I love you not

In thinking about the subversion of the traditional 'male gaze' and the idea of a negative relational aesthetic as 'unrequited love', it makes sense to look at Yvonne Rainer and her seminal work Trio A from 1965. 

A physical poem to avoidance and refusal, where a barrier of disavowal of the traditional, fetishised spectacle exists even when performer and spectator occupy the same plane. 

Rainer's manifesto of the unreturned affection resonates. 

No to spectacle.
No to virtuosity.
No to transformations and magic and make-believe.
No to the glamour and transcendency of the star image.
No to the heroic.
No to the anti-heroic.
No to trash imagery.
No to involvement
of performer or spectator.
No to style.
No to camp.
No to seduction of spectator by the wiles of the performer.
No to eccentricity.
No to moving or being moved.

EDIT: 04/05/11
I saw Babette Mangolte, the filmmaker responsible for this recording of Trio A, speak at the Barbican last week. She was an amazing woman with a fearsome will and she spoke at length about the works she made with Trisha Brown and her continued collaboration with Yvonne Rainer. It was interesting to hear how autonomous she was in the making of these pieces, especially in relation to Rainer's manifesto. It seems Mangolte was allowed complete control over what she made and that these films exist almost as works in their own right, other than as documents of the choreographies. That said, they seem to have proved invaluable in the re performance of these works in later years. 

During the talk they screened Mangolte's first film, Trisha Brown's Watermotor (1978) - possibly one of the most beautiful pieces of dance I have ever seen. A slowed down version of the dance is repeated a second time, creating a disarming grace that plays tricks on your perception of the motion. You can see a little snippet here if you fast forward to 2:16 - although watch Sololo's too. Mangolte referred to this work as her masterpiece, always interesting to hear when someone feels like that about the first thing they ever made. i.e when they knew nothing.

Babette Mangolte's Website. 


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