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  • How to touch movement? Body Materialities, Social Choreographies and Queer Feminisms

    Kem is excited to launch a new study programme in autumn 2021. 
    More detailed  information will be announced at the beginning of the new year together with the Open Call.

    Kem School: How to Touch Movement? Body Materialities, Social Choreographies and Queer Feminisms is an experimental school (a research and study programme) initiated by Kem based in Warsaw. This collective study programme is devised to facilitate the development of personal practice as well as collaborative modes of working and self-organization, through experiments with and reflections on expanded choreography, performance and queer feminist practices. 

    The first iteration will welcome 10-15 local and international participants. Open but not limited to choreographers, artists, performers, film-makers, writers, cultural producers, dancers and activists, Kem School will offer critical support and advice, alongside a curriculum of seminars, workshops, reading-groups, as well as other formats, so that the participants will be able to develop their practice in a nurturing, transdisciplinary environment. The programme offers a curriculum that will in part be developed by the participants themselves with the intention of rehearsing modes of collective, critical and embodied knowledge production, questioning the very notion of what a school is and can be.

    How to Touch Movement? Body Materialities, Social Choreographies and Queer Feminisms invites the participants to engage with critical issues within queer and feminist discourse drawing on tools of expanded choreography and performance, giving space to address, amongst others, questions of care, perception, hapticality, collectivity, and biopolitics. 

    The term “choreography” includes yet is not defined solely in relation to the practice of dance, Kem considers choreography as a complex embodied system that uses movement to articulate the various relationships between intimacy, body materialities, sensation, society, politics, and environment. Choreography is also a conscious engagement with movement as an articulation of various body politic relations including the intersections of the regimes of race, class, gender, ecology, sexuality. We would like Kem School to be a platform for rehearsing  methods of politically conscious attention, non-normative bodily grammars, perception and collective responsibility. 

    The study programme is intended as a space that supports the acknowledgement and study of long-standing histories and ongoing systemic violence and othering of bodies, as well as the forms of embodied pleasure, joy and relationality that thrive in resistance. 

    How to Touch Movement? Body Materialities, Social Choreographies and Queer Feminisms supports individual research while simultaneously engaging with modes of collective practice as interdependent processes. The programme will attempt to produce knowledge through playing and experimenting with different modes of research, choreography, curating, writing, performance.  

    Kem School takes into consideration the current socio-political moment in Poland and internationally (including the rise of the far-right, increasing dispossession and precarity). In response to this, How to Touch Movement? is an exercise into forms of organisation and infrastructure building to support forms of community making and knowledge production through art practice. Some sessions will be led by invited guests, will be led and shaped by the participants themselves. 

    Throughout the duration of How to touch movement? we will ask questions such as: How to embody resistance through movement? What is  a decolonial choreographic practice? What counts as a body and which bodies matter? What do we mean by worldmaking practices, and what type of worlds do we desire? How can we forge new and mobilise old kinds of intergenerational knowledge? What forms of togetherness do the practices of touch, attention and multisensory perception allow us to organise? What historical experiences and resistant archives can we tap into to draw alternative genealogies and forms of naming?  

    The study programme will take place in Warsaw, Poland, starting in Autumn 2021 (precise details about the duration will be announced soon). We aim to bring together participants based in the region and beyond. The programme will be led in English and all participants should be able to move to Warsaw for the duration of the programme. Dedicated to participants from various backgrounds and with various experiences, Kem School invites practitioners interested in further developing artistic practices through choreographic, performative and somatic methods and research. The school will take place across various locations in the city. It is an infrastructure that is in the making and will continue to be so throughout its duration, in collaboration with different organisations in the city and internationally. 

    More details and the open call will be announced soon.

    The project is realised by Kem, as part of Krytyka Polityczna’s ‘Centrum Jasna’ program and is financed by the Capital City of Warsaw.