“Scores for Distributed Dancing” by Megan Young

  • ©, , Scores for Distributed Dancing
  • ©, , Scores for Distributed Dancing


    Scores for Distributed Dancing

Artist(s) and People Involved:


Artist Statement:

    “Scores for Distributed Dancing” is an iterative project that accumulates over time and through presentation in diverse spaces. It engages viewers as participants and performers as facilitators of experience. This durational event appears from within everyday interactions and highlights the preexisting movement systems of public spaces. Social programming modifications are printed on playing cards in the form of logical operators. As participants attempt their scores, the system responds. Participants change the tone and pace of the space through a collaborative phase shift. The intervention displays how small, accumulated actions deliver results on a grand scale.

    Every project space is digitally documented with pre- and post-rupture layered into an experimental video portrait for online archives and exhibition display.
    This work addresses the nature of identity formation as it intersects acculturation and social structures. Our bodies are our first tools for experiencing the world, and yet how we see or interpret the world is filtered through the lens of our physical experiences. For that reason, culturally enforced physical precepts (like crossing legs when sitting, or looking down when near strangers) become inextricably linked to our sense of self. If we are consistently told to take up less space in our physical actions, we can come to believe that we do not need, or worse, do not deserve to take up as much space as others. To further complicate the delicate relationship of body and identity, we are living in a posthuman world where our physical experiences are often augmented by technological advances. The logical operators of programming parameters bind our interactions with screen-based media. Simply put, we can only perform a predetermined set of actions with a pre-programmed set of responses when interfacing with responsive media systems. We become accustomed to performing within a pre-set group of actions.

    Scores for Distributed Dancing hacks the body in the same way other projects hack technology. It breaks the congruity of everyday, introduces new parameters, and provides positive feedback for what might otherwise be perceived as failure. It de-emphasizes virtuosity of movement in dance-like contexts and affirms the refined expertise of everyday actions. The project exposes the rule-based parameters of social interactions and even personal movement choices. Scores for Distributed Dancing presents these concepts in an experimental and emergent digital format.

    Full text and photo (PDF) p. 190-192



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