Excavatory Ballet

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Excavatory Ballet

Concept / choreography / performance: Iza Szostak
Choreographic collaboration / performance: Paweł Sakowicz
Dramaturgy: Anka Herbut
Stage design: Łukasz Kwietniewski
Music: Kuba
Curator: Anna Królica
Producer : Dominik Skrzypkowski
Production: The Center for the Documentation of the Art of Tadeusz Kantor Cricoteka in Kraków
Co-production: Body/Mind, Burdąg Foundation, Centum w Ruchu
Premiera: 8.11.2015 Cricoteka, Kraków
work in progress: 1.10.2015 Festiwal Ciało/ Umysł, Warszawa
In the frame of “The Choreographic Machine: Schlemmer. Analogies” curated by Anna Królica


Excavatory Ballet is an attempt of a contemporary artist at tackling the work of Oskar Schlemmer (Bauhaus professor, German painter, theorist of art and reformer of dance) as well as his concept of movement. Schlemmer was fascinated by the mechanicality of movement of ballet dancers. He treated their bodies as forms and solids, finding in them a model of complicated relationships between man and the geometricized space. An important part of preparing the project was for the artists to complete a training course for excavation equipment operators. The process of learning the machine’s motor control as well as gaining new skills (how to activate, control, and maneuver the machine) clearly brought to light the interdependence between man and object. In her latest project Iza Szostak works with Schlemmer’s Triadic Ballet and translates it into the language of construction equipment. The artist is interested in the superiority of human over machines and machines over humans. At the same time the artist observes the bodies of dancers dressed in characteristic excavator operators’ costumes which stand out with their own motor control (three-dimensional and re-scaled) and which, when ‘put on’, enforce on dancers a specific behaviour and movement. The artist uses the mechanics of an excavator to take another look at human movement; the machine becomes a hybrid and an extension of the human body. The division between body and object disappears, excavators are performing specific choreography. What is created is a dance for two machines / a visual work / a music concert / a partial reconstruction of The Triadic Ballet.
The performance in the frame of Scena Tańca Studio program.
  • Where: Hala FSO Żerań, Jagiellońska 88, Warszawa
  • Start at: 21:00
  • Day: 2017.6.27
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