Tuesday, October 2, 2012

written thoughts by Adrienn Pásztóy_2nd day

Naoko Tanaka / Die Scheinwerferin – The shine thrower, a journey inside
Die Scheinwerferin is not a dance piece. Not even a theatre performance. The closest thing I can think of to pigeonhole it is the category of movies. The white curtains stretched out to function as movie screens, the small light bulb dissecting the scenery like a camera, and the artist, Naoko staying in the background (even though she is in front of the screen), guiding us through the landscape with her little “camera”, acting like a “camerawoman”, shooting the movie which is immediately projected on the curtains behind; it is as if I was watching a live cinematic show. The whole plot is a projection of the performer’s journey among all the odds and ends assigned to be the props: a doll representing the artist, lying on the table; crumpled, damaged film rolls; a small ladder; a wire fence; crooked cutlery.. A package tour into the subconsciousness of the performer, The shine thrower depicts an experimental game with light and shadow with an aim to discovering what cannot be lit with a single lightbulb. 
The first thing the artist explores with her tool is the doll on the table. The situation suggests medical atmosphere; she examines herself like a patient, trying to decipher her body limb by limb. But she goes beyong medicine’s borders, she goes deeper and descends the ladder. As the projection leads us among the damaged remains of the artist’s psyche, we can hear the noises of the mind, ethereal and formidable, mixed with sounds of reality, such as a train horning, waves clashing, or a conversation becoming distant. 
It is, for example, because of the sound of waves that I think of the movie Inception. In the movie, when the protagonist arrived at the deepest layer of his dreams, he founded himself at a beach. Going under, going deeper, he emerged to another surface, to another dimension of reality, breathing and existing in another world. The same thoughts came to my mind during the piece: is it really now that the artist is going under? Is it not possible that she was underwater before and comes to the surface now? What makes the world of the mind less real than the world of the medical table?
The sound effects of the performance were not the only things that inspired me to think further. The crooked forks and spoons, looming menacingly on the surface of the curtains, made me reconsider the power of my own mind; to what extent could our unconsciousness distort our sense of reality? Do these pieces of cutlery represent deformed self-perception? Emotions? Thoughts? Moral values?
The crumpled film rolls, invoking distant conversations, are like memories damaged by time, fading into oblivion, showing the tragedy of time ticking ruthlessly, leaving nothing behind but some torn, dusty mental movies.
The road signs leading to diverging places remind me of my own choices at the crossroads of my life. Did I make up my mind too hastily? Will I move away from the other road fast enough to forget the directions? To witness it becoming unreachable? Or, as I go further and further away, will I end up at the same destination, realizing that all roads lead to the same end?
Last but not least, towards the end, the small lightbulb gets almost stuck in the wall of a wirefence. Is there a point, I was wondering, beyond which one cannot go in their own mind? Beyond psychological limits? Or are these limits constructed by ourselves, are they traps of our own minds, should we be afraid of being captivated by our own psyche?
The technical solutions of the performance made me think about the piece from a methodological point of view. I realized that everything that we saw on the screen were the result of the movement of the artist, even though we paid more attention to the shadow-movie than herself. She was like an invisible painter, painting with light and shadow, guiding our attention, focus, and, what is more, manipulating our perception by deciding on the size, angle, object of the projected material. Everything is just a matter of point of view, even when we are only in the mind of one performer. Light breeds darkness, and submergence lets us breathe fresh air. There is not one set reality carved into our skull. 
Pásztóy Adrienn


  1. My favourite a part of the honest is that the games and prizes and ticDisposable medical drapeskets!!!!!!!

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