3. Dwelling in time → Moving through space 處於時域，動破空間。
“Dance, the movement of the body in a rhythmic way, usually to music and within a given space, for the purpose of expressing an idea or emotion, releasing energy, or simply taking delight in the movement itself. …'' This pops up with a basic Google search. But every phrase and line can be opened up to embrace what is marked non-dance. And what about the permutational combination of some of these elements? Rhythmic body movement without music? Dance across different spaces? Defining a space by how one dances? Could a place be the result of how we move in it? Conserving energy as much as releasing? Stillness as a kind of movement? This session contains several video essays initiated as dance videos or by dance professionals. They are liberating! We should all dance.
Daily life, Living space, Loneliness, Bolero, Dance
日常生活, 生活的空間, 孤單, 波萊羅, 舞蹈
In 2020, Frédéric Liver tries to come to grips with the Boléro, as choreographed by Maurice Béjart. Attracted by the performance of Duska Sifnios and never having danced before in his life, Liver’s daily life is filled by this new quest.
Between Reims and Brussels, Frédéric Xavier Liver, an Italian-French artist, cultivates a work on the confluence of historical and social constructions in art. Through painting, performance, videos and publishing, he questions the notions of individual and collective identity and their inscription in our social practices. Working from historical and vernacular imagery, he often proceeds by assembling iconographic materials that he manipulates, declines, and multiplies with a simple approach in order to blur the lines and write new representations.
These images question the perception of contemporary identity and create new narratives that are often fantastic, alternative and performative. In doing so, he invites us to critically reconsider the notion of identity, whether collective or subjective, as well as the individual's quest for political, social and identity-based belonging.
Frédéric Xavier Liver, French-Italian visual artist
Liver graduated from the Accademia di Belle Arti in Milan in 2005 and since 2012 is a member of the collective E IL TOPO (Milan). His works are presented in Paris by the galleries Nivet Carzon, Estace and Les Salaisons, in Naples by the Annarumma gallery, in Brussels by the Dubois-Friedland gallery, and in Bucharest by the Galateca gallery. His personal work and his collaborations with the collective E IL TOPO have been exhibited at Gamec (Bergamo, 2011), La Fabbrica del Vapore (Milano, 2012), Cneai (Paris, 2013), FRAC Bretagne (Rennes, 2014), EBiennale (Bucharest, 2015), Primary (Nottingham, 2016), Clark Center (Montreal, 2016), 19 - CRAC (Montbéliard, 2017) and Reims Scène d'Europe (with FRAC Champagne-Ardenne) 2019.
I like this work, especially when I notice the performer is not a professional dancer. The video is well shot, which highlights the precision of movements. It reminds me of Yvonne Rainer’s trio A, which opens up the act of dancing which could just be an immediate abstraction of daily actions by giving them rhythm, a sense of temporal measure. Watching his video makes me want to dance. (Linda Lai)
Simple and beautiful. The narration is very loosely bound, yet the action design is “silly” in ways that sustain my interest. And it is good that I didn't feel any self-pity which is common in works about a single individual in quarantine. (WONG Fei-pang)
Relationship, Partial, Time, Synchronization, Latin Dance
關係, 局部, 時間, 同步, 拉丁舞
Drawing from impressions of Latin dance, Two Solos, Once Dance, Three Frames is an attempt to deconstruct and translate this particular dance genre into video form. Two prestigious local Latin dancers Sam Ng and Michelle Lam are invited to re-interpret two works from their long-term partnership that have marked their professional achievement and personal breakthrough. Their new collaboration was then translated into the language of moving images, thus ascribing new ways of seeing to Latin dance. The piece was also intended to celebrate diversity across dance genres, as well as mutual respect in collaboration on the ground that the integrity of the original form of Latin dance could be respected.
《Two Solos, One Dance, Three Frames》邀請了兩位本地出類拔萃的拉丁舞者吳森雋和林惠怡，從二人拍檔多年的經驗中重新演繹兩個對他們的職業及個人生涯尤其重要的作品，嘗試藉著錄像攝影去探索拉丁舞的影像呈現的可能性，建立新的想像和視點。這次的創作，同時是跨越不同界別舞蹈之間的分類和差異的嘗試，尋找在雙方尊重及保有其完整性的前提下合作的方式，檢視及辨識舞蹈的多樣性在藝術生態中的重要。
Choreography and Performance 編舞及演出: Sam Ng 吳森雋 Choreography and Performance 編舞及演出: Michelle Lam 林惠怡 Editing 剪接: Lee Wai Shing 李偉盛 Cinematography 攝影: Steve Li 李昊 Sound design and Artistic Advice 音效設計及藝術顧問: Lawrence Lau 劉曉江
Joseph Lee is a Hong Kong-based choreographer and performer. He began his dance training at seventeen. Graduated from the Chinese University of Hong Kong and The Place, London Contemporary Dance School in the United Kingdom, Lee is currently the Associate Artistic Director of Unlock Dancing Plaza, curating a series of contemporary dance programs and platforms to foster artistic discourse in the performing arts field locally and internationally. Lee is interested in reading, transferring, and the re-enactment of bodily experience which reveals the performative nature of everyday life in contemporary society; and he translates and re-organizes experience and contexts within the physical body through live performance, writing, moving image and curation. His work is focused on expanding the audience's imaginary horizons of choreography by creating and performing with the body and other alternatives. He is also keen on transdisciplinary collaboration as a way to enrich and reflect on his own practices. Recent choreography includes Folding Echoes (2016), Drifting (2019) and We Are Spectacles (2021).
I have watched a lot of dance videos, and there’s a kind of standard approach emerging. I like this piece for its restrictive frontal camera work, self monologue and reflexiveness. The piece is overall very artsy. Rather than a dance being documented on camera, we see a dance choreographed and performed for the camera as a work of video. (Linda Lai)
I have learned that people’s general impression of Latin dance is that it is rather out-dated or old-fashioned, compared to modern dance. Lee gives us another perspective, which I found quite fascinating. One more thing. It is not uncommon that when dancers view their own dance on video, they find the camera shots not wide enough. From this perspective, this work manifests a subversive approach and distinguishes itself from most other dance videos. (WONG Fei-pang)
However, I do not enjoy the ending when the two dancers are disclosed to be a couple. I should say that I rarely watch dance videos and yet I enjoy this one’s pacing. (WONG Chun-hoi)
Swim to the Sea is an experimental documentary of a live performance.
On a hot summer day, a performer “swims” from the town centre of San Miguel, Manila, to the riverside on a tricycle. The video is the choreographer-director’s intervention into the local residents’ everyday life via improvisation. Despite huge cultural gaps and language differences between the makers and the native, the work sought to study traces of the audience’s reactions aroused by an upstaged performance. Through representation on screen, every move of the audience became a part of the performance. They participated in it. As days go by, life returns to normal, but are the scenes collaboratively composed with the participants so easily washed away by time?
Director 導演: KT Yau 邱加希 Video Editor 影片剪接: LEE Wai-shing 李偉盛
KT Yau (Director)
Born in Hong Kong, Yau graduated from The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. She is currently the resident choreographer of Unlock Dancing Plaza. In 2016, she furthered her dance studies in Israel. From 2013 to 2014 she was a dancer of Y-space Dance Company.
Yau received the Award for Young Artist at the Hong Kong Arts Development Awards 2018; the same year, she also received the Emerging Choreographer Award at the Hong Kong Dance Awards. Her work Unmixed in the New Force in Motion series presented by LCSD and Confine presented by Taikwun received the Outstanding Small Venue Production Award at the Hong Kong Dance Awards 2018 and 2019. Both works were nominated for Outstanding Choreography.
LEE Wai-shing (Video Editor)
Hong Kong independent filmmaker, also dedicated to the making of documentary and experimental video. His documentary video Family Family Day has won the Gold Award (Open Category) in the 24th ifva Awards in Hong Kong (2019).
There are only 3 works in this round that are self-classified as “documentation.” ... As a video documentation, it seeks to have the audience immersed in the event.
I didn't take it as a dance video. How Should I put it? Most other dance videos I've watched before feel distant to me and there’s always a barrier I can’t cross. To watch it on a monitor, I feel the dance movement will vanish in front of the camera. However I think this work gives me a dense sensation of movement. (Winnie Yan)
That’s probably because we don't need extra knowledge to appreciate the dance movement which derives directly from swimming. I think this resonates with the thing you said, of seeing the movement.
But we could have habitually just focused on the narrative of movement and neglected other details, such as the street view and the pedestrians' reactions. The camera work does carefully include subtle movements of swimming that we don't normally see. (Linda Lai)
I am not entirely sure how to draw the distinction between a dance video and the documentation of a dance. Either way, I think the work is obviously ending with kids on the beach laughing.
I gather that this work stands out for its being site-specific. It wouldn’t have been possible in Hong Kong. (WONG Chun-hoi)
It is pure, pure joy. It is rare to see a work with such simplicity and without being heavy-handed even though there’s a critical dimension, obviously. (WONG Fei-pang)
I don’t like video works that end with making selfies with children. The work feels like consuming the passersby. I would have appreciated it much more if the video had ended with a real dive into the ocean. (John Chow)