particular location- a desert or expanse of beach | the tension of “re-organizing anatomy” | patterns (in movement and topography) | retreat | hidden and difficult tasks | outside forces at work | multiple attempts at the same thing | gathering and parting, repeated motifs | segmenting the parts of the body, isolating, attending to… | texture of air or space | lulling, entrancing | wing span broad strokes | eyes leading eyes | continuous diminishing | “wilderness” of the watcher, the space to move into one’s own “wilderness” | arrival, with a question mark (?) | shifts of tension in fingers and hands | something happening to you, versus more direct agency | inaudible breathing | the quality of attention had a sense of being able to go on forever | Not exposing logic, opacity. | what is my relationship to “virtuosity?” efficiency? efficacy? Working out my relationship with ballet in a way that is NOT generic.
Got into the studio with Julia this weekend [BEGIN BY BEGINNING].
Realizing that the impossible things I am interested are extremely active and imply some power to shift either the exterior or the interior environment. Rather than "be two places at once" or "survive on the surface of the sun," I have been experimenting with prompts such as "raise your interior body temperature to 400 degrees" and "remove all sound from the space." I want the impossible tasks to include some change, in either the dancer or the world. Subtly changing the course of history, not just surviving in it.
Today, however, we mostly just gathered material, movement to work with. It came from two sources. First, we created several short movement sequences based on the number of shifts of weight. We then arranged them via chance procedures. Additionally, Julia and I learned a fraction of the improvisation that Nicole and I did last Friday. We each have our respective versions, but they do resemble each other and resist each other in turn. Here is the material we have to work with:
Simultaneously drawing from Merce Cunningham and Meg Stuart, I am interested in impossible tasks. Cunningham pressed up against the limits of the trained body- explicitly expanding the realm of possibility (the oft-quoted maxim: “the only way to do it is to do it”). I remember reading an interview with Meg Stuart in which she said her goal for a work was to literally change the weather. I first tried a very basic iteration of this impossibility score in a workshop with Sarah Michelson in January 2016. I attempted to transubstantiate- going back to confusion in my childhood about catholicism (I saw it as a symbol, but a priest insisted it was literal). I wanted to go back to it and refine it.
Nicole and I began our work period by listing impossible things: change the color of your blood, become younger, take up no space, exceed the speed of light, be in two places at once, fly, know everything. At Nicole’s suggestion, we went with “know everything.” We did a series of rapid prototypes and refinements.
The spatial relationship between the two of us is cyclical, circuitous, orbital.
The default speed is slower than the speed of everyday interaction, and the default pathway is immobile, staying more or less in the same space. I challenged the space, but not the time.
There is a subscore operating: predict the future. Predict each other’s movements.
And a sub-task: banish curiosity and banish fascination (“fascination is the opposite of knowledge”)
Omniscience without omnipotence.