ANTIBODIES OF SURVEILLANCE_ Microdances
DOCUMENTARY SCRIPT DVD – ENGLISH – Complete and modified
Brief version of documentary in www.youtube.com/user/jdvreverso
REVERSO_Jaime del Val – www.reverso.org
Wireless micro-surveillance cameras on the body. A body with thousand eyes. Nearly abstract micro landscapes and microdances of the body are projected like an immersive environment or architecture.
The cameras act like an interface for the life processing of the voice of the performers in the interactive system, through movement analysis performed by the computer in real time. The voice is granulated, delayed, multiplied and spatialised interactively in four channels, like a fragmented chorus, a multiplicity that dissolves.
Performers and audience are immersed in the same space, where the skin of the interacting audience becomes part of the landscape
Microdances is an interactive, expanded, participatory performance, installation and spatial intervention: it is a Metaformance, that inverts the mechanisms of surveillance in the society of control.
Surveillance and control rely upon the reproduction of recognisable patterns, actions and frameworks of representation for the bodies. Here, through a subverted use of the technology the body is rendered unintelligible or hovers in the frontier of intelligibility, its discursive territories fall apart, surveillance collapses in the realm of the amorphous.
Yet at the same time the body flows uncontrolled in new landscapes of potential meaning, flooding over the channels of convention and norm.
The proximity, amorphousness and minimal gestures of this body, remind us of sexual organs that palpitate, yet they are incomplete, fragmentary, emergent organs in constant morphogenesis, never sedimenting into recognisable patterns, or genders, or sexes, proliferating into open landscapes of association, embodiment and transduction.
Machines for embodiment rather than meaning, where the body flows beyond meaning in its pure excess. Anti-organs for intensive Bodies without Organs.
Every body is fragmentary, every look and desire is disseminated in fragments of bodies that are intensive fields of forces rather than fixed materiality. Microdances explores the potential of the body as desire, rid of fixed references, pure intensity that questions the materiality of the body as fixity and redefines it as effect of representations and sedimentation of relational forces.
The space breathes in a new kind of osmose and time scale, an experience of reembodiment at the heart of technocultures that long for disembodiment.
One to eight cameras are placed all over the body, without distinctions between parts, illuminated with partial lighting worn by the performers. The image is analysed in a software tat extracts up to 20 parameters of movement, a truly intensive surveillance system that works in real time, however the parameters are used to process the voice and eventually the images themselves, that conform the environment, as well as used to transform digital three dimensional structures or architectures, like organs of an emerging virtual expanded body. The code is thus put at the service of the illegible, rather than being an écriture and instrument of control. the surveillance system is used for an increasing dissolution of the object of control, in a process of internal feedback of the very system of which the body is part; representation dissolves in its attempt to capture and fix itself, until surveillance fails altogether, and in its reverse emerges a poetic landscape that breathes in the intensive flows of a new kind of (meta)body. The instrument is indeed an inverse-surveillance, or an anti-surveillance system.
New forms of awareness arise in the performers, through the radical dislocation of the framing, angle, proximity and focus of the camera that moves together with the body and the participating audience: you move not through the usual proprioceptive feedback, but through the images of abstract body fragments that you perceive initially as something other, until you reconnect to them, as you move in minimalist evolutions, till you become that other body, you become an alterity in emergence and formation. Thus new scales, temporalities and kinds of movement, new minimal and potential open languages, and new kinds of body emerge, that exceed signification: meta-signifying processes.
The body with thousand eyes is both landscape and subject of vision in a triple choreography: of the microdances, the cameras and the partial lighting. Interaction is designed so that the movements captured through the analysis of the images influence the sound processing and in feedback also the actual movements and the breathing of the performer, in mutliple layers of relation that conform the instrument or system, the metabody, that generates new relations between sound, image and movement, as it redesigns the sensory anatomy of the transmedia body, the reflexive processes of pattern generation that may result in a consciousness .
The audience is no longer such, participating in the immersive experience. The skin of the participating audience becomes part of the landscape. The intimate interface facilitates new possibilities of relation that cannot be assimilated into other familiar domains of experience, intimate beyond intimacy, occupying and producing intermediate spaces and new dimensions of the body, challenging the very frameworks of intimacy itself. What are these bodies? What are they doing?
Where everything is body, gender is nowhere, everything is sex, affect, proximity and relation beyond meaning.
The monstrous, overwhelming beyond “beauty”, hovers in the frontier of the thinkable, opening the door to the impossible.
It is possible to do Microdances as performance or installation in different kinds of spaces, closed, in the streets or in the internet, and with different durations, from 10 minutes interventions, to days long immersions, however when performed in a theatre or auditorium the spaces are inverted, the seats are covered like furniture of an abandoned house, there is only the stage as real space for action and interaction. The translucent screens on which the images are projected symbolize the collapse of the total screen as hiperreal regime of representation, simulation and parody.
The space of the performance is like an extension, visual, aural and gestural of the bodies, an architecture in process of formation. It is a process where proximity, relations and territories can be renegotiated. Where the instrument, that is the sum of software, hardware, bodies, space and language, is the sedimentation of improvisations, a field of communicating forces, a body of bodies, a metaformance and a metabody.
There is no re-presentation and per-formance, but rather a process of emergence that is transmodal and transmedia, operating along multiple frontiers and layers of relation and embodied communication. Such a space is eventually post-architectural, post-coreographic, post-musical and post-visual, in so far as its procedural character happens in between, challenging disciplinary and anatomical boundaries.
Much as it is post-performative, post-post-pornographic, post-queer, post-posthuman and post-post-colonial, for it produces a body that swings in infinite potentials of new meaning beyond the existing territories and anatomies, the empires of form: it is not a material-textual-prosthetic body, but one that redesigns itself in the (non-verbal) flows that constitute corporeality.
This body is perhaps a political project of resistance within our hipermodern society of standardisation and implicit control, where freedom of forms becomes more relevant than freedom of ideas. Where the specificity of bodies and technologies could allow new radical depictions for the social body and its political economy, an unpredictable landscape full of both hope and uncertainty.
Microdances started as a photography and video project and later merged with the interactive dance performance and installation project Morphogenesis.
The future lines of the project are many: in open spaces and the internet, with digital architecture and interactive analogue spaces, opening the scale of bodies and dances that speak in the frontier of the speakable, challenging its domain, taking “the risk of redrawing the line between what is and is not speakable, the risk of being cast into the realm of the unspeakable.” (J. Butler, Excitable Speech)