tens:ding [bending over backwards]

Bjarte Wildeman

Keywords: Performance, Expanded body, Systems of relating

bjartewildeman.com, bjartewildeman0998@gmail.com, instagram.com/bjarte.wildeman

‘tens:ding [bending over backwards]’ is a performative installation seeking and offering a magnification of the dynamics, small beauties, interdependencies and struggles of a relationship between individuals.

In the piece, two performers engage in a direct relationship, entering a system with a central mechanism connected to their bodies, set up so that the performers can feel one another and their movements through these cables.

The performers continuously attempt to find a balance between themselves, surrendering to themselves and the other, leaning on and trusting in each other. They save, move and hold one another, but at what cost for themselves? This dynamic creates a performance that explores the connected interrelations of equilibrium, the fear of taking yet also of losing control, and a struggle of intimacy.

Through the combined movements of the human performers, the mechanism, a third body, serves as a magnification of their interactions. The entire system, performers, mechanism and movement, become a unified alchemistic body.

This piece, the alchemistic body, is the representation and result of the relationship between human and human. Together, not alone, they give it shape, yet the created shape or relationship also holds influence over the individuals. The represented relationship holds the giving and taking, the growth, exchange of care and trust, yet it also includes the possibility of breaking. This intimate struggle, the creaking, torsion and cracking, the bends and curves that are created, yet also the relationship with another allowing both to achieve more than alone genuinely enlarges or magnifies aspects of a relationship that we all recognise and experience in life.

Performance Times:

July 2nd-5th: 11.30/12.45/14.15/16.15/17.45/19.30

Opening (July 1st): (10.00/12.30/15.15) 17.00/18.15/20.00/21.30

With this performance, and taking into account the times we have collectively experienced, I intend to take the audience with me in this act of a distanced intimacy. By sharing this normally private process, I want to open this space for the audience to contemplate their own experiences. I channel and recognise my ówn experiences of relational searching, uncertainty and queerness. I share this body-based healing process to explore the surrounding, our body and place in the environment, a process of fitting and belonging.

This project is a continuation of my performative research practice centring around mechanisms and structures found in and around the body. I use these to create kinetic and choreographic apparatuses that enable movements to emerge and allow for a kinetic and kinaesthetic relationship between Performer, Apparatus and Surroundings.

With this piece, I explore the performative movement qualities of the relations between multiple bodies within a connected system. Building upon notions of tensegrity and expansion through restriction, it plays with the dynamics of balancing an equilibrium, showing strength, being careful and using strength to be careful. In this, it can be treated as a body-wide thought experiment on the (ambiguous) nature of the relationship between the controller and the controlled.

Performed By: Maarten Keus, Lucile Prems Soliman, Julie Goslinga, Inga Hirsch, Elisa de la Serna Gallego, Dominic Hughes, Corina V, Bjarte Wildeman.