hypertext dissertation - by Robyn Stuart

Mutation and Recombination in Rhizomes:
Complexity mixed with Deleuze and Guattari (1987)

Rhizomes evolved using elements from a larger 'plane of composition' or 'plane of consistency' grounded in: Curson and my histories of choreography, aesthetics, research of combining live dance with virtual scenography, also the dancers' movement predisposition and vocabulary, and the general contemporary culture within which we live, specifically the contemporary film and dance culture from which all the human elements of Rhizomes have been educated (that which is created has an environmental /cultural and historical context, which significantly affects its creation and is best comprehended when interpreting 'the work', see 'The Mead Project'). In choreographing the movement (both Pc and Vc), and in creating and choosing the virtual 3D models, Curson, I, and the dancers, recombined or mutated variations of movement or imagery we already 'knew of'. My intention has been to direct our research toward creating at the outer limits of our knowledge, pushing into maximal variation but stopping I hope before chaos is reached. Living on the edge of order, we took ‘lines of flight’ out of the 'plane of consistency', ‘deterritorialising’ into a new emerging 'plane of composition' which becomes Rhizomes. Rhizomes is nested in this greater ‘strata’ and yet apart and ‘reterritorialised’ into its own 'identity' or series of 'identities'.

Pc movement emerged through the following processes of mutating and recombining existing movement patterns:

1. the dancer's inherent Pc movement patterns were used during improvisation and recombined directly in relation to improvised Vc and mutated through a process of direction by Curson and I asking for relation to the Vc.

2. nuggets of my (Pc) movement from previous choreography were recombined and given to the dancers who further recombined and then mutated these nuggets of (Pc) through the use of their own idiosyncratic bodies and the direction to relate to the moving Vc.

3. the dancers' inherent movement patterns were recombined by them into nuggets of choreographed (Pc) movement which I further recombined and mutated into new phrases of (Pc)movement

4. The Pc movement phrases of 3. were further mutated and recombined as dancers were asked to relate them to Vc Movement and Imagery.

5. This process of creating movement evolved/ mutated throughout the creation of Rhizomes, as we increasingly allowed Pc movement to develop directly in relation to simultaneously developing Vc movement and Imagery.

6. Throughout Rhizomes I encouraged Pc to emerge with minimal pre-conceived views as to how it should look. I would commence the creation of a Pc phrase or scene by giving a warm-up to the dancers that encouraged a focused style of Pc movement, for example focusing on the compositional shape of the body, or a sense of reaching. Then I would ask the dancers to create a choreographed or improvised phrase using that information. The style I chose to focus on for each new phrase to be designed was in part arbitrarily chosen, or rather chosen in relation to quite local stimuli, but grounded within the history of my previous choreographic explorations (e.g. space holds, rapid changes of quality, gestures, & small quirks of body parts). Each movement phrase was not developed because I thought about how it would fit in relation to other phrases I had been or would create; each movement phrase was based on particular movement problems that fascinated me and resurfaced in my mind in the day or two prior to working on it. Thus the Pc emerged from a whole series of personal movement fascinations, and not from an initial vision or the expression of a singular intention. This also was the case for the 3D models created and chosen (see Introduction to Rhizomes).

7. The creative processes evolved with increasing complexity, whereby all of us: Curson as Vc designer, me as Pc director/designer, and dancers as movement-creators would improvise in warm-up together in a particular style (which I facilitated) allowing Pc and Vc to emerge together. My direction toward deriving an emerging scene (combining Pc and Vc) became increasingly fluid and responsive to both Curson and dancer(s).

The Vc movement phrases were created primarily by Curson in the following manner:

1. He would recombine previously created Vc movement to a dancer's Pc,
2. He would improvise with new models, using variations of known Vc paths, and relate to the dancers as they improvised with a particular Pc phrase or set of movements and through this improvisation would mutate and recombine previous Vc. He allowed new stable and repeatable Vc phrases to emerge.
3. He would mutate Vc movement to relate to new Pc being simultaneously choreographed.
4. He would interrogate his artistic creation of Vc movement and imagery to illuminate how to further redesign the software to maximise its flexibility while also allowing repeatability.
5. He would actively look for ways in which the programming limited or predefined the Vc movement possibilities and work to break these boundaries.

Mutation and recombination are the active processes of creating new products. Perhaps this is common sense, but I believe that it is worth spelling out, as it is in this manner that we reach the adjacent possible. The new is born from the old, not created out of nowhere; Deleuze (1985) suggests that the new will often be camouflaged as the old in the beginning stages of development.

1.4 Home Page, 'Beginning', Conclusion, Acknowledgements, References, Rhizomes Performances, Performances as References

alKamie are members of Chisenhale Dance Space.
© copyright all material alKamie 2001-2014