hyperformalism

skydancers second spring

Already a while ago I joined the group impossible in real life which keeps me posted on all sorts of interesting new projects. It was thanks to this group that I heard about the new performance of DanCoyote Antonelli’s ZeroG SkyDancers third production called ‘Second Spring’. In the information about the show: ‘Second Spring is a completely live story performance. SkyDancers perform in-flight choreography without the benefit of animations or gestures of any kind following cues given in real time on a private im channel. DanCoyote “calls” the show to keep time with the score written and performed by ZeroOne Paz’. I already heard both names, dancoyote and skydancers, before and decided I wanted to see it. I had already seen some of DC’s work and of all things I saw I was in fact most impressed by his ambitions and the fact that he has developed a whole new theory about his sl art, called hyperformalism. In his artist statement DC writes the following about this hyperformalism:

‘In 2003, building on earlier constructs, I coined ‘hyperformalism’ to provide theoretical rationale for art work being performed with digital and network tools. Hyperformalism is a synthetic term that describes formalist abstraction in hyper medium. Formalist abstraction refers to such concerns as the non-anthropomorphic exploration of line, shape, color and spatial displacement. Hyper medium describes characteristics not available in the physical medium, such as ersatz gravity and micro and macro scale, as well as network transportability, which is analogous to hyper text in its nonlinearity. Two years ago I was invited by a curator to exhibit work in the virtual world of second life, and I translated my proxy, DanCoyote, into an avatar to continue my work in hyperformalism within the virtual world’.

In the information given in sl about his art he writes about his ambitions: ‘I fully intend to show the SL art in the MOMA [Museum of Modern Art], Whitney, Tate and Guggenheim. My favorite quote is from Rubaiyat Shatner, curator of SL gallery Ars Virtua and member of RL art group Ars Electronica, who said that he learned from my show that there is NO virtual reality, it is all real.”

Having read that I asked DC about these ambitions and if and how things are progressing. His answer: ‘my intent is to cross the border from sl to rl’. Yes, exactly the thing I had been wondering about for a while now. The bridge from rl to sl has been crossed by many already and some decided to return halfway and emptyhanded, but my question is how we can go back and forth and actually bring stuff from sl into rl! How? Showing these works on screen for instance would not do justice to it. I think. However, on the other hand, when I see and experience these works while being in sl I am behind a screen myself. So why do I say that? Why do I think showing them on a screen would not do them justice? Is that because when I’m in sl I am actually being interactive? With my avi, with my fellow avi’s, with the artworks? DC’s art exhibition at NMC is not called full immersion for nothing. Think of the work of edo autopoiesis (see previous post) for instance, can’t be performed in RL, there is no place where I could fly above the clouds in a small vessel to listen to an orchestra of windmills. In fact, there is no second life wind outside second life which is an important ingredient of the work. I can however experience it in sl. But if, let’s follow DC’s ambitions here for a moment, the MOMA would like to show it, how in the world should that be done? I go around sl asking those things to artists and everybody is thinking about it and investigating it. I also asked DC. Here is an excerpt of his answer: ‘my work looks like objects, but it is not. Every work I do is the embodiment of a conceptual framing. A so called “interactive” work installation is not about the sensors or about the hardware at all, it is about the experience, the conceptual bent of the application. In SL the hardware is moot. And more fluency and subtle research into reactivity and interactivity is possible. What I am saying is that in RL it takes an army of people to do what one programmer can do in SL. How does one get it in a RL museum? By bringing the viewer to sl, by acknowleging telepresence as real’.

Well, since the whole thing dazzles me I can only say for now that I can’t wait to see which rl institution will pick it up and start crossing that bridge.

About the skydancers, DC makes a clear distinction between the work he does with the skydancers and his fine art. Both are branches of the hyperformal tree but the skydancers are more casual and more accessable. It’s hyperformal theater. Above pic may give an impression of the skydancers performance. And if you want to see more about hyperformalism and the skydancers you can look here, it’s a nice and very clear short film.

 

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    […] I was asked if I thought Juria and Nnoiz’s performance was too much like Dancoyote Antonelli ZeroGskydancers show. I had to think about that for a while. Since there were indeed similarities, there also were […]


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