[dance-tech] Re: post / choreographic

Hi all.

What a lovely and lively discussion! Too many things to think about and
re-iterate and embody and explore, again - thank you to everyone for your
insights and tangents and engagements.

I think I find the taxonomies most interesting: affect or effect?
performative or performatic? post-[blank] or not so? Is this concerned with
choreography, or is it something else? I think these drive home Matthew's
point that structure and definition help to make better tools for
interrogation. I agree.

But it also begs other questions of structure. Performative namings of
"things" (whether they be affect and effect, or gender and race) help us to
better understand and ask questions, yes, but they also pose (produce?) a
"thingy-ness" where there may not be one. Is structure where the body or
technology lies? Perhaps. And I would never belittle or devalue the work of
theorists such as Butler or Schneider, the performance artists and
choreographers of the 60s through 90s and beyond. But one of the most
fascinating things the study of structuralism, and for that matter the body,
has taught me personally is that these things are not only performative, but
also generative and self-deforming. They change over time, through
per-formance, through their poststructure, through enfleshed meaning-making
and understanding. And so, perhaps, that change, that performance, that
transformation is actually more essential for, at the core of, the "thing,"
than the performative utterances that name its parts (or activities).
Perhaps the being-with of change, the interrogation, the process itself, is
a pre-condition (or at least co-condition) for structure. In this case it
may be vital to, sometimes (but certainly not always), ignore structure and
instead engage with the embodied feedback loops between our presupposed
understandings of such categories. This is not to again separate structure
and body, text and flesh, real and Real, but rather to say the tranformative
process each plays on the other is precisely where we "are". This is where
my work attempts to focus.

So yes, say what I (or you or we) do is more affect or effect, performative
or performatic, choreography or interface design. Debate Massumi's or
Gough's or Hayles' definitions. I'm happy to engage and play with all of it.
But where my practice begins is as investigative of provocative movement -
literal, figural, conceptual, continuous and all and more of the above -
aiming to find the things we don't know but our bodies (whatever "a body"
is) do know or will know or will become. Whether this process succeeds or
fails in any instance does not make the investigation any less
worthwhile....

Looking forward to more. Warmly,

nathaniel
http://nathanielstern.com

On Sun, Apr 6, 2008 at 9:23 PM, Johannes Birringer <
Johannes.Birringer@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> dear jeannette,   list:
>
> your post on April 2  was really beautiful, Jeannette,  i enjoyed reading
> it a lot,
> and it was also good to hear response from others (Nathaniel, Harmony,
> Marko,  Jaime,  etc),
>
> I think Jaime started a kind of "postcolonial" seminar/debate here which
> we've never had on this list, it;'s great,   so I'll be curious to see how
> discussion ensues or whether  such delineations or academic tropings, from
> poststructuralisms to queer performativities, return us to the problems that
> were mentioned by Marlon when he addressed the politics of language.....
> Harmony is quite right in commenting on the politics of language at
> stake.... .
>
> I'm still thinking further along the lines of  how performance
> practitioners,   regarding dance and real time composition / improvisation,
>  can articulate the kinds of experience and enactments Jeannette describes.
>
> 2 things i wanted to dwell on.
>
> (a) the multiple performer selves  in this fluid real-time environment
>  --this i found particularly interesting and beautifully expressed.
>
> >>as  if there is a constant dialogue within the performer between
> the different 'performative selves' - one is aware of the structure and
> responds accordingly, one is aware of the shifts and slight differences
> that
> occur at each performance, so cause and effect vary slightly at each
> performance, one is aware of mistakes and therefore new ideas and
> possibilities, one that is aware of audience and the desire to evoke an
> empathetic response in them, (if only they were you) making them as
> kinetically or emotionally engaged and in an excited/aware state, in that
> moment of connection....
>
> ...
> is synaptic space, no longer an empty space but a place of
> transition. an-other place. it is not an empty gap that must be leapt
> over,
> as in the underground from train to platform, but a substantial place
> filled
> and alive with history, memory, energy, electricity, spontaneity and a new
> life form. the space between is no longer 'between' but a place, an
> environment to be. >>>
>
> and to reply to your questions,
> >> can the dancer give another response to alter an encoded response? can
> it
> challenge the machine with unexpected input, rather than "causal and
> patterned" responses?>>.
>
> I'd suggest that this is exactly the crux we were talking about in the
> discussion on the post-choreographic.  In the sensorally experienced and
> enacted environment, the synaptic space you evoke, there will most likely
> always be an indetermined spontaneous and intuitive enaction on the one
> hand, depending on whether the dancer is not constricting herself to seeking
> to elicit a particular (repeatable) reaction from the system, be it audio or
> video or light or particular aspects of the sonic and the 2d or 3d
> environment..... ,   and there might be intentionality and a particular
> attitude towards the "choreographic" material and real time relationality on
> the other which could mean that the dancer carefully explores and seeks
> traces .... here i like what Nathaniel wrote --- "ludic interfaces, and the
> per-formed, " and .."carefully stutter or quiver between texts."
>
>
> the other
> (b) >>it begs the question - for whom and what is this work for? at the
> moment of
> co-authorship, it seems to be intensely personal, not for the consumption
> of
> an audience,>>
>
>
> well,  this is true,  it seems as if we are no longer speaking of
> spectacle, right?    Away from performances for audiences,  our attention
> would then naturally shift more towards interactive or immersive
> installations and how the kind of ludic interfaces or complex sensorial and
> cross-modal embodiments can be "arranged" for participants, in which case
> again i had assumed, perhaps prematurely, that one would not speak of
> choreographing the visitor or user.
>
>
> In remember a conversation with Yacov Sharir on his immersive journey
> inside Gromola's projected body:
>
>
>          What artistic, intellectual, kinesthetic, and emotional issues
> could be addressed using this
>          technology? … virtual technologies allow us to manipulate,
> extend, distort, and deform
>          information as well as experience of the body. They are vehicles
> that enable us to extend and color
>          work in many ways, some of which may not be possible in the
> physical realm and/or by traditional
>          means. They offer a way to augment and extend possibilities
> creatively, experientially, spatially,
>          visually, sonically, and cognitively.  (this is drawn from his
> work at Banff in the mid 90s)
>
>
> The augmented interface he recounts ("Dancing with the Virtual Dervish")is
> a conflation of inter-action and immersive experience within a real-time,
> 3-D graphic and aural environment generated by computers. Sharir refers to
> it as a "distributed performance environment" which he entered and inhabited
> with a head-mounted display and dataglove. The three-dimensional world,
> created by Gromola, projected on an enormous scale the torso and inner
> organs of her body built from X-ray and MRI data. Sharir said that when
> moving through the virtual torso he also encountered digitized images of
> himself dancing, which diffused and multiplied his sense of being inside an
> other body.
>
> Sharir's experience of the distributed self (selves) refers us back to the
> motivations for such performance / dance research in the first place. He is
> clearly stating a desire to provoke questions about human beings,
> subjectivity, perceptual systems, and how we re-envision and re-configure
> ourselves through technology. On the computational and formal level of
> making work, he seems largely content to explore "possibilities" for a new
> spatiotemporal aesthetics, asking where one can locate his performance, in
> the real space, or the virtual world.
>
> A concern about choreography is not apparent, not do i detect it in
> Jeannette's or Nathaniel's writing, or Jaime's writings.  I think there are
> clear reasons for this, no?  am i mistaken?
>
> regards
> Johannes Birringer
> DAP Lab, London
>
>
>
>
> Jeannette Ginslov wrote
> Wed 4/2/2008
> >>>
>
> in my experience during performance with interactive sites, a heightened &
> amplified sense of focus, perception and seeing, is perhaps what occurs
> for
> me at the moment, the gap, or place of interaction.
>
> the irony is that the more one narrows and quietens the focus on that
> locus
> of interaction, the more it amplifies the sense of awareness of perception
> -
> the five senses and awareness of self, become heightened and allows for a
> discursive interaction within the self, between the many selves, feelings
> and ideas, that come alive during performance. it gets a bit 'noisy' at
> times if you do not concentrate, as they tend to happen simultaneously.
>
> for this to come alive during such performances, a sense of quietness is
> necessary for intense focus and listening to occur at these loci of
> interactivity. it is as if you have to walk through a door, squeeze and
> squash the mind/body binary together, so they merge, and then you are
> through the door into another sense of perceiving the present, real-time,
> perceiving and acknowledging it, all at the same time, in your entire body
> and being.
>
> then during performance i am amazed at how my senses are awakened and how
> my
> body memory, that includes habit and the questioning of it, comes forward
> in
> my consciousness for the moment of negotiation or choice, to respond. as
> part author, should i use this or that? milliseconds float by.
>
> an added advantage of being the performer/"enfleshed machine" immersed in
> the constellation of possible interactions, whether they are causal or
> not,
> is that we have an added awareness of audience. the real 'electronic'
> machine does not.
>
> the "enfleshed machine" is aware of mind and perceptual flow, seeing in
> real-time but also seeing shifts in perceptual flow and shifts in
> perspective, as if there is a constant dialogue within the performer
> between
> the different 'performative selves' - one is aware of the structure and
> responds accordingly, one is aware of the shifts and slight differences
> that
> occur at each performance, so cause and effect vary slightly at each
> performance, one is aware of mistakes and therefore new ideas and
> possibilities, one that is aware of audience and the desire to evoke an
> empathetic response in them, (if only they were you) making them as
> kinetically or emotionally engaged and in an excited/aware state, in that
> moment of connection, one that is always judging the performance as a
> whole
> within a cultural context aware of place in time and history, one that is
> the personal - body aches, pains, tiredness, energy levels etc, one that
> is
> aware of other interferences - extraneous noises etc
>
> it begs the question - for whom and what is this work for? at the moment
> of
> co-authorship, it seems to be intensely personal, not for the consumption
> of
> an audience, that seems extraneous, outside of 'the moment of choice',
> unless the result is for the more spectacular. specularity then comes into
> play and alters the performer's choices.
>
> the need to share what has actually happened at the interface between the
> highly skilled dancer and the machine, the myriad of different narratives
> that the "enfleshed machine" can elicit is what interests me...perhaps
> (dare
> i say it), at this synaptic space, no longer an empty space but a place of
> transition. an-other place. it is not an empty gap that must be leapt
> over,
> as in the underground from train to platform, but a substantial place
> filled
> and alive with history, memory, energy, electricity, spontaneity and a new
> life form. the space between is no longer 'between' but a place, an
> environment to be.
>
> can we make these places unique? are these places the result of call and
> response? can there be innovation and origination in these places? how can
> the dancer give another response to alter an encoded response? can it
> challenge the machine with unexpected input, rather than "casual and
> patterned" responses?
>
> the "enfleshed machine" has more to offer from its embodied data base, i
> think, than the metallic - how do we access that and what will the
> choreographic structures and outcomes be and will there be more freedom of
> choice, or will it just be the same but more complex?
>
>
>


-- 

nathaniel
http://nathanielstern.com

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