monadologie day 14 & 15

Thursday was so baking and heavy, like getting into the trunk of a car on a hot day and being taken for a drive until expiration. And the flies. Something about cattle and poo and thousands of breeders per cow pat and all the runts, scrawny, malformed, malnourished and ravenous come in an insatiable black flying plague to vomit on and suck the nutrients off the lips of us mentally feeble enough to be outside and walking on such days.

We spent a brain-exhausting few hours in the studio of Lucy Guerin learning a few of the short phrase bits that came out of the VR Lab work. I’d spent the previous evening doing Final Cut Pro cut and paste watching Lina then Bonnie, finding stuff that worked – an odd and extremely subjective pursuit that nonetheless is quite clear to see – and ending up with a slew of 5 second tiny monsters to do … something with.

The first day of learning from video this stuff is the hardest. It’s partly getting used to understanding what we’re seeing, especially the transfer of 3-dimensional depth onto 2-dimensional inclines and foreshortenings, it’s also registering the detail and the procession of movement, mapping it onto our bodies, making very biased decisions about how far to go with detail, formulating rules and ideas about all this, and working out what to leave till later. We had this during temperance, and after the first couple of days it became a breeze.

The difference here is that we are working with specific methods (eg 9-point, avoidance, tracing, point, line, surface and volume operations etc) of analysing the VR visualisations, and so early on made a couple of rules that will possibly be very important in the eventual generation of the work. The first, possibly because I’ve been in Final Cut a lot the last couple of days is called bins. In all the improvisations, particular body parts, surfaces, joints, wrinkles, muscles and so on are afforded priority. Besides the general shape of movement over time, which can be reproduced reasonably quickly, these bins, which the rest of the body accommodated itself around are more or less impossible to recreate. They represent the immediate physical acts in response to the visualisations and there’s no way of turning the camera around to find what they were pointed at.

So we came to a decision these would be left open, as long as we knew both what body part was an empty bin at any time, and what operation was taking place within that location, anything could be slotted in (the second rule). This is probably important in the later stages when the work is being generated and a lot of making it up as we going along is happening in regard to external input from a bunch of data.

No photos yet, but Leo is planning to come in on Thursday and draw us, so everyone can see the strange little things we get up to in the studio.