A New Sensualism

A new sensualism is emerging in this time of globalisation, a time when the globe is recreating itself. It is hard to imagine anything more elementary. It is not only that something is changing while everything else stays the same, rather it is a transformation of everything, including the nature of change itself. Technology is clearly no longer an instrument but a condition – it is becoming our nature. We live in a technonature on a radically changing planet. It is characterised by a technologically triggered climate change that confronts us as natural catastrophe, and a technological environment in which we are losing social bonds, while at the same time everything and everyone is connected. It has become clear that we cannot control and plan what is going on, and that in itself is integral to what is going on. We can feel and sense this new becoming. We live it. We are not detached from this extreme planetary transformation, but are in it and are part of it. The planet is not changing without us. The transformation going on cannot be looked at and studied like an object. What is changing is changing us: what we see and how we see, what we hear and how we listen, what we feel and how we feel – how the senses make sense – is transforming itself, and that is why sensing as such is becoming so surprisingly unfamiliar, new, intense, exciting, disturbing. We are being born into the environment of a transforming planet; we are exposed to the experience of it, to living in it. In our work we aim to let ourselves be affected by the elementary change we are going through. Our pieces work with presence and sensuality to feel, hear, see this self-transforming time and space. In doing so, some of them address technology and nature explicitly, others do not. It is not important. When technology becomes natural and nature is technologically transformed, this affects our existence and our senses – always. Not only when we use devices or talk about it. The transformation goes deeper and beyond technology’s instrumental function. If a piece is about presence then it is about the elementary nature of this change.

After a long period in which both works and people feel as if they are the last of a line, burdened by a certain melancholia and the heaviness of closure, of history being over, we experience an atmosphere of something else coming into existence. Indefinite beings, ones who start living and feeling in this new world, who start to be (in) technonature. That is why mere presence becomes so important in many pieces, including ours. What matters in them is the drive to open the senses, to approach our transforming existence as sincerely as possible, even innocently. On this planet which is giving birth to itself – and so to us – we are vulnerable and fragile. We are not dominant. We are not the strongest. We have the power to kill some or even many of us and a lot of life on earth, and we do so every day. But we are not life as such. There are forces in continuous motion within and without us, and we can clearly feel this today in the change and transformation that is happening around us, between us, within us, exceeding and surpassing us. We want to open ourselves to these forces and offer a space where we can get in touch with them. This changes our relationship to those who come to experience our work.

None of our pieces is ”interactive” but all of them engage with the audience and establish relationships, offer a kind of participation. The act of being present, of pure being there, happens in and as an environment. It is an environment that includes the audience, and that which appears in-between, consisting of relationships – bodies, feelings, sensations, perceptions. An environment of affects and forces to which you are exposed and connected, open to what becomes present right here and now. In this environment, another way of being an audience is emerging. It is not about what you see – neither what nor you – but about the state a piece offers. As an audience you still have to enter that state; being a spectator or visitor here does not mean staying outside, observing. From the outside you will not see. If a piece works, it does not force you into something, it gives you space and time for being. It is an offer, not a product and not a task, and it is not always happening. The pieces we are trying to make ask for a certain way of watching and being in them. A watching that is not triggered by anything interesting on the sidelines of what is being shown, and that is not an understanding on the part of the spectator. It is rather an appearing than a showing, and rather a meditation than an understanding. A watching as a state exceeding what you see and who you are as a spectator. Neither the performers nor the audience can control it, but all of them are involved in exploring a state in which watching becomes being sensually present. Our works follow a belief in presence, in sensuality, in openness. They are not critical, not ironic, not detached, not cool; neither are they personal or emotional. They are at the same time humble and risky, because they follow a drive. It is subtle and it is strong, it is a new experience of being on this planet. It is a sensual affirmation, a yes. This yes is not ignorant of violence, of injustice, of exploitation; it is not an escape from the suffering. It is charged by and opens itself up to what is stronger than any destruction. It echoes that there is something rather than nothing. This yes sounds like it is coming from somewhere else. It is the call of an adventure.

Choros V

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Model view, 2018

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Model view, 2018

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Model view, 2018

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Model view, 2018

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Model view, 2018

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Model view, 2018

Adam + Eve

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Michelangelo, La Creazione di Adamo, 1508–1512

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Albrecht Dürer, Adam und Eva, 1507

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Giovanni di Paolo, Creazione e Cacciata dal Paradiso terrestre, 1445

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Hieronymus Bosch, Garten Eden, 1500

Choros III (Koroška) @ Kunstraum Lakeside, Klagenfurt 8.9.–6.10.2017

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Choros (III) Koroška, Stillshot

The author/choreographer Sandra Man and the visual artist/choreographer Moritz Majce have been working together since 2010. What distinguishes their collaboration is that they view and produce choreography not from the perspective of the performing arts but rather as a visual art: as art in space.

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Choros (III) Koroška, Stillshot

For the exhibition Choros III (Koroška), conceived by the duo as an artistic research project on the choir and choreography, they have developed outdoor choral constellations as a way of engaging with the specific spatial conditions of landscape as “nature”, and with the possibilities for its reception as well as with its acoustics, its prospects, and its horizon. In parallel, an exhibition will be presented at Kunstraum Lakeside that is also composed as a kind of “landscape” of various views and sounds.

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Choros stomped @ Tanzböden, Polinik

The work includes various elements of the “choral”, including the ancient Greek term choros, meaning circular, sung dance; the dance floor and those who dance upon it; and the linking of dance, theater, and music. The choir is perceived as a spatial network of sensory relations. In a direct confrontation with the audience, the spatial choreography is realized independently of the media used as a movement between all elements and the audience. Vital to this exercise is the direct encounter with the landscape of Carinthia, which served as the production setting for all voice and video recordings, all of which were made outdoors in the alpine region. Body and voice are seen as part of nature here, reacting to the weather and the topographical conditions. Reference is also made to the political and ideological appropriation of the landscape and the choir in the course of history, whereby the work does not merely take up this critical thread but rather reconceives landscape, choir, and space as a multidimensional fabric that is not there for the taking and belongs to no one.

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Choros (III) Koroška, Making Of @ Striedensee

IDEA + CONCEPT: Moritz Majce + Sandra Man
VOICE + MOVEMENT: Christine Börsch-Supan
OUTSIDE EYE: Katharina Wallisch
CURATOR: Nora Leitgeb

Wir bedanken uns bei Lakeside Labs GmbH für die großzügige Unterstützung bei den Videoaufnahmen mit einer Drohne und bei Franz Habich für die Steuerung, sowie bei der Agrargemeinschaft Nachbarschaft Söbriach für den freundlichen Zugang zu einer ihrer Almen.

Eröffnung: 7. September 2017, 18.30 Uhr

Kunstraum Lakeside • Lakeside B02 • 9020 Klagenfurt
www.lakeside-kunstraum.at • +43 463 22 88 22-20

Call for Choreutic Movers: 8+9 July 2017 (+Oct/Nov)

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Narziss Echo, model view

WE ARE LOOKING FOR PEOPLE WITH MOVING/DANCING EXPERIENCE WHO LIKE TO WORK IN A GROUP.

Part 1: 8 + 9 July 2017, 16–20h Uferstudios (can be done separately)
Part 2: 10–14 days rehearsals in October 2017
Part 3: 4 presentations in early November 2017

We are working on a revised version of our piece „Narziss Echo“ (http://www.moritzmajcesandraman.com/narzissecho). The premiere was in March at imagetanz festival in Vienna and there will be presentations in the beginning of November in Berlin at Open Spaces festival of Tanzfabrik. For the performances in Berlin we will be reworking some parts and making new ones. While in the first version we have been working with a single dancer we now want to work with what we call a „space chorus“ of 12–15 people.

The project deals with the relation between audience and performer, engaging in questions of looking and identifying as performing (watching, being looked at, being/performing a spectator); it is an installational setting with a limited amount of audience members. We will play with the inside and the outside of the setting, using the whole space incl. the audience area as the stage and moving spectators only slowly from the frame and the outside into the inside and the seats of „their“ space.

First, there is a video shooting on 8th and 9th July, from 16–20h at Uferstudios. Second, there will be appr. 10–14 days of rehearsal in October. Third, there will be four shows in Berlin in the first November week. We cannot pay for the video shooting, for the presentations in October and November we do have a budget. For more information about our work see www.moritzmajcesandraman.com

If you are interested please send a mail incl. CV to ms@moritzmajcesandraman.com