performance

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Art

Human-Powered Clocks by Maarten Baas Physically Mark the Passage of Time

March 14, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Dutch artist Maarten Baas produces artworks that lie at the intersection of visual art, performance, and design, creating manual clocks that are erased and redrawn on the stroke of each minute. In pieces like Grandfather Clock and Schiphol Clock Baas places himself within the structure of the time-telling devices, functioning as the works’ human mechanism. Other pieces from his Real Time series use the assistance of another performer to create 12-hour films, such as a line of perpetually swept trash doubling as a clock arm. Baas began the time-based series in 2009 at the Salone Del Mobile in Milan, Italy, and has a current piece in the group exhibition Design by Time at the Pratt Institute through April 13, 2019. You can see more of his works on his website, Instagram, and Vimeo, and in the videos below.

 

 

 



Art

Modified Office Chairs Perform an Autonomous Dance Through Gagosian Gallery

September 11, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Nine office chairs, each in a dazzling jewel tone, swirl and scuttle across the reflective floor of Gagosian‘s West 21st Street gallery. PLAY was conceived by Swiss artist Urs Fischer (previously) with choreography for the inanimate objects provided by New York City-based artist Madeline Hollander. The self-propelled furniture is controlled by programming and sensors embedded in their seats which moves them away from visitors or towards each other while swirling through the extensive space. When the performative chairs are running low on battery, they are programmed to head to a machine located inside the gallery that automatically replaces their seats.

Visitors may walk through the herd of functional chairs, observing the pieces as they group together, move in synchronized turns, or scatter. You can interact with the objects yourself during PLAY’s run at Gagosian through October 13, 2018. (via Artsy)

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Amazing Science

The Science Behind Incredible Bubbles Explained by Pro Bubbler Melody Yang

June 14, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

With a lifetime of bubble experience under her belt, Melody Yang of the Gazillion Bubbles Show shows the method behind the madness. Much of the formula and nuances of technique are, unsurprisingly, proprietary. But the video above, from Wired, is a fun look behind the scenes as Yang demonstrates her expertise and shares some stories of her career as a bubble engineer. (via Laughing Squid)

 

 



Art Dance

Dancers Demonstrate the Perpetual ‘Mechanics of History’ in a Performance by Yoann Bourgeois

October 26, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Visitors to the Panthéon in Paris earlier this month have been encountering an unusual sight. For about ten days in October, multi-disciplinary movement artist Yoann Bourgeois installed a rotating circular stairway with a discrete trampoline at its center, and a small cast of anonymously clothed dancers trudged up the steps, each one falling in succession onto the trampoline and seamlessly rebounding back on to the stairs.

The installation was strategically placed over the Panthéon’s Foucault Pendulum, which was devised by French physicist Léon Foucault and offers an easy-to-understand demonstration of Earth’s rotation. Commonly replicated at science museums around the world, the Panthéon’s pendulum has been the most well-known since its inception in 1851. According to co-producers Théâtre de la Ville, Bourgeois’s work is a meditation on Earth’s gravity.

Entitled ‘La mécanique de l’Histoire’ (The Mechanics of History), the performance is a part of the Monuments En Movement series at the Panthéon. Video by Tony Whitfield.

 

 



Art Dance Design

A Concept Dance Performance Incorporating a Plane of 640 Motorized LED Spheres

September 11, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

2047 Apologue is a concept performance by Chinese director Zhang Yimou, the director of the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The video is a teaser for the final part of the show titled the Weaving Machine, one of eight acts that combine traditional Chinese craft, music, or dance with modern technology such as lasers, robots, and drones. The combination of ancient and modern technology aims to comment on how much the later has taken over life in the 21st century.

For this particular segment Zhang places an ancient Chinese weaving machine on stage with 640 kinetic LED spheres designed and produced by WHITEvoid. Moving together in an elegant wave, the lights interact with a dancer performing underneath. Throughout the segment the lights change both pattern and color, as a soundtrack matches their increasing energy and movement.

The performance premiered at the National Center for the Performing Arts in Beijing this past June and will tour China throughout 2018.  You can see the full teaser video for the Weaving Machine above. (via Prosthetic Knowledge)

 

 



Amazing Music

A Remarkable Goblet Drumming Performance by Erdem Dalkıran

March 21, 2016

Christopher Jobson

Unfortunately this video ends almost before it begins, but it’s just long enough to get a quick glimpse of an Istanbul-based musician named Erdem Dalkıran as he shows off his ridiculous percussion abilities while playing a darbuka, or goblet drum. I was going to make a generic comment about something like this taking a lifetime of practice (which is certainly true), but here’s a a young boy using many of the same techniques. Amazing. (via Reddit)

 

 



Dance

The Movement of Air: A New Dance Performance Incorporating Interactive Digital Projection from Adrien M & Claire B

November 11, 2015

Christopher Jobson

Artist duo Adrien M & Claire B have lifted the curtain on their latest acrobatic dance performance utilizing digital projection titled The Movement of Air. Seen in this video is a handful of moments taken from an hour-long piece performed in France last month by a trio dancers. Unlike more common uses of digital project mapping where a recorded animation or scene is projected in a space, Adrien M & Claire B instead utilize fully interactive “scenes” that respond to human interaction. Nothing you see on the set is animated beforehand.

“This ‘living light’ is produced by video projectors and generated in real time by a set of algorithms,” Adrien shares with us. “It is a mix of control room operated human interventions and onstage data sensors that outlines a precise writing of motions and generative behaviors. Thus, the images are never pre-recorded for a rigid show on an imposed rhythm: on the contrary, they breathe and move with the dancers and organize a new space for them to explore.”

The overall effect is dizzying, and in many ways enhances the dancer’s work instead of looking like a gimmick added as an afterthought. A great marriage of physical performance and digital special effects. You can watch several earlier interactive creations by Adrien & Claire here on Colossal including Pixel and Kinetic Sand.

RESIDENCE CREATION CIE AM-CBADRIEN MONDOT / CLAIRE BARDAINNELE MOUVEMENT DE L AIRTHEATRE DE L ARCHIPEL / SCENE NATIONALEPERPIGNAN 01/02 OCTBORE 2015.

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