Re: Research on dance & tech3

Johannes Birringer (
Thu, 07 May 1998 22:33:35

Hello everyone:

1) I remember that a few days ago Doug was not willing to read the irony in
what I said about the discussions on form/content being hilarious.....

Kasey just wrote:

>If only we could exchange information directly through dance....
>it is only hilarious to me in a kind of quixotic way. This is not to say
>that our exchanges about structure, information carried in our choices of
>tools, etc (in my camp they are all interwoven) are unimportant.
>But why I am reading this list is to learn how I may better "exchange
>information directly through dance".

That would be ideal but is not possible, Kasey.
Except if we came together more often.
I went to see Yacov's dance concert, and - stunningly - the piece
(Electrical Mask) that had triggered the whole form/content debate here,
well, it had been removed from the program (some computer or engineering
trouble). It was a beautiful concert, anyway, and the audience wasn't even
made aware that in one of the works the "electronic dance floor" (with
sensor devices linked to Midi sound) was utilized.

Hah. I liked that, since it doesn't twist my attention to the technological
interactive design, but lets me experience what I can imagine being the
dialectic of this movement, these stage images, and this music. One might
ask of course why we then need an interactive design platform, since the
same dance piece perhaps could be done in analog or traditional mixed media
parameters. The last piece on the program, "Command Enter, looked like any
other modern dance piece I would expect from Yavov's choreography, and yet
he here apparently composed the movement with the help of a computer
program (this was mentioned in the discussion after the show).

If I had come to see, explictly, the interactive design and the way it's
used, I may be disappointed. But I did appreciate the choices the Yacov
made, and I find them interesting because he integrates the digital
interfaces and 3-D animations in non-selfconscious ways. That, however,
makes the dance look like conventional modern dance. Am I making sense?

2) And Jos commented on Isabel's description of her new dancework:

>> These videos developed influenced by and influencing the movement
>> situation being explored, starting from body interiority, the expression
>> of body functions themselves, going on to questioning and commenting on
>> the positive versus negative impact of the new advances on medicine, and
>> in particular the objectification of the body. Here one of the performers
>> simply manipulated the other. Further there is a symbolic fight between
>> the performer/human and the animated figure/cyborg. At last projecting
>> moving images of the organs into our bodies moving the intent was to bring
>> our body into technology instead of the technologies into our body.

Since my composers, dancers and I are currently racking our brains over the
interior body landscapes in our new work, I am curious what Isabel means by
"starting from body interiority"...... and "the expression of body
functions themeslves.." ? How does the liver express itself, or the
kidneys, or the heart? Bowel movements? I could imagine a piece built on
bowel movements, actually. Musically speaking. Choreographically it might
yield a 3-D animation worth considering. My skeleton trembles. We should
objectify our bodies more often. Has anyone read Robet Murphy's "The Body
Silent?"I am impressed with that book, and am reading it with a different
sense now.


Johannes Birringer
Aliennation Co.