Its our duty to expose ourselves even when we don’t feel comfortable.” This is, in a sense, a moral of this residency, each resident needs to expose themselves, to new ideas, new techniques, new situations, and to authentically expose who they are, what they think, to others. This year this has been very unproblematic, and everyone has taken this duty very seriously. They day was spent refining projects. A small group of residents went to Mystras, an important Byzantine site across the valley from the residency. There amidst ruined walls and buildings, numerous churches whose original ornamentation and sacred power still show forth, and fragrant vegetation, video and photos were shot, while, at the same time, we came to a deeper understanding of the history and importance of the valleys and mountains that surround us. As this blog shows, one resident, a dancer, after many days of observing and interacting with the landscape, came to an understanding, one of many possible understandings, of how her body and movements might fit in with the surroundings. After dinner we has a “show and tell” of all the projects, and it is remarkable both how many, how close to completion, and how aesthetically focused, they are. We are at the stage where many of the projects really start to reveal their potentialities, they open up and suggest numerious ways of resolving them, multiple arc they may embody. It is at this point we need to follow the advice of one resident: “The problem is, I should not think too much.”
Today the residents awoke to sunny skies and warm temperatures. With the surrounding mountains etched clearly against a blue sky, the residents moved outside, for both social and artistic encounters. At one point Eric Lewis was playing trumpet on the balcony, while the dancer Ioanna Kabylafka joined in. Their improvisation was soon enriched by the participation of Viviane Houle, whose vocalizations and movements were both amplified and morphed by trumpet and dancer. This encounter led to a discussion of corporality, voice and movement, and was repeated in the afternoon with the addition of the saxophonist Guido De Flaviis. Watch for the results of this collaboration next week at Knot Gallery.
Resident composer Marielle Groven worked on graphic scores based on multi-color high contrast photos of deep-sky objects. We wait to see how the collective will actualize them in sound, movement and image. She also led a group of residents in one of her improvisational games, based on the collective manipulation of a finite number of musical ideas. A number of residents continued to experiment with, both as performers and as conductors, The Mad Scientist Machine. We are very quickly becoming familiar with the potential and possibilities inherent in the system, and the resultant improvisations are growing in subtly and interactivity. Much video editing took place, and, as always, every resident was well fortified by the fine food, spirits, and spirit, everywhere apparent.