“When I was very young, my siblings and I did not have many real toys; toys from the store, toys that only had one shape and meaning. When we wanted to sink deep into imaginary worlds of dolls and trains we made our own versions of them. I would cover an orange with plastic paper, stick a long wooden spoon into its juicy head and name the newly created doll Toquinho. Later I would peel off Toquinho ´s head and dig my fingers deep into its flesh to enjoy the fruit´s sweet taste. What comes naturally to a child´s mind – the playful transformation of objects and its versatile changeability – has accompanied and formed me as an artist in later life.
One of my shows at the Upper Austrian State Theatre, that used objects to alter the shape of human bodies, was watched by a wheelchair user. After the performance, she told me how the transformation of bodies into a new corpo-reality had touched her deeply. I went home and started to think about the emotional connection of my piece to the woman´s identity. It is clear to me that the general inability to move one´s own legs and having to rely on an external object for mobility is bound to the feeling of restriction. Navigating through everyday life – that rarely caters to the need of differently abled people – feeds into the perception of otherness and isolation. Watching a piece that sees the use of objects as a source of possibility and new corpo-reality rather than a state of limitation, must have stirred an emotional response. In return, I asked myself if objects and dance can become connected and interwoven to one another in a way that reaches further into a political and social sphere? A sphere in which the lack of things, the void creates a space of possibility?
Movement is enough. Through dance the body can speak to an audience. However, the interaction between objects, textures, space and time that includes the body as one of these elements, enables me as a choreographer to expand and redefine the micro universe of the stage in different ways. Even as a physically fully capable human I am shaped and forced into a form by an external power to my body in everyday life. I wear shoes that confine my feet, I put on clothes that restrict my mobility, I ride a bike that transforms my mobility, I work in an office that relates my body to space in difference ways than the time I spend watching the stars with my back on the ground. When a moving body is bound to an object, limitation might occur. However, this limitation of movement also creates new forms of physicality. The human body becomes one with a body of different textures and materials. The focus shifts, details of perception change. A body within another body, an extension of limbs and heads. A distortion of shape and frame. Props are used as separate entities fulfilling purpose and utility in a staged scene, they can be decoration or ornament. Objects on the other hand that morph into the structures of the dancing body become one with movement, unified and transformed. Through the process of playful rearranging, visible elements and ideas of the world we know reappear in new shapes and forms; what has been invisible before becomes perceptible as a new corpo-reality allocated in a space that reaches unknown possibilities.”