Slowing in 3 dimensions
I designate the heading through movement rather than volume, an italic rather than a bold, a leaning, a giving in to gravity, an acknowledgement of my interconnection to the forces of nature.
Earlier, I was reading a physical book—words printed onto paper, once a tree now held in my hands, my body inclined toward and spiralling around it—and I was pulled away by a chime from my phone, alerting me to my weekly amount of screen time. Ironic, now we are isolated, trapped in and by our bodies, we are still striving to be elsewhere, manically producing and uploading, clicking and liking, still investing in sight and surface when we should be slowing into sensation and three-dimensionality.
The book, The Secret Network of Nature by Peter Wohlleben, speaks of the three-dimensionality of ecosystems and connects into my thinking about how to translate the three-dimensionality of my dance class to the online portal. How can I bring the multiple planes, senses, knowledges into this disembodied space?
These are not new ideas for me. I have been translating dance to screen for over twenty years now. My studio practice is full of cinematic tools of play and poetic metaphor; my use of technology always foregrounding the body. My dance practice is about the interconnections between the physical and virtual, it relies on shared space and physical contact, proximity, touch, risk. My recent performance work, Cabin Fever, is the epitome of this. (One strategy for sharing this is here)
The consideration now is other, if we cannot share space and touch, how can we dance?
Let me refer back to the book…Wohlleben talks about the width of rings in tree trunks and how their size reflects the nutrients available in the soil at particular times.
It brings my attention to breath…deepening, slowing, enabling more nutrients in, softening to allow the rain to soak in rather than run off the hard surface and wash the soil away.
I think about the body as a forest, using the canopy of our architecture to catch the rain, divert it, allow it to drip, to soak in, to nurture the roots, to allow nutrients to travel through the bloodstream and widen the rings within our trunks.