Draft of a thesis section: StudioRead More
Image by Lou RosRead More
Part of talking about Magenta with various people is that the apologizing and mucking around to find those “maybe-might-possibly-hmmm” fillers as some latent apology for wanting to delve into a color has had to step aside. Crazy (obvious) how intense it is to talk about something intriguing that begs and guides and siphons my interest. Insecure and personal should be a side note to everything in this field. Yet, necessary in order to figure out what the thing is, what it can be, what it's doing. I keep saying to myself "you can't do all the things all the time" and "practice what you preach"... so, put the thing(s) out there before they are ready, because they'll never feel ready.
Some things that are rising to the surface, from readings, thoughts, teaching, talking:
1. From the history of dyes and questions around whether contemporary painters have ‘lost’ something due to the technology of paint and color. Meaning artists today rarely have to create and or invent their materials from natural substances. Often times the recipe is already created and the experimentation to make the physical materials is surpassed by science/technology/availability of commercial products. Makes me think of dance materials. The materials as the movement generation and research. How has this changed with technology? What, due to technology, has been surpassed/forgone in the materials or the process of cultivating the materials?
2. The frequencies of the invisible spectrum as well as the the naming of a color that is perceived rather than received in the brain and the brain’s electric biology, offers a blueprint (more than a metaphor) for realities often deemed elusive, magical, or arcane that are in fact actual, quantifiable, and known.
2b. Then what after or within these philosophies is my interest? Why do I hover over magenta, desiring to plummet through it, to be fully submerged and swim through it, savor with tastebuds that shoot pulses through my electricity- nerves of delight and aliveness.
3. ?As a non-gendered femininity- reclaim and redefine femininity for myself? A sense of my pelvis and curves, sorcery and science, the gift of empathy and all those little tiny hairs as antennae conspiring to inform my heart, my listening, and the power of seeing. These things I consider feminine, not as gendered or a relegation to the demeaned ‘sensitive’, but rather something with ancient listening as opposed to ancient knowing- something feminine for all beings. Something to reform and free a word by being.
4. Similar to Maggie Nelson’s Argonaut’s- I do not use dance to express but rather to clarify- and perhaps stumble upon a more meaningful way of living.
1 thru 4 scratch at it:
This project explores choreography and pedagogy through the hues of magenta light. Drawing from theories of color perception, theories of color, color theory (I never knew those two were different!) and somatic energy fields, magenta becomes phenomenological, physical, and biological; a real phenomenon. Unlike other colors, magenta is not associated with a range of wavelengths and thus, technically, does not exist. Yet, magenta is perceived and experienced. I seek this research as a means to articulate some of the phenomena I witness in (my) choreographic and pedagogical practice(s), and as a corporeal lens for the charged space between social and choreographed bodies; where I find the subterranean politic of deep listening. Magenta has conjured questions around fazing, absence, saturation, and the desire to release femininity from gender and sanction- to reclaim and redefine femininity for myself.
ROCKING SCORE: Feeding
What it is: a movement score that places movers near each other, with and without physical touch. For the sake of this entry, 'touch' may be defined as physical or energetic; the depth, specificity, and clarity of the touch is important. Each touch is initially fed by supplying energy incrementally, which may translate as physical weight or charging the space between bodies (will work on how to talk about this- but for now, it's in that nexus of pheromones, heat, listening to other bodies, etc). The gentle incremental additions of energy act as waves- ebbing and flowing- with a little more energy upon each direction. The feeding of the touch presents an energetic system, a pattern, of relating to the other bodies that prioritizes the nuanced shifts and negotiated use of weight necessary to keep the energy increasing rather than the achievement of a perfectly repeatable choreography. Here the shapes do not matter- the accuracy lies in the adapting to and feeding one another. Though a repeatable choreography may be reached, the score is sensitive and subject to the smallest variation which becomes larger difference. Here the movers cannot be exact and a tiny wobble 'off their leg' might change the weight/pattern of the whole group.
Feeding the energy invites imageries for moving bodies that I refer to in classes and other laboratory experiences (all of which are a mash-up of my curiosity AND inspirational, inquisitive, and informational experiences I've had with those that have come before me):
1. NET. The use of unison and/or being together is likened to a three dimensional net cast on the surface of a water. Wherein two opposite corners might offer resistance or succumb to another tug at another point in the net. This way of being is also somatic, with the fascia moving, supporting, gliding and the body's system of tensional integrity (tensegrity).
2. CONTENT/CONTAINER. The body as a two-liter bottle, perhaps half filled. Move the container without splashing the water. Feel the weight of the water as it rolls with stillness inside its container. Conversely, move the container as a means to make the water splash, dump, pour, shift. The body as this container, its contents of organs, marrow, blood, water.
3. THE LIGHT TUBE. (another post)
4. THE SKIN as a shapeshifting, diaphragmatic, billowing container.
Notes from BDF research period:
- more about feeding the weight- continuously and incrementally- rather than the action of rocking
- rhythmic synchronicity is most often uneven- elliptical, a sliding apex, and constantly shifting its meter
- the dissolve is the new fix
- gentle recording
From the day "Katie Crawled Out" (Paraphrased observations from dancers Marion Spencer, Aya Wilson, Katie Skinner, Nattie Trogden, Betsy Miller, Kristin O'Neal)
M: Release any sitting of the material... by returning to the concept of the container/contents... erase the container's relation to being viewed from the outside.
A: Range of listening that can assist or reinforce. Intent of listening; what can be lost or not noticed because of the focused listening and how to switch into something else because a glitch presents itself. (Flicker of states/presence).
N: Desire to make sense
A: Eagerness to make the rocking happen becomes a quickness vs. assembling as a system. (Navigating and responding to the present).
"Even though color starts in the physical world, it is finished in our minds." [Jonah Lehrer, radiolab.org, on Goethe]
Seemingly conflicting sciences and phenomena:
1 A COUPLE O'HISTORIES (on Theories of Light) offered by Colm Kelleher
Colm Kelleher's TedEd series on color (How we see color, What is color, Is light a particle or wave?)
- Plato- thought little probes went out of the eye, gathered information, and brought them back the eye.
- Alhazan- eyes collect light that falls into them. (Very few objects emit their own light, most are rejecting light).
- Newton- light is made of 'corpuscles', particles.
- 20th cent- light acts like particles, when energy is delivered as tiny packets of waves versus a spherical particle that can collide. If light collided it would ricochet of itself inside of passing through. "Interference patterns" are made by waves- if two light sources were crossing, they behave more like two rocks thrown into the surface of water then two buckets of marbles emptied at each other.
Or as Maggie Nelson states in Bluets (#54): Long before either wave or particle, some (Pythagoras, Euclid, Hipparchus) thought that our eyes emitted some kind of substance that illuminated, or "felt," what we saw. (Aristotle pointed out that this hypothesis runs into trouble at night, as objects become invisible despite the eyes' purported power.) Others, like Epicurus, proposed the inverse- that objects themselves project a kind of ray that reaches out toward the eye, as if they were looking at us (and surely some of them are). Plato split the difference, and postulated that a "visual fire" burns between our eyes and that which they behold. This still seems fair enough.
2 WAVES: Light as waves with particular frequencies. We can see some of these frequencies- they are the colors of the visible spectrum. Each wave is measurable from crest to crest, often referred to as a period. How many periods occur during one second equals frequency. If a period takes 3 seconds to complete, the frequency is 0.333333blahblah. Color frequencies edge past 400 million million waves/periods per second. Red is the lowest frequency in the visible spectrum, and violet the highest at 350-450 nanometers per second. [Colm Kelleher, "How We See Color" and TedEd]. These waves are the physical property of light- and there are an infinite number of these waves, but only 3 cones in the retina to trigger the brain...
3 CONES/RODS: Light sensors in the eye are cones and rods. Rods are of one variety and generally triggered by low light. Cones, in most humans, come in three kinds: red, blue, green. Light enters the eye, is received by the rods/cones and sent to the brain. If a red wave enters the eye- the red cones are triggered and a message of red is sent to the brain. So what of the non-red/green/blue colors? Take yellow for example. On the visible spectrum, yellow resides between red and green; yellow's frequency is between the the frequency of red and the frequency of green and therefore triggers both cones. The triggering of both of these cones is yellow.
4 MAGENTA: This color does not fall on the visible spectrum, yet we see it. Specifically, magenta does not have a frequency and is the brain's way of making sense of the 'absence of green'. In experiments with layering colored light upon each other, one can layer blue light on red light and see magenta. It could be assumed that magenta is between red and blue light, yet on the visible spectrum (frequencies in order) magenta does not fall in median of the two, green does. So, 'magenta' light, as red and blue waves, enter the eye which the brain would normally layer and determine the median to be green, but the cones for green are not triggered and this the color received cannot be green. The name for the absence of green is 'magenta.'
Tube of Light + moving body.
A tube of light that moves through, connects, the diaphragmatic regions of the body: the pelvic floor, the diaphragm, 'lungs of the heart', behind the collar bones (bottom of the throat), roof of the mouth, crown, and halo. Allowing the light to bend with support and light that is able to travel through the body, with the idea that this tube of light can narrow and widen- have its own aperture- depending on the support/volume needed. The light tube continues behind the halo into the furthest stratosphere, like one of those advertising lights shinning across the sky. The light tube extends beyond the pelvic floor and beyond the surface of the floor. These two ends extending with support like a hammock tethered and wrung-out in as many directions as a moment requires. The hands and feet have their own mouth like diaphragms, and can radiate light like tributaries off the heart and belly/gut/engine.
Recalls, but necessarily drawing upon: Skinner's notion of a cone head that extends to a point approximately 13" above the head, John Jasperse's image of a pelvis as an upside-down lampshade (added the ribcage as a right-side-up lampshade, and the two together can move like spinning plates or like two ends of an accordion), Ohad Naharin's "lena", and some Chakra-ish ideas (7 Chakras)... including that of (an 8th) MAGENTA (chakra) presence.