An Experiment through entanglement
Tess de Quincey, Peter Fraser, Frank van de Ven

Rex Cramphorn Residency 2:  29 January – 17 February 2019
The University of Sydney

A FUTURE BODY is not trying to predict the future; it is not an illustration, a representation or an argument; it is an experiment, looking into potential futures of the body in the light of contemporary scientific developments, e.g. prosthetics, stem-cell and DNA modifications, robotics, 3-D printed bodyparts, new sensory bandwidths etc. As a society, and as individuals, we are constantly altering our body and environment to meet our current and expanding desires. But this body/environment that we are making is also making us. The future is already active and has traces in the body/environment and in our perceptions. Scientific insights propel us into new terrains of imagination and transformation –what are the ethical implications of this?

A FUTURE BODY takes an investigative position within the entanglement of body, environment and time. Our dance strategy is BodyWeather, which proposes the body as an integrated aspect of a greater ecology through the meeting and interweaving of inner and outer environments. Shifting scales, manipulated by imagined environments and by empathy with other lifeforms, the body can also trial the imprint of proposed prosthetic reconfigurations and the dispersed ‘swarm’ mentality of multiple bodies. We aim to dance the depths of micro-signals, qualities and temporalities, just as they will surface in the future body, and will ‘try on’ imagined bodies.

A presentation format will emerge from the next upcoming residency at The University of Sydney in Jan-Feb 2019. FUTURE BODY SHOWN will occur a few days before the end of the residency so that feedback can be immediately built into the work. The performative forum will invite audiences to participate in exploratory exercises that bring awareness to bodily sensations and to being moved by imagination. We will also discuss recent break-throughs in scientific bodily interventions and modifications, as well as show snippets of physical performance over several key themes – e.g. imagined bodies, gut-biome, robotics, plant intelligence, octopus mind/body, swarm awareness, prosthetic reconfigurations. These performance snippets will further break open an exchange with audiences, inviting them to feedback their ideas that we, as dancers, then try to embody. We intend to hold a strong streak of comedy (where human hubris and bodily capacity collide) alongside choreographic structures created by a group intelligence and by audiences. We aim to explore changes of awareness and open up ethical questions.

This project is supported through a residency at the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, the University of Sydney.



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