Attendees’ Companion, Part I: Learning Twelve Languages
Photo installation, ODC Theater SF
Twelve duets for the same two dancers.
Twelve personalities, twelve languages.
Drawing on RAWdance co-founders Ryan Smith’s and Wendy Rein’s 17-year history as dance partners, Double Exposure is an evening-length work comprised of twelve duets created by some of the field’s most intriguing and esteemed choreographers working in contemporary dance along the West Coast.
As I documented RAWdance learning twelve choreographic vocabularies at once, each time I joined a different choreographer at work in the studio, there was a tangibly distinct hum in the room. I photographed six duets in progress this way, finding truly unique processes and exchanges between the choreographer, Wendy and Ryan.
For the remaining duets, I shadowed Wendy and Ryan as they rehearsed on their own. Reviewing the syntax, debating the nuances. These photographs are about the two dancers reviving choreographic conversation without filters or external input.
For those attending the performance of Double Exposure, much of this creative process is invisible or masked. Documentation of the project’s choreographic thinking is meant to accompany and sustain the making of dance, alongside its final form. We look to foreground the ways in which dance is perpetually becoming, with performance as just one way of engaging in a multifaceted process.