[-empyre-] theory/practice and becoming-avatar

Ashley Ferro-Murray aferromurray at gmail.com
Fri May 22 04:33:27 EST 2009

For a purely process based response to bringing Deleuze into the studio and
on theory/practice in general...

When I read the rhizomatic arguments of Deleuze and Guatarri I often sit
with my journal and choreograph in my head and on paper. My still body is
intellectually moved by concepts of multiplicity and the body without
organs. Conceptually, I desire physical movement. When I finally make it to
the studio to satisfy my impulse to move, Deleuze and Guatarri's
inspirational words directly influence my becoming body. I transcribe my
thought process through critical motion practice.

Of course, this is just one method and one fragment of a potential practice.
Nonetheless, my process is ingrained in theoretical inquiry just as my
theoretical inquiry is ingrained in my process. To me, it seems that
although this intimate connection between theory and practice in critical
movement conception is not necessary, it is absolutely possible.

I am interested to hear more about collaboration on this topic. I don't
usually think of my work with theory as collaborative process. Although I
suppose that there is potential for that too. Am I inherently collaborating
with scholarship? Or does this scholarship inspire collaborative process
through interdisciplinary?


On Thu, May 21, 2009 at 5:51 AM, Norah Zuniga Shaw <zuniga.11 at osu.edu>wrote:

> On bringing Deleuze into the studio and collaboration as critical practice:
> I've been thinking about this in response to stamatia's good questions
> about
> our use of the word diagram and the deleuzian possibilities of this word.
> For me, this is a good example of what Laura is describing as the theory in
> the mix vs. systematic application. We enjoyed thinking about the nature of
> a diagram within the critical process of iterative design and deleuzian
> conceptions kept our creative options open and mobile (these conceptions
> were inserted into our process by members of our interdisciplinary working
> group from art history, philosophy, and architecture). But no where were we
> applying theory systematically. Discourse, production, process ...
> functioned together as critical making.
> In this rubric of critical motion I'm trying to determine for myself if I
> believe our objects to be the locus of critical motion, the animated
> objects
> are theorizing on the choreographic motions. Or theorizing with the
> choreographic motions? Not sure whether this is important or not.
> And finally, Laura and Johannes bring us to thinking about collaboration as
> critical practice and this is hugely important to me and to the kind of
> work
> many of us do.
> On 5/21/09 4:43 AM, "Cull, Laura" <lkc202 at exeter.ac.uk> wrote:
> > For my part, I feel as if I do bring Deleuze into the studio (it's not
> > 'rehearsals' for me) - not literally, nor in an overbearing way - but he
> is a
> > persistent voice given that he's been a focus of my research for the last
> 3
> > years. I've not tried to 'apply' Deleuze in any systematic way - which I
> think
> > would be disastrous in any case - but I feel as if reading Deleuze
> (outside
> > the studio) has tuned my sensibilities somehow, such that I pay attention
> to
> > different kinds of things than I once did (when I was reading Roland
> Barthes
> > and Edward Said). It has also been Deleuze (alongside groups like Goat
> Island
> > who are also very influenced by his thought) who has drawn my attention
> to the
> > complex and multiplicitous creations that can come from collaboration.
> (You
> > already knew this of course, Johannes, whereas I came from an art school
> > environment in which one was encouraged to develop one's own distinct
> style
> > and recognisable product, rather than make things that were or looked
> like the
> > product of many minds). Dare I say that I think that 'genuine'
> collaboration
> > is inherently a critical practice? That is, collaboration is its own
> thinking
> > (without philosophy) in a manner that critiques how we are constantly
> being
> > told to think socially, politically.
> >
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
> http://www.subtle.net/empyre

Ashley Ferro-Murray
MA/PhD Student
Dept. Theater, Dance & Performance Studies
University of California, Berkeley
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