Langue : EN
In this book, the dancer Steve Paxton traces a lifetime in the company of gravity. The memory of his first flight, a meditation on walking, pondering on the conditions of life, and a dream of dancing make up pieces of a puzzle. He reveals the physical force that is affecting each of us and underpins our personal stories. Paxton muses about the limit of his consciousness and celebrates the potentiality of our senses to enter the dance. Gravity is the first book by Steve Paxton, a major international dancer, choreographer and teacher. Throughout his 55-year career, he has researched the fiction of cultured dance and the “truth” of improvisation.
"Birth is not so much a beginning as it is an abrupt change in which suddenly there are different factors than those in the womb, and there is gravity. With gravity, a new negotiation begins, and these terms condition us for the rest of our lives." [pg 3] "I once saw a pig jump into the air, turn a full circle, and land facing the original direction, then scamper around its pen like a mad thing. Whatever primal survival urge, or mating display (another pig was watching) provoked this, I don’t know. But it was so outside the pig-movement norm that it looked improvised." [pg 25] "Most of us walk around in a split universe, the sensorial one in which the sun rises, and the rational one in which the earth turns. Meanwhile, we will forget that the moon does rise. It is a quandary for the senses, which cannot tell the difference, and a success for the rational mind, which can." [pg 41] —Steve Paxton, "Gravity"
In the 1960s and 1970s Steve Paxton was a founding member of the Judson Dance Theater and the Grand Union in New York, in 1972 he was at the origin of Contact Improvisation – a practice of improvised dance which is known throughout the world today – and as of 1986 he developed the Material for the Spine technique (see below "materiaforthespine.com). For more than 55 years, his plays, which have been performed throughout the world, and his teachings question the reality of the body and the culture it is part of.
"My first impression of Gravity, a book of prose by Steve Paxton that could be mistaken for a collection of poetry, is that the stakes are high. Paxton is an iconic figure in American dance; the title is a singular and massive term; and he has a lifetime of work behind him. My expectation pointed toward a text of somber distillation of experience. [...]" — Back to Earth Again and Again, by Andrew Sargus Klein (thinkingdance.net)
Also available as an Audiobook - order here
Check also this other publication on Steve Paxton's work: www.materialforthespine.com - Get your access here
Prix: EUR 12
Tag:Aïkido | Balanchine | Contact Improvisation | pesanteur | Improvisation | Martha Graham | Steve Paxton