Dance researcher/performer Maroula Iliopoulou follows the research process of Ingrid Berger Myhre in Museum Boijmans van Beuningen. Read her text and follow the journey!
Since Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen is currently being renovated, their collection has been dispersed across neighbouring institutions, under the title ‘Boijmans Next Door’. Having said that, Dancing Museums collaborative European Project has been on the move as well.
During the local residencies for our Dancing Museums project, I followed the appointed choreographer, Ingrid Berger Myhre, at three different institutions in Rotterdam: the Maritime Museum, the Museum Rotterdam and the Kunsthal. Curious about how a choreographic residency, especially within a museum environment, can unfold? Then navigate the local choreographic residencies of our Dancing Museums project to follow the journey.
Kunsthal: The maze – crafting the events
For the fourth week of the local residencies of our Dancing Museums project I followed Ingrid Berger Myhre at the Kunsthal in Rotterdam.
From the outset of her research, Ingrid has been interested in exploring unconventional ways and routes that invite the visitor to notice different things than they would normally see. A playful alibi for this journey has been the idea of a treasure hunt. Tracing the residencies back, from Stedelijk Museum Schiedam to Maritiem Museum to Museum Rotterdam, it is only now at Kunsthal that we become aware that the actual journey from residency to residency starts to resemble that treasure hunt on a larger scale. That being said, each residency has constantly offered new tools and perspectives to look at further. This week, Ingrid has mainly been dedicated to harvesting the treasures discovered on each of the previous residencies. She has examined and evaluated things that can possibly work together and has started crafting some journeys to experiment with.
The choreographic research at Kunsthal took place within the exhibition space entitled ‘Masterly!’, which presents a grand retrospective of four centuries of paintings and drawings from the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen collection.
The space which accommodates this exhibition has been designed in the form of a maze. There are many different pathways a visitor can choose to walk through the exhibition. This potential provides ownership for the visitor, who may enjoy crafting their own experience as they wander around, since there is no suggested or predetermined pathway to follow in order to see the artworks.
This observation becomes relevant to the nature of the invitation to a visitor to be guided, that is central in Ingrid’s practice. One of her questions in the series of events she has been crafting has to do with defining the viewer’s role. To explain more, this refers to the visitor’s involvement or witnessed moments, but also an interest ining work within a scale of distance/proximity. Challenging the dimensions of the space among the artworks, the viewer, and an event which can take place on the surface of the obvious, in distance or coincidental.
The labyrinthine design of the space this week inspired us to explore the spatial orientation. For one of the experiments, Ingrid used a thread attached to two or more dancers who were constantly moving, using different lengths of the thread and creating volumes in relation to the space. Viewers seem to appreciate this intervention, which eventually manifested as an alternative and three dimensional experience of their itinerary throughout the exhibition. Since the maze-structure had already invited the visitor to inhabit the space on their own sense, the particular event they encountered resonated visually and physically within their bodies. Therefore, the fact that there was an opportunity for the viewer to relate kinaesthetically may have heightened their experience.
Image: Paul Sixta