The kinesfield : a study of movement-based interactive and choreographic art
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Through the exploration of practice and theory, this thesis aims to elucidate the characteristics of movement-based interactive art and the kinesfield, a term developed during the course of the research to describe the publics' body-medium. Movement-based interactive art is based on choreographed movements of the body, media and specialized technologies which facilitate new forms of participatory movement experience. This emergent art form has initiated new methods of experiencing and presenting dance in the public domain. lt is argued that this leads to new artistic developments which may constitute a paradigm shift of the concept of the body-medium in the field of dance. To understand whether the shift is indeed paradigmatic, and to contribute to the development of dance and technology, this study introduces and applies the concept of the kinesfield to extend the theory of the body-medium as kinesphere, first proposed by Laban, and to challenge its characteristics in the context of movement-based interactive art. The concept of the kinesfield is employed to describe the relational dynamic of movement interactions which traverse the body and material forms in unbounded space. By this account, the body-medium is not defined geometrically, as in Laban's theory, but as a temporal and spatial field. The kinesfield accounts for a complexity of movement characteristics which pertain to the dynamic and relational experiences which occur between the biological body and its natural and atmospheric surroundings, natural forces, and its socio-cultural milieu. The argument unfolds as a triangulation of three movement-based interactive artworks (Shifting Ground, trajets, and Raumspielpuzzle) presented during the course of the thesis, my physical and experiential knowledge in the field of dance and an interdisciplinary literature investigation in the fields of dance, physiology/psychology/cognitive science, philosophy and sociology, plastic arts and cinema. This written document is accompanied by a CD-ROM which serves as an electronic appendix including images, videos and diagrams of the works referenced in the written thesis.
This thesis is a discussion of the experiential and conceptual characteristics which underpin the choreographic research of three movement-based interactive artworks I, Shifting Ground ( 1999), trajets (2000) and Raumspielpuzzle (2003). 2 In addition to elucidating an emergent mode of choreographic practice,3 this thesis proposes a new term which offers a description of the body-medium4 materialised in choreographic movement-based interactive art, namely the kinesfield.
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