Joint Relationships

October 10th, 2012 By The Artist Formerly Known as Kate

On our call, Elizabeth Giron emphasized the importance of problem solving in the choreography process.  She referred to it as a “verbal problem turned into a movement problem.”
Two components of “Force of Circumstance” inspired this proposal:

  • making movement accumulate (as Elizabeth demonstrated with her S phrase).
    • The accumulation aspect reminded me of a looper, a device usually used for music and sound design. Loopers have been adapted to video for use in dance performances (Movement Looper at MIT or Dance Loops at Utah Valley University)
  • spatial counterpoint
    • Sean Curran’s emphasis on clean lines, body shape and linearity  reminded me of an animation made for Issey Miyake’s APOC collection in 2007 ( The animation is a loop of 3D tracking data from a walking model.  Her joints are represented by white dots on a black background, with lines occasionally joining the dots in a variety of patterns, some resembling shapes of the body and Issey’s clothing, some more abstract.

This digital intervention would combine looping with minimalist skeleton tracking.

Kinect and Laptop with skeleton tracking application that can map at least 13 points/joints
Wireless device (worn by dancer to start and stop recording a loop)

The dancers’ movements are tracked with dots, using the tracking application:

The dancers can start and stop recording a loop with a wireless device. Using the laptop, lines can be drawn, connecting dots within one dancers “skeleton,” or the lines can connect the same joint on multiple dancers.



Since Sean is “a hawk for detail” and gives much consideration to line and shape, I wanted to give him and his dancers a platform to highlight his choreography. By turning the dancers’ bodies in points and lines that can be reshaped and manipulated, the technology provides thousands of relationships between parts of one body and parts of many bodies. It’s a new kind of exploration of body shape and movement.

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