There is a room.
Perhaps it’s a kitchen or living room.
Perhaps the room is just empty.
The room is empty.
The walls are thick white plaster.
The air carries the smell of the dust and moisture almost as if it has dimension.
The room is cool even when the outside is warm.
Perhaps the room is too small.
The room is too small.
How far would one have to travel with one’s body to move from one wall to the other?
Not far enough for a dancer.
Dancers like open spaces, where the constraints are marked on the floor.
This room is like a swimming pool, where one hits one’s knuckles on the far edge after just a few strokes.
The sides are rough and this hurts.
Each time this happens it’s a surprise.
One knows in one’s brain that the pool is short, but still one is caught by surprise, as this space makes no sense for a body.
A body engaged in this kind of horizontal activity.
This space makes no sense for a body.
Especially a body engaged in this kind of horizontal activity.
How many people are in the room?
Where do they go when they leave?
Where’s the door?
What do people do in this room?
Slapstick. Pratfalls. Intimacy. Pain.
It is a place where expertise is of no use, or little use.
But still one tries.
This was written a year ago as a score for the choreographer Joanna Kotze in Bogliasco, a small town southeast of Genoa. Bogliasco is on the Mediterranean, one of the most polluted oceans on earth, in terms of crude oil, mercury, cadmium, zinc, lead, untreated sewage and plastic.
These aren’t plastic.
They’re sea creatures commonly known as by-the-wind sailors,
their Latin name is Velella velella.
Velella velella is a monospecific genus of hydrozoa. Each apparent individual is a colony, connected by a canal system that enables them to share food. The colonies are either all male or all female, and they reproduce in an asexual budding process.
These photos were taken at a beach a few kilometers from the Morandi Bridge that subsequently collapsed.
When they dry, by-the-wind sailors lose their pigmentation, and appear bleached white.