Fly on the wall

freedom to move by Art Happens
September 9, 2008, 3:45 pm
Filed under: rehearsal | Tags: , ,

as ideas for this new work, re-worked recent work, come to fruition inside the studio and out… everywhere i look it seems there are references and research opportunities, confluences and insights all around me.  i adore this place where the piece begins to take over your life space in such a way that you live and breath it at nearly every moment.  it becomes this living entity that demands attention and care, consideration.  but it also gives back and offers inspiration, questions, moments of discovery and surprise.  “ambient intimacy” is beginning to take form and our rehearsal yesterday, although full of bumps and walls was equally full of laughter and inspired moments and i feel as though we are getting somewhere, have turned a new page, unveiled a new series of questions and directions for further exploration… whereas for a moment we were stuck in mud and unsure where we might go and what we were experiencing/doing.  it is not as though we now have answers but the mud pulls less and there is freedom to move around the space and change our perception, see new things, and find motion in the process again.  i can hardly wait for the the next rehearsal!!!!! more to come!!!!


3 dimensional ephemeral performance on flat screen tvs by Art Happens
June 27, 2008, 1:22 pm
Filed under: performance | Tags: , ,

Recordings of live performance – i still can’t decide how to feel about seeing something captured eternally (well probably not given how quickly technology changes these days HA!) that is created for and made for a living breathing space that is fleeting and subject to individual perception and our memory’s moveable impressions.  Not to mention the energetic exchange between performer and audience that is completely flattened in the virtual realm of recorded live performance.  Video has taken a strong and clear place in our field.  It is expected that an artist have videos of their work available to any one who asks to see it – producers, schools, granting organizations, the list goes on. And while we all acknowledge how much is lost in a recording, so much is often decided on based on these recordings.  It is as though we can say that it is incomplete and does not function well and then yet our actions follow through in such a way that allows these recordings to have the power of something that is representative.  this is beginning to sound like a rant and that is not actually the intention, i understand the dilemna.  I am actually more curious about my own relationship with video and dance.  the question arises for me that perhaps when working with video and dance we should be making versions of the dance that are made for the 2dimensional world of television and video.  so that the “stage” and “site specific” nature of the realm in which it is viewed can be acknowledged.  Artists have been doing this for some time and have made beautiful art work this way.  it is not live performance but it’s own medium of dance video which can be captivating and inspiring.  yet this does not function for the above mentioned uses – when trying to imagine what a live performance of the work feels like.  or can it?  is something made for the virtual world of our tv screen that captures the energetic feeling of a performance more accurate than an uncut flattened version of a live performance?   sometimes I feel like it is more accurate.  Even if I am presenting a piece that has already been performed i consider the new venue, the new site and all of its specifics and always shift and allow the piece to change in order to accomplish what is at the heart of the piece in this new environment.  video feels like the same thing to me, a new environment.  and while I would never take a piece and carte blanc transport it into a new space unchanged and unconsidered, why should I do that here? other than because I have been told that is what people want to see, uncut footage from live performance…  artistically this makes no sense to me.  the purest in me cringes.  and for the business of the art this also seems improbable as the best way to represent oneself – even when you do get a great video of the work… it is so sub-par to the real thing.  so far I have mostly simply avoided trying to define how i choose to have a relationship with video in my dance work, but i recognize the need to discover what my relaltionship with video might be moving forward.  I have put video up on youtube for the first time.  I am testing the water to see how it sits with me, to have some footage live that approaches the dance on video question in some different ways.  nothing has really hit yet, but I am trying to understand the form, its possibilities, its problems, and to discover for myself how i can dialogue with it to have available the things that the field demands and stay true as an artist to the way that I work and the relationship that i have with these dances.  part of me says just get over it, keep it simple, record, copy and send… and part of me is intrigued by all the different sets of problems and limitations each new space or site-specific project presents – and this feels no different…


Versions of the same idea. by Jason
June 10, 2008, 5:32 pm
Filed under: performance | Tags: , ,

Last week Lindsey and I returned to Ann Arbor to finalize a version of Inflatable Man, Evaporating Woman on 5 students for Ann Arbor Dance Works.  We took the same approach in making this excerpt as we did the duet excerpt for DanceNow.  We examine the content of the piece and extract ideas that we feel will lend itself to the new format, considering where it will be seen, the venue, who is the audience and how many other works (ideas) will it be seen with in the same evening among other points of consideration.  Rather then pick a particular 10 minute moment from the first formal presentation of the work at Danspace Project, Lins and I looked to our process materials and the works many iterations and built a piece that was most appropriate given the criteria we were considering above.  We both refer to it, as Lindsey titled her last post, a remix like they do with music.


remixes by Art Happens
June 3, 2008, 3:01 am
Filed under: performance | Tags: , ,

in the theater at the university of michigan today. the remix for five of inflatable man, evaporating woman went up under lights.  always such a great moment to see it all come to life in the space. its such an intriguing variation on the work.  so many elements that we journeyed through in this spacious duet world; we’ve now layered them and they co-exist, still in this world of slow molasses and sparseness, but things happen simultaneously and you can scan through the space and the world and take things in side by side.  it gives the piece a whole new life.  syntax makes such a difference.  i can hardly imagine putting a piece up and not looking at it again and again from so many different perspectives.  i feel so lucky to have the opportunity to do that and so committed to the value of letting things sit with time and not hesitating to allow something to continue to grow and change and shift.  its live performance after all, such a big part of what i love about the field…


reflections on half of the room by Art Happens
May 17, 2008, 3:47 pm
Filed under: performance | Tags: , ,

all the great and terrible feelings that both float along side finishing a new work.  it was such a satisfying weekend of performances.  half of the room, with all of it’s interrupters/supporters/disrupters/enablers; a different cast each performance, a different set of obstacles and invitations to engage and negotiate each evening – it all made for an incredibly exciting series of performances for jason and i.  it kept every performance feeling so unique and fresh.  as performers it kept everything so genuine and real.  we really didn’t know what to expect from each evening and each performer.  some more than others, and some more general expectations given how we know and what we have grown to know from each performer we worked with.  but the details, they were happening and falling in our laps as it went on.  different than improvising though – we had this set duet that we journeyed through.  sometimes in its entirety with inserted moments of new/spontaneous ideas – sometimes with lots of holes and skipped ideas based on where our guests’ contributions took the piece. the duet itself though, which shaped itself until the very last moment, actually turned out to be quite satisfying artistically.  it very much built on where we have been but turned a different corner than in the past.  i am intrigued by it, so much so that i hope that we go back and look at it more in depth on its own – as well as within the world of the external interruptions and structure that we have set up for half of the room.  thats were the excitement comes in after this show.  the satisfaction and intrigue about how it unfurled in performance and the possibilities of where it might still go with more exploration and performance.  and there in lies the sadness, the ending of something.  ironically timed so perfectly with the ending of our period of artistic exploration with christian, saying goodbye to three months of daily practice and investigative conversations about “the work” of dance and movement.  ending also is this particular structured time for working and performing half of the room, the ideas, the movement, these collaborators.  I mean we have more to come, more performances, more rehearsals, more projects with all of these wonderful collaborators, etc etc… but just the same, it’s an ending of something, a couple of things even.  

thankful for this beautiful springtime weather in NYC today – keeps the focus on the renewal and the things to come…