Performer in a motion capture suit with a spotlight surrounded by around 7 people, one explaining to the others. Projection in the background shows a mesh of an avatar

“Yugen” (Jap. “mystery and depth”) is a pas de deux dance performance of the dancer Christine Bonansea with several representations of herself in a feedback loop. Her body transforms from human to abstract figurines to superhuman VR avatar. The avatar is bouncing back onto the dancer’s body, who wears a capture (MC) suit that also animates the avatar as it dances. This looping transfer process is interrupted and altered to find the original physical quality of an individual human character. “Yugen” develops a temporal space where the real and virtual space are not always congruent but dependent on each other. The avatar and the dancer are both moving in a congruent frame, developing an investigative interest on each other worlds.

Cover Photo: Patrick Kruse

Link to Yugen Research (2021 DOCKdigital Berlin):

Christine Bonansea Saulut

Christine Bonansea Saulut is a US-European dancer and choreographer with 20 years of international experience in conceiving, directing/choreographing and performing movement- based works. Artistic director of CBC, founded in 2010, she creates performances, installations, and films. Her work inhabits an experimental, interdisciplinary including new digital media such as VR/AR, and collaborative environment. Selected internationally in residencies and venues in USA, Japan, Korea, Canada and Europe. She is supported by the Zellerbach Family Foundation, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Theater Bay Area, the NYC LMCC, DOCK art /Berlin, the JOINT ADVENTURES // NPN and the TakeHeart resumption funded by NEUSTART KULTUR, the program DIS-TANZEN of the Dachverband Tanz Deutschland, Perspektiv Kultur with DOCK Digital Lab residency.

Link: http://cbcdance.com

Chris Ziegler

Chris Ziegler is a digital artist stage. After teaching interactive media at Arizona State University (USA) from 2013 – 2021, he returned to Europe to work again on dance and theater productions, using immersive technologies on stage. 2022 he was a member of DOCKdigital Berlin, presenting “ARENA” a solo dance production using life generated AR and “ANA”, an AI theater production, funded by the Volkswagen Foundation. His creative and artistic career began in 1994 at the Center for Art and Media ZKM Karlsruhe with multimedia productions for the Frankfurt Ballet and the Choreographic Center ICK Amsterdam among others. Since 1999 he has been producing his own award- winning digital dance productions on stage, which tour internationally.

Link: http://movingimages.de

MODINA Residency

The 8-week MODINA residency for the development of this project took place at tanzhaus nrw, Düsseldorf, between 20/11/2023 and 19/1/2024. It culminated with an artist talk and a public showing, 13/1/2024.