Thursday, April 19, 2012

Reflection on spaces (Iris)

After 3 weeks of residency at O espaço do tempo in the beautiful convent in Montemor-o-Novo the piece has taken form and it's almost done. We've been working intensively with Françoise Boillat our outside eye who has been incredible in helping us to communicate what we want from this project. We played with the structure changing the order of things, experimenting with different intensities and tensions of performing each situation until finally everything fell into place.
It's been wonderful to have the possibility to work outside in the garden of the convent experiencing the force of a natural space and it's influence on how the body moves and perceives. When ever there was time I went out to take a walk through this impressive landscape. I realize that really all one has to do is to observe, perceive and receive all the stimuli around. These impressions do their job by themselves and inspire what I make without me even searching for it. In that sense it seems crucial to me where I make work - not only how, with whom or with which kind of support but also where. It seems that the environment which surrounds you during the process of creation becomes a part of what you make, coloring the atmosphere, marking the body, directing the way you think.
Looking at L_ENTES right now I can feel all the spaces present that we have been in. They were all very different and offered different things to our creative practice.
In La Nave del Duende we worked in an old factory adapted to be a performance space. This was the beginning of our process and it made us look for systems and ways how to structure physicality in order to find a language which permits freedom of expression. We came up with the basic tools (something which is almost practical) which accompanied us during the whole process and still do.
La Fragua in Belalcázar is also an old convent which is being offered as a creation space for artists of all different specialties. For me this experience was above all about exchange. There was a constant flow of interaction, of social activity, of sharing life and ideas with all the people we met there. In that sense what we were making at one point became so full of input and impressions that it almost burst into pieces. There was a certain density and a very specific intensity in the physical work we were doing which at times almost took over. Then we started to work outside in the garden and the body found a counterpart in the rough nature, the stones, the earth, the heat of the Andalusian sun in September.
After a break we came back at the beginning of this year to work at EscenaEstruch which is very equipped for the work with body. There was a certain concentration already in this space which coincided with where we were at in the process. We started to play with possible structures, experiencing how dependent what you do is from what you just did or what you are about to do. This space was almost like a laboratory inviting us to do very clear and structured experiments with what we had found before.
And now O espaço do tempo was mainly two things: on the one hand leaving the city and being surrounded by nature was like simplifying information. For me it was like coming up for air in a surrounding were you are not bombarded by information, input and constant movement. It allowed me to focus on what I was doing and what I was searching for in a very pure and direct way. A bit as if the fog had lifted. On the other hand there was a sensation of freedom and endless time to be. A kind of tranquility which allowed me to wait for the things to come instead of pushing them into a direction. It was like taking a step back and looking at what we did from a birds perspective to see what it was and then get back into it to experience it from the inside.

In 3 weeks we premiere. Lots is done, lots has to be done still. I've already learned so much from this process, from the people I work with and the ones I've met on the way.

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