Singled out as one of the artists to watch in 2004*, Israeli artist Guy Bar Amotz presents a reconfiguration of his dynamic installation ‘The Dance Machine‘ at the Project Arts Centre from May 5th until May 29th. ‘The Dance Machine‘ translates movement into sound through electronic sensors that respond to the body and can be activated by the audience in a number of ways. For one performance only, ‘The Dance Machine‘ interconnected directly with choreographer and dancer Yasmin Vardimon; Vardimon’s dance moves to create a truly interactive and genre cross-over moment. Vardimon’s choreography is highly energetic and emotive and this collaboration promises to be a dynamic event.
Following the performance, visitors to the gallery where invited to interact with the machine to produce their own images and sounds simply by moving their bodies in front of both the electronic sensors and a camera. Their movements where translated into sound and images and then the images where projected from the camera onto the wall of the gallery, while sounds where played through an arrangement of large-scale sculptural speakers. In addition, there was smaller, wearable speakers, called Mochleros (shaped like a rucksack) attached to a musical instruments which were used for jamming.
‘The Dance Machine‘ is a long- term project by Guy Bar Amotz which is being constantly updated by the artist and realised differently in each location. ‘The Dance Machine‘ is not a sound artwork but more like a mobile production house that deals with the medium of music from its relationship to the aesthetics to the physicality of dance. It is like a ‘growling’ low-fi expressive machine that stands in contradiction to a hi-fi brave new world.
‘Jasmin Vardimon vs. The Dance Machine‘ is a collaboration between the International Dance Festival Ireland and Project’s visual arts programme. This work was one in a series of exhibitions during 2004 that drew on Project’s role as both visual arts and performing arts venue, and examine how the two can interact. The original version of ‘The Dance Machine‘ was commissioned by Tate Britain and the Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva (2003), supported by the Laban Centre, Yorkshire Dance and Le Monte Meppel.
Guy Bar Amotz is an Israeli artist who lives and works in London. His sculptures have a strong formal aspect and vary in scale and materials. They include speakers suspended in the ceiling like satellites, units that are designed to be worn on a person’s back, and larger configurations of modular structures spread across the gallery floor made from materials such as cast fibreglass, plastic board and found objects.
Bar Amotz has a Masters in Fine Art from Goldsmith’s College, London and was artist in residence at the Rijkacadamie in Amsterdam. Exhibitions include solo shows at the Centre of Contemporary Art, Geneva; Tate & Egg Live, London; Site, Düsseldorf; Trade Apartment, London; One in the Other, London; Tal Esther, Tel Aviv and W139, Amsterdam. He has also participated in group shows at various spaces around the world including the Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amsterdam; Ikon Gallery Birmingham; The Israeli Museum, Jerusalem; The Saitama Museum of Modern Art, Japan; Kwangju International Biennale Biennale, S. Korea and Sidney Biennale.
Bar Amotz frequently collaborates with his partner, the dancer Jasmin Vardimon, who uses a variety of dance theatre approaches to her choreography, centring on observation of human physical behaviour. Born in Israel she has become one of Britain’s most exciting and accessible choreographers working in the field of contemporary dance and physical theatre today. Recipient of the prestigious 2000 Jerwood Award for Choreography, her company’s work has been performed at high profile festivals around the world including Slovenia, Germany, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Holland, Greece and Belgium.
“Amotz makes art that looks and sound like the best night out that you’ve never had”
Arena, September 2003
“VARDIMON is one of those dancers you can’t take your eyes off. Like an inquisitive cat, she bends and stretches, climbs and crawls, contorting her incredible body into ever more complex positions. She does the same with her choreography.”
Kelly Apter, September 2002.
*Art Forum magazine, Jan 2004
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