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IDOCs » Visions, a research on poetic dance documentation by Anouk Llaurens and guests
The last version of the presentation text of Visions.

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“Visions, a research on poetic dance documentation ” by Anouk Llaurens and guests.

Guests: Andrea KeizMaya Dalinsky, Sonia Si Ahmed , Julien Bruneau, Lilia Mestre , Ana Stegnar, Laure Myers, Titane Bregentzer, Eva Maes. 


1 - Project presentation


Visions is interested in the transmission of choreographic tools and their integration into new artistic paths. How to integrate and combine some of Lisa Nelson tools into new processes and references? How to create a poetic and polyphonic documentation that will contribute to the evolution of a choreographic culture?

Visions is an original combination between movement, image, drawing, text and verbal reports. The research is interested in the translation of movement into multi-modal documentation, and in the articulation of these documents with each other’s. The research not only defines tangible documents but also practices that can be played, appropriated and transformed by others. Visions proposes a poetic documentation where scores and in extension workshops and performances are also considered as documents.

Visions is interested to present the interdependency between the visual and the tactile world. The object of the documentation is « eyes-hand coordination » which is the coordination between the vision and the hand necessary to execute the simplest task.

The proposal is based on Lisa Nelson Tuning Scores: It studies sensorial explorations that links the eye and the hand, integrates multiple and subjective points of view to document a shared event and generates feedback loops between the movement practice and its documentation.

Visions is interested in the porosity of the boundaries between inside and outside, objectivity and subjectivity, document and lives event, education and creation, performers and spectator. The research looks for spaces of suspended meaning where stable references are put in questions.


2- Tuning scores


In the “Tuning score” all of the players are both actors and observers so it creates a kind of unfolded eyeball where there is no outside and no inside. The idea is that everything, in the image space, is visible to somebody. The game is set like a dialogue where the players are a cycling back and forth from being in action and being in observation. This setting plays as a feedback system that affords the players to get direct feedback from their actions. “Tuning scores” is a communication system that allows each participant to taste their taste and to communicate their opinion to each other. The players are using an operating terminology coming from choreographic and editing practices to act directly on the composition arising and tune the image in order to compose an experience that makes sense for them. The most frequently used calls are: enter, exit, pause, Repeat, Sustain, Reverse, Replace, Redirect.  Tunings scores are inscribed into an evolutionary process, practitioners invent new scores and new calls. 


3- Inscription in my artistic path


I have been deeply inspired by Lisa Nelson Tuning Scores since I have met them in 1998. I have used them as a base for the unfolding of my dance, teaching and choreographic paths. The question of documentation allows me to pursue my appropriation process. The research is first a mean for revisiting this heritage, to specify my interest and to communicate my opinion. It allows me to questions the process of transmission, to build up personal references and to highlight what appears to me essential in Lisa’s work: the active and subjective construction of experience. I see this research as an emancipation process that can only happen within a collective frame.  I invite others to play games, to sharpen our taste and materialize it through our documents. I invite “us” to teach ourselves, to teach each other and to emancipate from “the one who knows. I see Visions not only as poetic proposal but also a political one that want to create and inspire diversified and yet unified choreographic ecosystem.

With Visions, I am also interested to reflect upon documentation in itself: what is a poetic dance documentation? What effects does it have upon its subject? How can documentation allow the appropriation of a received teaching?

Finally Visions is a mean to enter the complexity of daily life action and share a taste for details and small movements that are rarely considered in the contemporary dance field.  


4- Singularity of the problematic


In Visions a document is anything that transmit an experience from the past and that can be revisited to move on.  Documentation is connected to evolution and survival. To survive, living beings are creating, storing and processing memory. Cells “document” their life, DNA encodes the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all living organisms. Visions starts from the hypothesis that living is documentation practice and that a document can be alive. Visions also gives a voice to what is lost and cannot be transmitted:  Absence is integrated in the documentation as a potential space for new associations to emerge, a potential for poetry.

The experimental nature of Visions turns the act of documenting dance into a translation process that embraces the trans-media space. Visions both integrates and questions the traditional format of dance documentation. It integrates scores on the side of tangible documents.It brings into conversation live events (performance - workshop) with installation composed by video, drawing, text, writing and photography.

During residency period, guest artists (and sometimes ‘amateurs’), are invited to practice sensorial exploration based on eye-hand coordination. For example, they are invited to follow their hand with their eyes or eyes with their hand, to activate their visual field with the hand entering and exiting it, or to manipulate objects following their tactile or visual interest. These explorations are deconstructing perceptual and motor skills necessary to see, to frame a visual experience or to interact with objects. The field it opens is at once relevant for dance explorations and an experimental approach to documentation, since eye-hand coordination is central to many activities by which we could leave traces:  writing, drawing, filming, taking pictures, modeling. Thus there is a continuity of the strategies applied to dance and documentation in our process, one constantly informing the other.

A residency space that hosts Visions acts as a niche where artist live, explore and document their experiments. The niche's physical existence is embodied in the documents produced; their lives leave traces that transform the niche, which in turn transforms their perception, their dance and its documentation. They leave traces on the walls, the windows, the floor, and in the air. Drawings, invented objects, written words and photograph are testifying their presence and practice. Information are in free circulation, they can be appropriated and transformed. Thus Visions’ hybrid and polyphonic documentationemerges from the dialogue, accumulation, contamination, combination, articulation and cross-pollination of all participants’ points of view.



5- Methodology of the research


Two types of documentations unfold simultaneously: A poetic documentation about eye-hand coordination and a poetic documentation of the research.

a-     Poetic documentation about eye-hand coordination

During residency period, guest artists are invited to document their experience with the media of their choice (video, pen, audio recorder). The media can be integrated in the exploration: the video camera is used as an eye or the frame as a visual field. The document can emerge from the sensitivity awakens by an exploration: the artists have the choice to revisit their experience through drawing. Finally the documentation can take notes of left traces present in the space after an exploration, artists take pictures of objects that have been used or orally describe their composition in space.

The artists are brought to question the belief that commonly link documentation to objectivity and poetry to subjectivity. They explore the poetic potential of documentation methods that are supposed to be objective like statistic, grids or exhaustive descriptions. On the other hand, they observe how a personal point of view can produce documents that can concern others and be useful for the development of their research.

A fragmentation process is recurrently used to create gaps that activate the imagination and give space to the presence of what is lost or impossible to document.

Visitors are sometimes invited to share the movement and documentation practice.  Their point of view is integrated in the documentation.

 b  - A poetic documentation of the research

Some strategies invented for the documentation of the eye-hand coordination are applied to the documentation of the research.

Conversation that are happening in between exploration and documentation phases and that relate to broader subjects are recorded, edited and and transcribed.

Title of produced documents and theoretical inputs that feed the research are inscribed on a paperboard. This document presents an horizontal organization of information, a network of relationship.

This board is transformed in a research ‘s dictionary that articulates content (eye-hand coordination documentation) with the environment that nourished it (the tuning scores tools, theoretical references). Information are organized in alphabetical order.


6 – Produced resources and access


 The documentation will build up progressively. For each residency, the team will focus on a specific document and will make a presentation at the end of it. Each residency will also include an open door period where ‘outsiders’ will be invited to join the process.

 The final documentation will articulate selected produces documents in a public event that will put in conversation performance, workshop and installation. These events will be organized in the European choreographic and art centers that have host the project.

 A second resource will be accessible to the public: a dictionary of the research will be edited on line on Research Catalogue, an international database for artistic research. This publication will gather all the documents produces about eye-hand coordination and the references that have fed the research. Organized by alphabetical order, the documents will present themselves in an arbitrary order decided by the first letter of their title. This organization will make appear new links and unexpected associations.


Photos by Maya Dalinsky and Anouk Llaurens. 



what stays 1 copy 2
nose in the frame
fragment visual field curtain 3
litle face
crack and shadows 2
news 2

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