Friday, March 27, 2009

Butoh Water Dance Concept

I was asked by a San Jose museum to brainstorm on ideas for a public participatory activity that tied into Bay Area water issues and textiles for the SUBZERO Festival in June.

I have been thinking of a project that would incorporate small amounts of local water into a very large dramatic outdoor hanging “tapestry”. The tapestry would be composed of hundreds of recycled snack sized clear ziplock bags folded and partially filled with water. Each bag would suspend from an earring hook that is pre-attached to a large metal grid. At night this hanging “tapestry” could be lit up really fantastically. The project would work like this:

1. Visitor receives a zip lock bag.

2. Visitor cuts out a water related shape (ie: fish) from recycled scraps of fabric. Maybe writes something about water conservation?

3. This small shape is placed into the bag.

4. Visitor partially fills bag from water provided (buckets will be there labeled with what the source was)

5. Bag is folded in half and hung from an earring hook on large outdoor vertical grid.

I thought it would be also interesting to create a dramatic garment composed of local water filled baggies (recycled baggies) that a butoh dancer wears and breaks as she moves to music concrete made up of sounds from water sources in the Bay Area. Maybe part of the garment would be plastic bags reclaimed from creek and Bay water clean ups.

Butoh dancer I am thinking of is Christina Braun.
She is a choreographer/producer of SF Butoh LAB and Co-producer of BUTOH SanFrancisco's "80/08" Butoh Dance :

I envision the tapestry illuminated at night, but not at a high cost so I have been thinking of solar options. The dance performance I would like to be in the evening as well or at least at dusk.

Possible solar lighting options:
Solar Glowing Globes by Frontgate: $49.99 each (shifts through different colors)

I really enjoy these round floating lights as they remind me of the old Japanese glass fishing floats so prized in Hawaii when my dad was growing up. After big storms these glass floats would sometimes wash ashore unbroken. I remember at my grandma's house on Maui there were a few of these precious finds nested away in the garage.

Solig Solar lights from IKEA $7.99 each. Man, good price!

I need to see how luminous these are at night and I need to find out if they are study enough to be among foot traffic during the festival days.

It would be great to have a combination of each type of light...

1 comment:

  1. I look forwrd to the water bag dance. We have Butoh-fu for becoming a bag of water. The poetry of choreography and guided improvistaion is known as Butoh-fu. Transformation is a key element in this dance form.
    Butoh, originally from Japan, turns 50 years old this year. Happy Birthday!
    -Christina Braun