Art As War; part 2.

I’ve decided to keep this exhibition to the original three of us. One because it’s easier that way; not having to okay things with Pierre, and two because Pierre’s decided to add it to the calender as a group show so there’ll be lots of room in the future for other artists to have a go.

Had a little trouble with the invite and who is identified with what picture but it’s all sorted now and I’m the one going cross gender and brazenly extreme in the physical attributes department…

Also the Art as War theme has cross fertilised Pierre’s imagination and we’ll be running an associated underground add campaign to state the galleries intentions using some of the pictorial gems found in photography books of war… with the odd twist.

Comin’ up alongsidee this exhibition is a contact I made at Deus Ex Machina to make stuff for retro styled motorcycles; seats, exhausts, etc, leather and steel basically which could be the bread and butter activity I’ve always wanted but it’s hit a snag as the man has gone quiet on the paying me front. I’m not too put out as I still have a Harley Davidson seat I can sell to defray expenses but I really don’t want it to go that way because I really like the work, and the owners directions, so I’ll say, hopefully, it’s just a misunderstanding.

As well as the above, Valerie the dancer and Kristin the story teller, and myself are working up a performance to do at the performing arts centre dance festival in mid october. We had the big talk yesterday at mine with the fire going, which made everyone feel absolutely cosy, and nutted out the general parameters and also figured we might need a little absurd added in so we’re going to approach John Radford to come along.

The idea is to make pods in which each of us defines ourself. Valerie dances in hers, Kristin tells a story in hers and I make noises in mine… and then John adds the absurd as only he can from the confines of his.

It’ll be very post apocalyptic Tibetan meckanikistical vaudeville… and then we’ll all go see the Red Mole tapes at the film archive… we might cal ourselves Blue Badger and the working title is “A title will emerge”

My thoughts on the subject, somewhat defined after sitting through at dance performance at Galatos last night, are that the dancers, by themselves, are too consumed by the dance narrative to see the importance of sound, story, sets and acting elements as a way to hold an audiences attention. Last night Valeries performance, after a slow cumbersome start (though it did help to set the scene) was really quite gratifying to watch as she danced with and made great use of the ambient lighting and well chosen music. I don’t think too many dancers realise how important pacing is, dramatic pause and suchlike, to give our eyes the needed rest and activity they need to find a performance stimulating. This is why the sound is so important in dance but they just don’t, often, see the big picture of performances existing in a world full of so much other stimulus; that they should be acknowledgeing and not fighting the losing battle of high art and culture versus the popular choice.

Dancers may not think they are but they are storytellers regardless of their own motivations, just like musicians and actors, but ther chosen medium, almost exclusively powered by sight, means they must work that much harder to hold our attention and not drop into the shallow pit of riffing to show their prowesses. We don’t care!

Slow and soft against hard and fast, light and dark etc, the dancer fraternity really needs to apply the idea of chiaroscuro to movement and time while also realising that the use of sound joins our eyes to our hearts and this joining will frollick through the emotions if given the cues and opportunities to do so.

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