A transcript of Philipp Gehmacher's walk+talk no. 5

www.philippgehmacher.net 1 Mar 2008English

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Contextual note
This is the transcription of Philipp Gehmacher's 5th walk+talk, performed in July 2009 at ImPulsTanz in Vienna. The transcription was republished on the occasion of the second "walk+talk" series organized by Philipp Gehmacher at Kaaistudio's in Brussels, 15-19 March 2011.

In March 2008, ten ... ten choreographers came together to engage in this idea of ... of walk and talk. How to ... how to speak about yet actually more over to or with your body-in-motion. How can you make sense of your own physicality and how can you speak about it?

There’s always a moment where that chest, those air-filled lungs, that panning motion ... A protruding chest pushing forward, just ... pans towards the front ... and the neck ... I pull myself into the vertical image.

I look at you ... I don’t see you ... I don’t know who you are. I don’t care. I know you are here. And your gaze is onto me ... on me. I need you to be there as my representative, rendering me object.

Movement (on the floor)

How to get up from the floor? Somehow by standing up from the floor the body reveals itself, mechanics of the body get revealed.
You should always walk away from where you had yourself arrested ... And say now it’s ... here. ...

And after those years of horizontal expressivity, I was only left with the vertical upright image ... The verticality of theatre ... And I tried to understand this verticality in relationship to the perpendicularity of architectural surroundings ... and how my body would be placed within that without being swallowed up ... there was a piece where I just right put myself right here for eight minutes ... and there was a piece and I just stood there leaning forward ... Just trying to be that super-subject with my whole coordinates ...
Never ... trying to be subject and radically ... other. Like ... not an affinity, not in parallel: always ... me and you ...
How to spatialize.

Movement (turning)

After that time of trying to be super-subject always having that protruding chest ... sending through space ... walking forward. I ... felt, I mean ... you go here, the important moment is here and you do your thing ... and you go ... you go over there and you do that other thing and then you think ... what has changed? Sometimes it feels that nothing has changed and my own kinespheric space is still the same, although I changed place and ... when I found myself in that panning motion, I was somehow relieved because I felt by turning that kinesphere, that limit of the kinesphere was erased. And ... it felt like I was in touch with the whole space ... and the world became my kinesphere.
Or paradoxically on the contrary it felt like ... maybe my kinesphere was scooped inside of me, because that twisting, that torsion, that drill ... that entropic drill ... disappearance ... crushing my organs ... and trying to be aware of that inside ... and suddenly everything was just inside and nothing outside anymore at all ... form of venture ... propeller ... being everywhere and nowhere at the same time.

Movement (on all fours)

Being on all fours ... I kind of encountered ... or initiated ... my interest in ... the mixture of a sensory, felt sense, pre-emptying, pre-conceiving ... instant composition. Because it’s easier and on all fours you have the gravitational pull and just to work with time ...
How to not just do cheap beats and ... initiating or being in each continuous pathway ... and knowing when to ... change ...
One can preview ... try that idea ... it’s all about time ... and being relaxed.
One entity ...

The gesture ... or my gesture ... I found myself in that ... Somebody said to me that all you do is gesture, you don’t do much else ... and I realised that its kind of true and the interest in that is ... I see my gestures in analogy to verbal language. Its always an ... – ex.
But it is actually just an utterance ... or about the utterances. The gesture doesn’t say anything, just utters ... .be it with those singed fingers, that dysfunctional hand ... on top of my arm or ... kind of ... registering ... sensing. We used to say the gesture is not a sign.
But more importantly for me with the gesture it’s that ... again ... that gesture always takes place within that kinespheric realm and ... sometimes ... that back of the hand just knocks on that boundary. So the gesture always takes place within, but actually it always means the beyond.

And the shoulder plays an important part ... it’s like the shoulder is the intermediary, interlocutor ... it could be, can be either with the upper body ... with the arm. It’s like a pin-ball-machine that has some form of crossing that ... organs can be thrown up through your arms into your hands.

And those fingers ... those singed fingers did eventually actually start to reach out and touch that boundary and ... the extended arm appeared.
This is my favourite movement. This is my contribution.
Touching that boundary knowing I will never be able to go beyond that boundary.

I walked to the front. I put myself next to David and I just placed that straight arm next to him closing that intersubjective gap between us and ... touched his shoulder. I put myself right in front of him like if I were to choke him ... with that now weapon-arm and the hand just slides down his arm into his right hand.
I take his upper arm, turn him around ... and push him into the wall and drag him along and ( ... ?).
My interest was ... to try how to make work about me and this other person ... how to interact ... interact to find physicality, the neither speaks merely about sensory situation, or theatrical togetherness, but would leave subject and subject side by side. And just just ... my only ... the only thing I could find was touching that boundary ...
But maybe the sad thing was however that after that gap, after having my hand in his hand ... standing next to him ... I grabbed him ... I got into that functional action to over-power him, render him object and ...

Between them ...

Movement (gesture as signs)

Here, I never know whether that’s my movement at all. Actually it’s just a tribute.

I know that this is the moment where I have to accept the place I’m in ... I want to let you know that I ... cherish and honour ...Sometimes I would like to be able to just say: Okay, my work is about love, my work is about ... that house that was built over there ... and when it turns around you can walk towards and then you know you really feel like ...
But ultimately there’s no possibility for me to do that. Because I can only say that ... what I feel I’m doing is that ... it’s always within that gap between the uttering and the uttered.

Thank you for listening.