On our search for good locations in Venice, we came across this very friendly campo in the Sestiere of Santa Croce (Holy Cross) named after Nazario Sauro. I did a study of walking a circle and sensing the different interactions with the walking people who were crossing. You can see how the dance is blending in and out of the overall situation.
Then I let my body move very slowly and from sensation, so that I could keep up with all of the impressions around me, while I was moving. It created a very different kind of poem that is made of movements.
We went on and discovered a small alleyway between houses. (There are many such alleys in Venice, and the more central you get, the more narrow they can become) Here, the space invited me to do a small dance with touching the walls and letting that influence me.
Finally, I finished on the smaller Campiello de le Strope, which became a bit more exuberant, less measured. (the graffiti on the wall says "Art" in German, which was another motivation ☺ )
Now when I review the videos I am surprised that the movement material seems very consistent. It seems that I can dare to go to extremes even more, as long as I am still in a dialogue of listening and talking with the actual situation where I am, including the people who are there.
Friday, May 16, 2014
We are currently waiting for the result of an application for a licence from the local police authorities to perform within the city of Venice (singing! the authorities request the addition of singing as there is no category for only dancing ...) The project's video documentator, Jean-Ulrick Désert, has recently arrived from Berlin, making our strategic working group more complete.
On Wednesday 14 May 2014, we experimented with the possible tech equipment in C32, a very friendly cooperative dance-movement space established in Mestre off the mainland of the Venitian islands, via choreographer Marianna Andrigo. Upon returning to the Emily Harvey Foundation A.I.R. apartments we recorded the first preliminary video experiments (for framing) and dance on the illuminated Fishmarket near the Rialto bridge. It was nearly empty so there was a lot of space available for experimenting with dance movements while allowing the camera to take on its role in documenting the spontaneity of the improvisational work that serves as the basis to Sokrates. At one moment I made a conscious decision to 'repeat' how to move away from the dark-green raised-curtain and the energy of my movement changed. There was very strong sense of poetry in the atmosphere, created by the movements and I could feel the different possible decisions very strongly in their difference. Two tourists came and watched for a moment, then left after giving a welcomed applause.
I realized once more how Sokrates is based on the creation of a portrait of the moment in the moment, comparable to the way Gertrude Stein wrote her portraits of people and objects in the 20th century. Similarly, just like the philosopher Socrates, who realized his philosophy in conversations with others, I have to face the confrontation of relating to people who are passing by. It is up to me to decide how directly I make the contact with them - again - at any moment.
At any moment when you are you you are you without the memory of yourself because if you remember yourself while you are you you are not for purposes of creating you.
(Gertrude Stein, What are Masterpieces and Why are There So Few of Them, 1936)
Thursday, May 1, 2014
I have been awarded to be artist-in-residence at the Emily Harvey Foundation in Venice, Italy from May 8th to June 16th and look forward to this time of extended focus on my choreographic work, to make another move forward after the encouragments of last year.
During the coming weeks I will start with re-enacting "Sokrates" a piece that I developed 2000/2001 in public space in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
Sokrates is a conceptual dance work and the actual realizations may vary greatly: The basic concept is that like the Greek philosopher Socrates whose daily work, according to legend, was to go to the Market place of Athens and engage passers-by in philosophical conversations, my daily work will be to meander through Venice and engage the city and the people I meet in moments of performance. An important feature when I developed this piece was the state of not-knowing, and that Socrates apparently eschewed the more abstracted modes of his times to write ABOUT philosophy, and PRACTICED it directly, instead.
While re-creating this work in Venice, almost 14 years after its inception (which later became the con·sens·us series) documentation of the results will be done by Berlin-based visual artist Jean-Ulrick Désert - perhaps encountering what he has termed "conspicuous invisibility" in his own work.
I will also consider Venice as a city that has played a significantly in the temporary dominance of European empires and its historical background, and my processes from more recent works (Pelléas material / b.a.n.q. and domain/domein in 2013, my involvement with Occupy Rotterdam and the community-dance-project Delfshaven Dans! in 2012)
Finally, my overall theme for this year is Körperemotionen (German for "corporal, literally: body emotions")
I am curious and eager to find out to what extent I will be able to realize these Körperemotionen with the upcoming Venice residency.
Stay tuned ☺
photos made in Rotterdam, NL ©2001 by Cor Kapaan