Natural Abstractions I

“Natural Abstractions Dance Performance I” (28min) – Keyes Gallery in Brooklyn, NYC. Jan. 2020

“Natural Abstractions I” was an immersive art experience inspired by the groups of artworks in Claps’ exhibition “Natural Abstractions IV”.  The production brought these landscapes to life with original music and dance that incorporated traditional Japanese and Chinese martial arts and dance, fused with classical ballet and contemporary dance, with an original score performed live by composer/musician William Catanzaro.   


Nineteen original dance movements, inspired by each of the groups of eighteen artworks in the exhibition, were performed in front of the artworks, as the audience moved through the gallery space. The sequences in the dance performances were set in the various locations around the world which were the geographical settings for the artworks, including:  Huangshan in the fabled Yellow Mountains of China; a tree from Nanzenji temple in Kyoto, Japan, the setting of a tea ceremony in the performance; Humboldt Rain Forest in Cuba; and rice fields during the autumn harvest on the island of Kyushu, Japan. 


Choreographer Shoko Tamai created movements for this performance inspired by the growth patterns of nature and its distinct personality in different geographical areas, such as Japan and China.  An example is bamboo, which has many distinct subtilties depending on where it is grown.  By imagining the smell of the dirt, the warmth of the sun on her skin, and the feeling of moving in these spaces, Shoko found and expressed a place of harmony and balance between different geographical location and peoples.

 

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