Phase 3 (2005-8) ARTICULATING DANCE
Building on the findings of the previous Lab this phase took the form of an extended series of meetings with a group of highly respected movement artists in order to develop creative works and, importantly explore the ways in which we can share and talk about the sensitive processes of creation.
Entitled ‘Articulating Dance’ (£155K, including £62K ACE) the Lab engaged the dance maker/researchers with questions that are of crucial importance to dancers, dance makers, writers and scholars:
How can we share and deepen our understanding of creative processes?
How can we investigate creative processes in modes that are ‘sensitive’ and supportive of the choreographer?
What is the significance of an ability to articulate ‘something’ about our creative processes in choreographic and performance research?
Do we generate ‘new’ knowledges in this process and, if so, what modes of communication are appropriate for the dissemination of these articulations?
Key to the process of the Lab were:
The artists’ commitment to the articulation, exchange and sharing of processes
The availability of studio space, video editing and music editing facilities for extensive blocks of time when artists can pursue their own interests
The participation in workshops and ‘Intensives’ which facilitates discussion and exchange of ideas and information
The artists’ commitment to the creation and dissemination of both independent and collective tangible outcomes
The project had two interrelated elements:
a. individual research projects
b. development and ‘testing’ of ‘articulation models’
a. Individual research projects:
All members of ‘Articulating Dance’ followed independent research projects which embody certain aspects of their working methodologies / creative interests.
Alongside Jane Bacon and Vida Midgelow, the artists involved in ‘Articulating Dance’ Phase Three were a group of wonderful practitioners: Gill Clarke, Simon Ellis, Sara Giddens, Yvon Bonenfant, Guy Dartnell, Anna Furse, Robert Daniels and Kerryn Wise.
Yvon Bonenfant interests lay in the links between somatics, the voice and movement emerging from his work with post-Reichian body oriented psychotherapies. Whereas Gill Clarke worked with a video artist to capture ‘the unconscious dance’ – the moments in-between and the moments before the ‘dancing’. Her work in video had interesting resonances with Sara Giddens’ exploration in action-research in which, through re-making and transposing choreographies, she was able to reflect on the nature of creative methodologies. Also investigating through video is Guy Dartnell. His ongoing processes in movement, voice and emotion in improvisation were here being re-framed in video, testing and amplifying the boundaries of this work. Vida Midgelow investigated what might be called the ontology of improvisation – testing the ‘what is known’ and the ‘what is unknown’ in solo dance improvisation. Simon Ellis worked in intimate settings to consider the perceptual experience of the audience, while Anna Furse researched the notion of the ‘Graphic body’ establishing and recording the principles of her ‘empty space’ aesthetic. Robert Daniels and Kerryn Wise are both regional associate artists. Robert investigated the nature of the ‘performance score’, as it intersects with modes of performer interpretation and documentation, and Kerryn explored the relationship between live and recorded images – focusing on her body based processes/aesthetic.
In these projects they sought to be able to be more ‘articulate’ both within and about their practice. ‘Articulating Dance’ offered artists:
The opportunity to explore aspects of dance and choreography which do not easily fit into programmes of activity elsewhere
The opportunity to explore aspects of dance and movement without pressure to produce a final performance product
The freedom to pursue independent choreographic research
Opportunities to interact with other artists with related interests in order to reflect upon and develop their own choreographic processes
High quality studio space, state of the art video editing and music editing facilities.