Structures of Movement

March 2 – April 3, 2016

Aleš Čermák, Antonín Jirát, Petr Krátký, Matěj Smetana, Johana Střížková, Zuzana Žabková and Adam Vačkář

Curator: Viktor Čech

March 1 – Opening
March 30 – Performance Adam Vačkář and Tereza Lenerová

Everybody forgets themselves once in a while and behaves a little indecorously. Indeed, it has happened to me: I halted on the street to stare at the legs of a young woman passing by. I found myself fascinated by the rhythm of her hips, knees and calves moving, but rather per se, as a concord in itself of discordant movements. To me, the movement represented a form endowed with a value of its own – which transcended the specifics of a particular material situation. Even despite the base connotations of my initial gaze, what eventually stayed in my mind was the fascination with a structure created by this particular set of movements.

Such observations have also provided the inspiration for this exhibition. I could not help but notice that a number of contemporary video and performance artists reflect something similar in their work. In other words, they approach movement as aesthetic structure. Some of them build on dance, where the phenomenon is one of the fundamentals. Choreography as a language system of movements consequently becomes a newly interpreted instrument in the play of meanings. Other creators use more direct approaches to movement, such as when a structure of movement is lifted out of its day-to-day context and ambiguously teeters on the edge between a gag and an abstracted form. In the latter case, the structures of motion are presented through their fragile ephemerality and born by the kinesis of the material body. Yet another possible approach for the artists is to extract these very structures by means of their visualization. What we usually perceive as a phenomenon stretched out across time and its rhythms is through some of its aspects highlighted in a purely visual form.

From what has been said so far it might seem that such works exemplify the disengaged approach of an aesthete that severs a specific phenomenon from its semantic, political, broadly cultural and other contexts. In a number of cases, the contrary is true. Similarly to the way a preserved sample may present a source of important insights completing the whole scientific picture, here too the accentuation of a structure may reveal yet another perspective on the same thing. A given structure of movement can be generated as a response to a sound, rhythm or visual stimulus, as well as through its connection to the above-mentioned contexts. Movement here can bear witness to the state of the world around us, be a dimension in which our existence in space and time is apprehended not in terms of materiality, but first and foremost as a process.

Viktor Čech