Fly on the wall

4am Full Moon by Art Happens

Someone I recently met in the studio – and their own gentleness, presence, and mindfulness – has inspired some recent reflection on many of my artistic practices. Here is one recent 4am rambling that I sent his way…

Up in the middle of the night, full moon-light streaming in my window (or just past I think it was yesterday), inspired and listening to music, thinking about collaboration – within our bodies, the dialogue between our thought and our physical intuition or physical intelligence; with each other, other bodies in space, between performer and audience and community – all of the spoken and unspoken rules and constructs, known and unknowable, the barriers and connections… And how this investigation into collaboration has guided me towards a practice of deep listening and mindfulness, and what that looks like in movement and art making, and where I still fail at it, and what kinds of questions and investigations and probing that can ignite… And then how to wrap these deep and philosophical considerations into a 2 hour morning class to prepare ourselves for all the varied and intense demands on our bodies… 

sound and body by Art Happens
energetic floating
intention flowing
moving through the breath into the earth bound ear
I don’t have the words but I can feel it – both as it brews internally at the base of a deep belly and as it billows up through the body, pulling the spine up and the chest outward, expanding and softening my mouth, jaw, cheeks, face, until finally pouring out with a kind of ease and independent life that has come from me but is other than me.

and then, as though that weren’t enough, I also get to receive it. the sensation of hearing, as it reverberates, my body receives its vibratory resonance.

full, beautiful, ephemeral, terrifying, vulnerable, magic

between Thinking and Doing by Art Happens

I am curious about the balance between thinking and doing in performance.

I think intelligent action is critical.  I also think that our current culture, both societal and artistic, is at risk of existing in a kind of intellectual virtual space that begins to loose a connection to the body and to action, to doing, to what I believe is a critical piece of our connection to nature to animal to instinct, a kind of listening to environment, self, and other that is not about listening to words or thoughts or intellectual ideas.

I think that dance and live performance embody these things at an essential level and that as an artist in todays world, it is both our responsibility and opportunity to help maintain and deepen connections to these things while also remaining present and conscientious in our intellectual awareness and presence as art makers and leaders, gatherers, visionaries.

We generate community, we initiate thought, challenge assumptions, question ourselves and the world around us and in doing so, we stimulate change and growth in the world around us.  We have a responsibility and an opportunity to continue to guide our cultural connection to body and environment, while expanding our intellectual understanding of the world – without losing ourselves so deeply in one as to kill/silence/or shut down the other.


Gearing up by Art Happens

As we get ready for our trek to Russia we are noticing what we can do without. Streamlining sets and props. Stripping down… Removing excess. Observing what remains. Understanding the essence of something, of what defines our environment and world. Noticing when less is more and when less is simply less…

Remembering moving by Art Happens
October 3, 2008, 1:09 am
Filed under: performance, rehearsal | Tags: , , ,

Such an awesomely inspiring rehearsal today. Feels so good to break a sweat and really dig in and MOVE. Sometimes rehearsals seem like they move so far away from moving, conceptualizing the work – understanding intention and context – negotiating props and sets and other elements – and sometimes it just feels great to move and remener that is what is at the heart of what we are doing.

between us by Art Happens
September 14, 2008, 9:10 pm
Filed under: rehearsal | Tags: , ,

As I begin work on our new piece, “ambient intimacy”, I am thinking about the space between us, near, far, physical, emotional, psychological… the distance we can see between our bodies… the distance we can’t see but can feel from those far off.  the closeness we can feel to someone whose physical presence is not visible but felt.  the real intimacy and the imagined intimacy that these close and far distances BOTH allow for.  Imagining this space as tangible and full.  How does that change, inform, redefine my own bodies edges, my emotional boundaries, and my physical sensations?  While these questions are examined in a much broader context for this new work, it somehow carries me back to what is a central question and exploration that keeps popping up with these daily practices.  the boundaries and edges between us as doers and watchers and the impact, both real and imagined, that we each have on one-another in both of these roles…  there is something key, keen about that space between us that is felt and permeates our own edges to blur what is you and what is me.  it is a connectedness that is both engaging and essential while also probable cause of the fear and walls that keep such a strong desire to maintain our “mask” and to keep a delineation between ourselves and others so clear.  how much are these “distinctions” necessary in order to have a real dialogue and how much must they dissolve?  what is the balance between the thickness and mobility of the space between us and the potency of our own edges…?


inside out by Art Happens
September 13, 2008, 12:08 am
Filed under: on class | Tags: , ,

UNDOING a Holding Back
RELEASING a Holding On
Surrendering withing rather than Recreating in an image outside of oneself

Letting go
Plunging forward
With a feeling of sensing ones self in this moment
Movement from the inside out
Resonating in a sensation that is uncovered
Stumbling onto where we are
Only to see for a moment as we allow ourselves to pass through it and fall forward into the next

An evershifting sequence of sensations – observed, witnessed, filled.

Negotiating the “external”. With a sense of care, softness, and sensitivity.  Acknowledging it’s congruence with ourselves.  Our connection with it as an extension of ourselves.

The body as both inside and out; here, there and now. Trust in the before and after in order to let go of a linear logic that keeps us keeping track rather than tracking.