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Public seminar: Knowledge in Making, Design by Doing

How to make dance accessible as a type of knowledge in its own right?

Suzan Tunca (ICK Dans Amsterdam) and Laura Karreman (Utrecht University) give a seminar in the Transmission in Motion series of Utrecht University. Free to attend on 26 May 2021 from 15.00 to 17.00.

Language: English
Location: Microsoft Teams

In this session of the TiM seminar on “Knowledge in Making – Design by Doing” we focus on the shift towards bringing choreographic ideas beyond the studio walls through the development of digital applications and environments. The design of such applications and ‘digital scores’ is closely tied up with the question of how such media can make us know dance differently. These types of ‘mobile archives’ highlight different aspects of dance and offer the opportunity to ask questions about dance that have not been asked before.

Dance researcher Suzan Tunca relates to this topic from her long-time engagement with the work of choreographers Emio Greco and Pieter C. Scholten and the International Choreographic Arts Centre (ICK Amsterdam). To be able to give dance an enduring existence through time, ICK has been conducting research since 2005 into dance (an)notation, documentation and knowledge transmission. Tunca discusses how Greco and Scholten’s central aesthetic premise of ‘the intuitive body’ underlies and informs the research done by ICK Academy, paying special attention to the recent online score of Amos Ben-Tal / OFFproject’s performance 60.

Tunca’s presentation is preceded by an introduction by Laura Karreman, who situates the phenomenon of digital scores in a political and epistemological context. She distinguishes these initiatives as strategies of self-visualization that are motivated by multiple concerns: not only to preserve artistic knowledge and reach new audiences, but also to meet the demands of our knowledge economy.

To view the Online Score by Amos Ben-Tal/OFFprojects, click here.

Suzan Tunca (1975, Turkey/Germany) is head of the ICK Academy with a research focus and dance (an)notation, documentation and knowledge transmission. She developed and implemented an artistic research curriculum for BA Dance students at Codarts University of the Arts Rotterdam and coaches  MA Choreography students at Codarts/Fontys.  She is a member of DASresearch THIRD and PhD candidate at PhDArts Leiden University. 

Through her work as a dance researcher in professional and educational contexts and as a performing artist, she aims to contribute to the regeneration and advancement the art of dance and its societal recognition as an invaluable source for embodied knowledge. 

Laura Karreman is an assistant professor in the Department of Media and Culture Studies at Utrecht University, where she teaches in the RMA Media, Art and Performance Studies, the MA Contemporary Theatre, Dance and Dramaturgy and the BA Media and Culture. She conducted her doctoral research at Ghent University. Her PhD dissertation was titled “The Motion Capture Imaginary: Digital renderings of dance knowledge.” Her research engages with epistemological questions about movement, representation and digital technologies, and investigates new notions of dance and performance knowledge.


Suggested reading
James Leach, “Making knowledge from movement: Some notes on the contextual impetus to transmit knowledge from dance.” in: Maaike Bleeker (ed.) Transmission in Motion: The technologizing of dance. London and New York: Routledge, 2017.

Additional source
Laura Karreman, “Dance as knowledge” in The Motion Capture Imaginary: Digital Renderings of Dance Knowledge. PhD dissertation, Ghent University, 2017, p. 55-88.

This session is an initiative from Mobilizing the Archive.
Mobilizing the Archive is one of the interest groups of Transmission in Motion

Mobilizing the Archive
Mobilizing the Archive examines contemporary initiatives and projects that seek to radically remodel traditional notions and practices of media and performance archives. In particular, the group considers new types of archives and related practice-based projects that have emerged in the slipstream of cultural heritage digitization. This comprises projects that deploy digital techniques to defy traditional practices of recording, documenting and capturing that ’domiciliat[e]’ archival data (Derrida 1996, 10) and instead develop alternative ways of engaging with and creating meaning that are multi-authored, open source and in perpetual movement. Thus, the type of projects that interests us challenges traditional, authoritative documentation of media documents and performances as still objects that can be rendered intelligible and expand conditions for recreation, exchange and transmission of archives by setting knowledge in motion. A key affordance of such projects is to create awareness about the exclusions and absences in our existing systems of knowledge and invite a reconsideration of the role that (digitized and born-digital) archives play in them. Following this interest, the group fosters interdisciplinary dialogue between artists, archivists and scholars with the aim of developing critical understandings of the layered meanings of digitized, archival collections. In doing so, Mobilizing the Archive aims to create the conditions for a dialogue, that may facilitate new connections and collaborations, and to report on research-in-progress in these areas.

Photo credits
Extra Dry by Emio Greco | PC. Photo: Laurent Ziegler.

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