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In one of the most intriguing recent books on dance, Choreographing Problems: Expressive Concepts in Contemporary European Dance and Performance (Palgrave, 2015), Bojana Cvejić proposes that dance is capable of thought. This kind of thought is thoroughly different from representational thinking, which, since Kant, has been based on concepts of understanding. Instead of understanding and recognition, thought arises in expression – a path of experimentation in which a problem is created, posed and solved. For dance, this means that the problems must relate to the body, movement and time, even if no motion or living form of movement is perceptible – body and movement being historical residues of the discipline. Cvejić’s inquiry includes works made between 1998 and 2008 of what critics have referred to as “conceptual dance”, a derogatory misnomer threatening to eliminate the dancing body: a selection of choreographies by Xavier Le Roy, Eszter Salamon, Mette Ingvartsen, Jonathan Burrows and others. Of course, the comparison with conceptual art was inadequate because bodies and movements abounded in these works of dance. The problem lies elsewhere: these choreographies show that the source for dance could be outside the self, dissociated from the body that acts as an index of subjective expression or as an instrument of the form of dance. Their point of departure is somewhere else: in expressing problems that disrupt and denaturalise the bond between movement and body.
was born in Belgrade and now lives in Brussels. Since 1996, she has been active as a director, performer and dramaturg, and has worked for and with Mette Ingvartsen, Xavier Le Roy, among others. She has published numerous contributions in the fields of performance theory and philosophy.
Alongside publications together with Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker or Ana Vujanović, she has curated exhibitions at CCN Rennes as well as a performance focus at the Tate Modern.