Immerce Cunningham Multimedia Prototype: A Visual Data-base Based on the Dances of Merce Cunningham

Symposium:


Session Title:

  • Body Narratives

Presentation Title:

  • Immerce Cunningham Multimedia Prototype: A Visual Data-base Based on the Dances of Merce Cunningham

Presenter(s):



Abstract:

  • The Immerce Cunningham visual database, is an interactive multi-media prototype based on the dances and the choreographic process of Merce Cunningham. In Immerce, dance material is explored and navigated using an interface metaphor which is based on a process grounded in Merce Cunningham’s working methodology and in the nature of dance itself. Tools are available to enable users to create their own menu system or structure, retrace their path through the archive, and to gather their own “body of knowledge” for later viewing. At any time, the user may choose to view the material from the point of view of the computer system itself by selecting the System Gaze.

    Intro

    “In one way or another what we thought we couldn’t do was altogether possible, if only we didn’t get the mind in the way”
    _Merce Cunningham

    The Immerce Cunningham visual database, is an interactive multi-media prototype based on the dances and the choreographic process of Merce Cunningham. In immerse dance material is explored and navigated using an interface metaphor which is based on a process grounded in Merce Cunningham’s working methodology and in the nature of dance itself. Cunningham’s process deals complexity, the incorporation of chance  procedures, the relatedness of space and time, and multiple points of reference. The multi-media work explores notions of interactivity, of navigation and of representation related to dance, the body, and the choreographic process of Merce Cunningham. A key part of the design process has been to remain allied with Cunningham’s choreographic process. The system design has incorporated the use of chance operations, complexity, and a multiplicity of centers with respect to both time and space, concepts derived from Zen Buddism. Immerce allows dance to be re-experienced and re-defined in multiple layers, from multiple vantage points. This way of viewing the system design comes from a position where one is not seeking solutions with known methodologies but instead seeking experience and re-experience through a process of exploring the unknown.

    With Stephen Hawryshko.

    This project is sponsored by the Centre for Image and Sound Research through the support of CITI

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