MG Description

March 13, 2013

I wrote a few paragraphs as an introduction for the Ecopoetics Gathering, and looking back on  it, I like what it says about the embodiment of language in my work, so here it is:

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I have danced since I was a child, and since the ‘90’s my research and work has been situated in experimental and improvisational dance, as well as community activism and the healing arts. As a movement educator in the Feldenkrais Method® and movement arts, I am consistently fascinated with the ways that specificity and prosody of language effects one’s state and movement integration, how using the voice can unleash creative power, and how language can be a bridge for thought and action. As a practitioner of qigong, acupressure, and Chinese energetics, I have been drawn to the poetry inscribed in the body through these traditional cosmologies. Starting in 2003, I began a study of two fields of research, embodied language and later what came to be coined dance poetry, the former of which I formalized through a Master’s Program at Gallatin-NYU in Movement Research. The potency and prism of movement and language has become a primary pursuit.

Through my research, I have been focusing on the implicit connections of the bodymind/ environment. The projects share in common extensive research periods that were integrated within the movement-based, multidisciplinary public events, often site-based. Most of my movement work tends to have a language-based component, either in the form of the creation of a ‘zine, published document, weblog entries, live writing, and speaking in dance. This research and text aspect of my work is central, as I am committed to public discourse in dance. I have found that rather than pursuing text about movement, my interest is with materials and words that come from and through movement research, which have a potency that is unique to the context and situation. More information about these projects is available online: www.margitg.wordpress.org/archive

Currently, I am working on a project called Relay, inspired by the poem Concordance by Mei-Mei Bersenbrugge, with images by Kiki Smith. Relay is a multi-phased experimental forum that invites conversation between text, movement, and context. The piece attempts to expand and integrate – literally moving words from page to lived stage – by transducing and inventing new forms. Through subtle means, words can literally change our neurophysiology, our chemistry, and our mood. This aspect invokes questions I have around movement, language and performance – How to bring radiance to a performative context, so that the text does not rest in the mental operations, but rather is full-bodied and multisensorial? How to compose hybrid forms that give space for a coherent aesthetic? How can language connect?

Over the course of the years, I have curated and founded events that deeply examine the mosaic of movement and words. SEEDS Festival (Somatic Experiments in Earth, Dance, + Science) was a multi-year international festival and research organism that incorporated workshops, panel discussions, publication, and performance to experientially research ecology through interdisciplinary arts. As a director and co-founder of SEEDS, I was often envisioning and composing the event, and in the final year I participated as artist-resident, as well. This housed a longterm collaboration with landscape architect Margot Lystra, an investigation of public site through dance and design, which we call Withness. As co-curator for the Movement Research Festival NYC 2005, I gathered artists internationally to present panel discussions and live experiments, incorporating language into dance processes.  Additionally, some of the initial ideas for Relay sprang from a mini-festival I founded in the Bay Area, Words and Deeds: Experiments in Language and the Physical World, which I co-produced through Art Workouts with Abby Crain. This event brought together artists from various disciplines to teach the public about movement and language.

The group research feeds the understanding, and the (trans/inter)personal research in turn feeds the collective discourse and overlapping contexts from which the questions originally sprang. Roiling. Vaporizing (….) …Like gas

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