Garden of Constants

This project was initiated by Kathryn Holt through the Council of Graduate Students/Arts and Culture department. CGS has been encouraging departments of performing arts to produce pop-up performances around the OSU campus.

Because of my interest in site-specific works at places where interesting architecture intersect with human activities, I chose the Garden of Constants sculptures as the location.

The artist, Barbra Grygutis,  created outdoor structures  in “public spaces that enhance the built environment, enable civic interaction, and reveal unspoken relationships between nature and humanity.” Furthermore, her purpose was to identify “themes meaningful to each specific sites and community.” Dance fits perfectly within the language that Barbra has used to describe her art in public spaces: dance humans moving through designed spaces, interacting with their environment and each other.

To make this process more personal and meaningful for the dancers involved, I asked them to write down all the numbers that resemble a special event. For example; their parent’s birthday, their anniversary date, the date they adopted a dog, they date they moved to a new place, etc. We then read our numbers out loud and similar to bingo, circled the ones that are close to the read number. So we ended up with a list of our personal numbers and the stories behind them as well as a list of shared numbers.

I find it very interesting when text is incorporated in abstract and structured improvisation. During rehearsal, I noticed how adding voice effects our engagement with movements. It was certainly an anchoring point of this performance.

The Improvisation Structure heavily relied on the music – and in this case, our live musician Yuji Jones. The sections shift as the music begins or ends. But the beginnings and endings of each section is smoothed out: ever so slightly stretching the time in which change happens.

Overall, I very much enjoyed the making process and performing inside it. I was lucky to be surrounded by talented improvisers. It certainly is an invaluable skill to be able to jump into a structure improvisation with an articulate body.

 

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