiday home in his family’s estate where he spent most of his time reading and writing. (in the 16th Century).10 However, with access to internet and budget travels young artists today, instead of spending all their time in one land, choose to move to another land for a short span – as an opportunity to temporarily detach from their daily lives and set out on a journey of reflection, exploration and collaboration.

In designing a residency as one of the pit stops on this journey of the artists, the focus is mainly on young professionals involved in all visual and performing arts such as painting, sculpture, photography, dance and theatre etc. to provide them with impactful experiences that will help them along their courier. Rather than focusing on one art form, in order to foster collaborations and interdisciplinary explorations the residency aims to host artists from varied art forms. Artists based in India as well as international artists would be welcome to be a part of the residency.

Since the research focused on

experience in dance and the artists coming to the residencies are looking for impactful spatial experiences along with learning experiences, throughout the design process the artists will be looked at as an ‘Experiencer’ rather than a ‘User’. And the focus will be the experience of the artist in the spaces designed and the scope for experiences that he gains by interacting with other people. Thus, the priority will be the benefit and growth of the artist.



B. EXPECTATIONS OF THE ARTIST Artists will have a variety of motivations for, and expectations about, participating in a residency. Artist motivations for participating in a residency may include:


Learning specific techniques or skills.

Working with particular artists, curators or scholars.


Working on an individual creative project.

Working with specific technical tools or facilities.

Making work for exhibition or performance.


Taking time away from the everyday.

Immersion in a new environment and culture.

Finding new inspiration.

Creatively exploring an idea.


Building networks.

Meeting local artists and/or other residency artists.

Working as a group to develop a project.1

Although, the residency may not indisputably meet all of these expectations but understanding these to formulate and design a residency is necessary in order to be able to provide scope for most of these to be met, to satisfy the different needs of different artists. Out of all the four categories, the learning and production aspects are more logistic than design regulated. However, the expectations for solitude and collaboration can be directly addressed in the architectural design of the space. Knowing these will help to set out the purpose and aim of the residency. 141


C. EXPECTATION FROM THE ARTIST Artists would be expected to showcase either during or at the conclusion of the term, the work produced/ formulated by them. This may be in any format workshops, exhibitions, presentation of research, a performance excerpt or concerts, focused discussions etc. These would help to raise opportunities for them on the professional frond and also promote community engagement by inviting locals for such events.

D. DURATION AND SCALE The duration of the residency for each artist will be a minimum of 6 weeks to a maximum of 6 months. Considering the immigration/visa rules and looking at examples of other residencies, where artists have managed to create great work in a period of 6 months or even lesser at times. The Visual and Performing Arts Residency will be a mid-scale one – not a nano residency that provides great scope for seclusion and reflection time but no chance for interactions and collaborations. A residency that hosts 20 artists at a time, will gives enough scope for interaction and at the same time have time and space for solitude.

E. AIM OF THE ARTISTS’ RESIDENCY The primary aim of the residency is to provide the young artist with an environment to reflect on his ideas and work in seclusion. But at the same time, give scope to cultivate relationships with other artists and learn from them by facilitating exchange across art forms. The location of the residency will also define the networking opportunities for both visiting artists and the host community, with opportunities for the artist and the community to be invigorated through an exchange of ideas and new ways of working. Thus, the design will promote the artist to engage with the environment, other artists and the host community using the framework derived out of the study of dances. The residency will be a space for young artists TO ENGAGE, EXPERIENCE, EXPERIMENT AND EXHIBIT – Exchange with the people, Experience the space, Experiment with work and new art forms and techniques and Exhibit the same.




Architects - Toshiko Mori

Location - Sinthian, Senegal

Project Year – 2015

Project– A Cultural Artist Residency

Program - Artists workshop, Accommodation for 2 Artists (with attached Kitchen and Bathroom), Breakout spaces, Gathering Spaces and Courtyard. Aim - To offer artist residencies for artists looking to engage with the Sinthian community and to offer a diverse range of programs that will provide the people of Sinthian and the surrounding region with the opportunity to discover new forms of creativity and cultivate their skills.

Plate 9.6. Locals watching a performance at the residency. And Plate. 9.7 Sinthian Kids playing at the Residency.

Design - The plan of the residency is an open floor plan that draws the residents into the building. The open floor plan provides for flexibility in use in terms of how the locals and the artists want to use the space. It also provides scope for intimate as well as large gathering spaces. The traditional construction techniques are combined with design innovations by Mori. The building is constructed using local materials - bamboo, brick, and thatch with the help of local buildings. Thus, involving the locals in the entire construction process. 143


Fig. 9.1. Plan of Thread Artist Residency

Fig. 9.2. West Elevation of Thread Artist Residency

Apart from being a residency, the program leaves scope for hosting several events such as markets, education, performances and meetings, the centre aims to be a hub for the local community and a place where the resident artists can have a truly meaningful experience of Sinthian society. Since, Thread is located in a rural area of Africa, which has a distinct culture and lifestyle. The local community and culture in this case, dictated the design to a large extent as the program and planning revolve around getting the locals into the residency.




Architects – Lotus Designs

Location – Khirki Village, Delhi, India.

Project Year – 2002

Project– A Cultural Artist Residency.

Program - Exhibition spaces, Artists’ studios, Residents’ accommodation (3 nos.- 2 double, 1 single), lounge as a shared space, Reference library, Media lab, Public café, Open-air terrace, Classrooms for children, Multi-purpose for presentations. Aim - At a time when Indian artists felt isolated and unsupported, Khoj provided the possibility for young practitioners to create an open-ended, experimental space for themselves on their own terms. Location – In 2002 Khoj acquired a building in Khirki village, south Delhi. An urban village established in the 14th Century, Khirkhi is known for its beautiful Mosgue (1380 AD) and an urban shopping mall. Juxtaposed against this historic landmark, the vibrancy of urban Delhi spills through the labyrinthine streets of Khirki. Design – Khoj is a simple and appropriate adaptation of two buildings. Rather than construct a new building, the architects chose to carve out spaces from the two existing buildings. It engages the community through education space and a café, opening the buildings up to the public.

Plate 9.8. Interior Views of Khoj, Delhi.



Fig. 9.8. Plan of Khoj Artist residency.

A large passageway, used for openings and neighbourhood events, cuts to a lower level courtyard in the first building. The majority of public activities take place in this courtyard. A cut in the wall to the adjoining building, along with a steel staircase leading up to galleries and the roof terrace, frames a common space of co-habitation for the neighbourhood and artists. Two smaller passageways pierce through the second building. One leads up to the cafÊ and studio. The second goes down to studios and private residences. Each of the courtyards is at once large and shallow enough to provide ample natural light to the studios and communal spaces. Vertical circulation is threaded throughout the two courtyard spaces. The zoning and circulation is articulated such that the public zones seamlessly integrate the street and private zones, without disturbing either of the two. Although, Khoj is located in a busy urban context, it doesn’t fail to provide a calm and refreshing atmosphere to the artists. The space inside the building helps the artists to temporarily cut off from the city but also allows them to connect with the city that it spilling onto the doorstep of the building. Thus, in both the case studies the location of the residency, the culture and hof the place plays an important role in the architectural design as well as in the functioning of the residency.

Plate 9.10. (Left and Center) Courtyard of Khoj. Plate 9.11. Artist working in the Khoj Studio.



12. 1. SITE SELECTION CRITERIA As seen in the case studies, the location plays an important role in defining the architectural character and overall atmosphere of the residency. The most important criteria for selecting a site is that the location should have some vibrancy in terms of the local residents, their lifestyle and culture. Another factor that must be taken into account is the sense of seclusion it has to offer. Thus, rather than identifying an exact location or plot for the residency, it is fir important to identify an apt Setting. Three potential setting for the project are – Rural setting with rich culture, a busy urban setting and a secluded urban area. Rural setting – A rural area, a particular village or town will offer the perfect solitude that is missing in the busy from the busy urban life. The location will offer great opportunities for the artists to engage with the locals, learn their art forms, collaborate with them and get inspired. Busy urban setting – Although the site will not offer an obvious seclusion from the hustle and bustle, the residency can offer a sense of solitude, through the design. In such a setting, the inspiration for the artist may not be a particular culture or serene environment but it’ll instead be the stories that the city and its dwellers has to offer. Secluded urban setting – The location would be in the city but yet secluded, either from the noise and pollution or due to the scenic views it has to offer. Such a setting is an amalgamation of both the above ones, it is cut off from the city yet not completely isolated.

Plate 9.11. Potential Settings for the Residency – A rural setting, a busy urban Setting, a secluded urban setting. (From left to right)



POTENTIAL SITES 12. A. REVDANDA, ALIBAG – RURAL SETTING Revdanda is a village located near Alibag, a coastal town in Konkan region of Maharashtra - 17 km away from Alibag and 125 km away from Mumbai. It is a historical place and is home to various attractive spots including the ruins of Revdanda fort, once built by the Portuguese. HISTORIC SIGNIFICANCE Revdanda fort is a sea facing fort located at the entrance of Kundilaka River. It was built in 1558 by a Portuguese captain Soj to watch over their trading interests. During the Portuguese times it was called Santa Maria de Castelo, but the locals called it Revdanda after Revati the spouse of the Yadava king Balrama. The Portuguese stoically defended this fort against many invasions but it was captured by the Marathas in 1740. In 1806 it was ceded to the East India Company and remained in brief control of the Angres in 1817. However, today only the ruins of the fort are still standing. Revdanda is also an important place for the Indian Jewish community. About 700 years ago, after the destruction of the Holy Temple of Israel in Biblical era, a group of Jews came in touch with India. The group arrived and settled in Nagav. They adopted the culture and lifestyle of India. They also founded an Indian Jewish community. Thus, Revdanda has a strong historical background which gives it a subtle yet distinct vibrancy.9

REVDANDA VILLAGE The village of Revdanda has a laid back feel but, in the evenings that this place comes alive with plenty of locals going about the place. The beauty of Revdanda lies in the coconut and betel nut trees in this region. The plantations of coconut trees are called ‘naralachi baag’ in Marathi, the local language spoken by the people. Revdanda is also famous for a species of aromatic flower called ‘Bakuli’ it’s a small flower with a wonderful fragrance. The livelihood of people in this region comes from the production of rice. (Staple being fish and rice.) 8 148


Plate 9.13. Paintings of Revdanda Village.

The highlight of Revdanda like the rest of the places along the Konkan belt is the village beach. The beach is isolated since not many travellers visit this village and hence the beach has only local village folks who come there in the evening for recreation. The vibrant villages of Nagav and Korlai are in close are in close proximity to Revdanda (15 mins away).

Plate 9.12. Betel nut Plantations near the beach. And Plate 9.3. View of the Revdanda beach.

RUINS OF REVDANDA FORT The fort was built in the 16th Century and it’s the periphery of extends up to 5kms. The entire Revdanda village (houses with patches of farmland) is presently within the fort walls. The ruins of the fort stand on the beach today surrounded by water on three sides and providing scenic views to the Arabian Sea.



Ruins have remained a popular subject for films, painting and creative photography for several years. Some of the most powerful aesthetic experiences for several people have been associated with ruins.

Part of the

experience of ruins is just pleasure taken in architecture, for example in the details of buildings that remain. Part of it, however, is in a feeling of nostalgia, a kind of longing for a place and time not our own. Blogger Tom Leddy in his blogs speaks of ruins being connections to the past, “Ruins connect one to a past, to a past that went through a life and then a death...a past with a complete history. Ruins represent civilizations once alive and now dead.�7 Thus, ruins have several layers of stories to tell and could be a great source of inspire several themes for the artists’ work. Intervening with the ruins not only serves as an inspirational environment for the artists but provides them with various themes and subjects to work with and also helps to transform and revitalise these redundant locations. This would also give great scope for the locals to learn new arts and to use the public zones of the residency to their benefit.

Plate 9.14. Ruins of Revdanda fort

Revdanda fort with its proximity to the Nagav, Korlai and Revdanda village offers great cultural vibrancy for creating community engagements between the locals and artists. The scenic views will help the experiencer who intends to get away from an everyday bustling life into a calm and serene atmosphere. The idea is to make a modern intervention in the ruins of the fort of Revdanda with minimum harm to the heritage. However, the culture and lifestyle of the place will become key factors in defining architectural language, character of the space and may not give full scope to explore the study of dances. Thus, the cultural significance in this case is a critical factor.




Plate. 9.15. Existing Amphitheatre at Bandra fort. (Left) And Plate 9.16: View of the Sea Link from Bandra Fort. (Right)

LOCATION – Bandra is one of the most important suburbs of Mumbai. It has something to offer to everyone – shopping streets, eateries, parties, cafes, churches, promenades etc. It is centrally located in the city and gives the real taste of life in Mumbai. Bandra fort is in close proximity to Eateries and shopping joints at Hill road, the Mount Mary Church and Bandra Masjid. In spite of being in such a bustling locality, being situated at the end of the Bandra bandstand promenade it is completely cut off from the traffic and noise of the city. HISTORY – The fort was built by the Portuguese in 1640 as a watchtower overlooking Mahim


the Arabian

Sea and




of Mahim. The strategic value of the fort was enhanced in 1661 after the Portuguese ceded the seven islands of Bombay to the English. Thus, the fort has several layers of history for the artist to unfold. CURRENT DAY SITUATION - With beautiful views of the Bandra- Worli Sea Link and the skyline of the city, it is a popular spot for youngsters in the city. The fort is the main location for the ‘Bandra Fest’ each year, where several performances and events related to sports, dance, music, drama and entertainment – are hosted in the amphitheatre and campus of the fort. This could be used as an opportunity by the artists to exhibit their work and interact with the locals. The residency, if proposed on this site, will offer great opportunities for the artist to know Mumbai and the people better and also give them a serene environment to work in.



12. C. SPACE 118, MAZGAON – URBAN SETTING Space 118 is an artist residency located in Mazgaon, Mumbai. It provides studios and residencies on a short-term basis (1-2 months) to artists as part of its commitment to supporting emerging art practitioners from all parts of the country and the world. LOCATION –Space 118 in the heart of industrial Bombay, a 15 minute drive from Kala Ghoda and the art district in Colaba. The south side of Mazagaon is known as Wadi Bunder Road, Dongri & Noorbaug, and J.J. Hospital. To the east side is the Darukhana area, which is especially known for its shoreline and industrial estates. On the north side is Reay Road and Ghodapdeo, and to the west side Byculla. Thus, artists have the freedom to experience the everyday lives of

people in the city. SPACE – The residency is located in a compound with several other warehouses and is in fact, a warehouse readapted into an artist residency of 4 studios. I visited Space 118 as a reference case study, however after the visit, I realised that the space didn’t do justice to the context and the large compound available. Although the residency is located in an industrial area and is right next to the railway tracks, the plot allows oneself to detach from the scene outside and the only thing bringing one back to reality is the occasional sound of the train passing on the track. However, there is huge scope for engagement with the locals in the site. Hence, one of the potential proposal for the project is adaptive reuse of Space 118 and the warehouses in the same complex.

Plate 9.16. Warehouse in the compound of Space 118. Plate 9.17. View of the studio and open compound at Space 118.



12. PROGRAM The design will be centred around the artists’ growth and working convenience. As per the spatial analysis of the dance Day on Earth and the activities that the Visual and Performing Arts Residency will provide for – Working/ Learning, Living, Exhibiting and Gathering which when looked at as facilities determine the following categories – Production and Coaching Support, Accommodation, Presentation facilities, Gathering spaces. PRODUCTION FACILITIES  Artists’ studios with attached Living spaces  Independent visual artists’ studios. (no attached accomodation)  Independent performing artists’ studios. (no attached accomodation)  Common/ Co working spaces  Outdoor work spaces  Reference Library  Media Lab  Equipment Lab  Wood workshop  Two observatories for solitude and contemplation. (providing fresh views) ACCOMODATION FACILITY  Artists’ accommodation (single and sharing)  Guest accommodation (hostels – for guests attending short seminars, workshops, travellers etc.) PRESENTATION FACILITY  Multipurpose hall. (for events, presentations, screenings etc.)  Lecture rooms  Amphitheatre  Exhibition Space GATHERING SPACES  Public café  A space where locals can come regularly – park or kindergarten or classroom for village kids.  Landscape courts.


LIST OF TERMS AFFORDANCE: In the case of architecture can be understood as the potential that the environment has for supporting human action. (Chapter 7) CHOREOGRAPHY IN DANCE: Until the advent of modern dance, choreography was known to arranging known steps in an order to produce a dance. However, modern dance looks at choreography as designing and composing patterns of movements for the human body and not arranging movements. (Chapter 5) CORPOREAL: is a term generally used to describe a state/ experience related to the body. It is used in both dance and architecture to describe movements and experiences that involve the entire body. (Chapter 1,3 & 7) CORPS DE BALLET: is the group of dancers who are not soloists. They are a permanent part of the ballet company and often work as a backdrop for the principal dancers. (Chapter 1) IMPROVISATION: The action of dancing without defining movement previously; the dancer does not know what she/her will execute but moves spontaneously and freely, in opposition to composed dance, where the dancer memorizes the choreography. (Chapter 3) INDIAN CLASSICAL DANCE: is an umbrella term for various performance arts rooted in religious Hindu musical theatre styles, whose theory and practice can be traced to the Natya Shastra. The number of recognized classical dances range from eight to more, depending on the source and scholar. The Sangeet Natak Akademi recognizes eight Bharatnatyam, Kathak, Kuchipudi, Odissi, Kathakali, Sattriya, Manipuri and Mohiniyattam. (Chapter 1) KINAESTHETICS: is a term relating to the use of sense organs in the muscles and other body parts to feel the position and movements of the body. (Chapter 3) MODERN DANCE: A broad genre of dance that came in the early 20th Century and is a free expressive style of dancing that developed in the early 20th century as a reaction to classical ballet's strict movement vocabulary, the particular, limited set of movements. (Chapter 1 and 5) NATYA SHASHTRA: is a Sanskrit Hindu text on the performing arts. Its first complete compilation is dated to between 200 BCE and 200 CE. The text consists of 36 chapters with poetic verses describing Indian performance arts. The subjects covered by the treatise include dramatic composition, structure of a play and the construction of a stage to host it, genres of acting, body movements, make up and costumes etc. (Chapter 1) PHRASE: A short choreographic fragment that has an intention and feeling of a beginning and end. Phrases are commonly constructed by following rhythmic patterns (like for example the popular dancing phrase of eight beats.) (Chapter 5) POST MODERN DANCE: A genre of dance that came in the mid20th Century as a reaction to the compositional and presentation constraints of modern dance, postmodern dance hailed the use of everyday movement as valid performance art and advocated novel methods of dance composition as well as presentation. Postmodern dance looked at democratisation of stage space and questioned the role of the audience in the dance. (Chapter 1 & 6)


PROFILES Daniel Lepkoff is a dancer, dance maker, improvising performer, teacher and writer. His works looks at functional movement as a finely tuned physical dialogue with the environment and explores the form and composition of this interaction as a language for making dances. He has played a central role in the early development of Contact Improvisation with Steve Paxton. He has published numerous articles articulating concepts that are central to his approach to dance making and Contact Improvisation. Doris Humphrey is known to be one of the pioneers of modern dance. She was one of the first artists to shake of the strictures of choreography based on the culture of Europe and the Far East, and to evolve modern dance as we know it today. She went on to develop her theory for choreography which she wrote her book ‘The Art of Making Dances’ the most important book of its kind ever written. Gaston Bachelard was a French philosopher. He made contributions in the fields of poetics and the philosophy of science. He further explored phenomenology in his book ‘Poetics Of Space’, which had a wide reception in the architecture theory circles, along with philosophers, writers and psychologists. Himanshu Burte has practiced architecture in Mumbai and Goa, and written extensively on the poetics and politics of the built environment since 1990. His book, ‘Spaces for Engagement: The Indian Artplace and a Habitational Approach to Architecture’ proposes an alternative theoretical framework for architecture, centred on the act of habitation and provides a great framework for analysis and design of art and public places. He also teaches at School of Habitat Studies (TISS), Mumbai and is pursuing a PhD in urban planning. Juhani Pallasmaa is a Finnish architect and thinker and former professor of architecture and Dean at the Helsinki University of Technology. He has been a visiting professor at universities all over the world. Pallasmaa is the author/ editor of over thirty books, including ‘The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses’ a book that asks the far-reaching question why, when there are five senses, has one single sense – sight – become so predominant in architectural culture and design? And has become a classic of architectural theory. Martha Graham was an American modern dancer and choreographer whose influence on

dance has been considered extremely valuable. She danced and choreographed for over seventy years. Her style, the Graham technique, fundamentally reshaped American dance and is still taught worldwide. Steve Paxton is an experimental dancer and choreographer. His early background was

in gymnastics and went on to become the founding member of the experimental group Grand Union and began to develop the dance form known as Contact Improvisation, a form of dance that utilizes the physical laws of friction, momentum, gravity, and inertia to explore the relationship between dancers. Victoria Hunter is a Practitioner- Researcher and Senior Lecturer in Dance at the University Of Chichester, UK. Her research is practice based and explores issues of presence, engagement and human interaction with the site and environment. Her work explores body’s phenomenological engagement with space and place through a consideration of the individual’s corporeal, spatial and kinetic engagement with their environment.



4. 5.

Burte. H. (2008). Spaces for Engagement: The Indian ArtPlace and a Habitational Approach to Architecture. Seagull Books. Ersoy, Z. (2011). Building Dancing: Dance within the Context of Architectural Design Pedagogy. International Journal of Art & Design Education. Harris, A. (2014) Choreographing Space: The Enhancement of Architecture Through Dance. Architectural Studies Integrative Projects. Paper 62. United States, Connecticut College. Humphrey, D. (Originally written in 1958, Reprint edition 1 Aug.1991.) The Art Of Making Dances. New Jersey, A Dance Horizons Book, Princeton Book Company Publishers. Kaltenbrunner, T. (2nd edition 2004). Contact Improvisation: moving - dancing – interaction. United Kingdom, Oxford: Meyer und Meyer Ltd.


7. 8.

Nayak, S. (2008) DANCE AND ARCHITECTURE: BODY, FORM, SPACE AND TRANSFORMATION. (Master’s thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Maryland, College Park). Patkar, N. Dance and Architecture (Bachelor’s thesis). Academy Of Architecture, Mumbai University, India. Shaver, C. (2015) Choreographed Architecture. (Master’s Thesis, University of Idaho). Retrieved from https://issuu.com/cierashaver/docs/thesis_compiled



Khokhlova, I. (2011, 28 Nov) Choreographer uses Frank Gehry architecture as Stage. BBC News Magazine. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-15907733 10. Lynch, P. (2016, 11 Oct) Steven Holl and Jessica Lang’s “Tesseracts of Time” Explores the Relationship Between Architecture and Dance. ArchDaily. Retrieved from http://www.archdaily.com/797079/steven-holl-and-jessica-langstesseracts-of-time-explores-the-relationship-between-architecture-and-dance 11. Dance Dialogues, Mumbai – Official website Retrieved from http://dancedialogues.org/ VIDEOS/ MOVIES/ T.V. SHOWS: 12. [Bora Yoon]. (2007, 27 Aug) RAPTURE : Noemie Lafrance w/ Frank Gehry architecture. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojBHWbn-l2A. 13. [Maggie Xu]. (2009, 3 Apr) Spider Web - Collaboration between Dance and Architecture. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-3LI6pToxc. 14. [PeaceOnEarthDotOrg]. (2009, 3 May) Anna Halprin: Spirit of Place (Unedited Clip I to IV). 15. [Steven Holl Architects]. (Jan 2016) Jessica Lang Dance performing “Tesseracts of Time”. Retrieved from https://vimeo.com/151532082. 16. [TEDx Talks]. (2014, 24 Sept) On architecture and tango | Lidea Hajjar | TEDxLAU, Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esN9jU4FJA8. 17. Crane, D. and Kauffman, M. (Writers) and Burrows, J. (Director). (1994). The Pilot (Television series episode). In Bright, K. and Crane, D. and Kauffman, M. (Executive Producers), Friends, New York, NBC.


LECTURES/ TALKS: 18. Nongmeikapam, S. (2016) About his Work and Choreography, Chai biscuit #6 organised by Dance dialogues, Future School of Performing Arts, Mumbai. Lecture.

LIST OF PLATES: Plate 1.1. Corps de Ballet (Source - http://balletnews.co.uk/wpcontent/uploads/2011/01/Rachel-is-far-right-Photo-by-Gene-Schiavone.-700x298.jpg) Plate 1.2. Contraction – Martha Graham (Source - Shaver, Ciera – Choreographed Architecture – Master’s Thesis Project, University of Idaho, 2015) Plate 1.3. First Arabesque – Ballet (Source - Shaver, Ciera – Choreographed Architecture – Master’s Thesis Project, University of Idaho, 2015) Plate 1.4. Site Specific Dance - Spirit Of Place by Anna Halprin (Source http://www.blurb.com/images/uploads/catalog/99/2522799/38115315d2ea47af31f922c0616f8041a990883.jpg) (Edited - Author) Plate 1.5. Plate showing the triangular isolated footing (left) and the basic triangular step of Tango (right) (Source - https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/originals/2c/06/7a/2c067a861fef765f1f202659d1007f3b.jpg) (Edited - Author) Plate 1.6. Rapture at Richard Fisher Centre, 2008 (Source http://medias.creativeandlive.com/medias/hds/000/002/699/hd/rapture_noemielafrance2.jpg) Plate 1.7. Set of Magnanimous Cuckold, 1922 by Popova (Source http://max.mmlc.northwestern.edu/mdenner/Drama/images/new_images/constructivist/constr 2_lg.jpg) Plate 1.8. Steven Holl’s Sketches for the spaces indicate how he intended the dance to explore his spaces. (Top image Source http://images.adsttc.com/media/images/57fc/1700/e58e/ce4e/0f00/00fc/slideshow/10222015_ TesseractsofTime2.jpg?1476138747) Plate 1.9. Tesseracts Of time, 2005 (Source - http://www.stevenholl.com/media/files/474/3WHOR.jpg) Plate 1.10. Snapshots from Spider web (Source - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=83LI6pToxc) Plate 1.11. Central Perk Café in the T.V. show Friends (Source http://untappedcities.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Friends-CentralPerk-Pop-Up-Coffee-Shop-Cafe-SoHo-NYC.jpg)


CHAPTER 2 READINGS/ BOOKS: 1. Bachelard, G. (Originally written in 1958, New edition edition, 1994.) The Poetics of Space. Boston, Beacon Press. 2. Hunter, V. (2015) Moving sites: Investigating Site Specific Dance Performance. [Kindle version]. 3. Jay, M. Downcast the Eyes: the Denigration of Vision in Twentieth Century French Thought. Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press. 4. Pallasmaa, J. (3rd Revised edition edition, 2012.) The Eyes of the skin: Architecture and the sense. New Jersey, United States, John Wiley & Sons. 5. Uysal, V. and Markus W. Embodying architecture, studying dance: movement as means of studying bodyspace relationship’, Turkey, University of Bilkent. ARTICLES: 6. Shahar, F. (2011, 23 June) Gaston Bachelard – The Poetics of Space: The attic and the basement. [Blog post] Retrieved from http://culturalstudiesnow.blogspot.in/2011/06/gaston-bachelard-poetics-of-spaceattic.html VIDOES/ PERFORMANCES: 7. Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham. [Martha Graham Dance Company]. (2016, 28 Apr) Martha Graham in Lamentation. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-lcFwPJUXQ 8. Magninimous Cuckold (1922) written by Fernand Crommelynck. 9. Strange Fish by Lyod Newson. [naxosvideos]. (2010, 17 June) DV8 PHYSICAL THEATRE: 3 Ballets [Arthaus 102093]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBdU7S_Bf8c

LIST OF PLATES: Plate 2.1. Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham (Left Image Source – https://wetalkwelisten.files.wordpress.com/2016/07/e1e6102cd6bcff7f23fc421c0c4041c1.jpg? w=640) (Right Image Source – https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/originals/e4/51/d7/e451d77c6074f413cebbf1278ad1c594.jpg) Plate 2.3. Magnanimous Cuckold, Set by Popova (Source http://max.mmlc.northwestern.edu/mdenner/Drama/images/new_images/constructivist/constr 2_lg.jpg) Plate 2.4. Strange Fish, Lloyd Newson (Left Image Source - https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/736x/08/e6/a4/08e6a4b5d7621612a8708e72e93c483a.jpg) (Right Image Source - https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/originals/e5/8a/f4/e58af4e123b4fd77d399ad8dbe226249.jpg)


BOOKS / READINGS: 1. 2. 3.

4. 5. 6. 7.

Bronet, F.and Schumacher, J. (1999) Design in Movement: The Prospects of Interdisciplinary Design - Journal of Architectural Education 53, p: 97 – 109. Press. Ersoy, Z. (2011). Building Dancing: Dance within the Context of Architectural Design Pedagogy. International Journal of Art & Design Education. Harris, A. (2014) Choreographing Space: The Enhancement of Architecture Through Dance. Architectural Studies Integrative Projects. Paper 62. United States, Connecticut College. Haque, U. The Choreography of Sensations: Three case studies of responsive environment Interfaces. London, UK. Haque Design and Research. Press Kaltenbrunner, T. (2nd edition 2004.) Contact Improvisation: moving - dancing – interaction. United Kingdom, Oxford: Meyer und Meyer Ltd. Lepkoff, D. (2008) Contact Improvisation: A question. Retrieved from http://www.daniellepkoff.com/Writings/CI%20A%20question.php Pallasmaa, J. (originally published in 1996, 3rd Revised edition edition, 2012.) The Eyes of the skin: Architecture and the sense. New Jersey, United States, John Wiley & Sons.

THESIS / DISSERTATION: 8. Anjana K.V. (2011) Body Tales. (Published Thesis). Academy of Fine Art and Craft, Mumbai University, India. ARTICLES: 9. Silliker, A. (2009) Leading the Blind – Teaching Dance to The Visually Impaired Children. Point Magazine. 10. Lepkoff, D. (1998) Contact Improvisation or What happens when I focus my attention on the sensations of gravity, the earth and my partner? Nouvelles de Dance no 38/39. Brussels, Belgium, Contredanse in Bruxelles. Retrieved from http://www.daniellepkoff.com/Writings/CI%20What%20happens%20when.php 11. Bilimoria, J. (2009) Happy Homes School for the Blind, Worli, Mumbai. Retrieved from www.happyhomeschoolfortheblind.org/contactus.html 12. Vijaykumar, N. (2016, 6 Apr) Students at this school cannot se. But they can dance, in a Group, with Perfect Coordination! The Better India. Retrieved from http://www.thebetterindia.com/50091/blind-children-learn-dance-srmab-bengaluru/

VIDEOS/ MOVIES: 13. [Bora Yoon]. (2007, 27 Aug) RAPTURE : Noemie Lafrance w/ Frank Gehry architecture. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojBHWbn-l2A. 14. [Autorickshaw]. (2014, 19 Feb) 20 Days Of Rain. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XtM2mJtnE 15. [Zoomin.TV World News]. (2016, 2 May) Dancing in the dark: First Ballet School For the blind. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmB9O6Q8WEY 16. [Juri Schmidt]. (2009, 14 May) Easter Impro Festival - What is Contact improvisation. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzb9Hnjnd5g 17. [Irene Sposetti BeingMotion]. (2009) Contact Improvisation - Moments of practice, with Irene Sposetti & Johan Nilsson. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED8hNoulZv4 18. [Neige Christenson]. (2009) Evolving life. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9cvPyxXz6hY 19. [indiavideodotorg]. (2011, 5 Sept) Why a dance workshop for blind children? Pali Chandra explains. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYalrsMfU90


20. [TEDx Talks]. (2015, 19 Oct) What Nobody Told You About Happiness. | Saisha Srivastava | TEDxJaiHindCollege. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65zQzOQBYNs 21. Weis, C., Christiansen, S., & Kraus, L. (1987). Fall after Newton [videorecording].

LIST OF FIGURES: Fig, 3.A. Analysis of ‘The Eyes of the Skin’ by Pallasmaa & ‘Poetics of Space’ by Bachelard (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 3.B. Diagram of Steve Paxton’s core Idea of Contact Improvisation (Courtesy - Author) Fig 3.C. Table showing two bodies interacting with their senses in a Contact Improvisation Dance (Pictures – Irene Sposetti & John Nilsson, Edited - Author) Fig 3.D. Table showing two bodies interacting with their senses in a Contact Improvisation Dance (Pictures – Niege Christenson & Catherine Lessard, Edited - Author) Fig 3.E. Analysis of structures formed by Steve Paxton & his dancers (Edited - Author) Fig 3.F. Analysis of structures formed by Contact Improvisation dancers (Edited - Author)


Plate 3.1. A walk in the Forest, Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh (Photograph Courtesy - Author) Plate 3.2. Building Dancing Workshop (Segment 2) Turkey, 2011 (Ersoy, Z. (2011).) Plate 3.3. Building Dancing Workshop (Segment 3) Turkey, 2011 (Ersoy, Z. (2011).) Plate 3.4. Contact Improvisation Dancers (Source https://danceparadenewyork.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/20110310-064839.jpg)

Plate 3.5. Plan of the Rebuilt Pavilion, by Aldo Evan Eyck, 2006 (Source - http://socksstudio.com/img/blog/van-eyck-03.jpg) Plate 3.6. Sonsbeek Pavilion (Source - http://socks-studio.com/img/blog/van-eyck-01.jpg) Plate 3.7. Sonsbeek Pavilion (Source - http://socks-studio.com/img/blog/van-eyck-07.jpg) Plate 3.8. Centre of gravity (Source - http://www.advancedbodyworks.co.uk/docs/gravity.pdf ) Plate 3.9. Saisha replicating the sensation of raindrop on her student’s hand (Source https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XtM2mJtnE ) Plate 3.10. -Student trying to replicate rainfall (Source https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7XtM2mJtnE ) Plate 3.11. Blind School for Ballet, Brazil Plate 3.12. Blind children learning Ballet, Brazil (Source https://i.ytimg.com/vi/YmB9O6Q8WEY/maxresdefault.jpg)


Plate 3.13. Scents of Space Installation (Source - Haque, U. The Choreography of Sensations: Three case studies of responsive environment Interfaces. London, UK. Haque Design and Research. Press.) Plate 3.14. Scents of Space Installation (Source - Haque, U. The Choreography of Sensations: Three case studies of responsive environment Interfaces. London, UK. Haque Design and Research. Press.)

CHAPTER 4 BOOKS: 1. Humphrey, D. (Originally written in 1958, Reprint edition 1 Aug.1991.) The Art Of Making Dances – Chapter 2. New Jersey, a Dance Horizons Book, Princeton Book Company Publishers. 2. Kaltenbrunner, T. (2nd edition 2004.) Contact Improvisation: moving - dancing – interaction. United Kingdom, Oxford: Meyer und Meyer Ltd. ARTICLES: 3. Ersoy, Z. (2011). Building Dancing: Dance within the Context of Architectural Design Pedagogy. International Journal of Art & Design Education.

CHAPTER 5 BOOKS: 1. Humphrey, D. (Originally written in 1958, Reprint edition 1 Aug.1991.) The Art Of Making Dances. New Jersey, a Dance Horizons Book, Princeton Book Company Publishers. 2. Kaltenbrunner, T. (2nd edition 2004.) Contact Improvisation: moving - dancing – interaction. United Kingdom, Oxford: Meyer und Meyer Ltd. THESIS / DISSERTATIONS: 3. Shaver, C. (2015) Choreographed Architecture. (Master’s Thesis, University of Idaho). Retrieved from https://issuu.com/cierashaver/docs/thesis_compiled 4. Perusinovic, D. (2009) Choreography and Architecture – Composing a Framework for Individual Participation (Master’s Thesis). Ottawa, Canada, Carleton University. ARTICLES/ READINGS: 5. Mueller J. (Originally published Feb, 1979) Masterpieces by Doris Humphrey and Aaron Copland. Dance Magazine. 6. Salvacao Church, Archnet Publication, Page no. 106 -111 7. Lamentation – Wikipedia Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lamentation_(ballet) 8. Lauren and Breanne’s Creative Dance. Retrieved from https://web.uvic.ca/~thopper/Dance/Laura%20Breanne/danceAnalysis.html 9. Retrieved from http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://archpapers.com/lamentat ion-by-martha-graham/&gws_rd=cr&ei=GUoDWP7CCsHovASji5DoAg


10. Retrieved from http://www.irenebrination.typepad.com/irenebrination_notes_on_a/2011/05/marthagraham-lamentation.html 11. The Modern Dancers: Chapter 3 – Martha Graham. Retrieved from http://www.pitt.edu/~gillis/dance/martha.html 12. Michael Crosbie. Dances with Building. ArchitectureWeek.com. Retrieved from http://www.architectureweek.com/2004/0204/design_1-2.html VIDEOS: 13. Day on Earth, 1947 by Doris Humphrey. [dancenotationbureau]. (2013, 4 Dec) DNB – Day on Earth (1947) by Doris Humphrey. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08 HyZCA9z4Y. 14. Four Points in Space, 1986 by Merce Cunningham. [profesionalesartes]. (2011, 11 Feb) 4. Four Points in Space (1986) Choreography Merce Cunningham Dir Elliot Caplan & Merce Cunningham. Mkv. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qf_kLcdijz8 15. Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham. [Martha Graham Dance Company]. (2016, 28 Apr) Martha Graham in Lamentation. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-lcFwPJUXQ 16. [Howcast]. (2012, 16 Jul) How to Do the Contraction | Jazz Dance. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIlEb4gkIs4

LECTURES/ TALKS: 17. Nongmeikapam, S. (2016) About his Work and Choreography, Chai biscuit #6 organised by Dance dialogues, Future School of Performing Arts, Mumbai. LIST OF FIGURES: Fig 5.A. Movement patterns in the Salvacao Church. (Courtesy - Author) Fig 5.B. Explaining Symmetry, Asymmetry, Opposition & Succession (Source: Humphrey, D. 1958) Fig. 5.C. Analysis of Doris Humphrey’s Theory of Design in Space (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.D. Diagrammatic Analysis of Postures in Four Points in Space, 1986 by Merce Cunningham (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.E. Diagram showing Sequence of Design in Space for Four Points in Space. (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.F. Diagram showing Rhythm of Design in Time for Four Points in Space. (Courtesy Author) Fig. 5.G. Diagrammatic Analysis of Postures in Day on Earth, 1947 by Doris Humphrey (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.H. Diagram showing Sequence of Design in Space for Day on Earth. (Courtesy Author) Fig. 5.I. Diagram showing patterns of ‘Design in Time’ for Day on Earth, 1947. (Courtesy Author) Fig. 5.J. 20 seconds of movement mapped in plan for Day on Earth. (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.K. Diagram showing Zones and Paths in plan for Day on Earth. (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.L. Figures of the Skin for Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.M. Structure Diagrams of the Skin for Lamentation. (Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.N. 3D exploration of the skin for Lamentation. Courtesy - Author) Fig. 5.O. The Architecture of the Stage, Doris Humphrey (Humphrey, D. 1958) Fig. 5.P. Spatial Analysis of Day on Earth. (Courtesy - Author)


Fig. 5.Q. Labanotation for Serenade (Left) and the dancing columns on the level 1 plan acquired from the Labanotation. (Right in red) (Source http://www.donnabarryarchitect.com/stevie-eller-dance-theatre.html)

LIST OF PLATES: Plate 5.1 - Salvacao Church by Charles Correa (Left Image Source: https://dome.mit.edu/bitstream/handle/1721.3/57998/149658_sv.jpg?sequence=2) (Right Image: https://dome.mit.edu/bitstream/handle/1721.3/58014/149648_sv.jpg?sequence=2) Plate 5.2. Arch De Triumph (Source: http://en.parisinfo.com/var/otcp/sites/images/media/1.photos/02.-sites-culturels-630-x-405/arc-de-triomphe-de-face-630x405-c-thinkstock/35754-1fre-FR/Arc-de-Triomphe-de-face-630x405-C-Thinkstock.jpg) Plate 5.3. St. Bride’s Church, Christopher Wren (Source: https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/736x/10/6a/04/106a04cb07db98111ed8ff7bd06d6078.jpg) Plate 5.4. Symmetry - Doris Humphrey and Charles Weidman (Source: https://c2.staticflickr.com/6/5167/5264727942_5eb08173ba_b.jpg) Plate 5.5 - Asymmetry- Doris Humphrey and Charles Weidman (Source: https://dhcfellow2012dnb.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/2012-07-10-16-25-56.jpg) Plate 5.6. Opposition displayed in a dance by Paul Taylor (Source: http://triangleartsandentertainment.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/IMG_3258.jpg) Plate 5.7. Succession displayed in a performance by Doris Humphrey (Source http://marthagraham.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/Diversion-of-Angels-Snow-on-theMesa.jpg) (Edited - Author) Plate 5.8. Snapshots of Four Points In Space by Merce Cunningham, 1986 (Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qf_kLcdijz8) Plate 5.9. Snapshots from Day on Earth, 1947 by Doris Humphrey (Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08HyZCA9z4Y) Plate. 5.10. Students congregating and contemplating in the the Corridor at IIM Bangalore. (Top Image Source - http://www.iimb.ernet.in/sites/default/files/Exchange%20students.jpg) (Bottom Image Source - http://www.iimb.ernet.in/sites/default/files/Exchange%20students.jpg) Plate 5.11. Contraction and Expansion in modern dance (Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIlEb4gkIs4) Plate 5.12. Snapshots of Lamentation, 1930 by Martha Graham (Left image Source: https://ljeilola.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/martha-graham-lamentation2.jpg) (Centre image : http://41.media.tumblr.com/2c59cee1017b179ca8c320838953dd3f/tumblr_mlgc7i0pBE1qa95 wro1_1280.jpg) (Right image Source: https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/originals/e4/51/d7/e451d77c6074f413cebbf1278ad1c594.jpg) Plate 5.13. Rhythm in an arcade. (Left image sourcehttps://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/e/e6/Great_Mosque_of_Kairouan_gal lery.jpg/200px-Great_Mosque_of_Kairouan_gallery.jpg) Unvarying rhythm in the façade of American Federal Building, Iowa. (Centre image source http://65.media.tumblr.com/28ceefbebfa2b9d12dc5c3a7d64841ff/tumblr_mrgfxyDrb21qe0nlvo 1_1280.jpg) Rhythm in the Roof of Zaha Hadid’s Maxxi Museum, Italy. (Source - http://www.detailonline.com/inspiration/sites/inspiration_detail_de/uploads/imagesResized/projects/780_20130 521120039e0e9c8c38754b97a4755d5181a9ef60a8d556e95.jpg) Plate 5.14. Concept of East Façade of Stevie Eller Dance Theatre. (Source http://www.donnabarryarchitect.com/stevie-eller-dance-theatre.html)


Plate 5.15. Exterior and Interior view of Stevie Eller Dance Theatre displaying the wire screen. (Source - http://www.donnabarryarchitect.com/stevie-eller-dance-theatre.html)

CHAPTER 6 BOOKS/ READINGS: 1. Bachelard, G. (Originally written in 1958, New edition edition, 1994.) The Poetics of Space. Boston, Beacon Press. 2. Doreen Massey, (2005) Paper presentation at RESCEB Seminar ‘Making Space, R.I.B.A. London. 3. Hunter, V. (2015) Moving sites: Investigating Site Specific Dance Performance. [Kindle version]. 4. JD Gutermuth. (2013) Kolumba Museum for the Archdiocese of Cologne by Peter Zumthor. Arch 508, Breshears. 5. Kloetzel, M. and Palvik, C. (2009) Site Dance: Choreographers and the lure of alternative spaces, Gainesville, Florida: University Press of Florida. 6. Lefebvre, H. (originally written 1974, edition 1991) Production of Space, Oxford: Blackwell. 7. Mackrell J. (1991:40) Post Modern Dance in Britain, Dance Research. Press. 8. Norberg-Schulz, C., Genius Loci: Towards a Phenomenology of Architecture, London, Academy Editions. 9. Pallasmaa, J. (3rd Revised edition edition, 2012.) The Eyes of the skin: Architecture and the sense. New Jersey, United States, John Wiley & Sons. 10. Suderberg, E. (2000) Space, Site, Intervention: Situating installation art, Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press. 11. Tschumi, B. (1978) Advertisements for Architecture, Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press. 12. Ursprung, P. (Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art, University of Zürich) (2009) Earthworks: The Architecture of Peter Zumthor.

ARTICLES: 13. Diavolo official website. Retrieved from http://www.diavolo.org/about-us/mission-vision/ 14. Cilento, K. (2010, 6 Aug) Kolumba Museum/ Peter Zumthor. Archdaily. Retrieved from http://www.archdaily.com/72192/kolumba-musuem-peter-zumthor 15. Retrieved from http://www.globalsiteperformance.org/oneriver/art/sitespdance.html

VIDEOS: 16. TED Ideas worth spreading. (2012) A Choreographer’s creative process in real time. TEDGlobal. Retrieved from https://www.ted.com/talks/wayne_McGregor_a_choreographer_s_creative_process_in_r eal_time?language=en 17. [Diavolo]. (2014, 29 Sept) Diavolo/ Architecture in Motion. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNO5z9i4uvhbWrTmd8adFvQ


LIST OF FIGURES: Fig. 6.A. Diagram showing McGregor’s process live on the TEDGlobal stage (Edited: Author) Fig. 6.B. explains the engagement of the choreographer, dancer and audience with the site, in the process of the Site Specific Dance. (Courtesy: Author) Fig. 6.C. Architecture and Dance can be seen as locations on a share continuum between space and event. (Source – Hunter, 2015: 65) Fig 6.D. Hunter’s Choreographic Diary entry, 14 July 2004 (Courtesy - Victoria Hunter). This entry speaks about her immediate response to the initial phases of the site research and study. (Source – Hunter, 2015) Fig 6.E. Hunter’s model of influence, detailing the relationship between site and the creative process. (Source – Hunter: 2015)

LIST OF PLATES: Plate 6.1. Jacques Hiem’s’ Sketches (top), Life sized set (Bottom left), Model (Bottom right) (Source:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNO5z9i4uvhbWrTmd8adFvQ) Plate 6.2. Snapshots from Stone and Form, a Site Specific Performance by Mairead Vaughan Shakram Dance Co. in 2013 (Source:https://vimeo.com/62657407) Plate 6.6. A snapshot from ‘Beneath’, 2004. (Courtesy – P. Davies) (Source – Hunter, 2015:111) Plate 6.7. The Basement Site (Courtesy – Victoria Hunter) (Source – Hunter, 2015) Plate 6.8. Practice session for ‘Beneath’, 2004. (Source:http://vickyhunter.weebly.com/imagegallery.html) Plate 6.9. Pre-performance installation. (Courtesy – P. Davies) (Source – Hunter, 2015) Plate 6.10 – View of Kolumba Museum by Peter Zumthor showing how the present day intervention is juxtaposed with the past. (Source: http://www.archdaily.com/72192/kolumba-musuem-peter-zumthor/4-custom) Plate 6.11. View of the courtyard at Kolumba Museum. (Source – https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1c/Kolumba_K%C3%B6ln__Innenhof_2.jpg) Plate 6.12. Ground level Plan (left) & 2 nd floor plan (right) – Kolumba Museum (Source:JD Gutermuth, Kolumba Museum for the Archdiocese of Cologne by Peter Zumthor, Arch 508, Breshears, Spring 2013) Plate 6.13. Views of Kolumba museum, showing the seamless integration of the modern façade into the ruins of brick and stone. (Source – http://img.over-blog-kiwi.com/1/48/40/59/20150228/ob_82a972_peter-zumthor-kolumbamuseum-cologne.jpg)


Plate 6.14. The nave of the museum. (Source: http://www.archdaily.com/72192/kolumbamusuem-peter-zumthor/25-custom)

CHAPTER 7 BOOKS: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Andrew Ayers, The Architecture of Paris: An Architectural Guide (London: Edition Axel Menges, 2004): 247. Burte. H. (2008). Spaces for Engagement: The Indian ArtPlace and a Habitational Approach to Architecture. Seagull Books. Dodds, G. (2005) Body and Building – Essays on changing relation of body and architecture edited by George Dodds and Robert Tavernor, MIT press. Pavlovich, H. The Promenade Architecturale: Ideology and Form in Le Corbusier and Niemeyer. Promenade Architecturale: A Documentation (Part 1: the Background) 1997.12.13)

LIST OF FIGURES: Fig. 7.A. Physical comfort (Left) and environment and physical comfort. (Right) (Source – Burte, 2008:133) Fig. 7.B. Highlighting the difference between smooth texture and rough texture in pause space. (Source – Burte, 2008:145) Fig. 7.C. Plan of Prithvi theatre showing spaces for pause. (Source – Burte:289)

LIST OF PLATES: Plate 7.1. Courtyard of the Azuma Residence. (Source http://www.patrickeischen.com/projects/full/azuma2.jpg) Plate 7.2. Section through Azuma Residence. (Source https://arch48jliang.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/ando_azuma-house_sections.jpg) Plate 7.3. Aerial view of Mount Rokko Chapel, Tadao Ando. (Source http://www.geocities.ws/arquique/ando/grandes/atcr02.jpg) Plate 7.4. Entrance of Mount Rokko Chapel, Tadao Ando. (Source https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Rokko_Mount_Chapel_Tadao_Ando.jpg) Plate 7.5. Interior view of Mount Rokko Chapel, Tadao Ando. (Source http://photos1.blogger.com/x/blogger2/3108/402193825081660/1600/675035/Chapel%20on% 20MtRokko.jpg) Plate 7.6. Modern Art Museum, Chandigarh. (Source - http://www.lashworldtour.com/wpcontent/uploads/2013/11/National-Art-Museum-CHandigarh.jpg) Plate. 7.7. Porous entrance of Prithvi theatre. Plate 7.8. Children engaging with Aldo Evan Eyck’s orphanage. (Source –Left Imagehttp://67.media.tumblr.com/8bb263ccb1693e933815780067c51d7a/tumblr_mxhtpaTn351s6u


7t4o1_1280.jpg) (Centre Image - https://thesleepofrigour.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/orpharchival012.jpg) (Right Image - https://s-media-cacheak0.pinimg.com/originals/de/ce/09/dece090d043ecdff56b24955c128a2ff.jpg) Plate 7.9. Café at Prithvi theatre. (Left Image) (Source http://www.prithvitheatre.org/photogallery/latest2015/6.-Prithvi-Cafe.jpg) Plate 7.10. Low height seating wall between the café and court. (Right Image)

PART 2 BOOKS / READINGS: 1. ArtsACT, Artist-in-Residence Toolkit, Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Government. Retrieved from www.arts.act.gov.au 2. Artist in Residence. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist-in-residence 3. Deborah, B. (2015) The Artist-in-Residence as Cultural Mediator, Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts, Krakow. (Paper prepared for the Fourth Euroacademia International Conference Re-Inventing Eastern Europe.) 4. Policy Handbook on Artists’ Residencies – Open Method Of Co ordination (OMC), Working group of EU member states experts on Artists’ Residencies, European Union. 5. Wiersma, Yeb. 2011. “Accidental Pleasures.” RE-tooling RESIDENCIES: A Closer Look at the Mobility of Art Professionals, 89-99. Warsaw, Poland: Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle BLOG 6. Anthony Acciavatti ()Paint it White – Reusing The Existing in New Delhi [Blog at uncube Magazine] Retrieved from http://www.uncubemagazine.com/blog/10068517 7. 8.

Aesthetics today. (2013, Sept 4) Is There an Aesthetics of Ruins? [Blog post] Retrieved from http://blog.apastyle.org/apastyle/2016/04/how-to-cite-a-blog-post-in-apa-style.html The Land Out There. (2013, Nov 6) Abode by the sea for backpackers: Revdanda, Maharashtra. [Blog at WordPress.com.] Retrieved from https://thelandoutthere.wordpress.com/2013/11/06/abode-by-the-sea-for-backpackersrevdanda-maharashtra/

ARTICLES 9. Revdanda Fort. Retrieved from http://www.kokansearch.com/forts/english/forts_in_raigad/revdanda/ VIDEOS: 10. [TEDx Talks]. (2014, Dec 29) Space matter -- Using space to stimulate creativity | Adam Price | TEDxUniversityofNicosia. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DK2JBLD_fbM LIST OF PLATES: Plate 9.1.Khoj Artist Residency, Delhi (Source - http://inlaksfoundation.org/images/Khoj.jpg) Plate 9.2. Betel nut Plantations near the beach. (Source - http://alibaugadventures.com/images/revdanda-beach.jpg) Plate 9.3. View of the beach. (Courtesy - Author) Plate 9.4. Paintings of scenes of Revdanda village. (Source - http://ajay60a.blogspot.in/2013/03/revdanda-paintings.html) Plate 9.5. Ruins of Revdanda fort (Courtesy - Author) Plate 9.6. Locals watching a performance at the residency.


Plate 9.7. Sinthian Kids playing at the Residency. (Source - http://www.archdaily.com/608096/new-artist-residency-in-senegal-toshiko-mori) Plate 9.8. Interior Views of Khoj. (Source - http://www.uncubemagazine.com/blog/10068517) Plate 9.10. (Left and Centre) Courtyard of Khoj Residency. (Source http://www.uncubemagazine.com/blog/10068517) Plate 9.11. Potential Settings for the Residency – A rural setting, a busy urban Setting, a secluded urban setting. (Left Image source https://onheavenlycompulsion.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/img_0010.jpg) (Centre Image source https://img1.etsystatic.com/010/1/6172748/il_570xN.430352851_narf.jpg) (Right Image source - https://s3-ap-southeast-1.amazonaws.com/scrollstorage/1395990834514_2.jpg) (Edited- Author) Right Image source Plate 9.12. Betel nut Plantations near the beach. And Plate 9.3. View of the Revdanda beach. (Courtesy - Author) Plate 9.13. Paintings of Revdanda Village. (Source – http://ajay60a.blogspot.in/2013/03/revdanda-paintings.html) Plate 9.14. Ruins of Revdanda fort. (Courtesy – Author) Plate. 9.15. Existing Amphitheatre at Bandra fort. (Left) And Plate 9.16: View of the Sea Link from Bandra Fort. (Right) Plate 9.16. Warehouse in the compound of Space 118. Plate 9.17. View of the studio and open compound at Space 118. (Courtesy - Author)

LIST OF FIGURES: Fig. 9.1. Plan of Thread Artist Residency. Fig. 9.2. West Elevation of Thread Artist Residency. (Source - http://www.livemint.com/Leisure/DOtD54iCMPFZPz5GROPcAK/Art--Room-with-aview.html) Fig. 9.3. Plans showing zoning of Khoj Artist Residency. (Source http://www.uncubemagazine.com/blog/10068517)


Profile for Sukruti Jain

DANCE & ARCHITECTURE: Choreographing Engagement between Body & Space dessertation  


DANCE & ARCHITECTURE: Choreographing Engagement between Body & Space dessertation