Viewing dance, viewing art
Isaac Spencer & Franz Ehrenberg
In his work as a contemporary dance artist, Isaac Spencer has often been met with the same question; what is contemporary dance?
Taking this question as a starting point to research the audience’s perception of his work, he teamed up with the visual artist Franz Ehrenberg to investigate the differences and intersections in their artistic practices in contemporary dance and fine arts.
They began their research by introducing their creative processes to one another, sharing work samples, and interviewing each other about their urgencies as artists. Isaac was invited into Franz’s atelier to witness how he creates his paintings and Isaac shared with Franz his dances in the studio. By identifying where their working methods intersect, they experimented with creating different spaces in order to test how the viewer interacted with and experienced their work. Over the course of the residency they met reference groups from SKD and a volunteer from Volkssolidarität several times, incorporating their feedback into the creations. Isaac and Franz focused their efforts on the visuality of dance and created a set in which they had the possibility to test the viewer’s perception of space and movement. They chose objects, textures, and colors that invited the viewer to form associations with their materials. By combining elements of their respective artistic practices, they collaborated to create live performance situations to research the reception and participation of the viewer.