Itay Yatuv

Itay Yatuv is the Artistic Director of the Hakvutza Dance School, and has been practising and teaching contact improvisation (CI) worldwide for the last 17 years. Itay trained as a contemporary dancer in New York, U.S; Italy, and Israel; then went on to independently choreographing and leading several international projects of improvisational performances. Itay has been training in Aikido for the past ten years, a practice he integrates into his CI research. 

Contakids has been developed in the last ten years.

Kevin O’Connor

Workshop:  A Precarious Crossing: Touching Fascial Relations

In this workshop we will touch into and explore the bio-tensegrity model of the body in relation to fascia research through a movement score.  A score can be thought of as open-ended rules to a game that people play within. We will examine how the score might orient our touch, and by extension the sociality of those participating in new ways.  We ask, how might our touching in this score always be collectively made?

Fascia can be thought of as the viscous goop that connects, divides, and slides between muscles, organs, skin, and cells. It has also been found to be active, intelligent, communicative, and a sensory organ, liquid, solid and mucus. Fascia research stretches between communities of biologists, massage therapists, clinicians, anatomists and pathologists, yoga and pilates teachers, embryologists, pharmaceutical researchers and doctors, and dancers, where each is partially connected to each other. This practice-as-research workshop thinks with the performance method of scoring to track the emerging science studies on fascia as this 21st century biological-cultural material comes to form. Through scoring, we touch into a tensegrity model of the body and attend to attention to track the political and social assumptions within fascia research.

Bio: Kevin O’Connor is a multidisciplinary artist working as a choreographer, dancer, improviser, circus artist and installation artist from Ontario, Canada and now based in the Bay area. He is involved in a decade-long artistic collective exploring participatory de-colonizing performances within polluted watersheds in Ontario. Over the last few years, he has worked with NAKA dance in Oakland, Shakiri and Skywatchers in the Bay Area, Oncogrrrls feminist art collective in Spain, and collaborated with Inuit hunter and designer Paulette Metuq on a project in Nunavut in the Canadian Arctic. He has been learning with the Axis Syllabus community for over a decade and is a biodynamic CranioSacral practitioner. He completed an MFA in choreography and is currently finishing a Ph.D. in performance studies at UC Davis. He is working at the intersection of arts, sciences, practice-as-research and improvisation theory and practice. His research examines anatomies, body performance capacities, interventions and imaginations in relation to science studies, including the material-bio-cultural tissue called fascia.

Romain Bigé

TOUCHY SUPERJECTS: haptics, posture, and individuation

In Ancient Greek, the verb for touch is haptomai. Contrary to the way it is said in English and other Indo-European languages, haptomai is neither active (touching) nor passive (being touched), but medial (touching-and-being-touched, inseparably). The medial is a verbal diathesis that can only be found in Ancient languages, such as Greek, Latin and Sanskrit. In the medial, the agent is at the same time the origin and the site of their action (Benvéniste 1966). In the medial, what I do is simultaneously what makes and affects me. Being born, dying, touching, dancing, pondering… all those verbs, in Greek, can only be said in the medial, pointing to activities or events that we participate in, and that reciprocally, we emerge from.

In this lecture weaving phenomenology (Straus 1935), process philosophy (Manning 2013) and somatic practices (Godard 1995), we’ll trouble our grammar with touch. We’ll envisage how haptics and the ways we are held contributes to the way we hold and support ourselves on the Earth’s surface. We’ll think of the touching subject as a touching superject: an emerging feature of relations in an affective environment.

Romain Bigé, PhD, digs, writes about, curates, and improvises dance and philosophy. Lives and teaches nomadically in and out of Paris, France. Currently is Philosophy and Epistemology Professor at Aix-en-Provence Fine Arts School (ESAAix). Fell in dance in North America and Western Europe with Steve Paxton, Lisa Nelson, Nancy Stark Smith, Matthieu Gaudeau, and many others. And now investigates the somatopolitical potentials of dance for mobilizing sensitivities to other critters.

Nita Little

Relational Intelligence: An issue of tactile embodiment

This introductory workshop will explore functional aspects of embodiment, allowing attendants to experience ways that spatial touch influences their relations with other people and the physical world. Through exercises that investigate the physicality of attention we will influence how we behave as a body that is inseparably a mind. We will come to understand that all embodiments are not equal in their relational potentials, and how language, imagination, time, and spatial practices change what we believe is possible and what we can do together.