[-empyre-] October Forum: "E/motion frequency deceleration"

Johannes Birringer Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk
Tue Oct 4 07:53:00 EST 2011

dear all

thanks to Renate Ferro for inviting me to moderate this month's  empyre's soft-skinned space discussion,
and I would like to get us under way with a brief introduction of our topic.

The theme is adapted; it  had inspired the third International Choreolab in Austria, held on the campus of Donau Universität Krems in late August/early September.
What interested me about extending its research and its experiential base, and involving you all if you are concerned with the subject matter, is the fact that it was (largely) 
a physical workshop, attended by many dancers and performers, as well as master teachers such as Amos Hetz, Henrietta Horn, and Ohno Yoshito (the latter now considered
the oldest living butoh dancer of the first generation).  

We invite you to participate in a forum discussion that, I imagine, could involve various kinds of movement, and particular curves and stillnesses that can be articulated and expressed, even or especially in a virtual 
space where thought can travel and connect us, and where we might give careful attention to body-mind, our senses in dialogue, and our reflections and projections on time, and on this time
we might spend together, here, amongst us.

The "choreolab" is a workhop, then.. .  "E/motion frequency deceleration"

Following the second lab titled “MEMBRANE motion_phonotope” in 2010, wherein the International ChoreoLab Austria  discussed the theory and practice of the choreo-sonar discourse, in 2011 it again deals with a current topic in the context of science and the performative arts: the desire for deceleration in the complex interface of motion and emotion.

Stress, breathlessness, exhaustion – these are the symptoms of our modern life-style pursued by most people around us. Our life is determined by the ticking of the clock or the enslavement imposed by electronic 'tags'... One thing is clear: those who do not surrender to the increasing speed of everyday life will very likely end up with the short end of the stick. It almost seems as if the unstoppable disengagement of life from natural and traditional rhythms simply can not be stopped.

Sociologist Fritz Reheis offers the alternative concept of a 'creativity of slowness'. He advocates not to succumb to the duress of constant acceleration but to discover instead the antithesis of a decelerated and self-determined society that promotes the intrinsic time and rhythm of people, culture and nature as its standards of reference. However, this is anything but a return to an idyllic state. Therefore, science and art have to forge a privileged partnership in the process of deceleration.

In the course of our workshop – and this virtual forum –  we want to convey that there is a great conjunction between motion and emotion, action and inaction, which ultimately brings out who we really are, with full illumination that can be grasped at the conscious level.  Thus, the power of compassion and deep understanding becomes senior to all else, including motion/inaction, intent/action, sound/silence, and so forth. How to take this paradigm to practicality will be the focus of our interdisciplinary dialalogues. 

The "choreolab"(1)  will map out new outlooks on performative frameworks, applying interdisciplinary eclectic perspectives, as the feedback from a wide range of practical experiences results in findings which often proof to exemplify harsh contrasts to ever new theories. Expanded social choreographies and performance processes, and some basic existential questions will be addressed in this autumn time,  raising the issue of how substantial changes in dealing with time can be achieved in the sense of deceleration, and what the roles of the performative arts in addition to science will be. 

The discussion forum might  begin with a reflection on butoh dance.

In my next post i shall begin to introduce our guests. We have a lively and diverse ensemble of practitioners and thinkers, which I am very anxious to welcome!

with regards
Johannes Birringer

(1) The 2011 CHOREOLAB at Krems, Austria, was envisioned and organized by Sebastian Prantl and the Tanzatelier. 

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