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Mon, Jul 17


Larret, Saint-Saud-Lacoussière

DIGESTIONS (summer school in creative research, in collaboration with other dancers)

DIGESTIONS (summer school in creative research, in collaboration with other dancers)
DIGESTIONS (summer school in creative research, in collaboration with other dancers)

Time & Location

Jul 17, 2023, 7:00 PM – Jul 23, 2023, 7:00 PM

Larret, Saint-Saud-Lacoussière

About the event

The proposal is to bring together artists, researchers and gesture workers (dance, circus, performance, theater, mime...) for a week of encounter(s) and shared studies. After a first summer school dedicated to Decompositions (2021), this second edition is called Digestions. The Rumen, a group of five artists/researchers, is working together to set up the framework and will be present during the week.


In our Rumen group, we all share the experience of being cornered by certain dimensions of our professions - production deadlines, accumulation of tasks, rhythm of the seasons, obsolescence of creations - but also a profusion of artistic and cultural events, festivals, books, movies, online contents... Our professional meetings are most often devoted to sharing our “work”, observing that of others or disseminating (often vertically) information.

We experience a growing imbalance between the volume (and nature?) of what we ingest and the time we have to digest it. We are satisfied, but with what? And what to do with what refuses to be digested/transformed, to the point of sometimes provoking our indigestion? And therefore, what possible spaces for what exceeds our appetite? Faced with these observations, we imagine for this week in Larret a space-time of collective digestion.


The digestion that occurs in human (and non-human) stomachs, like the decomposition that occurs in humus, is a multi-species affair, a collective achievement involving over 500 different species (one of which is commonly called Homo sapiens). The word “digestion” derives from the Latin gerere (to carry), which is also at the origin of the French “gesture”: digestion thus brings into play pregnancy, gestation, the fact of carrying and bringing with oneself what we eat and what we breathe, and with what we become; and it is traversed by gestures (eating, swallowing, liquefaction, grinding, filtering). Digestion problematizes the humanist conception of the subject as a transcendent entity. What is consumed contributes to the future of the consumer.


For us who dance/move and who work with gestures, what can digestion teach us about the movements we study, in the studio and elsewhere? Could digestion teach us to invite or invent new epistemologies and overcome the practical/theory division in current academic knowledge?


The French somatic practitioner Hubert Godard speaks in this sense of reading gestures through what he calls a “anthropophagous gaze”:

“Seeing gravity does not go through reasoning. If I look with a focal gaze, if I think by causes and deductions, I see nothing. But if I stop being in this mode for a bit, if I become peripheral, that is to say if I agree to eat the person, by a very real cannibalism, if I agree to become the other, I get to feel what's going on inside them when I’m observing their gesture.”


On his track, we dream of an epistemology of digestion (rather than of analysis, reflection, criticism) which would propose replacing optical distance with a very particular form of proximity: that of the parietal or the visceral, where there is room for affects, for empathic resonance, for the gravitational contagion between us.


In the words of Donna Haraway, it matters, which stories we use to tell stories, and it matters, which gestures we use to study other gestures... In continuation of the summer school of Decompositions, this week will have no preconceived structure, classes or seminars. We imagine it rather as a studio, in its primary sense, a place to study and digest together.


The Rumen group is made up of:

Sylvie Balestra, Myriam Pruvot, Marcela Santander, Pol Pi and Asaf Bachrach.


The Rumens participate in the design and implementation of the (pre)frame as well as in the eventual selection of the participants. During the first day of the meeting, the group will propose a gesture for collective landing. During the rest of the week, the group will not have a privileged place in the course of the event.


Larret en Mouvements ( co-develops a place of collective life, creation and hosting for those who come there: dancers, researchers, philosophers, craftsmen, curious. Their activities revolve around gesture and movement. Larret defines itself as an eco-somatic refuge: a place where the human and other-than-human environment meet the living-lived body.

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