[dance-tech] Re: motion at the edge

  • From: "Birringer, Johannes" <johannes.birringer@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <dance-tech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 22 Oct 2005 22:33:00 +0100

hello all;

last night I witnessed an unusual opening, right in midst of a rainy windswept 
dark countryside in a small village called Long Buckby (Northamptonshire):  
"Motion at the edge", a program of dance/video/performance screenings, curated 
by Anna Douglas, having its premiere in an old building that used to be the 
Assembly Hall, a chapel-like architecture with beautiful wooden floorpanels and 
a magical ambience, except that these historical Assembly Rooms are now the 
house of an architect, who opens his private living room up for 5 weeks, 
exhibiting a collection of unusual films which, at first sight, look not at all 
like dancevideos or videodance. 

The artists included are:

Rosemary Butcher/Martin Otter, "Vanishing Point"
Gina Czarnecki  "Infected"
Chris. Dugrenier,  "Ascendance"  [with Aerobatic pilot Julian Murfitt]
David Hinton, "Birds"
Grace Ndiritu,  "Arrested Development"
Katharina Mayer, "Romanz"

Not all of these screen-works are new, "Romanz" for example dates back to 2000, 
the others are more recent, but they have been re-worked or are now re-sited 
(having moved from earlier video or film installations to a single screen 
projection). The new context in which they are seen now, in this old but 
renovated architecture of the private-public house, and the constellation of a 
program that conjoins these very different films, provides room for discussion, 
especially if "dance" here is really not foregrounded or even perceivable in 
the manner in which we may tend to think of dance for the camera or videodance. 

I know that are many here on this list who are interest in dance and film, i 
wish i could tell you more about what i felt last night, observing the 
cinematic choreographies of these different artists and artist-collaborators. 
There is no website, so I can only take my memories with me from the village, 
meeting all these fine people there last night, chatting with the filmmakers 
and guests, laughing along with the pilot, who explained his maneuvers to me 
(he first visualizes his aerial aerobatic movement sequences on the ground, so 
the filmmaker starts off with Murfitt rehearsing - in a green meadow - how he 
will fly the plane..... Then the film shifts upward, and "flies" into the air 
and becomes an aerial dance itself....   

The other remarkable work, along with Grace Ndiritu's curious and subtle ritual 
performance, only her feet visible in the dark, a tiny fire burning on the 
ground,  is Gina Czarnecki's equally strangely mesmerizing digitally-modified 
spiralling body (danced by Iona Kewney), a dance - illusory filmed motion -  
that cannot be, but is generated digitally and thus moves like dance, and yet, 
even if moving impossibly, becomes utterly direct, naked and close, as well as 
poetic, far out (in the current worlds of hybrids, bioarttech and genetically 
engineered creaturegamelandscapes) and not easily graspable, interpretable.

Go and see the show if you are in the UK.

Those of you coming to Nottingham at the end of year to attend the Digital 
Cultures Lab and Symposium (www.digitalcultures.org) -- - we may be able to get 
the Arts Council England (who underwrites this exhibition) to let us screen the 
works again at that occasion.

Johannes Birringer

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