Continue Discontinue/ Trying to leave the room and enter the collective
It feels as though I'm sinking deeper into the subtleties of this practice, and it’s becoming more personal. The closest I've come to escaping the room has been through imaginary portals, and the construction of another self as I can see it reflected on every surface I look at, or look through, including other people. A soft projection metaphor. What I imagine my other self to be is shapeless, shifting, and ungraspable. What is useful to me is not trying to inscribe this entity, or define its qualities, but engage in whatever might exist beyond its qualities. Vibe, magic, affect, sense. What is useful to me is developing a methodology that produces imagination; that stimulates phantasy-making. A space that produces alternatives when activated by human engagement. A space of utopian consciousness, that has nothing to do with reacting to the world as we know it, or anything anthropocentric, but to sensing the world as we can’t know it. By mining the gaps in our perceptive faculties, we might glimpse an impossible periphery. A focal point that disappears as soon as we focus on it. Something at an immeasurable distance, much too close to see. This is not a fictional body, or the body re-constructed, this is a dis-engagement of the senses towards an unfamiliar body, an unfamiliar worldview that doesn’t pan out to see more, but turns in on itself, implodes, and remembers the body as the first site of resistance, the first site of communication, and as a fully inhabited, painfully empathetic space that can’t escape its own authenticity.
What to do with this body, these limbs, this brain, a left and right eye? How can a territory of sensuous experience become material? How can this material be accessed by all participants in the performance engagement? Start with a safe space, a located space, the familiar, the calm, the centre. Start with self-perception exercises/modes/methods that reveal the self to the self, and then dial outwards. Start with a solo, and let its striations reach outwards to the collective. Allow platforms for future collective engagement emerge from the solo practice.
This is not an escape, but an expedition into lines of disappearance, of duality, of motion sickness, of forgetting language, memory, trauma, ability, and ambition. It is total present, and the more present it becomes, the less ‘present’ has any conventional meaning.
Peripheral Conversations (bypassing language, entering projection) aka Listening
Two participants are handed a pen and paper.
They are instructed to have a silent conversation, and write down responses to the other person on his/her paper.
This paper may be kept private or shared. Agree on this beforehand.
From Peripheral Conversations, Oct. 3, 2014
1) It can be turned into an interview, whereby one person only asks questions, and the other only answers. Then switch roles.
2) The linearity of language becomes skewed through writing. Writing becomes differently coherent as it soaks up body information.
3) Is it ethically problematic to have this conversation with unknowing participants? (I tried it on the way home on the streetcar. It felt a bit too invasive, but I liked wondering what my interviewees were doing, where they might be going, what their hopes for the future might be. Maybe this last question is the one that really matters)
4) This exercise is perhaps a response to one’s projection of him/herself onto the other, and a response to collectively experienced events within the conversation space. Common themes emerge however, so there may be some synchronicity going on as we read into each other's vibe.
From Discrepancies Between Left and Right (aka The Line of Disappearance) Sept. 18, 2014
Stare at an object.
One that’s no wider than the distance between your eyes.
Focus your eyes on that object.
Approach the object until your focus becomes blurry, wide, and split.
Slowly reach your hand behind the object, until your fingers appear on the other side.
Notice parts of your hand disappear, while the whole sensation of your hand remains.
From Peripheral Mapping, Oct. 8, 2014
Enter any physical space, indoors or outdoors.
Look at an object in the space.
Focus on that object.
Slowly allow our focus to soften and widen.
Select something in your peripheral vision and move towards it.
Focus on this new something as you gain proximity.
Stop moving when your focus becomes clear.
Repeat until you feel like you understand the space.
Draw a map from memory.
From Exiting/Re-Existing Movement Meditation, Oct. 10, 2014
From Walking on the Ceiling (outsourcing sensation through the virtual) Sept. 17, 2014
Locate a mirror bigger than the size of both your feet.
Hold the mirror in front of you, reflective side up, and peer into it.
Angle the mirror so you can see the ceiling, but not see a reflection of your own face.
Slowly walk around the room. Be cautious on stairs.
From Prefixes as Navigation
Is it possible to start with conceptualizing a change, or a modification, before whatever action it is attempting to modify can be identified?
A dance/body proposal:
Generate a list of prefixes using any means available (memory, internet)
Engage in cathartic improvised movement of any kind, keeping in mind one of the prefixes from your list.
(You may use music, alcohol, heavy breathing, shaking, youtube, or any other influence that might help initiate cathartic movement.)
Allow this prefix to inform your movement.
As you move, keep an external eye on yourself.
As soon as you can identify an action, give it a name, and write it beside the prefix from your list.
Continue exploring the shades of this action, and its modification.
Pick a new prefix and continue.
See video clip examples:
(07:30 Continue/ Dis:continue)
(09:25 Plant/ Re:plant)
Other prefixes that have emerged:
Video Trial, October 15, 2014
A collection of movement ideas, set to audio excerpts from Exiting/Re:existing
Movement explorations include: using the camera to capture the dancer’s perspective and her peripheral vision, the line of disappearance, interrupting habitual perception, stillness as accident, thrusting from vague points of leadership, prefixes, surveillance/projection/the eye, and rough ideas on presenting some of these ideas using video.