Each street, each site, each moment, each encounter perpetuates new forms of exchange; new paths; routes and ways of surviving and existing in each city. We can watch, observe, experience, notate describe all we see; the pavements, the spaces between buildings, the shopping malls, the buses, the trams, the electric buses, the underground; the cars; the spaces outside of apartments; the tram stops; the empty plazas; the public statues; the bike lanes; the back streets, the bus stops, the markets; the kiosks; the street stalls. The physical infrastructure of the city, a city, this can be any city any place. The materials, which allow the city to take a form and create an image, and a specific architecture which then allows it to become individual. Then there are the people; who, in their actions, patterns, routines, exchanges; jobs, recreations; social life and temperament; collaborate and explore; create; recreate; expand; destroy, fit in to; force change upon, struggle in; ease through this physical infrastructure to allow it to become human. How can a city be revealed through movement and how far can choreography determine this movement. From the mass; heaving through the crowded under passages at 9 am; the dance of the workers; to the quiet duet of the man and the sidewalk at 3am. The city can be seen as choreography; yet perhaps this is too vague; a personal methodology. Each walk taken becomes a solo performance; noting the textures; the sounds and the spaces; How can mapping of a city reveal patterns of spatial use and explore modes of spatial encounter? We will start with our eyes closed. We will listen. Guided by a partner; a route they see; navigate and construct. A gentle duet. Becoming sensitive. Finding in our steps some new understanding of the city. Each step some new landscape. What happens when we photograph with our eyes closed? What are we drawn to by sound and sensation? The passing wind, the empty space; changes in velocity; all becoming our experience of place. Â Â
The duet of the body and the city. Performance making workshop. November 8 th and 9 th At Universitatea Naţională de Arte. Bucharest How do we embody the experience of the city? How do we overlay that reflection back to the experience of the city? Through a series of walks around 3 types of city areas, how do we learn an area through the experience of our body? What does one encounter? What does one experience? How can the city allow us certain modes of encounter? And how can the city allow certain modes of practice to form? The city forms a test bed for experiments of the social, the body, proximity and canvas for the embodied encounter. How does the city permit and enable? How does the city form our codes and conducts and how might we use performance as a tool and resource to begin to understand and re-‐ evaluate our own performance in the city? How does the city enable or disable certain modes of encounter? How does one ensure certain codes are understood and decoded in such a way that they can become performance resource? To look at human movements as action signs is to conceive the human body itself as signifier, to conceive of the body as a signifying body. What this means is that we have to conceive of human act/actions as embodied intentions and that we have to be able to see a lived space as intentionally achieved structuring, some that has been willed or is now willed by someone or some group of persons.’ 1 This workshop explores how performance interaction, and choreography can be used as tools to map and interact with the activity of the city. Working from a series of choreographic scores; we will explore 3 sites around Bucharest, the forth site is the studio, and form a short series of interventions and spatial reflections forming series of
Farnell. B ( 2001) Human Action Sign in Cultural Context. The Visible and Invisible in Movement and Dance. The Scarecrow Press. Maryland. P53
performance works which can also be explored as film works collaboratively and individually. Creating three pieces of performance reflection in situ, which will then be used as resource in studio setting; the workshop will encourage consideration and production of solo and collaborative performance works which will be shared on Saturday 10th November. Through a series of somatic exercises and performance experiments we shall explore the city as studio; reflecting upon the following issues as we explore the city: -‐ Modes of being in space and place (what is performing and what is quotidian behavior in public urban space) -‐ Character development: can we create new characters to explore aspects of spatial and social behavior in public urban space? -‐ personal context: how well does our own training and background (social and spatial) contribute to our behavior in the spaces we encounter) -‐ Social and political context of spatial encounter to wider contextual frameworks; how does the act of performance enable certain spatial histories to be re-‐framed to enable heightened reactions to local histories. Generating three interactive performance processes in areas of the city; this workshop will also enable participants to explore issues as to how do we re-‐present the experience of the encounter with public urban space. Combining the use of speech, sound recordings, text, photography, objects (found or made), film and adding the possible dimension of costume; we shall explore ways of allowing the initial encounter with the city to become new founded mode of embodied performance.
Workshop Overview: Aims: -‐ to explore the city choreographically in such a way that can enable more diverse and engaged approach to enabling modes of urban interaction as resource for performance: -‐ To engage with the city as performance: how to enable the city to become means to develop modes of performance dialog -‐ Exploration of collaboration in performance making -‐ Exploration of multi-‐ disciplinary engagement with multiple practices to enable through exploration of notions of re-‐presentation of experience. -‐ Exploration of notion of camera as performer: how to integrate the camera as ‘performer’ within live performance scenarios. -‐ Dissemination of use of performance as archive of lived experience -‐ Exploration of choreography as means to map both character and context of public urban space Tools: Choreographic scores, using camera as tool (as third body), photography; notes, sound recorders, costumes; other members of the workshop, editing tools, video. Method: Day one: This workshop begins on Thursday 8th: we will meet at 11am at Universitatea Naţională de Arte. Bucharest. After a brief introduction to the practice and plan; we will begin a series of exercises; warming up the body; experiment with the use of the body as tool; archive and signifier; we will experiment with narrative; memory and individual approaches to life in Bucharest. This will then lead into a conversation in which we will select three sites: (each site will explore the following patterns of social/ spatial use) -‐ Disuse/ shift of use/ use in contestation -‐ Regeneration (in process) -‐ Areas of specific historical or political significance We will then explore three performance scores, which will be given to each participant in a small pack on the day. These scores will deconstruct the space emotionally, physically and through the use of narrative, spoken word and character. The outcomes of these scores will provide a means to generate an interactive performance for the further reflection and performance making within the studio. We will explore 3 sites on day 1 (allowing 45 minutes in each location); -‐ Disuse/ shift of use/ use in contestation: Suggestion: Old market hall on Buzesti and areas around Buzești-‐Berzei-‐Uranus
-‐ Regeneration (in process): Suggestion: Lipscani; main busy streets/ squares There will be a small set of performances in each space, which will then be repeated and taken back to the studio space to form a prolonged improvisation under a list of considerations: -‐ Embodiment -‐ Memory -‐ Drama/ the ordinary -‐ Characters and the absurd -‐ Text and narrative as direction
At the end of day one; we will finish with some exploration of the camera as score and explore how to represent versions of experience through use of camera work. We will work with some in camera edits, live feed work and also how to integrate the camera into the making process. Ideas of the frame in the studio can then be taken into the space the following day. Between day one and day two; participants are asked to gather all materials they have towards the sites and create a short solo reflection of the day, this can be performance, text or image based media. If possible participants are asked to re-‐visit the site they are most or least drawn to, and commit to some simple observation of the space, some free association writing and some further movement study. If it is not possible to visit the site then participants are asked to generate a similar process from memory about their relationship to the sites. Day two: 11am: arrive to studio with key ideas collated from day before. Small sharing of solo performance/ reflection ideas for group discussion. Separating to groups of 4 to 6 people; we will each group take a site and re-‐visit the movement scores and explore shifts in emphasis. Through a series of re-‐visits/ re-‐ guides we will arrive then to the process of evaluating what we might like to generate as a performance work. Consider the following: -‐ The body in a landscape/ the body removed from a landscape (trace/ presence) -‐ Making visible, creating place, removing self.
Togetherness, unity, solidarity, alone in the mass, estranged. The architecture of space, the architecture of self.
We will then work in the studio for the afternoon/ or on site if this participants choice.. Exploring possibilities and qualities of the materials gathered, selecting parts or aspects to develop further, exploring relationships in term of time and space. Creating a series of performance shorts and visual materials; we shall then proceed to a wider improvisation, culminating in a final discussion of materials. Day 3. 15h30. please feel free to invite friends, colleagues and family to an informal sharing of the outcomes of the two days. I suggest we meet at 13h30 to collate materials. Sites:
Approach: ENTER THE CITY: ENTER A STREET: ENTER A W ORLD: ENTER A STORY: How can the body become a reflective mechanism for the experience of the body in the city? How far can the city be shaped and moulded by the actions and reactions of the body?
Urban space within this workshop become a canvas; upon which numerous marks, symbols and lines are added to; such marks and codes constitutive of some form of spatial and movement language; how can this language be transcribed, documented, recorded and then re-‐ told? To translate is a lie. Just as to converse and re-‐present scenarios of the urban encounter relies on the subjective realities of the author to generate a narrative which another then reform a presentation of. Losing all sense of meaning to cultural assemblage of language. Concept of universal language as impossible as language is shaped by geography, history. Patterning; which in the fabric of its construction lays bear the failures of communication into physical fruition of the desires of the mind in its solitude? The results of this workshops aims to function as creative subjective impressions initially; the weight of the task forms as to how such a subjective experiential task can bare productive social fruit; a dialog, which can further enable new methodologies as to how the space is used. Through the language of multi-‐disciplinary performance making exercises and processes we shall explore how narrative, movement, voice, costume and visual representation can come to represent strands of personal experience of public urban space. By choosing three very different strands of urban landscape; the aim is to test performance as mode of representation and further reflection.
Process outcome: -‐ Performance/ movement generated -‐ Use of performance scores to explore three strands of urban space -‐ Urban exploration as practice resource -‐ Exploration of costume, sound, voice, text -‐ Development of camera skills as tool for production -‐ Development of improvisation skills -‐ Solo/ collaborative production process experience -‐ Sharing and discussion of process and product
For more information about my practice please see below: BEATRICE JARVIS Choreographer | Performer | Researcher Beatrice is an urban space creative facilitator, choreographer and researcher. She utilizes key concepts of choreography and visual arts methodologies with the intention to develop, original doctoral research on the connections between choreography and urban cultures. She is currently undertaking her practice based PhD funded by DEL titled; The Choreographic Apparatus| How Far can Choreographic Practice be used to Develop New Methods to Explore and Offer Insights into a Range of Urban Contexts. Her practice merges essential techniques in a sociological framework of critical perspectives. Beatrice is currently a visiting lecturer at various town planning and architecture departments in London developing a platform for the conceptual and physical integration of urban planning, sociology and choreography leading to practical social creative implementation. As a dance artist she works in Romania, Gaza, Germany and Northern Ireland to generate large scale choreographic works underpinned with a sociological inquiry; exploring the social power of movement. Beatrice is keen to create platforms social interaction using urban wastelands and reflections on urban habitation as a creative resource; her research currently focuses on how far choreography practice can develop a new methodology to interrogate a range of inner city conflict zones. Beatrice has recently initiated a new urban forum: Urban Research Forum for artists, architects, urban designers, cultural researchers, sociologists, anthropologists and all with an urban interest. This is conducted through seminars, workshops, performances and exhibitions. Collaboration, discourse and intellectual inquiry are seminal to this concept. The city with her practice becomes a live laboratory for social and spatial research of urban space use developing from this research innovative and interactive future space use programs through creativity Current research funded by DEL. ( Dartington College of Arts 2005-‐8 Choreography and Visual Arts BA hons First Class, MA Goldsmiths’, Centre of Community and Urban research, AHRC Funded; PhD, Ulster; Architecture and Art and Design, DEL funded) For further information about my practice please see the following links: • • • •
Creative City life: http://beatricejarvis.com/ Urban Research: http://issuu.com/urbanresearchforum Documentation: http://www.blurb.com/user/bj87 City as Studio: http://urbanorganics.cultura3.net/Resources/media/promo.mov
Work Examples: Heygate Estate/Elephant and Castle: http://vimeo.com/26177151 password: city and http://issuu.com/urbanresearchforum/docs/towards_embodied_methodology?mode=window&viewMode=singl ePage Deptford Study for Steven Lawrence Centre: http://issuu.com/urbanresearchforum/docs/exhibition_catalouge_practising_space/3 and http://www.practisingspace.com/events-‐and-‐exhibitions.php Bucharest Study for local government AHRC: Dansul Objectul din Bucuresti LaBomba http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/invited/1015638/a8bd37a9fad73767cb13edef857dba7d Northern Ireland Cartography Project: AHRC: CollectingTrails http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/invited/1002909/405ee1c548a4b9718763503e118327cc
The body in the city acts as vessel; to carry, contain and interact; forming routes and navigations through the immediacies of its encounter. The body in the city becomes a means to extend the discourses of the mind and architecture to a frontal physical plane. The experience of the body as it moves through its decided and undecided routes of the complex labyrinth becomes synthesis; forming in such modes of encounter a reflection as to the physical landscape it temporally habits. Exploring the passage ways of the body through the city can function as means for discourse as to the nature of affect the city may have on the psychology of urban human behaviour and simultaneously affords insight as to how the city is formed and cemented by the very patterns which human occupancy projects. This mutual dialectical relationship becomes synonymous to concepts as to how far cities are designed for people and how people essentially redesign and augment the fabric of urban texture. The embodiment of the urban experience by the human form becomes focus for this research; how far can the body enter a state of conscious reflection as to its use and positioning within the built environment to observe and how can such conscious observations be then potentially be reapplied to generate shifts in land use patterning and generate possible realms of progress within discourses of spatial planning.
Published on Oct 31, 2012
The duet of the body and the city.Performance making workshop.November 8th and 9th At Universitatea Naţională de Arte. Bucharest This works...