Viewing Copy

dual channel digital video installation
24.55min, sound 

‘My Trio A dealt with the ‘seeing’ difficulty by dint of its continual and unremitting revelation of gestural detail that did not repeat itself, thereby focusing on the fact that the material could not easily be encompassed.’ Yvonne Rainer 1966

Compelled by the original and the distribution of its subsequent re-performances I set myself the task of learning Rainer’s Trio A. A five minute sequence of movement, the original work is defined by its uninflected continuity and the performers averted gaze. Despite Rainer’s insistence that the choreography is taught and passed on only by qualified instructors the work has continued through repeated but varied performances by both dancers and non-dancers alike.

Here I approximate Rainers’ performance through copying and mirroring its documentation - a low resolution digitisation of Sally Banes 1978 recording available on YouTube. I then worked with Aya, a trained dancer unfamiliar with the original, to mirror and repeat my versions. Passed between us the choreography gradually degenerates as each and every movement - including the additional mistakes and hesitations- are reinterpreted as intended movement.

1. video still

2. Install documentation, Exhaust, Contemporary Art Tasmania, Hobart, 2015