The Derive Project
Anthony Askew & Tom Kindell
Exploring Body in Space through Workshops and Public Performance
In order to create understanding and transformation of the world we must create adventures. Society’s emancipation will not be found in the existing structures of the world, but in the cracks and lost spaces.
(PIPS, Providence Initiative for Psycho-geographic Studies, n.d.)
Based in Devon and Cornwall, Anthony Askew & Tom Kindell seek to instigate and promote experimental social ventures through the use of communications technology and dance.
A sense of togetherness is important to the wellbeing of any community. By drawing attention to the typical use of public spaces and by using them ourselves, such a relationship can be developed with the local environment that it becomes a social space. Communications technologies attempt to clarify our perspective, they make our perspectives reviewable/ translatable/ communicable.
It’s too easy to stop seeing, to stop noticing things, as familiarity takes away the novelty of the new. This is like saying, I know my home, it can not surprise me, so I see only the difference in it now. The people who visit my home town, who look around it like it’s an exotic and novel new playground, catch my eye. As do the new shops and the renovated building facades. Yet there is a monotony even here. The constant revelation of the “new” is so comprised of reoccurring ideas that it doesn’t fulfil anyone. Instead the implied notion of progression, where maybe there is no real progress taking place, draws people further and further away from their heritage and the history inherent to their home.
So can we go back to being questioning? Can we all be tourists here? Can we find something fresh in our too familiar home?
Over a period of one month, young people between the ages of 14 -22 are invited to participate in a local arts project that is being led by two young artists in the Falmouth and Penryn area. Participants will be introduced to the Urban dance movement style that has been led by Willi Dorner’s Urban Bodies projects. Tom Kindell will be leading a group of young people through a series of workshops ending with a set of three performances that will take place on the Moor in Falmouth.
Through the use of the dancer’s body and by documenting through film we hope to pose an intervention upon the typical daily flow of life in Falmouth Town. The choreographed body can be used to present old spaces in new ways. The physical performance intends to create a visually discordant situation that will cause people to gather.
The dancers will not be performing to present themselves exclusively but instead to introduce or highlight characteristics/features of the architecture or topography of the town. As this is a derive, or drift, audiences will be invited to participate in a short promenade within Falmouth town.
The Performance will be documented on video cameras as well as by people present on the Moor. Audience members will be invited to participate in the documentation process as they are free to document the performance with their own cameras.
The entire process will be documented and explained through film documentation on through an online blog format.
Development of movement, working with sites to determine choreography and primary camera set-up.
Cameras are in place, anticipating the dance, the cameras belonging to the audience form a tertiary group of camera perspectives.
The recorded interactions are manipulated, edited, or used, to emphasise intent and content.
• Locate several key sites and a trajectory for the drift.
• Perform routine research processes for each site.
• Speak to locals.
• Document process.
• Research local history and cultural relevance of sites.
• Create responses:
• Lead Body and Movement workshop
• Lead Performances
• Document Performances
• Evaluate project and prospects for further development/relocation
• Series of experimental artworks
Further Information on the Project:
DATES AND RELEASES
Performance: August 1st/3rd/5th 2011
Final Material Release: Winter 2011
Developed from the Illegal Arthouse preview work “Art of Nonconsequence”, this project now seeks to create a critically engaged work for the wider public.
This project is an inter-disciplinary and cross-practice, interactive and site-specific, performance artwork. Manipulating and sourcing material from communications technologies to create at a base level a community dance on camera film. The Derive project scopes and includes dance performance, film, installation, and psycho-geographical exploration.
As a site specific work the location is heavily influential upon the final product. It had been our intention from the start to find a social space to create work in for this project. There is a disconcerting lack of provocative/challenging activity in Falmouth town in some respects which is another factor which plays to contribute to the cultural value of this work.
Whilst the work overtly plays with the nature of the site and the liberties that such a site can provide, this work is politically, socially, and culturally conscious.
This Project was developed in response to the economic decline and the plight of engaging community arts activity in Falmouth (UK). The level of engagement between art, artists, and the local community is limited. This project intends to stimulate awareness and interest in the art that does exist and encourage the local culture in its development.
Performance art extends into the lives of people. Our work intends to create a gestalt artwork, a whole artwork. From the moment the project reaches the public it must be performative, if it is used, advertising should entice audiences to perform as themselves within a controlled situation that they may not know that they are even performing in. The illusions of the work of art must be able to withstand its infiltration of everyday life, its use of modern day technology to engage literally, as commercial ventures might, with the life that contemporary people live; the use of email, mobile phones, communications technology, social networks.
The performance itself, in its traditional manifestation, must fit into this contemporary context instead of falling back on established and predictable platforms such as the gallery and the theatre that have cultivated and nurtured specific audiences. Alternative platforms, particularly the street, pose interesting questions for the contemporary art world. By doubting exclusivity and the status of the established means of presentation, the artist can function to inform a wider social demographic of the value of art. Street art’s graffiti scene is often taking hold of temporary spaces that would be otherwise dank and barren and is turning spaces into something representative of the beauty of being. Artists who are occupying abandoned spaces with their art give such spaces an incontestable air of life and vitality. But how does the performance utilise this pirated arena? The use of such spaces is not new but it is a taboo space for the average member of public.
Editing techniques will be employed that de-constructs the documentation that is made, the film, the perspectives, the movements of performers and the movements of the audience members will be explored in the editing process so the film itself will bean exploration of the relationship between body and site. Emphasis is placed upon the intentions of the original body movement.
The arts are responsive. This is not to say that art is designed as it might be if it were in response to a brief, but rather art responds as humans respond to their habit as a matter of being.
Anthony Askew, Tom Kindell
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