After Ghostcatching, 2010, installation view, 2011, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

After Ghostcatching, 2010.

After Ghostcatching, Bill T. Jones Collaboration with CG Video

After Ghostcatching, 2010.

After Ghostcatching, 2010.

After Ghostcatching, 2010.

 

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
4525 Oak Street
816-751-1278
Kansas City

After Ghostcatching
September 10-December 31, 2011

After Ghostcatching, a 13-minute video evokes a dark, mysterious realm inhabited by a dancing, disembodied figure comprised of ephemeral traces of color and light. The dancer’s movements express a broad range of emotion, and his vocalizations are elusive.

After Ghostcatching (2010) is a synthesis of dance, sound and computer technology. It is a collaboration between Bill T. Jones, one of the greatest living dancers, choreographers, founder and artistic director of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and OpenEnded Group, Marc Downie, Shelley Eshkar and Paul Kaiser. It reinterprets Ghostcatching (1999), and is enhanced by advances in stereoscopic illusion (3D) and high-resolution technology.

To create Ghostcatching, OpenEnded Group used motion capture, a technology that tracks sensors attached to Jones’ body as he danced. The digital technology records only the dancer’s movements without retaining the solidity of the figural form. Only movement remains. This data, according to OpenEnded Group, became “the building blocks for the virtual composition” for •After Ghostcatching•.

It was “edited, rechoreographed, and staged for a digital performance in the 3-D space of the computer.”

Jones’ dance sequence relates to a series of characters and begins with Ancestral Figure who moves in relation to a vertical, rectangular box. He is ancestral, since, according to Kaiser, “he is the progenitor of all the figures that follow.” Others are Athlete, recognized for his robust, aggressive movements and Sculptor, named for Jones’ penchant for sculpting his body into fixed poses.

Leesa Fanning, Associate Curator, Modern & Contemporary Art said, “In After Ghostcatching, computer programs transform Jones’ fluid movements into ribbons and tracers of streaming light and color that seem to fill the space, extending toward gallery visitors wearing 3-D glasses. Jones’ improvisational style is one that originates from a deep well-spring of memory, tapping into the body as a dynamic force of energy. His movements emphasize rhythmic patterns of action and rest, expansion and contraction. Each elegant movement is precise and assured. Jones’ dance is autobiographical, full of feeling, expressing extended moments of joy, bursts of ecstasy, flashes of aggression and quiet repose.”

Bill T. Jones

After Ghostcatching, 2010.

After Ghostcatching, 2010.