Unreal Nature

March 30, 2020

The Fan

Filed under: Uncategorized — unrealnature @ 6:22 am

… It generates wind, reminding you that there is air.

This is from a 2010 interview with Phong Bui in Sarah Sze (2016):

Phong Bui: You know, one of the most difficult techniques when one studies martial arts, especially kung-fu, is the drunken technique. Not because you have to be drunk, but because you have to think like a drunk, so that your movement becomes extremely unpredictable. In other words, while the practitioner may look intoxicated, the technique behind the appearance is highly acrobatic and skilled and requires a great degree of balance and coordination. …

Sarah Sze: A friend of mine who was one of the primary dancers at Tanztheater Wuppertal — Pina Bausch — said that the hardest and first test they would give any dancer who wished to be part of the company was to ask him or her to walk naturally across the stage. And, immediately, from that test you were either in or out. It’s just the idea that trying to mimic nature, even in yourself, is actually very hard.

[line break added] For example, the cot in the piece Never Enough (Projector) — it looks like it’s been eaten by moths or like it’s become a ruin. But in fact that’s my hand trying to paint or reproduce something in a way that looks like nature made it, like it happened outside of my hand, by a larger natural force. It’s an idea central to earth art — the investigation of the actual behavior of landscape rather than the representation of landscape.

[ … ]

PB: Are there other functions of the fan, apart from creating physical moments to certain areas?

SS: It generates wind, reminding you that there is air. It’s like when you see a spotlight on a stage and you see the dust floating in the air, and it makes you aware that there is air.

My most recent previous post from this book is here.




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