Siobhan Davies Dance: Every Day
- Kelly Apter
- 15 May 2013
Solo dance act by Siobhan Davies and performed by Helka Kaski focuses on the daily movements we take for granted
A table, a chair, an umbrella and a stool – ordinary objects we come across on a daily basis. But a new exhibition is asking us to look at those objects, and others, with fresh eyes. Not only that, but a live element will encourage visitors to re-evaluate basic bodily movement which most of us take for granted.
Every Day will feature the work of six Scottish sculptors, all of whom were asked to create pieces inspired by our daily routines. Responding to the same brief is renowned choreographer Siobhan Davies, who has created a solo work for dance artist Helka Kaski – and any passers-by keen to engage in the process. Both the visual artworks and Kaski’s live performance will share the same space, and Davies is aware that creating the right environment for visitors is paramount to Every Day’s success.
‘Most people are drawn to the live element, but some will find that unnerving,’ she says. ‘So part of our job is to not make it unnerving; to be able to say to people we’re here for a purpose, and we want you to engage with this. It’s vital for us to create a situation in which they feel comfortable about coming close.’ The engagement Davies has in mind is fascinating. As they walk around the exhibition, Kaski will ask visitors to help her stand up; not by physical assistance, but by talking her through the process, thereby forcing them to focus (possibly for the first time) on a hugely complex movement they do every day without thinking.
‘Each person will ask Helka to do it in a different way, and she will respond only as that person requests,’ explains Davies. ‘After a few moments, it becomes a wonderful, head-scratching conversation between the two of them on how they’re going to help each other achieve this movement. It takes a while, but once she stands up, there’s a real sense of satisfaction for both of them.’
Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow, Tue 11–Sun 16 Jun