Merle Schiebergen, Netherlands - Karla Isidorou, Greece 2019
Merle Schiebergen, Netherlands
Merle is a dancer/performer. She graduated from Fontys dance academy (the Netherlands) in 2017, where she studied modern dance and dance theatre performance art. Merle has a long term collaboration with Katja Heitmann, focused on durational, extremely controlled, and detailed movements. In their research; the dancer’s body is approached as a storage for human movements, movements that are in danger of extinction. Merle has also been collaborating with Jens van Daele’s Burning Bridges. Burning Bridges brings live music and dance together in an energetic, unpolished and poetic performance. The physical language of Burning Bridges is mainly focused on partnering and floor work, which gave Merle the chance to discover and research working with gravity, resistance and different bodies. Merle has discovered a fascination for site specific work: being outside, either touched or untouched by human influences, the performer is asked to transgress borders and develop a specific relationship with the environment through the body, reaching out to playfulness and primal physicality, As a performer, Merle draws attention to the world we are a part of, something we tend to forget. As an educator she develops workshops to stimulate creativity and research within the physicality of the body, extending to the environment and it's influences.
Karla Isidorou, Greece
Karla is a visual artist creating performative constellations in which different disciplines merge together to create an open meeting space between performer and public, letting the work immerse into public space. Magnetised (entranced?/enchanted?)) by the engraved rituals of the body, the versatile structures of our bones and muscles, Karla Isidorou, was trained as a performer, a theatermaker and a visual artist. Karla Isidorou followed Theater Studies at the University of Amsterdam, focusing on the shared experience of catharsis between performer and audience. She continued her studies in a more practical field: exploring the possibilities of performative photography (UCK, Utrecht), focussing on the scenographic dimensions of the moving body(ArtEZ, Arnhem) and continued her research on the limits of the body, its sculpturality as well as its relational aesthetics at the Base for Experiment Art and Research (ArtEZ, Arnhem). Researching the notions of borders within urban spaces, through collaborative settings, Karla Isidorou creates constellations to open the door of vulnerability and openness, a first step towards awareness. Next to her practices as an artist. Karla Isidorou creates performative workshops in collaboration with various artists researching the dialogue between learning and experiencing and creating, for educational institutions such as: ArtEZ/University of the Arts, Arnhem(NL) , Hofplein Rotterdam/Youth Theater School, Rotterdam(NL), Archipel Festival/ Geneva (CH).
Merle and Karla collaborate in this long term project, mixing their different backgrounds to create workshops and performances to challenge the perception of the performer and the spectator in relation to the body and to the urban environment.
THE COMMON SEATING
All benches need maintenance, this one requires only oxygen. We will plant seats, to give seeds for thought. To let a mosaic of bodies emerge in the urban environment, through a continuously transforming immobility. Benches are the watchers of the city, carriers of resting human bodies, spectators of the citizen’s stories. By creating benches made out of human bodies, we challenge the perception of the ones who pass by, to reconsider the city, the function and meaning of objects in the urban space. In this workshop, while working with gravity we will reach for physical limits between bodies. As a performer you will be challenged to discover the architecture of the body as well as the architecture of the city.
Letting the sounds, stories and structures of your surroundings inspire your building process. Together we will occupy Athens, re-creating the outdoor benches with only our bodies.