CHEATING DISCIPLINE AND OTHER ARTISTIC AFFAIRS
Cheating Discipline and Other Artistic Affairs is a project aiming to be adulterous to discipline through having artistic affairs. It challenges the historical heritage of discipline, through exercise and corrective training shaping the body into an obedient, docile, efficient and optimized anatomy. In this project, discipline is exercised as means to cheat on it.
If the dancer is considered as a body of work – a body constructed through labour and as a collection of art works – the dancer has multiple bodies collected from different practices, techniques and dancing. These bodies are in this project separated and distinguished trough using the dancer as a title; to title the different bodies as different dancers.
I have a closet full of dancers that I can put on, do, bring out the closet. I – performed – have different affairs with different dancers. My identities cheat and sleep with each other. Together, as a collection, they interact with each other in a polygamous way, cross-polluting, feeding, informing and contrasting each other. The play of understanding “myself” as different identities that I do, perform, indicates an identity affair, adulterous to the idea of essence, self-expressiveness and consistency. This notion of subjectivity, based on performativity and multiplicity, supposes a collectivity where the singular becomes multiple. This project unfolds and decentralises the singular, autonomous subject into open source choreography, moving it between bodies and materials. It is a notion of collectivity moving in-between subject and object, doing and being, a material and a body.
Cheating, in this project, connotes both a cheating on disciplines as well as on sexual partners. It plays with disciplinary labour as something the dancer could enter and do, rather than embody and be. The premises for the cheating will be constructed as affairs – an adulterous contract, a consented way of spending time together that exists next to discipline. These affairs are proposed and documented within the format of a score. Through scoring this choreography, and further, alter and change this score, this piece plays with performing fictive dancers as means to activate a specific kind of dancing.
Score About The Dancer and The Dance
This score plays with the idea of the dancer as a construct, a score, which one does rather than is. Trained through a workshop format, the dancer is constituted through diverse practices and techniques – and through the bodies proposed by these different practices and techniques. Thereby, the dancer becomes multiple, constituted by many different dancers though the practices the dancer embodies. My body becomes my bodies, as the body shifts with the work I do. A choreographer, institution, dance nor myself own my bodies; rather, I am a shape shifter. No, I am a principle shifter. I shift with the different principles, or different information, that I access and enter. Hence, the dancer is an identity I do, a score for accessing different dancing through entering a specific body and dispersing authorship. The dancer is not singular, not authentic, nor essential. The following series of scores called Score about the dancer and the dance is a game for emphasizing the fiction that the dancer could be considered. One can thereby pick a dancer to activate, in order to access a specific kind of dancing.
Both you and the dancer referred to in the score are performative identities, not true, essential or hierarchical. You are not more central or essential than the dancer. Rather, the score plays with a multitude of identities – professional, domestic et cetera – that work together in collaboration to construct a fictive sense of self. These identities are through this score deconstructed, fictionalised, as a method for separating them and exhibit a specific play with the dancer.
Pt. 1 The Wikipedia Dancer
Make a Wikipedia page about the dancer:
Title: The dancer
Introduction: Start giving a short intriguing and selling introduction to the dancer: name, age, appearance, important works, turns in life. (Note that these are not facts about you, but fictions about the dancer)
Character description: is the dancer lazy, disciplinary, a hard worker, a good girl, sucking up, talkative, muted, etc.?
Background: the dancer’s upbringing, birth, early conditions and circumstances
Training history: what techniques and training shaped and formed the dancer? What skills does the dancer have? What dance teachers, collaborators and practices constitute the dancer?
Preferences and tendencies: what preferences does the dancer have in terms of ways of working? Collaboratively, choreographing or not, alone? In what parts of the studio does the dancer feel the most comfortable? What role does the dancer tend to take when working together with others?
Current: what is the dancer busy with, and interested in, now? What kind of training, practices, projects, works does the dancer do?
Slogan/quote: Does the dancer have a frequently referenced quote? Make a slogan for the dancer
Pt. 2: Enter the dancer
Lie on the floor
Rest into the dancer:
Sense your body on the floor, let your attention and presence travel and spread through your body
Enter a dancer identity, maybe the identity that you are working together with in your practice
Visualize the dancer moving in front of you
Visualize the dancer’s distribution of weight, bodily structure, alignment and way of moving
Embody the dancer’s training that is immanent to her body:
What is specifically apparent about the dancer?
What movement principles, practices or techniques are activated or frequently used?
What movements and acts/activity stylized and shaped the dancer?
What reality is the dancer moving in and inhabiting?
Feel the dancer in your body; let the dancer imprint and enter your body.
Feel where the dancer is present in your body, what she does to your alignment, structure, weight distribution, attention, sensation, awareness, presence
Stand up and walk the dancer in space
Pt. 3: Doing the Dancer
Enter the stage
Enter the dancer
Walk the dancer centre stage
Let the dancer be seen, don’t hide in the doing of the dancer
Trust that the dancer is being accompanied by the practices inherent to her bodily structure, the practices constituting the dancer
Perform a momentarily executable task that does not require any preparation outside the preparation immanent to the dancer: if this is a task such as jumping, try to jump the dancer, rather than to jump as the dancer
Acknowledge how the performance of skill is also preaching a body for the dancer, signifying that any set of skills is connected to the body performing them
Trust the dancer’s intuition in composing the dance
Recognize when the dancer is shifting or drifting, maybe referencing another dancer: if this happens however, let the different identities accompany each other in a quick dance, before the second dancer is being incorporated into the memory of the dancer you were initially doing
Fill the silence of the score with the dancer’s interpretation of your imagination
Exit the dancer, then exit the stage
Pt. 4: The Domestic Dancer
Enter the dancer: spend some time together with the dancer you are working together with in your practice outside work, like an after work beer
Walk the dancer off-stage: take the dancer out of the disciplinary spaces such as the studio or the stage
Take the dancer for a walk; note your perception of the dancer’s body, weight and movement
Take the dancer home; note, as you’re doing domestic labour with the dancer, how your tasks are performed in relation to (together with) your dance practice
Give credit to the labour surrounding, informing and affecting your professional work
Consider everything you’re doing together a dance; name, in a speech act way, everything you’re doing a dance. Pay attention to composition, time, space and choreography, as well as how the performing of the tasks as the dancer affects the doing of the task
Spoil the dancer: plan a date for the dancer (flowers, dinner etc.)
Perform the date
Try to get the dancer to walk you home (with consent even to spend the night)
Entertain the dancer and your relationship; what practices entertains and sustains the dancer? Maybe give the dancer a massage?
Exit the dancer
Pt. 5: The Open Source Dancer
Exchange Wikipedia dancer with someone else, or make several
Wikipedia pages about either fictive dancers or a dance teacher you never got along with
Enter this dancer
Perform score Pt 2: Enter the dancer and Pt 3: Doing the dancer together with this colleague
Exit this dancer and repeat with different dancer