Interactive film offers interesting new forms of contact between the film and its viewer, but also requires other ways of shooting and editing the material. The participants research the relations between the paths of the camera, the movements of filmed bodies, the dramaturgy of the viewer and its movements on the screen or through space (in case of an installation), that together make up the form of the interactive dance film.
The workshop is an intense 5-day process. Starting off with a close study of several intriguing interactive dance film projects on the first day, the participants create the content, form and interactive experience of their project, discuss it with experienced trainers and participants, and build a working prototype assisted by technical assistants.
Participants can bring up to 40 minutes of material, on dvd, or on FireWire harddisk, preferably in Quicktime movie format.
Participants use an easy-to-learn tool, that allows the projects to be published online, or on dvd-rom.
All participants are assisted personally in realising their workshop projects. Specific technical knowledge of new media is not required.
is a media artist and director, active at the ZKM | Karlsruhe since 1994 in the field of multimedia production and stage production. His works consist of different interactive installations used for interactive dance performances. Awarded the grant prize of “Young Art and New Media“ in 2001, his works are noted all over the world.
As a producer, director and videographer of dance film, Evann Siebens has filmed numerous dancers and their performances, including Mikhail Baryshnikov, Bill T. Jones and Lucinda Childs. Former dancer with the National Ballet of Canada and the Bonn Ballet, Evann now devotes her time to (interactive) dance film in all its forms. Her films and documentaries have been screened with much acclaim at numerous film festivals worldwide.
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11 dancers, choreographers, film makers, and new media artists came together to participate at the Interactive Film Lab in Amsterdam. The central theme of this workshop was interactive dance film. The relations between the paths of the camera, the movements of filmed bodies, the dramaturgy of the viewer and it’s movements on the screen or through space came together in this theme and became objects of exploration.
In the morning of June 25th, the workshop started with an opening symposium at the Keizersgracht in Amsterdam where Evann Siebens and Chris Ziegler presented their fascinating interactive dance films and installations.
Evann as a dancer, producer, director and videographer of dance film, showed several of her own works and explained the production process.
Portal is the name of one of the new media pieces Evann made. It’s a product of a interactive dance website. As a visitor of this website you can travel through the virtual world by using dance to communicate with this virtual environment.
The second piece Evann shows in her presentation is the piece, "The Film:image/Word.not_a_pipe=". It’s an installation that gives the audience the rare opportunity to leave its seats in order to appreciate the work from all available angles. Evann used html and hypertext as code embedded within the image. It exists as a single channel film but also as a three channel installation. She explained the whole production process of this project.
Around 11.00 it was time for Chris Ziegler to present. As a media artist and director he focuses on multimedia productions and stage productions. His work consists of different interactive installations used for dance performances on stage.
In his presentation he ran into the audience questions about stage setup and production of his showed work. The audience already started thinking of ideas for their own projects.
The first day, and the following days, continued in the workshopspace of Mediamatic. After lunch Florian Thalhofer, maker of the Korsakow system, gave a presentation about his prizewinning interactive documentaries made with his system and discussed them with the participators. Now the participators had a quick look behind the curtains of the Korsakow system. Florian answered many questions about the possibilities for the maker and user of a Korsakow project. It was time to explore what this system is really about and experiment with it yourself! Participants learned step by step how to use the system and they explored the technical features of it. In the afternoon, the first ideas for the individual interactive dance film projects became clear through combining the possibilities of Korsakow with dance film material people brought or planned to shoot during the workshop. Chris also assisted the participants in this stage of project development with his new media performance knowledge.
Valeria: Here I discovered new technological contexts quite different from those we use in Cordoba-Argentina, and, at the same time it implied a huge personal challenge.
After the individual project ideas became more clear, it was time to prepare the film and sound material people want to use in their interactive dance film. Participants started to developing rough storyboards, and thought of possible keywords they want to use.
After one night sleep, all the information and ideas were processed and more things became clear about the way Korsakow works and the direction of the participators’ projects. Chris Ziegler gave a lecture on space and kinetics in interactive dance projects in the afternoon of this second day. This lecture was about multiple screen, multiple sound layers and the link versus the cut. He used examples from finished Korsakow projects, and when possible developing projects of the participants.
At the end of day 2 and during day 3 and 4 you already saw prototypes working! Film material was prepared, Fan filmed the interview of her moviestar, Peter finished the smoking images and Deborah had also found the way of how the images of moving bodies she filmed could merge with the sound.
As always the last two days of the workshop are a bit more stressfull than the first 3 days. Have I saved everything in the right folder? Can I edit the sound and all the images I want to use in time? Are there any links in my project that don’t work? And the main question: Can I finish my project in time? Fortunately all the students from Literature Institute Leipzig and University of the Arts Berlin helped the participants with their work so that all these questions could been answered in a positive way.
Valeria’s impression of the lectures in the workshop:
I was deeply moved by Evann’s work with its forceful poetry and its clean language; some of its images still remain in my memory. Chris encouraged us to experimenting, to an intelligent, creative use of/with technology. In both cases it was significant to see several of their works, which allow us to account for their searches and learn form their processes. Klaas’ talks on several topics enriched the creative process, activating our works and bringing up doubts to learn more.
Florian with his friendly personality, shared his work, his creativity, his development, how he reached to the creation of the system, and how he is still developing, it’s really inspiring.