Updated: Dec 8, 2018
The three primary colors of light: Red, Blue. Green. Additive colors.
Beware putting black clothes on stage under blue lights. Black is red, blue, green.
Blue fucks with our perception. It spreads.
It's pure. High-frequency. Untainted energy.
I wrote an entire paper about how impossible perfect repetition is. The crux of my research. I think this clip shows that it's something else, though. It's not the impossibility of repetition that makes it interesting to me. It's the convergence (in ephemera or across time) of repetitive (in ephemera or across time) actions that shifts and solidifies the actions. Expectedly, the repetition across time results in the calcification (and erasure or forgetting) of choreographic material in the dancer's body. In an unexpected moment of repetition across time, new choreographic information reveals itself. This scalar repetition is fascinating to me. There is the repetition that occurs inside a single instance of the work, inside a rehearsal process, inside a show run, inside the generation and relearning of material, inside of teaching the material. Each with a unique temporality informing and shifting my conception and execution of the work. Interconnected lines and circles, executions and demonstrations and questions and attempts and failures and states of being and hunger and sleeplessness and fatigue.
How long have I been dancing this material? 10 months now? I've taught it to at least 20 other dancers and it took the energy of performance to ignite a new shift in some of the phrasing. As it ossifies, the new permanence of the structure builds support for flourish, for finding out that the spiral I was tracing with my eyes didn't actually die out where I thought it did: It took bathing in blue light.
This is the reiterative power that Butler speaks of in her Performative Acts and Gender Constitution. The space of reification that allows for the destabilizing and cementing of a conception of gender. I think it's more scalar than I realized, though. It's incredibly choreographic and incredibly multifaceted.
It's blue light hitting a retina that isn't prepared for it. No matter what we do, we're never quite seeing blue LED light the way that it is. It's always a little bit wrong. Our eyes are too slow, too narrow, too deep. We're always behind understanding exactly what it is. It's brighter than other colors of light, yet it's harder to see. It's brighter than other colors, yet reducing its saturation in a blue photograph essentially renders the subject invisible. I wonder if living with that is as disorienting as dancing in blinding blue LED high sides and losing a concept of verticality. What is what we see?