Archaic Now

The CounterPULSE Gallery, San Francisco, February 8–March 1 2009

The 2009 Artship Exhibition Series addresses–directly and indirectly–the rise and fall of civilizations around issues of freedom of speech and expression, and notions of alignment and misalignment of place. In the ebb and flow of history, times of cultural flourishing are frequently followed by times of oppression and darkness. Concurrent with the performance are two visual arts exhibitions: Archaic Now, at the CounterPulse Gallery accompanying the performance, and the exhibition at San Francisco's Bonnafont Gallery, The Library of Maps.

View of the Old As New exhibition in the ODC Theater Gallery

A visual arts exhibition, in conjunction with the performance at CounterPULSE Gallery in San Francisco.

View of the Old as New Exhibit


View of the Old as New Exhibit

Photo of Catrina Sheen and Tom Franco, in an allusion to Leonardo's Vitruvian Man drawing

Photograph by Nikhil Sarma from the exhibition showing the Artship process

In this particular Artship Ensemble rehearsal, the dancers followed the lead of one dancer at a time, mirroring the leader's improvised movements with the bamboo sticks with radial symmetry. Exercises such as this helped to develop a sensitive awareness to the members of a group in the present moment, without losing the awareness of one's own body and personal space. The shifting three-dimensional mandala-like patterns formed by the circle are the expression of no one actor's movements, but the synthesis of the group's awareness and reply to each other

During the weekly incubation process, the ensemble members improvise with a uniques matrix, which itself emerged from an earlier improvisation. Ensemble members always rehearse in costume—in fact, the costume is given by the director or created by the ensemble members as the first seed of inspiration toward building a character. A prop, costume, a greeting, a phrase, or the atmosphere created by the ensembel musicains may all be used as the seed of an improvisation.