Object Int’l —

A rock is a perfect metaphor, an allegory in volume. When placed its sculptural limits beget a kind of artistic proposition — and when considered with reduced anthropomorphism and ungeologically — produce a ready-made analog to the causation and bounds of our attempts at the understanding of all things.

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GestureLab 4 __ test


The lab Sounding-Out Effort is proposed as a space to imagine a corporeal engagement with another material surface as and through sound and listen to the embodied response, which the sound may invite.

Gesture Lab 4 SOUNDING OUT EFFORT (test)
Moving Image Studio RCA, London, 2020.
Image: artist own.


Different working gestures transcribed as Laban Efforts of Action Drive (Wring, Press, Flick, Dab, Glide, Float, Punch and Slash)

Different Effort ‘quality’ and ‘emotional content’ of specific movements.

The pool cleaner, using an overly protracted pole to wipe the bottom of the pool from above, performs the unbound movement, with a sustained speed, light pressure and direct in his arm action. His extended pole-arm ‘glides’ gently across in the air. The hairdresser ‘slashes’ and ‘flicks’ the hair with his hand-scissors. The baker, kneading the dough, is applying heavy direct action, and her movement is bound. She ‘presses’ the dough with sustained gesture, ‘wrings’ it indirectly or in multiple directions and then ‘punches’ it suddenly. Effort types combine and intertwine in working motions.

Different ways of voicing these particular actions.

Some of the soundings were drawn from memory of heard and experienced grunts and voicing that accompany stronger efforts. For more subtle gestures we imagined sounds. What is the slashing or gliding quality in the voice?

____ Sounding out is voice shaped by occupation. It is a practice of narrow-mouthed speaking of Lancashire colliery men wishing to avoid the coal dust. It is the mew- mowing of women working in weaving factories so they could be heard over the noisy machines.

Sounding out vocalises the effort through quasi-abstract expressions (words or sounds) that support the action. It is the cadence call of hey ho, the phonation of vowels or consonants when exerting an effort.

Sounding out is the sounds of the body, which hisses, puffs and rumbles like a factory does, it grunts and squeaks. These are the internal sounds of the body, some inaudible and muffled yet reverberating inside. Then the others were expelled outwards.

Then soundings out are the gestic echoes of impact, the sound of the encounters between materials or rather between their surfaces (as we can only experience the surface of other materials).