body literacy is a way to understand our world
What is body literacy? Writer & rolfer Mary Bond says “body literacy is to become fully versed in your body’s sentience and responsive to the sentience of others. It is to understand all the workings of one’s body as expressions of self.” As such, body literacy can be used as a lens to look at any subject. Because our physical movements underlie everything we do & perceive, becoming more body literate can augment understanding of any & every subject.
Embodied public spaces are our unique contribution to creating a more ‘body literate’ society. Our inspiration is broad; we’re impressed & inspired by scientists, artists, body-workers, writers, engineers, doctors & others whose work reflect ideas of body literacy. Below are examples that range from artwork to science theory, blogs on movement to a film on a child assassin(!). We hope that you will email us to share the body-literacy work that you’re doing or have experienced.
OUR PEERS & PREDECESSORS
“Since 2007, photographer Richard Renaldi has worked on a series of photographs for which he asks complete strangers to physically interact while posing together for a portrait...“ At first, Brian Sneeden, a poetry teacher, saw no rhyme or reason for posing with 95-year-old retried fashion designer Reiko Ehrman, but eventually he, too, felt a change. "I felt like I cared for her," Brian says. "I felt like it brought down a lot of barriers." [http://www.cbsnews.com/news/new-york-photographer-turns-strangers-into-friends/]
"Cranked-up bass sounds leaking from cruising pimped cars are a familiar annoyance of the city streets in the world. What if the bass sounds are the drivers’ real-time heartbeat instead of beats of music?Does our relationship with the vehicle/driver and the pedestrians change?"
A fantastic example of how our individual habits of embodiment effect our interactions & communication. Professor, cognitive engineer & interaction designer David Tinapple developed this video by designing a recoding device that shut off every time Biden or Palin spoke, leaving only their breathing visible and audible.
The city of Boston commissioned artist & designer George Zisiadi's to create Pulse of the City, "an interactive public art installation that turns pedestrians' heartbeats into music. It consists of a large red heart with a speaker & handles mounted on a pole in the sidewalk. When visitors hold onto the handles, they hear their heartbeat layered over with custom music produced from their real-time pulse data."
Baryshnikov improvises to the sound of his own heart. In a collaboration with sound designer Christopher Janney & choreographer Sara Rudner, with Baryshnikov “wears wireless electrodes taped to his chest, transmitting the rhythm of his heart to onstage speakers […] Has its popularity surprised him? "I didn't know that people would take it so personally."
Public artist Graham Coreil-Allen created an embodied public space in Baltimore, inviting awareness, play & appropriated movement to a normally pedestrian way of crossing the street. The Hopscotch Crosswalk Colossus is one of three sets of artist-designed crosswalks made possible by Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts for the Bromo Seltzer Arts & Entertainment District.
It's a stretch, but we think that watching this movie is an experience of embodiment. The way that Saoirse Ronan moves is a rare example of a body in well organized motion, something actually not so commonly seen on the screen.