Articles — April 30, 2012 at 1:07 pm

Energy Geared to an Intensity High Enough to Melt Steel: Merce Cunningham, Movement, and Motion Capture

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Photograph by Tony Doughterty, courtesy of the artist.

LEA Volume 17 Issue 2
Senior Editors for this volume: Lanfranco Aceti and Simon Penny

ISBN: 978-1906897-16-1
ISSN: 1071-4391

Reference: Carrie Noland, “Energy Geared to an Intensity High Enough to Melt Steel: Merce Cunningham, Movement, and Motion Capture,” eds. Lanfranco Aceti and Simon Penny, Leonardo Electronic Almanac (DAC09: After Media: Embodiment and Context) 17, no. 2 (2012): 120-135.

Energy Geared to an Intensity High Enough to Melt Steel: Merce Cunningham, Movement, and Motion Capture
by Carrie Noland

The paper is concerned with the relation between everyday human social conditioning and the specialized skills demanded by choreography. Exploring the choreographic methods of Merce Cunningham, the author shows how choreography requires an entrainment of the body that mirrors modes of corporeal socialization while deviating in significant ways from the conditioning normally received. Cunningham works with constraints that have little to do with social convention, but that remain historical insofar as they reflect the technological conditions of a particular era. In the paper, his methods are traced from the inception of chance operations to the employment of Life Forms and the software-aided creative process.

Full article is available for download as a pdf here.

Vol 17 Issue 2 of Leonardo Electronic Almanac (LEA) is published on line as a free PDF but will also be rolled out as Amazon Print on Demand and will be available on iTunes, iPad, Kindle and other e-publishing outlets.

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