Monday, 19 September 2011
Ysgwydd :Gallery Notes
4 speakers, shoes, feathers, photos, text
Ysgwydd is about space [on the page, in time, in your head]. It is about dancing. It is about wondering about flying. It is probably about age, my current age. Also the body, my body, the whole work stems from the body, my body.
Five gestures to place between movements. Gestures of the body not actually articulated but imagined then drawn. The gesture of drawing itself made a new gesture, two gestures embedded. Each was in fact a gesture that moved to another – but every movement moves. Perhaps I should say they were the start and finish of each gesture. Of course there is something here of my synaesthesia of line, a mingling of writing, drawing and sewing.
Each gesture had text written for it – then it flowed into something longer. Articulation of an imagined body, the sensations of hand through air, subtle movements in space, breath.
Writing from the body, writing in the present. I would suggest that my influences are Gertrude Stein and Hélène Cixous. Somehow Stein and Cixous overlap yet are far from each other. I feel that there is immediacy in how they both write; in the now.
The script is part of the work, and can guide you through the sound should you wish it. The piece was recorded twice – once with microphones facing to the corners, once with them facing inwards.
In Ysgwydd, and minutely in In the Bag, there is a touch of Welsh/Cymraeg. Although Kristeva notes, ‘language is, from the start, translation,’ I see this as bilingualism. I have lived most of my life in an area where Welsh is widely spoken [particularly when I was younger] and my grandfather spoke Welsh. “Bilingualism, a form of internalised dialogue, highlights rather than smoothes over conflicts and contradictory feelings of both belonging and dislocation in the throat of the speaker.” Although I am not bilingual, some of the Welsh that I know is very embedded. It seems natural to use it. When I participated in a two week residency in Quebec: Marcheur des Bois, I produced an illustrated diary: the words were in English, French and Welsh – none were translated. This is an old theme! In Ysgwydd [shoulder] you will hear mainly nouns in Welsh. As I change from one language to another I am aware of the change in gestures – the movement of the mouth and face being different in the two languages.
Ysgwydd Script link
Ysgydd Duet link
Both Ysgwydd and In the Bag have a strong element of liveness. Ysgwydd was recorded in two parts and In the Bag in one, the video of In the Bag is of the event, live. my preference for making “real time” work.