Our Every Move

Daily writing prompt
Which aspects do you think makes a person unique?

My very first year in art [1972] at Parsons the New School, I also took a class in experimental dance. A quirky choreography assignment here leveled up my ability to notice and see the distinct unique qualities occurred there that shaped and altered my awareness – every bit of understanding about and my own practices in art, writing and life.

We were sent out into the streets of Greenwich Village for an hour with a pad and pen to write notes on our observations of 13 distinct walks by individuals. They had to be distinct, which forced us to notice things we normally might overlook. A slight uneven gait, a head down – or a straight back, someone who turned or moved quickly, a shuffle, how the arms swung or hands in pockets.

When we returned to the studio, we took a handful of our most interesting observations and walked them ourselves. Then we expanded the movements. A small arm swing might become a complete rotation. A slight turn to the right a spin.

Then we took all these diverse move and created a moving image of intersections – an abstract painting of energy with bodies.

I carry these noticing and thoughts into my concern for others, my character creations for picture book stories.

I carry them into my body every time I explore music with movement – a practice I resumed decades later on in the realm of ecstatic, transformational, contact improvisation and authentic dances.

It may seem an odd part of our uniqueness, but out of all those specific and possibly dismissible traits, some that might be judged negatively, I learned to see a rich array of perspectives that together increased all possibilities.

I’m suddenly reminded of the somewhat haunting paintings of George Tooker of people all walking the same exact way in the same clothing looking the same. . . this link has a perfect description* from one of these paintings The Subway – https://whitney.org/collection/works/3052

*[The last line of this description = As Tooker remarked, he chose the subway as the setting for this painting because it represented “a denial of the senses and a negation of life itself.” ]

If this denial is negation of life itself, it seems to me the uniqueness of all living beings is a celebration of life and a triggering of curiosity in us begins with wanting to explore what makes other beings tick and stimulate our minds and hearts – as well as inspire our creative drive.

Published by bonnie fireUrchin ~ pb illustration & writing

bonnie - birth name with a boring story behind it. fireUrchin - acquired by life - it being a bioluminescent sea urchin with a sharp outer protection, poison for those who step on it, yet offering a glowing light from within . . . while living close to the ocean floor . . . and offering protection and rides to fellow sea creatures like lobsters, crabs, small fish, octopus. Deep sometimes dark explorations may transform into light making.

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