turnbaby (2002)

by babel

Turnbaby begins as a sonic zoetrope, a digital rendering of the 'wheel of life' invented by Horner in 1834 to recreate motion using a series of images placed on a rotating drum. Beyond the zoetrope, a larger nine scene wheel devolves/revolves a contemporary dance sequence to its historical counterparts, two early cinematic experiments made by Thomas Edison at the end of the 19th century.

Through dynamic random and user-generated interaction, the dancers move in a fragmentary way. Sometimes their motion is static, and it is the degradation of the image that dances. The result is a dynamic on-screen play of image, frame and movement; a conflicted theatre or a fractured cinema of many parts.

The key theme of this piece is the concept of turning (round and into), as represented on both the physical and digital stages. As the dancers pirouette, they also change form; as the digital scenes piroeutte, ...

Full Description

Turnbaby begins as a sonic zoetrope, a digital rendering of the 'wheel of life' invented by Horner in 1834 to recreate motion using a series of images placed on a rotating drum. Beyond the zoetrope, a larger nine scene wheel devolves/revolves a contemporary dance sequence to its historical counterparts, two early cinematic experiments made by Thomas Edison at the end of the 19th century.

Through dynamic random and user-generated interaction, the dancers move in a fragmentary way. Sometimes their motion is static, and it is the degradation of the image that dances. The result is a dynamic on-screen play of image, frame and movement; a conflicted theatre or a fractured cinema of many parts.

The key theme of this piece is the concept of turning (round and into), as represented on both the physical and digital stages. As the dancers pirouette, they also change form; as the digital scenes piroeutte, they similarly change form. Both echo the (illusion of) motion found in the first zoetrope scene. To create an illusion of motion, the drum is spun; the faster the rate of spin, the smoother the progression of images.

For more background on the formal styles of this work, see

'Futurist Photodynamism' (Anton Giulio Bragaglia, 1st July 1913) - http://www.391.org/manifestos/antongiuliobragaglia_futuristphotodynamism.htm ;

'Plastic Dynamism' (Umberto Boccioni, 15th December 1913) - http://www.391.org/manifestos/umbertoboccioni_plasticdynamism.htm ;

'The Futurist Cinema' (F.T. Marinetti, Bruno Corra, Emilio Settimelli, Arnaldo Ginna, Giacomo Balla and Remo Chiti, 15th November 1916) - http://www.391.org/manifestos/marinetti_futuristcinema.htm

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