Street Sculpture, Urban Intervention
A swarm of multicoloured performers invades Montreal and melts into the background. Their mission – to invest the street with human forms, cramming themselves into vacant spaces of the urban landscape, injecting a dose of humanity into a world of concrete, metal and engine exhaust.
They advance in clusters, taking street fronts by storm as they squeeze into nooks and crannies, cling to facades, hang from balconies and ledges, perch from rooftops and stack atop each other behind pillars. Nestled in doorways, alcoves and awnings, sprawled on benches and clinging to poles and signposts, they pile themselves together in spectacular sculptural installations, ephemeral works of anonymous, entangled bodies. By the end of these amazing street romps, the crowd of astounded spectators is thrilled to have witnessed fascinating and incredible formations of human sculpture.
Questioning our perception of movement and of the urban environment, the Austrian choreographer Willi Dorner has created a sensation in one city after another with Bodies in urban spaces. Never has an in situ piece so successfully transformed the urban landscape, changing how we view the world around us.
Interdisciplinary and Unruly
Born in 1959 in Baden, Austria, Willi Dorner pursued an atypical education, studying modern dance, physical education, movement analysis, dance therapy, philosophy and visual arts. He made his début as a choreographer in the 1980s while working as a dancer for various companies in Austria and New York. Eager to move beyond the usual forms of theatre and performance, he has gained an international reputation for his in situ pieces and for his dance work. He also makes experimental films about his presentations and regularly collaborates with artists and scientists from diverse backgrounds, questioning our perception of others and of the world.
CIE WILLY DORNER / Redefining Space, Creating Public Art
Founded in Vienna in 1999, the Willi Dorner company has produced more than 20 works for the stage, cinema, art galleries and various sites. These include the exhibit Feet of Contemporary Choreographers, co-created with Lisa Rastl, the photographer involved in the Bodies in Urban Spaces project (an offshoot of which is the film Body Trail); Dance Karaoke and its revitalization of group dancing; Dolly and Me and anywhere-somewhere-everywhere with its passionate variations on the double; and Stick Solo. These and other pieces are brilliant studies on the relationship between the body and space and have been presented in theatres, in the street, and in buildings and apartments.
« Paris, Berlin, Londres, Philadelphie, une multitude de villes ont été les scènes de spectacle de ses projets. (…) Un peu de folie et d’humour dans notre train-train quotidien ça fait beaucoup de bien! »
Le Journal du design, 26/01/2011
“The performers (…) were stuck under a table at a street café, (…) sandwiched at uncomfortable angles between lampposts, street signs and walls, embellishing telephone boxes…”
John Mallinson, Ballet magazine, octobre 2009
« Par ses sculptures éphémères, le chorégraphe donne à l'architecture un autre sens, une autre perception. »
Libération, Marie-Christine Vernay, 28/07/2007
PRODUCED BY CIE WILLI DORNER
CONCEPTION AND CHOREOGRAPHY WILLI DORNER ASSISTANT TO THE CHOREOGRAPHER ESTHER STEINKOGLER
WITH THE SUPPORT OF OFFICE CULTUREL DE LA VILLE DE VIENNE + AUSTRIAN MINISTRY OF ARTS AND CULTURE, BMUKK
PREMIERED AT THE VIERTELFESTIVAL NÖ – INDUSTRIEVIERTEL, BADEN (AUSTRIA), 2007
WRITTEN BY FABIENNE CABADO TRANSLATED BY NEIL KROETSCH
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED / FESTIVAL TRANSAMÉRIQUES