Re-imagining: A Case Study of Exercises and Strategies (2019)

Hanna Järvinen

About this exposition

Exploring a case of a historian collaborating with dance makers on the contemporaneity evident in a past work, this exposition outlines how the corporeal methods of dance practice can assist a historian in their archival inquiry just as the historian's methods can subvert dominant ways of understanding re-performance of past dance. Interest in how past performances survive and are made to re-signify in the present and what is the role of the archive in a performing art are growing trends in both dance and performance scholarship and in performance practice. Drawing from this scholarship and critical performances, I distinguish between reconstruction (re-creation of dance from the archive) and re-imagining (working from the present practice towards corporeal relationship to past dance) to argue that any performance holds potential to uphold and conserve as well as question and subvert predominant histories of the art form. In contrast to theories of performance that juxtapose performance with history, repertoires with archives, I argue that it is possible to perform the epistemological questions through emphasis on what is not known. The practical exercises used in the studio and the strategies in the performance of Jeux: Re-imagined (2016) offer one example of destabilizing earlier claims to knowledge about a historical work. The seven pages of this exposition follow the structure of the seven events of the performance.
typeresearch exposition
keywordsepistemology, contemporary dance, studio research, dance history, archive, repertoire, scenarios, re-performance, reconstruction, re-imagining, re-making, not-knowing
last modified23/05/2019
affiliationAcademy of Finland/Theatre Academy of Uniarts Helsinki
published inRuukku Studies in Artistic Research
portal issue11.

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