From left to right >>> you will encounter (1) Transciption: The original conversation transcript (partially edited); (2) DistillationTextual distillation of conversation transcript; (3) Distillation/Presentation: Indication of the layout of the artists’ bookwork using the textual distillation; Presentation(4) PDFs of the bookwork as well as subsequent reworking of artists’ pages; (5) Documentation of the artists’ bookwork; (6) Documentation of various reconfigurations of this material including as exhibition, performance lecture, wall-work, and text-work for an online context.

For those readers with time and inclination, the conversation transcript presented here can be read at length, revealing something of the nature and tone of the conversation itself within the practice of conversation-as-material. However, inclusion of the transcript is intended more for revealing the connection between transcript and textual distillation. Here, the invitation to the reader is to glimpse or scan rather than necessarily read the transcript material in its entirety.

Context: The Italic I unfolded slowly over a number of years 2012–2018. During this period we — Emma Cocker and Clare Thornton — would meet together for an intensive 2-week long residency annually with correspondence in between. So the process of conversation-as-material within this collaboration likewise unfolded very slowly.

This page attempts to show how the process evolved from 2013 onwards. By this point, a series of experiments exploring falling had already been undertaken and through a process of conversation-as-material sixteen tentative titles or thematics for considering the arc of falling had already been identified as follows:  Testing (the) ground— setting up the conditions; Opening attempt— warming and flexing; Entering the arc— trust, twist, torque; A commitment made— working against impulse; Voluntary vertigo— ilinx, inclination; Becoming diagonal— the italic I; Touching limits— tilt towards (the other); Embodiment / disembodiment— mind-body partition; Formless— horizontality; Letting go— a liquid state; Ecstatic impotency— the jouissance of impuissance; Folding of attention— a heightened subjectivity; Gravity / levity— striking the right balances; Breathless— ventilating the idea; Voluptuous recovery— return, yet charged; Recalibrate … loop— desire to repeat.


The conversation transcript shown on this page takes up the process at the point of attempting to ‘flesh out’ these thematic titles, working towards a language for describing the different episodes within falling. 











The Italic I



[…] (W)e are striving to find some kind of means for speaking about the experience of making … the experience of collaborating … Is that really what is happening here? … (But) it is not a recording of that process … it is not a document. We are creating a series of documents, but it is not a documentary process … not a recording of how we make. We are constructing the scenes to explore the layers … the infrathin … Yet we still really struggle … We are still struggling … Our conversations take flight towards something that is not always the work  […] You make work or engage with a set of activities which prompt a flight of thinking from it […] What does it mean to stay with something, put it under pressure? Not to work it out but to understand it more. Not understand it in the sense of rationalizing it … but just to not always take flight from the work […] When you are making it is really hard to fly … because you are so in it […] A strange thing that happens … when you are making  it is possible to make the leaps much quicker because you are not flying away … You are staying with it, really present […] So it is not possible to fly because you are immersed … there is a quality of immersion. (T)he constraint of being engaged in a task can prohibit a flight of thinking away … I was concentrating, you were concentrating … we couldn’t be thinking about … (A) quality of immersion … a quality of muteness […] We are … so immersed in this process […] At times, it feels hermetic and sealed and opaque […] We are getting a sense of each other within this kind of collaboration … a getting to know […]  What would it be like … to take our headings, and explore them in relation to this … They speak … to that as much as this. Preparing the Ground … Tilt towards the other […] These states are not bound to the work of The Italic I [...] Taken away from the idea of the fall, it is almost like a manifesto of our working. The desire to repeat  there again … come back, try again […] The headers could refer to trying to think through what the experience of collaborating is […] We have devised and are devising a particular way of talking about it … softening the ground, preparing to fall, entering the arc, commitment made, letting go, voluntary vertigo, becoming diagonal, touching limits, folding of attention … These are all gestures towards an intent to collaborate and … all the resistances one goes through all the time around letting go and trust […] This is to do with an investigation of a vocabulary for collaboration […] The practice of making the work is part of the method for thinking […] Collaboration is the provocation for thinking […] This is really not the language of declaration […] It is full of desire … A sense of the poetic … the poetic speaks of a kind of dissident or resistant quality. Dissident. Dissonance. Agitate. Insurgent  … Excessive in its way of being also mute. It is not telling anything […] The poetic is a bit like willful falling isn’t it. It is a commitment to exploring an idea in a particular way … there is a push and pull […] The act of falling is the means through which to prompt a conversation and a vocabulary … for speaking  of the experience of the fall but we are also speaking about the nature of making work and collaborating […] It is about falling and not about falling […] Think of the image of trapeze artist. There is an effort required in the swinging which causes a momentum. Once you have left off from that plate, you have to undertake a series of body manoeuvres to keep the momentum going […] We have talked about flight before and going off … There is a twoing and froing, there is a returning. We are checking in and going off […] At times, you can only talk about something by not talking about it … We could have only conceived a vocabulary for talking about collaboration by not looking at it, by talking about something else. Inadvertently we have produced this vocabulary  it speaks poetically about something that we were never intending to speak about […] It is regarding the nature of making work … the vocabulary of this is quite distinct. Or although it is distinct … and it is also not. The vocabulary of our collaborative work is present in our other work. Because we carry it in ourselves … We collaborate with others, we make our own work, we have a set of concerns that we carry with us in our body … There is something about the cooking up … but the recipe is different each time. We are in a live sense wrestling with the idea of what it is to collaborate. I think that this is in what we are doing. Maybe this is what the work is … Wrestling is a really useful word […] There is a provenance to this journey  many artists have wrestled with this question of making and making work with others. But maybe there is something here about there being a particular aesthetic to this collaboration, like a palette. What is the writing version of that? There is a particular vocabulary or … would it be style. It is more than style. Maybe they are devices. They are rhetorical devices. Or … signature. You could say that there are tropes and motifs that you might explore for wrestling with the process of making […] They come back together again and again … there is a kind of practicing about it […] You have to talk about desire. Desire and restraint … Going back to the idea of the desire for touch  this is an entirely contradictory proposition … It is not about touching […] We are containing it … the restraint or control mechanisms both control the excessiveness of the work  they limit or contain the kind of excessiveness that is in the work  and they also produce it … The constraint produces these excesses. (T)he limit becomes a point of leverage … the tighter the conditions the more excesses get produced. (I)t is both containing and controlling … stopping it from tilting into that kind of hysteric, overly effervescent or overly flowery thing. The list of themes contains it […] How do we keep its economy… having a sense of the economic and the pared down. Because it is like the more pared down it is, the more intense or more potent the gesture becomes. There is a kind of spill […] doing something purposefully but without it having purpose. I think it is possible to be purposefully engaged in something without knowing … the sense of the muteness or the opacity … it is not just random.  […]  It is not some idle frippery […] Difficulty and opacity … instead of there being secrecy there is mystery. Mystery is the secret without anything to be revealed. The gestures are not concealing anything […] The idea of difficulty and opacity  something seeming purposeful yet is totally mute. (T)here isn’t a secret that can be decoded  there isn’t anything there, but it is not empty either … There isn’t a code to be cracked but it is mysterious. There is mystery here. (T)here is no way that we can truly know and understand ourselves or each other within collaborative acts of making. And there is this idea of really trusting … the drive of the intuitive … the embodied … You can never reveal everything and put all your cards on the table because you never yet know all your cards in advance […] In the attempt to try and find the vocabulary … every time it just produces this excess. There is something about trying to find a form to say what we are trying to say but at the same time … not saying anything […] Or the attempt to say the thing that which we are trying to say  but even if you feel that you have almost got there, the thing that you are trying to say has moved on. That was then … but the practice shifts … and you never get much closer. What is this thing? […] The slipperiness of it all. We are trying … We tried to stay … to have a single task and to almost exhaust it. To push it, to really push it into a space that we couldn’t have conceived … This sense of ‘Let us return to the work. Let us return to the work’. To keep attending to what is happening here, to keep coming back to the thing […] There is something to do with the vocabulary. By really sticking with this … by keeping coming back to the work we unexpectedly produce a vocabulary […] Certain things I might say come into my head like tiny clenched fists … I have to say the thing that is honestly just coming into my head … it might sound a bit silly. But I would have to be brave enough to say it and not be embarrassed […] It is hard to do it […] We are also saying that is difficult to write, which is why we are producing the writing through speaking. There is something to do with producing writing without having written it. Knowing that it will come … The body makes phrases […] Understanding language comes out in fits and starts … as a method. Like gestures, exploratory gestures … almost bypassing what the mind thinks. It is coming from somewhere else in the body. Or it is not coming in the same way as if you were trying to write. It is definitely coming from a different experience … it is coming from a felt experience of being, working with the body and feeling its pathetic limitations and irritating blockages. It is beyond  you haven't mastered it, you physically never will. Piecing things together. The struggle to find ways of articulating and the limitations of what you have … the impossibility of it […] We are manipulating these materials. There is a manipulation of the order of events. We are fictionalizing. There are these conceptual sickly ideas, in an intoxicating way. In an intoxicating way, but also in a way that resists rational thinking […] Opening up to the vastness or potential of the thing … It opens onto a kind of nausea if it gets too intense. There is something about this experience like lapping, like lagging  You said lag, did you say lag? Drag. The reaching  either letting go or reaching onto … You don't know whether you are trying to grab hold of it or repel it or escape from it. It creates more momentum … an attempt to distinguish between falling and jumping. Intention and gravity. The sense of the push and the pull. Resisting but also surrendering at the same time. And in that slightly undecidable moment where you are both … I am interested in those points. Like when you throw a ball in the air  at what point does the ball stop. Or the pause in breath. Maybe they are those imperceptible points of stillness within things that are perceived to be moving. In subjectivity as well … we have talked about this in the sense of the self and the subject. Not as portraits. But rather trying to articulate a sense of subjectivity that is absolutely in a state of movement, that is between control and surrender … There is this sense that it is neither one nor the other. These things are seemingly opposites but they are the same somehow. Considering oneself and the lived experience … We are fluid. Our mood and energy is constantly shifting … We are always grasping, trying to explore the lived experience and what it means to be […] Seeking an image that articulates what being feels like … the images where they are caught between states … This feels much more like what it is to be, to be alive really … They feel more like what it feels like rather than what one looks like in a photograph, as a static thing […] This idea of jumping or falling, crashing, hurting or death … it feels more like an activity about living […] An optimistic collapse … they speak of certain states that are propositions […] It is hard to know sometimes … A bit like if you were making a perfume … when there is a little bit of something that you don't need to be able to recognise. You might have it as the base notes but you don't need to name it in the description of the perfume […] Desire is a word that I use, that we use. But the volume is turned down on that, it is a bit more toned down […] The idea of the ecstatic is there it is almost unspeakable […] The vocabulary is utilitarian but with no sense of what the function is ... the pairing of the utilitarian but without function […] There is a sense of a propositional subjectivity … It feels quite like faints more than falls. There is a sense of the falling out or leaving behind of the body in falling … but in a faint, the body is almost left where it is. The sense of the doubling of the sense of self […] Like falling over inside of yourself […] Something to do with finding a vocabulary for articulating certain kinds of lived states, particularly within the act of collaboration where you are always falling in and out of yourself. (T)hey are like hybrid subjectivities, which are produced in the gap between one state and another. When you are thinking it is like that as well because you are here but you are also elsewhere. You are going off […] Hélène Cixous writes a beautiful line about writing, where she says a woman’s gesture of writing is to steal/fly. She steals into language in order to make it fly … The whole vocabulary of the diagonal and the tilt in relation to subjectivity … The geometry helps tone down the sensuousness […] Collapsing the hard/soft thing … Collapsing of things which seem opposite but are the same […] Our categories are more to do with a quality of feeling rather than movement in space ... the distinction between intensity and extensivity, between the qualitative and quantative. I think of Henri Bergson on time … on duration, and the experience of it. There is something in the experience … to simply take a photograph of falling or to even try to give categories to falling is to try and quantify it somehow and this doesn't seem as though this is what we are trying to do. We are trying to get close to the sense of the intensities within the event of falling […] trying to capture the passage of movement or the movement in moving, trying to capture the moving of movement. And all of the imperceptible movements and affects that come with this […] We are using a pseudo-scientific method  the movement is passing before the camera, we are creating these categories of falling. Whilst the form might have these scientific leanings … the intent is not. It is poetic … visually and in language. It is not about absence or that which is seen as loss either. Not about disorientation but a shifting of orientation. So is that because disorientation is seen as being negative  rather than seeing this as a negative, as an opposite, as the dis, the dis of orientation; it is conceiving of it as a parallel orientation or a shifted orientation. Disorientation doesn’t so much allow for a shifting of an orientation. There is kind a temporary disorientation, a temporary disorientation could positively facilitate … but you could get stuck in a disoriented state which could be unproductive. […] It is not so much a resistance or refusal of the dominant models of uprightness and success, but actually learning how to live with the conditions of the everyday. It is tending to the everyday. The everyday as experience and about learning how to develop a capacity for speaking about that. It is not clock time ... it is duration. Acceptance of the movement […] You have to learn how to go with the fall. Learning how to go with it. How to obey or surrender to the fall, attend to the tendencies of gravity […] It will take a while to acclimatize … It is through the repetitions, through the experience of the repetitions, that it becomes possible to lose that initial disorientation that comes with falling, in order to discern that there are many stages within the event of falling [...] There is a certain taxonomy of falling  trip, fall, stumble, collapse, pratfall, slide. Our thematic list is not this … It feels very extended in terms of the stages. The titles all feel very distinct  they speak to different moments within the experience. It is only possible to start to make those kinds of extensions once you are familiar with the process  […] You come into a movement which is indivisible into steps. So the stages could be infinite in this sense ... even to say every second is different is not enough, because that can be divisible and divisible and divisible infinitely [...] Steps is already limited. With a theme like covering the ground ...  it is indicated as if it is the first step but actually we are conceiving of it as a repeated action  it is looping, it is never the first. There is always a before. In order to prepare how to fall you already must have fallen. To fall first in order to know  for how might you otherwise prepare. (T)hat is what we are saying about movement in a way  it is before language. But at the same time, I think that language has got this capacity to slow the fall down in a different way to the photographs. Or to allow you linger in the phases on falling in a way that the photographs don’t allow for. Or in some ways, photographs can't help but capture the instants even when there is a blur — whereas the categories are a bit more slippery […] The movement can be both instances and durations, in the sense that it can be both a continuous present and a continual beginning again … It doesn’t feel as if it has to be either/or […] Occasionality and something unfolding. Like the desire to speak and listen at the same time. Doing things at the same time or articulating something at the same time as doing it, absolutely simultaneously. The titles preparing to fall and the warming and flexing feel as if they attend to the nature of a conversation or this kind of conversation, where we are trying through conversation to make a fall happen. You would hope that we find a way of getting to the point … which is more than us just bringing together the materials and thoughts that we already have […] The conversations have the feeling for me  though maybe different for someone who falls in the physical sense  of the middle stages of the fall. There is something quite ecstatic about that kind of thinking process. We are not physically falling  we are talking, we are writing, we are making, we are thinking … but it feels like a fall. It would be interesting to talk about how the categories that we have started to develop for thinking about falling actually speak about creative practice … exploring the processes of collaboration and making. Moving between thinking about falling specifically and then thinking about practice, oscillating between  speaking to the fall and also to the act of collaboration […] It produces a vocabulary that speaks to both […] There is an attempt to describe a lived experience. This sense of duration  this is taking place within our broader lives. You can’t separate it … it is a pocket within a pocket. Thinking about it in those ways means that what I might say also comes from a different place … where I am not meditating on falling  I am speaking from the experience of it […] It is not so much that I am looking at the images of you falling or thinking about you falling, and thinking what must it feel like. I am speaking from what I experience happening in practice. Even the sense of covering the ground or setting up the conditions  I am thinking about what we did before this or what we do before we meet. There is something to do with making space, making time […] Is this similar to falling? It is something like preparing yourself on many different levels for what is to come or clearing the decks of other things, getting rid of everyday concerns […] A putting aside of certain everyday concerns, putting things into suspension. There is a kind of sweeping […] I am losing language. Something about sweeping a space clear to make the space for something. It is both sweeping and it is also agitating. There is a sense of trying to churn something up or agitate something but to the point that you have to just let it go. There is a letting go before you can let goThe preparatory  the preparation isn’t necessarily one of knowing what will unfold, it is more about stretching and a sense of warming up […] There is a kind of limbering up of thinking but also you have to be prepared to let some of that go in order to not just be regurgitating what you already know. In falling there could be preparation that one might do, but then having to let go of that because otherwise it is not giving way to the fall. It would be performing a fall but not falling … The body facilitates the fall as a movement rather than the body being a thing that falls. The body is not a thing that something happens to, rather it is through the body that the fall occurs. It con-jurs. It is not the body passively falling  not the body-object and gravity. It is a whole set of mind and muscle activations, and the familiarity with that process makes you able to be even more fearless and graceful in the act of doing it. It is a set of mechanisms that the body goes into to create a fall. You create a fall. Or it is not so much that a fall happens to you or that you create a fall, but that a fall is created. There is a sense of it being a collaboration between the body, the forces of gravity, intention, a whole set of factors, in the same way that it is not so much that a body has a thought […] The thinking and the falling are parallels. Through the body a thinking happens. Thinking of these things as passages or forces of which the body is a part, rather than thinking of them as something that the body does or performs or acts out […] It is much more bodily … This blur between the self and the world is like the smoke and the airThere is a distinct sense of a shape but it is really blurry at the edges. Where is the fall in that? Where is it? Where does the fall stop and the ground begin? […] There is something about techniques  falling is a technique for helping the body to understand what it is … You begin to understand it as a field of forces  the body’s thingness is really put into question through the experience of falling, whether conceptually or physically, because the edges are so put to test. Not seeking a representation of movement but creating movement … a diagramming of sorts, where it is not possible to say what comes before and after […] It is not possible to separate it into steps  every next step is already anticipated in the thing that comes before. Even trying to talk around these headers feels like that … We are not even going sequentially. Even in covering the ground there are other phases … This is where the diagonal comes in … But the diagonal also has infinite permutations of gradation. The diagonal speaks to these infinite permutation of angle between. And if we were to take that idea of … verticality as somehow stable and the way that we are habitually oriented, and horizontality is what happens when you fall over … then between the two … even as a diagramming … there are so many possibilities. And also just the diagonal line itself  in certain states of fall, has different thickness … the diagonal could be quite thick or it could be very thin. Thick at the top because that is where there is most amount of force … the distribution of force through the body is not consistent […] Trying to think of different ways of demonstrating that. Not a representation of time as space. Trying to represent the lived, the true duration. Are we visually attending to the form of the fall or the force of the fall? A diagonal diagrams the shape of the physical body but also a sense of a vector of force. At other times the forces will be really unexpected … there is a kind of inversion. It is not even that the body has fallen to be horizontal  it has gone over and it is actually rising again. At its most fallen, there is this unexpected lift. […] Often a sense of falling is thought of in terms of giving into or resisting gravity, as if gravity is the only force at play. And yet it is also to do with the resistances and gives of the body in terms of how you fall. The space in between the vertebrae. The body is not just becoming passive and giving over to gravity. But the body can never do that because it has all kinds of resistances and tensions within it. There is this play of different kinds of pressures and resistances which feels interesting […] The impression of exterior simplicity … belies the interior complexity. The body has not just slumped … there are a whole load of things occurring  certain pressures to with circulation, and the heart and the lungs and the spine. Having a visual simplicity so that the complexity has room […] It is more like a kind of ellipsing through the different states, as if they are all continually present, but perhaps have stronger emphasis at particular moments. What seemed like simple imaging and categorisation at first has become really complex  yet the still photograph hasn't got the complexity to capture this on its own […] They reflect the trajectory of a fall rather than a linear thread  it is more looping and folded and pleated […] Whilst there are identifiable phases to falling, arguably, its sequential order is not consistent … Through repeating a fall, the sequential order of its phases become more and more disoriented. Or … it starts to slip or fall out of sync. This idea of composition  composition as explanation  we have been using a kind of choreography but composition and composing feel really even more useful. Composing, deliberately using that verb, as it is occurring, the -ing. Composing  the idea of composing oneself, in the sense of controlling or establishing a calm or a stillness. Composure  serene or self-controlled state of mind. An agitation. The tension between composure or composition and agitation. Composure which is different to compose. Its opposite  the colloquial to fall apart. To lose one’s composure. Compose. Combining things, parts or elements. The combination of forces. By having a methodology for this combination, one can maintain the composure in order to have clear thinking. So it is like a knowledge of these components and how they interact. I wonder whether the sense of knowing how to do something is a way of allowing that knowledge to then fall. Sometimes it is only possible to not do something by knowing how to do something first. In order to reach some of the states within falling you have to know how to fall. You have to know the stages first and you need to know how to do them in order first and  hope that they do fall out of sync in a way, or hope that there might be something unexpected within that. Not just repeating  you wouldn't want it to be the same every time … otherwise it is rehearsing the image of a fall or going through the motions of a fall without the attendant transformations that are possible within it. You could conceive of a fall as a formula or as steps  you do this and this and this. In Roger Caillois’ writing on ilinx he talks about what happens as the experience of vertigo gets trained. So if you are a trapeze artist you learn how to fall. What is at stake in learning how to fall? […] It depends on whether you think that practise is to do with perfecting or whether practise is to do with depth  is practice to do with getting better at something or understanding something more? […] In a sense, you could perfect the art of falling and be very good at it, and in terms of the form of it, really understand the form, but this might not mean that you understand […] There are layers that you might hope to get to that are only possible through practice. The idea that practice is to do with somehow perfecting an art or even knowing how to do something is not always played out … Practice isn’t only about getting good at something, it is also a way of increasing the depths of one's understanding or expanding … There is a common misconception that notions of rehearsal and practice are to do with an end-game of resolution […] What is it that practise does? Is it one of extending something or taking something to a different place or maybe it is about being in control? That idea of control needs unpacking, for control is often synonymous with managing something, and actually it is more to do with having the control so you can go with something else, take it somewhere else? Maybe this is more about composure rather than control  having the composure in order to really go with it. Maybe one is practicing states of composure so that you can be really ready for what comes in, because surely the idea of practicing, like being a practicing artist, is about really about … wanting to learn, being exposed to more. The definitions of practice speak about the idea of performing habitually, or an exercise. A training element. Yet exercise is different to practice. What is an exercise  a means towards getting better at something or a stretch and a test? Maybe this is a better way of thinking about it  practise as stretching something? This stretching  is muscular and it is bodily. But also it is stretching perceptively. There is a kind of exploration  pushing at the edges or the limits, the stretching and the elastic … and each stretching, each thoughtful stretching leads you forward to the potential of a deeper stretch […] This achieving and letting go  it is not that it is practicing in order get better but reaching towards something and the act of doing something … It is always about having to be let go. They are temporary states  glimpses in a way […] It is not about knowledge that is fixed and stored but it is always having to be produced and goes if not practiced. There is this sense of learning how to be fluid; learning how to practice in order not to keep. Learning how to have experiences that aren’t lasting […] Working against impulse … it is not so much that it is out of control but the opposite. It is habit that would have us stand upright. The body wants to behave in particular ways and through dancing and through falling maybe it is about disobeying impulse. To trip up the tendency of the body would mean to try not to not fall, to not want to go with the resistance to falling. Some of these moves are learning how to disobey impulses and habits that have built up over time. As non-reaction. If the trip is the cause, the effect is often one of trying to hold back and resist falling. But how can you inhabit that gap more fully, like when we were drawing the fold. You might not even notice that a fall is about to happen, and step over the hole. What happens when you really go into that space  really suspending, plunging, and trying to elongate that? How many lines of writing, how many images of midfalls, of points during a fall … trying to create a lag so that something can happen. Stretching that gap moment so to give one’s body and mind the ultimate possibilities, the best possibilities for not habitually reacting. Giving oneself the best chance at shifting one's orientation of possibility. Changing one’s behavior by changing one’s behaviour. In order to change the way that you behave you have to practise changing the way that you behave. The idea of rehearsal is not one of getting somewhere but of an ongoing transformation. Needing to create the conditions for getting to the secret slowness of the fast. There needs to be some composure or setting up […] One hasn’t found the language yet. There is a necessary privacy. The sensory world can be distracting  there is too much. There are some moments in Cixous’ writing where she talks about closing the eyes, and the force of imagination that happens by closing off to the realities of the world. In some ways this might seem quite escapist, but I think it is more to do with a sense of closing the eyes to the normal sequencing of the world, or to the normal speed of the world. And it is only temporary. One closes one’s eyes knowing that they will be required again shortly. So, you open them up again. It is only temporary, but there is a gap. Some have concerns about this temporary blockage, as if one is being remote … there is a worry about it as if they are going to be left behind. The properties of the gymnasium itself are of one of being separate from the distractions of the world. It is a protected space away from those habitual pressure, wherein you can test the body in a different kind of way. And in a very mind and body way. Training suggests that both are at play. A temporary flicker. I think that sense of preparation  how much work you have to do in order not to respond habitually. The warming up and the development of capacity before you have even done anything, in order to work against how you would normally respond in everyday life. Getting in the right mind-set […] There is a period of preparation or training before the beginning … like a prologue or it is part of the beginning, but of a different order […] I really need to take my body to the edges of things in order to somehow to ventilate this a bit. It feels like you have to make space in the body before you can make space in the head somehow. The head is part of the body. It really helps the mind. It feels like through in the course of everyday life there are all these emotional, intellectual and physical knottings that occur within the body  to try to then perform a fall (whether this is physical or in thinking) is to get to a space that you don't yet know. Because that is what it is in a way, the space of the not-yet-known. You have all these knottings, which are resistant, and they really don’t want to go there, and there is something about undoing, unknotting. In order to fold, you have to be unknotted. The studio is a protective space for building resilience, becoming fluid, loosening up […] We talk about the endeavor of falling. Endeavor feels a key word. There is also the word conation, to do with a quality of striving, conatus, the striving to stay in being. Conation. The part of mental life having to do with striving including desire and volition. Latin  an attempting, to try ... like the essay, essayer.  It is a term that has fallen out of favour in contemporary vocabulary. An effort or striving, a force or tendency simulating a human effort. In the philosophy of Spinoza  the force in every animate creature towards the preservation of its existence. There is something about survival. Arakawa and Gins talk about the idea of person-ing being a verb, and as humans the quality of a person is a verbing. Not all of us are capable of person-ing  striving towards the capacity to be as much as you can be. They contrast being and person-ing. This striving to stay in being is more than a survival instinct around existence but more about striving to be more human, to be mindfully present in your being-ness. Against many of the tendencies of contemporary life. Endeavor [...] Thinking about the endings of things … Warming down from things. The jarring between an activity and the rest of the world can be hard. Decompressing. Dilated. Within the studio, it feels a long way from the world in a way. You are in the zone. I think it does take some decompression to come out of that. Lying with your feet in the air  just getting your feet above your head. Inverted postures are really good for the body […] In an inverted position your organs fall back into place … falling back into yourself. Compose talks about the idea of falling into arrangement. Arrangement  as in a musical arrangement. The secret slowness of the fast, the pause, the fermata as a music sign: there is something about that. It means that you pause. In an ensemble piece you would be listening out for one another’s pauses. It is different from sustaining a note though. If you think about the curve and the different grades of it and then with a punctum … it signals pause … making these passageways. In Greek, the word porous means a passageway  so the sailor would first imagine a passageway in the sea before they would sail it. The carving of a channel and then moving into it, like the arrow. You have already conceived the direction, the movement has started well before the movement has started. The space is made before you move into it. Creating the space and entering into. So smooth. Or spacious rather than smooth. Room to move […] How is one’s physiognomy when thinking, like when you have a bite to eat and all the blood goes to the tummy to help digest. I wonder what happens in these times when you are actively thinking, when you are thinking actively about thinking? Is there more blood going to the brain? Is there less? The idea of restraint has a positive force. It made me think very differently about spaciousness. The notion of good stretch and bad stretch. There being a bad stretch if your elasticity is too much. There is the sense of necessary tensions  without certain tensions it exceeds what is good […] Personal thresholds and how you do that limbering up. And that is intuitive. The idea of restraint seems to be there, not only in terms of the body disobeying impulse but other things. Cixous talks about the idea of plunging and diving and depths. This idea of descension being a much more difficult manouevre than ascension. To plummet into the depths is a harder manoeuvre. You have to climb to reach the depthsit involves a reaching gesture. It is very effortsome in the medium of water because the body wants to come up, because it is naturally quite buoyant. You have to really dig down to go down and that is why free divers weight themselves down. Plunging and diving. When I think of diving, I think of leading with the hands. Leading with the hands is also like the description of the dance where you cut a space before the body passes […] A vocabulary for talking about the edges of the self and trying to put them under pressure in some kind of way  whether that is through collaboration or falling. Rendering the limit blurry. Flinging oneself beyond the ego. […] Leaping from sentence to sentence  the spaces of potential between things. All the possible things that there could be … like with the headers, it is expedient to have these 16 categories but they are thought leaps in a way. There is an understanding that between them, there is also a sense of infinite possibilities […] Create a structure and play around with its variables […] The shape of the fall might look one way but underneath there are these other forces and currents. There is a depth of complexity — which is like churning the seabed or shifting a sense of the land. Like a tidal shift … the push and pull of these different dynamics. A desire to make visible but also an acknowledgment of the impossibility around that … There is a very genuine desire to find a vocabulary for speaking about the different states, yet in the process of trying to define that vocabulary it splurges. It won’t be contained and produces these excesses  or it in doing it, it shows that it is not possible. Or only very fleetingly. I have found that quote  “a name is merely the guest of reality”. There is a fleeting name which can be really rewarding and pushes one forwards in understanding, but you cannot rely on that being there permanently to rely on. That name will change. It will become another name. In relation to conation and endeavor … is it the finding of the name or the striving that is the active part or is the part that is meaningful not always the acquisition of the name? So our process of trying to find the names, or trying to produce a vocabulary is itself enacting the things that we are trying to articulate. Maybe the words themselves are snapshots of a particular moment, but like practice, it has to keep evolving. The words that we are using for moving forwards  are very graspy, very verby. They have a forward momentum. I have to take the noun and do something to it to transform it. I am compelled to transform it. Renouncing of solidity. Renunciation of solidity or stable ground […] I was thinking about syncope and the leap … This idea of fledgling thought and how a bird might have to learn to fall before it learns to fly. Thinking has to leap before it can be a thought. There is a stepping off. The falls are interesting … stepping off without stepping off anything. Our falls thus far have not been leaps … I have always had contact […] I think definitely we have leapt or flung with an idea  aspiring or attempting … but I wonder what would happen if one really flung oneself in physical terms […] There is a kind of levity or lightness, aeriality or lift that happens as a byproduct of the fall […] At the moment of hitting the ground, there is this moment where the body rises. Pulled up. In a way like an inversion, this striving for an inverted body and the rejuvenation that comes with that. Inversion […] It might suggest the inbetween … Inversion. To turn or change to the opposite. To turn inside outTo turn inward and backward on itself. Ideas around folding again […] You fall into yourself … falling back into yourself […] To turn upside down or inside out. To turn … turning over, a thinking process, mulling. In the sense of the repeated fall, turning over something […] It is an invitation … the invitation to compose a fall feels like an opportunity to turn over, to have a shift in orientation. A ritual practice  the idea of a ritual in relation to the liminal, the idea of a ritual practice that enables you to enter this other realm. Victor Turner talks about the idea of the subjunctive, which is a realm of possibility. A realm of possibility trembling with potentiality. One of the properties of the liminal phase is one of topsy-turvyism. The usual hierarchies and orders of the world are turned on their head. The ritual of the fall is one of entering that realm somehow. Topsy-turvyism. Rotate  to cause to turn around on an axis. I find the geometry interesting […] I would suspect that in terms of the path of a wave whilst the surface is like that (arc), the motion underneath … this idea of revolve. Revolving. To cause to go through a cycle of changes  is also rotation. To cause to pass or follow […] The difference between to causing to go through a cycle of changes and the sense of proceeding by a fixed routine in succession […] Feeling the force of form. Also this idea of present passing […] And this idea of ‘turn over’. Topsy-turvyism. Rotate. Revolve. Entering the arc. The trust, the twist, the torque […] There is something about turning over and revolving, which is not about twisting. It is not about twisting the mind or anything, but it is turning things over; shifting the orientation of thought. It is not twisting out of shape  shifting of orientation rather than disorientation […] I was looking again at revolve. To move in a circular or curving orbit. To turn around on an axis. To come around again. Or recur. Yes, and the recursive loop. To revolve in the mind. Also to focus or centre on  revolve around. That sense of the stillness at the heart of turning or the composure at the heart of movement. To think about and consider. Ponder. Creating time for rumination and the ponderesque […] Revolve  from volvere, to roll or wind. The idea of winding is interesting. Revolver  turn, roll back, from re- back again, volvere  to roll … I wonder if volver means return. The etymology is interesting. Volver  alternative to volgere, to turn to or towards something, to turn around something, roll or roll back … This turning over, I think of the parallels between thinking and falling. And the process of writing […] the processes are so similar in the flexing and the turning over. The compositional style … the writing mirrors the physical. It is more the quest for a vocabulary rather than the form that it takes on the page. The very construction of a vocabulary. The quest. It feels like entering the arc, trust, twist, torque. This turning over of words and of language  working against impulse, this searching for the underside of certain terms in order to bring them to life in a different way. I was thinking about rolling on the tongue. And really savoring and enjoying some of that aspect. And the letting go  the sense of this release of language from itself. Or how in the poetic there is a gesture in which language falls from itself or falls out of conventional use, falls away from habitual meanings into a different use. Again, that is different to saying it is to do with a disorientation or defamiliarization. It feels as if it is not that. I wonder whether the idea of the disorientation or defamiliarization speak too much of a vocabulary of opposites, we are searching for something more nuanced? […] Or there is an elasticity that is extra-ordinary through exhaustion, or maybe relaxation or in releasing or letting go it becomes possible to reach further. A productive slackening. At that moment of relax and slack you could really extend yourself. An attentive laid-backness […] I wonder whether in these moments of exhaustion or release the body understands itself not as a solid but as a liquid or as flow. It can then go somewhere else because it is not thinking of its edges … what is the thing on water when you make it go over the glass. Meniscus  where the water rises at the edges […] Liquid bulge. A meniscus is the curve of the upper surface of a liquid  the bottom curve, it is a convex meniscus. A convex meniscus occurs when the particles of liquid have a stronger attraction to each other than the material of the container. Convex or concave. A convex meniscus is one that bulges. Beyond the limits. There is this moment where the water holds its shape beyond the limits of its containment before it then spills. The point when one is at one’s most liquid state  that is when you are not even thinking about the meniscus. When you are covering the ground you might be thinking about meniscus. When you are getting yourself together ... but at the moment when you are in your deepest flow of lived experience you wouldn’t even be thinking about your edges, or your skin or anything, you would just be part of it. There are quite a few things about how a certain sense of consciousness is an enemy of these other kinds of movements […] An absence of a certain kind of consciousness within certain states, the quality of grace only through the absence of self-consciousness. Self-conscious. Limbs follow an arc or axis, relating to the point of gravity not with any embellishment. It is totally to do with the curvature of dynamic motion. Loss of (self)consciousness is a critical facility for states of grace. Grace feels the wrong word […] Ecstatic impotency is something liquid […] It doesn't have to be sequential. It could be liquid tense, liquid flow. Moments of recurring consciousness that interrupt. The feeling of becoming liquid or becoming fluid or becoming flow feels as if there is something to do with the unsettling of the sense of solidity that happens through falling. Or whatever we mean by that  physical, conceptual … an unsettling of stability. And also … a kind of forgetting of solidity, not bothering about solidity, not even letting it go but just it becomes inconsequential. It is really hard to grasp … there are no things, there is no self, all is flow and flux, not things … Even to conceive of yourself on an atomic level. Molecular level. This sense of being seething, or the fact that this (skin) is an indeterminate edge […] Whether there is something about certain kinds of practices like falling that make the lived experience palpable […] This flickering awareness of the flow … as much as we can handle […] Only those moments … they are fleeting […] Deliquesce – to become liquid by absorbing moisture from the air or to melt away … To become liquid. The difficulty is that this maybe speaks of disappearance or absence in a way. Liquescent  becoming liquid, tending towards a liquid state […] The body becoming more like steam … not so much liquid and not smoke but gaseous, moist steam. It is liquid but is more like a cloud. Becoming liquid but what is the word for becoming gas or becoming steam? Is that elemental transformation? … Elemental transformation feels like a shift in orientation. It doesn’t matter so much if one is becoming like a liquid or a gas ... one is becoming other to the place where one is at, whilst simultaneously being really at it. It is an intermediary state  that is neither fully gaseous or liquid or solid. In themselves they are categorical definitions ... We are trying to get close to a way of reflecting on lived experience, and the body is not any one of those thing  it is gaseous, solid and liquid. It is comprised of matter, water and air. To try and describe it as a solid or as a liquid or as a gas … doesn't make sense, because it is all of those things. These fleeting simultaneous layerings. In falling, the sense of the liquidity of the body becomes more apparent in the sense of how the blood rushes ... you become very aware of the motion of the blood. Suddenly it surges. One becomes flushed. A liquid state. Interiority. Something about the flow is very much about an interior process  in the blood. A thought process. If you have a liquid in a jar and turn it, the liquid retains its equilibrium  the liquid will always find the horizon. Unless it has a certain viscosity. Becoming liquid […] Maybe we have now made a commitment and we can now move on without starting over again […] So in the event of falling its not so much that you pass sequentially through these phases ... you arc and loop around certain moments within the cycle […] Tuning back. Tuning. Tuning back and turning back  linguistically […] The parallels between what we are doing now, what writing might be, what collaboration might be … recalling previous experiences, trying to bring those experiences into the situation in a way. In an invoking, conjuring up, drawing up … Bringing to bear. This tension between collecting oneself and recollection. Collecting one’s thoughts, collecting oneself, drawing on past experience … Collecting. Preparing to fall, collecting oneself, entering the arc […] To collect, to gather. Gather and fold […] It is almost like a scanning … A body scan and mental scanning … It feels more like a scoop. Drawing. Scanning. So scanning  looking swiftly to gather in the appropriate elements that might be useful in the current moment … Scanning is a flutter of quick gatherings. Latin  scandere. Comes from climbing or ascending … gathering in, drawing up, drawing up ideas. Ascend  to rise in pitch. Mount, rise. From scan to slant upward […] Spring or leap. Hastens leaps and jumps. Scandalon  a stumbling block. Where is this coming from, etymologically? Examination of a body or body part. I think we have struck on a  word with scan. Glance. A speed to it, an expediency. Recovering of certain material. Even now there might be a quick glancing over what we have already said or done. Not a remembering, not a summarising, almost like touching over something. Not reminding. Taking stock. Scanning. Scanning. Scanning. Scan. There is haste and necessity. You know this is the secret slowness of the fast  the potency of a glance … there is nothing about its swiftness which is inaccurate … There is both thoroughness and swiftness in a scan, the same as in the potency of a glance or the secrecy of the slowness of the swift. We are not saying that there is a slightness to it […] There is an alertness to the situation which is to do with the idea of que vive.  Vigilance. Alertness. Watchful. On the que vive. Attentive, alert. Watchfulness. The word revolve  speaks of focus and consideration, to focus on, there is something of this going on. The scan and the revolve. The rotational surveying. To revolve in the mind, to focus or centre on. Call upon. Scanning and calling upon. Bring to mindScan and bring to mind ... Rotating and revolving of that … there is a direction which is circular … This bringing to mind helps one to have the physical and kinetic impetus  so there is a physical and mental winding up. Bringing to mind, drawing on all previous knowledges, and then taking stock of that ... before choosing to set it aside, to let go. Bring to bear. What does that mean? It is a call to bear witness. Bear  to hold up or support. To bear the weight of. To bring forth. To be capable of. To tend in the course of. Bear down. To press or weigh down. To strive harder or intensify one’s efforts […] The intensification of one’s efforts through drawing up, to strive towards. To bear upon, to affect, to relate to or have connection with. To bring to bear  to concentrate on with a specific purpose. To bring to bearScan. To bring to bear […]  Bring to bear  to concentrate with a specific purpose. Pressure was brought to bear. There are also things to do with bear  withstand … Something around resilience, withstanding. There is something about what one does in these moments of awareness or bringing to bear or withstanding  there are moments when one is doing it and then moments when one is really self-consciously realizing the burden of it, and checking in where one’s body is … and that also makes you lose it momentarily […] This sense of minor categories or transitional categories that are emerging in between  so Scan: Bring to Bear and then associated vocabulary. What is counterpoint? A counterpoint rhythm is also referred to as syncopation. Counterpoint. The falling out. The gaps. The beat that emerges in the gaps. In music a shift in the normal accent stressing the usually unaccented beats. In the sense of the visual  how the undercurrent might speak of another less perceptible register, the feeling of force beneath the form. The sense of how the wave of the titles describes with a degree of clarity in a way, but beneath the surface there is a whole raft of imperceptible decision-making.  This bringing to bear or scanning are the imperceptible micro-movements that inform action, but which often remain unattended to. (W)e are still dwelling in the first sections  are these the areas which are more consciously engaged … We talked about the states of immersion in falling, also in conversation, and writing and practice. In covering the ground and preparing to fall and even entering the arc, there is a sense where conscious mind is still very aware of its own thinking, before it has become immersed […] It is almost easier to think about what is happening there … But it seems that the vocabulary for the latter stages of the arc has to come from a very different place. […] The vocabulary for the latter stages has to appear differently. These are the places that are not being rationalized  you are not thinking whilst you are doing […] Drawing on embodied knowledge  some of this language transforms into a physical language. Muscle memory. I am looking at inclinationMuscle memory and inclination allows one to reach becoming diagonal. A mixture of conditioning and desire […] It is not only about working against impulse because there is something pleasurable about it in a way  this inclination towards, an edging. Or a leaning into willfully. Inclination  a deviation from a normal position, especially from the horizontal or vertical. Deviation or amount of deviation. Propensity. Penchant. Tendency. Proclivity. Tendency towards. Predisposition. Disposition. Dispose. Disposition. An attitude. Attitude. An attitude and étude. Or bent. Bent is interesting. Resolve and bent. Having resolve … with the revolve and the resolve. Some of the words  like bent  have a lightness to them which makes them feel freer to the reading, more able for others to get into it and digest it […] Certain words  like bent or attitude which have many readings. So it is like a stance. An attitude. But it also means a propensity towards … Bend and bind have an etymological connection in terms of making a commitment to. We are bound together. Bent or bend  to yield or submit or give in, but also this connection to being resolved to. Whilst yielding. Resolve and the voluntary suggest agency and volition … having volition whilst giving over, that weird opposite … It is not submission to another’s force, there is resolve in that. It is an active surrender. It has power. It is not being bent at the mercy of something  it is not giving in to a power, but rather one of going with it. There is something powerful about the word … yield is not the same as give up or give in. Yield acknowledges the effort on both parts. It is different kind of giving in or defeat […] I rather like colloquialisms … the idea of being hell bent on something. What does that mean? There is a certain kind of resolve. Impetuously or recklessly resolved to do something. I would like to bring that occasionally into play. Not hell bent necessarily. Something that is provocative in it, playful. The impetuous. Very determined to do something especially when the results might be bad. Head strong can often be confused with head long which is to proceed with the head foremost, head first, head long into something. We mustn’t forget the plunge. Something that is made precipitously, precipitately. Head long. Undertaken quickly, made precipitately. To fling or hurl, to cast, plunge especially violently or hurriedly. You know if you were head strong and you went head long into something. So head strong, head long. The notion in the vertical, in becoming diagonal. Is there something around headiness? Or the point at which the physicality of the head takes over the thinking of the head ... like rushes. Like head over heals, there is something about a surge. The mind starts the action but the body has a momentum and a force of its own. And there is this yield. Impetuous. What was it we said last night … vivacity. Desire is somewhere in this. ExhilerationHeadyFrom head long, head strong, to heady, from a rational willful desire to a state of intoxication. Affecting the mind or senses greatly. But that is one of those flickering, fleeting moments … it is no fantasy. It is only a flicker of a heady, dreamlike state … in the hurl, the willful head strong, head long, heady, rushing, ecstatic. But not gone, no sense of flight, of having taken off. There is a return or realignment […] Dipping, the dip. Blipping, fluttering. You know like when a bird is flying and it flaps and it sinks, then it flaps and lifts and sinks. Undulation. We are not doing this to lose ourselves. This is not the intent. We have to momentarily release and go heady. It is the shifting orientation, shift in orientation  there has to be a flicker of momentary yielding. Is this the free-fall space then? Where there is a moment of weightlessness before you harness that energy. There is a moment where the force is really wayward and out of control and the challenge if you like might be one of how do you harness those forces towards movement. What did you say, not veering off course  wayward. I like the word errant or errancy. To dip, to plunge, temporarily. To incline, to dip or slope downward. To scoop. Dip is nice because it is nimble but also quite tentative, because you dip your toe in the water, don’t you. And it also speaks to liquid. To put something into liquid. It is not a total submersion. A dip suggests that some part of that body is still above the water. You know like the idea of touching limits and the meniscus idea … dipping is when there is a kind of risky point  the toe going into the budging meniscus. It could break it at any point … it is a careful moment. That is where there is risk of spillage or the risk of losing oneself […] The immersion idea around dipping and plunging … There are also these thresholds of reality. We have drawn this diagram … this is the path of every day life and then there are moments of falling out of or dipping into something else. The beneath and below. Also with Cixous when she talks about the descenders  those capable of plumbing the depths.  The descenders. She talks about how the writers she likes are descenders, and are plumbing something, an act of plunging. You know the head long […] Like the word bent, they could be useful hooks … colloquial language can be good for rupturing academic language  those turns of phrase.  And they ventilate the thing, they give a let up and they ventilate. The colloquial is helpful. Head strong, head long. Errant  There is a wildness […] Jumping in feet first is different to the kinds of falls we have been talking about and it might be useful to distinguish between what it might mean to jump into something feet first […] There are forms of fall which are to do with this jarring collision, crash, hit, banging, injury. These forms speak of the dissimilarity between self and the world, the point where there is an uneasy meet. The kind of falling that we seem to be exploring seems to be more about becoming at one with the world, becoming. slipperiness of categories  so we have done a certain amount of work to make the edges start to become less solid […] It is not feet first. Maybe there is a sense of nots. It is not … we are talking about a very particular kind of fall which is not a feet first jump? It is not rash  it is not an action performed rashly, there is no carelessness. I wonder whether feet first slips to tread, trample, step on, crush. There is a sense of … the relation between the force of the body-object falling and the floor-ground meeting always feels as though it will be antagonistic. Where with a dive or a plunge the meeting is different. The foot blocks  keeps something more at a distance. The difference between falling onto and falling into. Falling onto … a sense of things hitting one another. Falling into  there are these forces and frictions and tensions and pressures … This feels a different vocabulary to forms and things. There is a completely different play of forces and materials and collisions. Falling onto something is just like a power play of non-yielding, whereas falling into something suggests … you are treating the ground as receptive rather than antagonistic. Feet first guards the body, whereas a sense of being unguarded is required or receptivity. Maybe the sense of the voluntary is around opening and receptivity. More like a welcome. Receptive […] You were saying something about folding ... the folding of attention, a heightened subject. Heightened subjectivity. Involve. Involve. Engage. To comprehend within itself. To bring into an intricate or complicated form. Involvere  to roll in or upEntangle, implicateA person bound up with something from which it is difficult to extricate him or herself … To bring more or less deeply into something. You know, it is almost like a recommitment made, this folding of attention, there is a recommitment. Because of this idea of engaging or binding. From entering into this space almost the risk of intoxication or the momentary intoxication, this ecstatic state. Then there is something to do with folding that excess back into a form of attention … Ilinx — the sense of vertigo, then inclination  the leaning into something … and then the sense of becoming diagonal, tilt towards the other, the limit, and the ecstatic impotency… They are the places where the body or the self is at most risk of falling out of control. Or there is that space there of momentary loss, loss or absence … which are the things that we are not really wanting to employ too much in a sense. Like the drowning  dipping one’s toe into the risky pool of intoxication […] There is this moment of bifurcation … in that ecstatic moment there is the possibility of clarity still and insight and a form of knowledge that is not possible to acquire by other means, but it can also take you towards an illusion or disreality. That is more one of escapism and pleasure without insight […] We talked a little bit about flinging oneself beyond the ego … but there is also this risk of a jubilant, ecstatic, pleased moment … a oh yeah … So, a kind of cautioning against … a kind of cautioning against self-impressed-ness … There must be vocabulary around that … cautionary against this risk of the self-congratulatory … which would bring a kind of loss of learning, a loss of potential learning because one is busy being pleased with oneself. It seems as if it is the point where the ‘I’ reasserts itself really aggressively, so I wonder whether the experience of the ecstatic is brought about in part by the feeling of 'I'ness or selfness beginning to dissolve, and the self-congratulatory is the ‘I’ reasserting itself. Or even the point of the ‘I’ reasserting itself in terms of recognising that this is pleasurable and ‘I’ want more of that … We are in this very risky area now. Touching limits. Ecstatic impotency […] There is something to do with … it is not the destination. It would be easy to see that actually … the liquid state, the sense of jouissance, as a destination. So this is blissful but fleeting … there needs to be a cautionary note on loitering … or … dwelling but not trying to hold onto something, not to try to stay with something. The experience gained is not lasting  they are not an end in themselves. It is not an end in itself. It is the striving and the passageway that is the key.  So it would be like if you were trying to extend the state of joy or bliss, it somehow solidifies … it is trying to hold still something that is fleeting. The jouissance of impuissance is a troublesome moment … there is something libidinal about those middle states but it more to do with how that energy gets turned. Towards a sense of a heightened subject. A heightened subjectivity rather than subject. The subject brings it back too much to the I. Folding of Attention: A heightened subjectivity. In that moment of intoxication, it is about the heightened subject, there is the risk of the elevated subject or the elevated I. It is a cautioning against the elevated I. Cautioning … this is a very nice minor heading within this area. Because there is always a surging or a racing … something about the secret slowness of the fast. In this hurling or surging forth there is also something ... there is a need for steadiness now. Steady now, easy now. In this sense, the jouissance of impuissance speaks to this state, but it also has a sense of excessiveness about it which needs to be cautioned against, even in terms of language […] Like at that moment, blooming … still with one foot on the ground. It is like a cautionary note … the need for a cautionary note and the language for that will assert itself but it could just be something like … taming feels wrong. Tempering might be useful. Something around tempering of excessThe excessive I. The elevated I. Cautioning against the elevated I. Jouissance […] the sense of it being a kind of transgressive excessive pleasure … the division and splitting of the subject involved … This is the point where restraint comes in. The sense of its relation to rapture  a restrained rapture or something being in measure? Maybe measure  measure suggests a pre-knowledge of boundaries. Is there something … maybe composure again? This is the point where you need to exercise the most caution … where you will need to be really challenged and your discipline really needs to manifest. Discipline. How to maintain a sense of tension? Somehow it could lose its sense of concentration or energy or somewhere around that moment the energies and forces drawn dissipate through lack of focusThis is a point where one needs to be prepared if necessary to stem the flow. It may not be necessary and the level might be the right level. But if it becomes excessive, you will need to stem the flow. Doses. Measures. Dosage. Composure. Composing. Measure is also a musical thing […] The act or process of ascertaining the exact dimensions or quality of something … There is a scanning moment occurring again. How do you avoid the sense of being overwhelmed? The liquid references feel very pertinent … being submerged, buried beneath flood waters, overcome, overpowered by superior forces. The sense of overthrown. The point at which … there is a point of inherent risk where the forces almost become quite nihilistic. Instead of an affirmation it becomes destructive or escapist or self-negating. A sense of being overcome by an irresistible force. Something about seduction and being seduced or tricked by the physical pleasures of something. But it is about not getting off on it […] There is a thought or hope that it is a resistible force  we are not doomed to its irresistibility. There is a hope or aspiration that this is a resistible force, otherwise there one would just stop. Because one would never get past it  it would remain the destination. You would treat it as intoxication in and of itself - which is a flight from reality rather than towards a better understanding of. What word were you looking at? Overwhelmed. Connections to a boat being washed over by a big wave. Over the helmTo turn upside down or overthrow. Overpower. Maybe there is something to do with the potency, the feeling of being overpowered, overwhelmed, over the top. Which comes after the fleeting bliss for sure  if you sustain the bliss you become unproductively overwhelmed. It is at that point that one needs to scan or measure to prevent this overwhelming … If you imagine that there is a line of flight that is coming from the situation, it is the point at which you fold that line of flight back upon itself through a form of attention. The relation of a form of impuissance or impotency that leads to a heightened potency … It is not a dwelling in impotency or loss of power or lack in itself  it is the recognition that through this it is possible to develop a certain kind of strength. So heightening can also be enlightening. The sense of inhabiting … it is understanding that impuissance and jouissance is not the destination  it forms part of a passage … That experience is folded back and it is not that you plan to stay there. In terms of the helmsman, you have to surrender to the wind in order to then turn it towards sailing. The helmsman has to take a risk and step off land  to fold the energies of wind and sea into sailing. Like in martial arts  using the force of onslaught to channel or turn back. Turning around the force for benefit […] rather than impotency being weak there is an obsolete meaning for it … a lack of self restraint, a wildness or subversiveness. The challenge is how to turn that … There are these wild energies at this moment … How to take these wild energies and channel them, in a way that has the capacity to be empowering and not annihilating. There is a moment where it is unrestrained  impotency has a lack of restraint. There is a moment of loss of control, loss of bearing, loss of orientation. But what we are saying is that this is not the destination. No. It is about just allowing a shift in orientation … There is a sense of it needing to be tethered. There is a groundedness requiredTethering and tempering. Tempering  to temper is used with metal. You temper steel. Calm. To calm. Modify its properties. A substance added to modify its properties. Or tone it down. In terms of encountering this ecstatic impotency, this jouissance of impuissance … and then, tone it down […] Turn. The turn again. Composure. Moderate and mitigate. They seem wrong words because they speak of a management form of control, which it is not to do with. To soften or tone down. Temper and tone feel more connected to composure. In a sense, there is a recognition within our own process that there are these moments of excessiveness. It is almost allowing for the possibility of that but also recognizing that it is also in risk of being elevated. The risk of elevation … Losing it. Risk of losing it. Then it is funny to think about this mind/body partition. There is this sense of splitting and a sudden coming back into oneself. One hasn't lost it  one is here and now in the body. Breathing. Bring it down. The order of these headers around the latter stages of the arc does not feel right somehow. Ecstatic impotency and touching limitsfolding of attention and maybe mind/body partition are further along. Formlessness and horizontality are higher up. Ecstatic impotency, folding of attention back … returning to the body, maybe even striking the right balances between gravity and levity … They feel like they are nearer to the end. Formlessness feels as though it should be higher. Yes. That seems closer to letting go, the vertigo and becoming diagonal. Becoming diagonal, formless  horizontality, touching limits  tilt towards the other …. Breathless  ventilating the idea. Gravity/Levity: striking the right balance. That feels actually connected to the cautionary note. Is that near ecstatic impotency? Striking the right balance  turn it down. Ecstatic impotency then gravity/levity then folding of attention. Yes. It could be that in the gravity/levity  there is a caution against elevation. There is a sense of flight and lightness and taking off that happens and maybe you need to bring back a sense of groundedness. But equally there needs to be some lightness  the language risks becoming too earnest. Maybe tone it down applies to so much. Tone it down on your earnestness, tone it down on you ecstaticness … It could go either way … Tone it down on the mutedness or tone it down on the excessiveness. We could go either way. What is really interesting there is this sense of whether it is gravity or levity that is being privileged and really put under pressure. So it has something … what brings things down without weight. So how might you bring it down or ground it without it being too heavy. There is a kind of bringing to ground without weight.  Gravity is also seriousness. Is there a way of bringing it back or bringing it to ground without it being heavy? There is a sense of needing to bring it back, but back without weight. So it has gone off on one  on an ecstatic flight or flourish. We need to bring it back down, but without the sense of weight, gravity, seriousness. We need to retain the lightness. How can we use a lightness as a way of bringing it back down? Maybe this is the function of colloquialisms. A comment which is light but which grounds. It makes me think of the word breathless in this situation … an exhalation would suggest weightiness and a breath would be an inhalation, a breathing in. And breathless is not so puffed out but the breathless could be weightless. I don’t know why  I can't quite tease it out. There is also something about aspiration. Aspiration is an out breath and also an intent. Remembering to breath out, remembering to aspire. A strong desire or aim. A goal. The act of aspiring. Aspirating. Breath. Articulation accompanied by an audible puff of breath or release. Yearning or striving. Aspiration. Aspirate. Popping the windiness of something. The hot air of all of that needs deflating. If you pop the hot air of an idea so that the meniscus split - but then the material  the idea  chose of its own volition to be there, it didn’t escape. It wasn’t tethered, it just remained … It is not coming down. It is like a non-dispersalIt is like something coming down without weight. The idea chooses not to disperse … there is a hovering. It is not going up and off and it is not crashing. Is there something about hovering. Buoyancy. Keeping or extending without allowing … What would be a word for not wanting things to go further ... Not thwarting, not the negative but something to do with …  how horses bolt and not wanting something to bolt. It is wanting to … not reining in, not containing, not halting. I wonder if around this point there is something more to do with caring for something. Or … it is not taming it is more encouraging the idea or thing to remain. The thing is at risk of bolting, at risk of escaping, dissipating, dispersing. I am thinking shepherding but this is wrong. I know what you mean, I am totally thinking along those lines … something like watch over, or watchfulness. Whilst cautionary it has connotations of guarding and restraint. It is more attending. We are at that point aren’t we. Attending. Attention. Folding of attention. Watchfulness. Tending. Tending to the moment. Look up tending. Disposed. Lead or conduce. Conduce. Conducive. When conditions are conducive. Conducive. Favourable. Tending to produce. Conduce. Then if you have this folding of attention … Touching limits, tilt towards the other … a feeling of disembodiment, ecstatic impotency. The folding of attention and idea of conduce is bringing it back together and is close to ventilating an idea. The tilt towards the other  there is a sense of stepping out of oneself. Disembodiment … ecstatic impotency. Then the sense of not reining it in … but attending to in order to create conductiveness. Bring together. Something around tender. To tender  to regard or treat tenderly. Taking charge of something. It is like sympathetically taking control, carefully directing. Sensitivity. Delicate. Something around the moment needing to be handled well. You know what makes me think about attending … tenderizing. In terms of being very bodily and fleshy about it. Tenderise. To pound. Too forceful. A sense of which means changing one’s nature  the subject being warmed and made malleable in the way that a metal might. The sense of its capacity to change its nature … so actually the thing is in a liquid state. It is about finding the means of taking it from this liquid state, and moving it towards something else. How do you manage the liquid state? This is when you are working with it, when you are working with these liquid materials to fuse them. Formlessness, horizontality, touching limits  all of this there is a sense of limits and edges being dissolved. Formless. Formlessness  the idea of it being deprived of meaning, searching for something meaningful. It is not so much loss of meaning, loss of subject, loss of orientation ... It is the point where there is a risk of all of that but the shift towards horizontal is one of trying … There is a quality of knowledge and meaning found through temporarily entering that state, in order to recover. It is not about inverting things and them staying inverted … It is not to do with depriving meaning, but finding meaning, a point of passage. Through which … a sense of augmented knowledge, embodied knowledge. We are not inoculating the body against the imagined threat of the fall and the experience of disorientation and uncertainty therein. We are not interested in the form of disorientation, but in becoming sensitised to the experience of disorientation in order to produce the vertiginous pleasure of unexpected forms of embodied knowledge and augmented subjectivity. So in a sense, those pleasures of disorientation have to be kept at bay  there is something about activating through the active inhabitation of the perceived passivity and impotency associated with the fall … The sense of disorientation within the fall has to be resisted to get the sense of augmentation … It is about harnessing … with it is attitude. Harnessing a stance, not so much resistance. It is about having a stance or this attitude again. So the stance isn't standing  it is not an upright stance. What would it be then? Withstanding. Something around tolerance and withstanding. Conversion. There are these turning points all the way through  taking these forces but channeling them in a different direction. Folding attention.  Maybe there is a minor category around resistance at this point. Which is to do with resisting the irresistible. No, there is nothing irresistible  accept that it is resistible. It is harnessing resistant qualities. A refusal to be seduced. In a sense, it is refusing hysteria. Or that motif  the clichés of the fall, around the falling woman. Wildness, waywardness, loss of control, loss of self, loss of consciousness, the evacuated body. It is resisting these motifs in order to reclaim a sense of embodiment rather than disembodiment. The moment where disembodiment is felt, it attempts to pull back in. It is the composure thing again. What is the word  demure? Shy or modest. Sober could be interesting. Not denial … temperate. This tempering of steel … exercising restraint. Not in a denial way but with a real sense of strength. Exercising … is this ascetic? What about decline? Yes. Yes. Withhold. There is a sense of this delicious, pleasurable thing on the table and you are not taking that because there is a more sustained experience. It is not currently useful. The circumstance or situation means that it is most fruitful to not deny  for this is like lack, but to circumnavigate it. I am not rejecting, I am not abstaining or denying. I wonder about steadfastness. Focus. Resolve. Resolve is a useful. You might have written it down earlier. Involve. Revolve. Resolve. Transform, convert. Determination … steadfast. In keeping with the head strong and the head long  a firmness of purpose or intent. Bent. Folding of attention. We need to retain the levity that has come from heightened subjectivity and bring it to ground in a way which isn't to do with gravity or earnestness or seriousness. The way that there is something of the slow within the fast, there is gravity within levity. Rather than turn it down, it is almost like tone it round  this kind of circumnavigation. We are not in total abstinence. There is something about tone it round  not tone it down, we don’t want to use the word down. Because that is not where we are at. You would expect to tone it down. It sounds a bit wrong. Yes, tone it round makes people stumble a bit. In music, resolve is also progress from a dissonance to a consonance or harmony. Resolve is the turning from the negative to the positive, the potential of loss of self towards the consonance of augmented subjectivity. It is augmented self rather than loss of self. Yes. Augmented self through loss of self. Through temporary or flitting loss of self. Fleeting. The temporariness of it cannot be amplified enough […] So, disorientation, loss of consciousness, loss of self, loss of bearings in and of itself is not the destination. It is in the arc but actually the sense of impotency and falling out has to be temporary otherwise it is escape or fantasy or dream […] It is not to do with the intoxication and the seduction and the disorientation in and of itself. It is that you dip into that as a way of bringing about a shift in orientation. Not disorientation, but a shift in orientation, a way of gaining a different perspective on things […] The idea of renonçant or renouncement … Renoncement  to give up or put aside voluntarily. It is renouncing worldly pleasures. It comes from renunciare  to bring back … Leave. Resign. That has within it the loop. To give up voluntarily. To leave, come back. The full journey is implied. I am going into the forest  I may be some time. But the suggestion is that you will be returning. A changed person. You are not going, I am leaving  punctum. Renunciation is the act of relinquishing, abandoning or sacrificing something. Forgoing. There is a giving up or letting go of one reality to enter the state of the fall, and then another giving up or letting go of those excesses that come with it. There is a kind of double surrender. You have to let go of stability in the first instance, then let go of the delirious qualities of the fall to keep enough composure to return … Going back up the list  you know this covering the ground, preparing to fall, entering the arc … What happens if we completely remove the word falling? It is completely implicit. What would happen if we don't have the word fall there … we are calling it The Italic I which is about a reorientation of the self … There is definitely something around preparation. Or readiness, the idea of readiness. Cultivating readiness. Something about revolve. We are covering the ground and we are interested in this idea of coming into a focused place, bringing to bear. Turning over, rotating, resolving, revolving. Maybe there is something in the vocabulary of the gymnasium here again  warming up, flexing, or kind of rehearsing moves. Preparing for the exercise. Limbering up. That seems important. It is a good thing to have in mind for all of it – the sense of yes and no. Yes  it is about that, about falling but no, not only. Maybe this is a determining factor in our selection for the whole of the text elements […] We are doing this thing about falling but actually it isn’t about falling at all or rather we are exploring tipping points in thinking and action. It is not about failure so much. No, not at all. It is not about collapse. It is something about tilt, body tilt and shifting orientation. And subjectivity. So that was very revealing … because I almost had to qualify it and say … it is probably not about falling. There is something quite graspable in terms of the vocabulary we have generated through investigating states of falling … To speak of tilt and tipping points … I think it enters a different more philosophical state … Maybe there is a dialogue … falling is kind of a metaphor. Honouring the process. Or acknowledging a shifting in the process … we began with an investigation of states of falling. There are a set of revelations in the process  we were looking at  these phases of falling or these states of falling, not in terms of a taxonomy or lexicon of falling  of trip, fall, stumble  but trying to find a way of articulating the feeling of the force in the fall. Talking about the categories as these phases  the tension between duration and passage and still points or steps; or around gravity and lightness, these paradoxes that emerge in a way. We are also speaking more broadly to this idea of the process of making work with another, processes of collaboration. It is deeply self-reflexive  it speaks of the process of its own making, in terms of the fall and also of the conversation. Preparing to let go. Preparing to let go. Something will come … Formless  horizontal, liquid, there is a kind of meniscus thing again, a skin on it, a viscosity. Sartre writes about viscosity  how it has the quality of treacle. Treacle clings … it is neither solid or liquid. You stick on to something or stick with something when you are on to something. Stick with it. You cling to something that is good. The molten state. And you know later, there is the cooling or warming down … there must be some heat. So molten state is interesting, so when one is in a liquid state it is not refreshing, it is hot. Liquescent. Melting. It is liquid through melting. Of a solid or gas becoming or tending to become liquid. Melting. It is not a liquid state that is dissipating, it is not languid or lipid. Lipid  what does that mean. Greasy to touch. No, I don’t mean that. Limpid? Not quite that either. It is not dissolving, dispersing  there is a capacity or a potentiality; it has still got form. It might be syrupy or viscous. Tacky, sticky  it is going to adhere to the idea. There is an earlier turning point  working against habitworking against impulse. Conformity  so doing something that might feel quite unnatural for the body to do. And here again, there is this other resolve of … resisting liquidity, resisting the oozy pleasure. Keeping form. Keeping one foot on the ground. Anchoring. Actually the stickiness is anchoring. Loss of will or discipline. The threat of wildness. In a conventional fall narrative the folding of attention would be based on the model of redemption. There is a turn, and there is a mending or turn back to a more moral path. This was a real revelation  the vocabulary of redemption is not part of this on any level. Not fantasy, not redemption  it is not about these narratives. There is a return … if the state is not one of disorientation and there is a return but we are not talking about redemption, then what is the vocabulary? What is the vocabulary of the return? Reclamation? Inversion? So there is a kind of renunciation … what does return bring up? Come back. Revert. No, it is not that. Recompose. There is transformation. That is key. You reconfigure or reassembling, but it is an altered state. Refigure  change the shape or formation of. A ritual. There is a exit, a leaving behind of one reality, then this liminal phase, and then this phase of re-entry or reaggregation. There are points to do with letting go which are around the exiting phase, the subjunctive. The liminal is the liquid, the impotent, the horizontal, the topsy-turvydom of the middle and then there is something to do with coming back with a different kind of knowledge […] So there is … the tackiness, or the viscosity or the molten… that there will be a reset. It is a very purposeful transformation. Aggregate. Re-aggregate. Forms by the conjunction of particulars into a whole. Collected as a dense cluster but not cohering. […] Reaching towards a set of ideas yet not wanting to be fixed by them […] Change in condition. Transformative. So it is not a return in the sense of going back to a previous state. It is not a redemptive model where you are turning back to a prior state, but acknowledging some transformation. Augmentation. Augment. Enlargement. Increase. This doesn’t feel right. Adjusted? Maybe transformation. What was it  reconfigure? The idea of the reform is interesting. There is that vocabulary of the fall narrative but it is much more about remodeling. Reform — to not reform but to re-form. We are excited about feeling the force of form. So to use the word re-form and forces of form  there is a sense of recurrence. Re-form and not reform. Yes, there is not an absorption of the re- and form together. There are places where it is not this and not that  refusals of certain vocabularies. Absorption. Coalescence. To grow together to form one body, to unite as single mass. To blend or come together. Coalesce in terms of successful collaborative action  so words and image coalesce and become a cohesive unit. In relation to collaboration  the liquidity and jouissance, blurring of boundaries and the need to move from the heady stage of that to clarity. But not one where the parts re-separate. How to you move forward in ways that keeps the integration made possible in the liquid state? Absorption of new ideas, coalescence into a revitalized collaborative body. A merging. Emulsion  a liquid consisting of two completely immiscible liquids. Like oil and water. So, it isn’t that. Well, they are blended but they are separate. But incapable of being mixed. What is miscible? Miscible  capable of being mixed, mingled. Intermingling. Coalesce sounds better  there seems to be something there. Something clear and distinct. The ideas of meniscus and viscosity  liquid but not dispersed … Lowering from the vertical to the horizontal or horizontalization. The properties of formlessness are rotation, inversion, upturn and turning. There is a sense of there being a demarcation between the vertical realm of the visible and the horizontal realm of the carnal. So there is this idea, that we have betrayed the sense of our own corporeality by standing upright. The horizontal tilt is one of returning to the reality of what a body is. This shift in orientation … it has a connotation of critique, a leaking away into the undifferentiated. I think formless and liquidity connect. We have been talking about ideas of adhering and  … there is a sense of edgelessness about it … Moving between the mind/body partition to formlessness  this middle space is very much exploring a loss of edges, or loss of boundaries, loss of self, momentarily in order to reconfigure. Is it like temporary boundlessness? … Suddenly I had a flutter of it being weak. But if it is purposeful … a shift in orientation, or a temporary boundlessness. All those points of getting to the horizontal. What will help to clarify that there is no vagueness here? There is no dream state here. Maybe it is here where there is something that talks about the operations of rotation, and turning and this deliberate shift of orientation. An acute revolving around something so that there is a sharpness to the purposefulness of the boundlessness. It is a term associated with the bringing down of categories. If this header demarcates difference, then formlessness and liquidity is around a letting go of categorisation. In some senses, this middle section reveals something of the impossibility of trying to create these categories in a way. Because these are all, to a certain extent, liquid states. Or the project itself is one of resisting categories and yet we have these categories as a way of thinking that through. I find this idea of bringing down categories … The idea that we need to bring down the categories in order to have a shift in orientation  we can bring that down. The tone it round is saying we are not interested in tethering it down. It is a different aim. It feels right to bring down categories because that is a resistant act. Let’s get a grip. We have been ecstatic for a time  now let’s bring it down. It is not judgmental. Not judging. Catching the force before it dissipates. Making it bend. The bending of desire in a way. A decision must be made swiftly in order to take things in a different direction […] Distill. From the energy there is a distillation. A sense of centrifugal force. Distillation  condensation, or concentration. Refine … There is something about a slightly more potent concoction. Pressure. Folding of attention  heightened subjectivity. Bending of that energy. Maybe the sense of the gravity and the levity is also around avoiding the moral dimension, or all those binaries. The thing that seems interesting in terms of the categories … like the collapse of mind/body separation … gravity and levity get folded into one another. At what point is it possible to bring something down whilst retaining the levity. Gravity not becoming seriousness or heaviness. Gravity without weightStriking the right balance …. It is more like balances  several plates with different weights on … So this is actually a balancing act of not two things but ... striking the right balances. There are many materials or factors in play. Like it is a recipe that doesn’t just have two ingredients. Measure  again. Striking. Blending. Mixing. There is this kind of … floating. The idea of wanting to keep the air in. You want a transformation. But how do you keep the air in … The idea of breathlessness and ventilating. Whisking. The act of falling is one of making this space, this capacity. How do you return to a sense of form whilst retaining the sense of spaciousness? A very delicate balance. Rotation. Rotor. Rotary. The idea of keeping the air in … Having done all of that work … all of that beating and churning and upturning, how do you keep the lightness, how do you keep the spaciousness or aeration? If you put in the word ventilation  what is coming up there? To provide fresh air in a place that has been contaminated. The idea of rejuvenation. We talked about tending  curving. To submit a problem to full and open examination — ventilating. Fan. Oh yes, examination  ventilating. Fan. Oh yes, fanning the flames … To toss in the air, to agitate. Molecules agitating and creating a kind of heat … how do you avoid the state of exhaustion? How do you avoid the sense that this is a singular experience? Through repeatedly going through a process, you develop a sense of the depths and the risings, and an understanding that is not necessarily gathered from a singular fall. I wonder whether a sense of the ventilating and the rejuvenation and the recalibration is around how to start over? Or how to begin again? What was the thing about the tending? Attending to or tending. So as to avoid burnout … keeping the heat in, fanning it so as not to dissipate the hot air but to capture ... Like in a hot air balloon, it is harnessing the heat so that you can get uplift. Rather than burnout. I am thinking now about the idea of reserves. Keep back for future use. Tending reserves. And reservation even? Maybe container as the reservoir, like … with reservation? Keep. Retain? It is very much about at this stage  harnessing, to avoid dissipation of strength. Reservoir. Vessel. Holding. Pockets of energy. There is an attention. So it is something to do with warming down but not towards resolution or finish. There is a quality of pause, or a sense of caring for the situation or having a moment. Never allowing it to get to the state of exhaustion. Maybe it is useful to bring in, fermata. The musical pause. That is an inverted arc. Maybe there is something about reserve, pause, fermata. Attending to that. Holding. Prolonging. Prolonging beyond normal duration. Holding. Prolonging. Not wanting completion, deferring exhaustion. Understanding something as having a circular structure, needing to recuperate enough for the next phase. There feels to be something about … you know before we talked about hurling and plunging and dipping. Here it feels like recalibration, a scooping and holding. Picking someone back up. Caesura. A pause in a line of poetry or musical composition. Musical notation. A silent pause. Maybe this should be with the voluptuous recovery. This idea … this silent pause. A break. Interruption. Pitstop. Reset. So a silent pause, resetreturn yet charged […] Where you are not doing anything. A space after. Placing attention on how the body now feels … Something about pause but not a break. A suspension of normal movement in order to attend to what has happened. A conscious pause. Considered pause. Is there a different way of saying taking stock. Drawing to a close […]

1. Transcription

2. Distillation 

Testing (the) Groundsetting up the conditions

There is always a before. It is never the first. Creating a scene, it will come when the conditions are conducive.


Opening Attemptwarming and flexing

Imagine carving a channel and then moving into it. Descending into it. Not just downward, dipping; maybe leaping too. The preparatory isn’t necessarily one of knowing what will unfold. There is a letting go before you can let go. Stretching — muscular, bodily. Pushing at the edges or the limits. This achieving and letting go — a reaching towards.


Entering the Arctrust, twist, torque

Forging a different relationship. Coming into movement, with confidence. Close your eyes to the normal sequencing of the world, the normal speed of the world. There is a gap but this is only temporary. Your eyes will be required again shortly. You will not be left behind. There is much work to do not to respond habitually. It will take a while to acclimatize. The studio can be a space for building this resilience. Forces and currents, bending of energy: receptive.


A Commitment Madeworking against impulse

Purposefully engaged, not random, not some idle frippery. Mute, opaque, yet not secretive. Drive of the intuitive, to disobey the habit that would have us upright, to trip this tendency up. Renunciāre — put aside, hold back, resist. Bring to bear, to concentrate on; intensify in effort.


Voluntary Vertigoilinx, inclination

Head strong, head long. Edging or a leaning into — willfully, to deviate from the strictly horizontal or vertical. Predisposition. Disposition. An attitude. Étude. Incline — to dip or slope downward, to scoop. Tendency towards. Bent. Descent.


Becoming Diagonal — the italic i

Geometry helps. Finding the right angle. From infinite permutations between the horizontal and vertical, hair thin lines comprise the fiber of the curve. The distribution of force is not a representation of time as space. A vector of force, rising again — unexpected lift. The impression of exterior simplicity belies the interior complexity. Arguably, its sequential order is not consistent.


Touching Limitstilt towards (the other)

The limit becomes a point of leverage, containing and controlling the tilt. To let go, repel, then to reach, a gesture towards a context. Involve — bring into intricate or complicated form. From involvere — entangle, implicate. To be bound up with something from which it is difficult to become extricated.


Embodiment/Disembodimentmind body partition

The body makes phrases, exploratory gestures, bypassing the mind. Feeling its limitations, irritating blockages, wrestling with ways to articulate. Piecing things together. A whole set of mind and muscle activations, intermingling. Then bifurcation: division and splitting, intensity and extensity.



Caught between states, working the edges to become less solid. Becoming liquid, now steam; no, now moist particle-filled air. This blur between the self and the world is like the smoke and the air. Renouncing solidity. Light, precise — the I dissolves. Fleeting submersion, a momentary loss of bearings.


Letting Goa liquid state

Immersion (in the undercurrent): becoming fluid, liquescent. Release. Flow. Optimistic collapse. Not thinking of the edges, but still, stretching the meniscus. There is a moment where it holds shape beyond the limits of its containment. It is totally to do with the curvature of dynamic motion. It could break at any point.


Ecstatic Impotencythe jouissance of impuissance

Losing language. You still have to talk about desire … but without veering off course. Not wayward. This is where restraint comes in — a refusal to be seduced. Restrained rapture. Measure. Exercise discipline to maintain the sense of tension. A momentary loss of concentration; energies dissipate through lack of focus. Turned upside down or overthrown, over the helm. Overwhelm. This is not an end in itself. It is not about getting carried away. Groundedness is required. So, be prepared to stem the flow. Tone it round. Caution against (over) elevation: the excessive I, the elevated I.


Folding of Attentiona heightened subjectivity

Not disorientation but a shift in orientation. Elemental transformation. Composition. Composure. Compose. Fall into an arrangement. Going inward. Turned backward. Inverted. Inversion — to turn or change; turn inside out, to fold. To turn around on an axis; revolve — from volvere, to roll or wind. Turn over, rolling on the tongue; the release of language from itself.


Gravity/Levitystriking the right balances

Hand striking the floor, marking time. Push and pull; lag or drag. Tempering — to calm, to modify its properties. Restraint has positive force, a necessary tension. Keeping form, one foot on the ground. Anchoring, maintaining the equilibrium. Retaining the lightness, bring to ground without weight.


Breathlessventilating the idea

Decompress. Distill. Cooling down but not towards resolution. Maybe it is useful to bring in fermata, the inverted arc … extended beyond normal duration. Beyond sustaining a note. Considered pause, return or realignment.


Voluptuous Recoveryreturn, yet charged

To bring to mind — to scan has haste and necessity, yet nothing about its swiftness is inaccurate. Rotational survey. To focus or centre upon, alert. Elasticity becomes extra-ordinary through exhaustion, a productive slackening. At that moment of relax and slack, extension; a hovering non-dispersal.


Recalibrate … Loopdesire to repeat

Revolve — to move in a circular or curving orbit, to keep the momentum. Recompose, with transformation. Reconfigure. Reassemble. Resolve — to bring more or less deeply into something. Steadfast, a recommitment is made. Temporary states, always having to be produced. Reset, retune — continuous present and a continual beginning again and again.

3. Distillation  / Presentation

This exposition shows the distillation of conversational transcript into a poetic, vocative text. However, within The Italic I the text itself has been presented visually, graphically, temporally, relationally, performatively — through artists’ book-works, wall-based text works, performance lectures, moving-image installations, and language-based works conceived for the web. These different modes of presentation explore how spatial and material approaches to writing shape and modify the experience of a given text — whether in relation to the use of font; format/layout; the relation of text to other performance documents such as photographic material; the positioning of words on and off the page, or in other spatial configurations. 


3. (Left) This image/text configuration attempts to show the relation of the performance documents of a repeated fall in proximity to the textual distillation for describing the arc of falling in 16 episodes. The layout of the text itself is conceived to also follow an arc of falling.

4 - 6 Scroll Right 

4a. This PDF shows the layout for the original artists’ bookwork, The Italic I (the bookwork itself is shown through various documents – see 5).


4b. This reworked version includes further sections to the poetic distillation following a second phase of conversation-as-material. These artists’ pages were conceived as part of the article, ‘The Italic I: A 16 stage Lexicon on the Arc of Falling’, in Journal of Theatre, Dance and Performance Training, 2016.


5. Documentation of the artists’ bookwork, The Italic I (2014). The bookwork was designed in collaboration with Joff+Ollie/Beam Editions, Nottingham, and pays specific attention to the materiality and physicality of readership – how a reader handles the bookwork through multiple levels of unfolding, how the different qualities and densities of paper create a felt and affective relation with the reader. Here perhaps, ‘tact’ (a sense of touch) might also be conceived as a quality of the vocative. The documentation shows the bookwork comprises a long concertina ‘core’ which presents photographic performance documentation on one side and the text on the other.


6a. The bookwork was effectively ‘deconstructed’ within an exhibition at Project Space Plus, Lincoln, 2014. The 16 thematic titles of the fall were presented as a wall-based text work outside the gallery and viewable from outside. The textual lexicon was presented as a moving image text-work alongside ‘props’ (scaffolds) for future performed falls. In a parallel exhibition space, the visual images of falling were presented using slide-projector technology – so this rendition  initially separated the visual and textual components of the work. However, the visual and textual were also recombined through a performance reading of the lexicon alongside the slide projected images of falling.


6b. The visual/textual component of the bookwork were again reconfigured as part of a second exhibition, this time a group exhibition called The Alternative Document, again at Project Space Plus, Lincoln, curated by Angela Bartram,13 February – 11 March 2016.


6c. Here, the visual performance documents and textual lexicon are reconfigured as a moving image work comprising both elements within a single frame. This configuration was conceived as an alternative format for performance lecture. It was presented as a wall projection within a second iteration of The Alternative Document exhibition at Verge Gallery Sydney, Sydney, 18th January to 24th February, and then at Bath Spa University Gallery, 20.04.18 – 11.05.18.


6d. This configuration of The Italic I is conceived as a text-only version of the work specifically for online reading. Working with web-designer Dane Watkins, an attempt was made to present the text from The Italic I slowly, very slowly, forcing a different relation of reading compared to the often accelerated and scanning reading practices online. Here, a screen recording is presented showing engagement with the web-work itself. The online version is available here - http://the-italic-i.com/ This webwork was also presented as a projection as part of a further iteration of The Alternative Document exhibition at Airspace Gallery, Stoke on Trent, 17 November – 16 December 2017.










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4a. Presentation (Version I)

4b. Presentation (Version II)

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5. Presentation (Version III)

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6a. Presentation (Version III)

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6b. Presentation (Version IV)

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6c. Presentation (Version V)

6d. Presentation (Version VI)

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