The radical reassessment of performance conceived by Tatsumi Hijikata calls into question the body informed by dance systems and society. While exploring a wide range of corporealities, Hijikata focused his attention, in particular throughout the 1960s, on the nikutai (carnal body). This specific corporeality is corruptible, pluralistic, metamorphic, ungovernable, intrinsically political and anti-capitalistic. The nikutai permits the performer to access and explore gaps between reality and fiction, to uncover the quality of deformation and malformation inherent within reality, while resisting systems of knowledge and forms of monolithic identity. As Hijikata states, the nikutai is shattered at the moment of birth. Hence, it may be said that disfiguration is at the very root of the carnal body, which oscillates between the rotting corpse and living body. In his 1960s dance aesthetics Hijikata experiments with corporeality by challenging image, reproduction and representation, and dismisses the figurative outcome of the performative act. Central to this enterprise is the corruption of the body and of the standardised body-object relation disciplined by language and quotidian behaviour. In this essay, I examine aspects of Hijikata’s artistic strategy to undermine choreographic methodologies and framed corporeality. With reference to James Gibson’s theory of affordances I also argue that the challenge in butoh’s movement process and corporeal work disrupts affordance. In relation to this alternative economy of movement, and of attention and exhibition, is highlighted the question of how Hijikata, in his earlier experimentations, avoids ‘the aesthetic consciousness of those who dance’ and switches off the power of gaze.

The radical reassessment of performance conceived by Tatsumi Hijikata calls into question the body informed by dance systems and society. While exploring a wide range of corporealities, Hijikata focused his attention, in particular throughout the 1960s, on the nikutai (carnal body). This specific corporeality is corruptible, pluralistic, metamorphic, ungovernable, intrinsically political and anti-capitalistic. The nikutai permits the performer to access and explore gaps between reality and fiction, to uncover the quality of deformation and malformation inherent within reality, while resisting systems of knowledge and forms of monolithic identity. As Hijikata states, the nikutai is shattered at the moment of birth. Hence, it may be said that disfiguration is at the very root of the carnal body, which oscillates between the rotting corpse and living body. In his 1960s dance aesthetics Hijikata experiments with corporeality by challenging image, reproduction and representation, and dismisses the figurative outcome of the performative act. Central to this enterprise is the corruption of the body and of the standardised body-object relation disciplined by language and quotidian behaviour. In this essay, I examine aspects of Hijikata’s artistic strategy to undermine choreographic methodologies and framed corporeality. With reference to James Gibson’s theory of affordances I also argue that the challenge in butoh’s movement process and corporeal work disrupts affordance. In relation to this alternative economy of movement, and of attention and exhibition, is highlighted the question of how Hijikata, in his earlier experimentations, avoids ‘the aesthetic consciousness of those who dance’ and switches off the power of gaze.

Processes of Corporeal Corruption and Objective Disfiguration in Tatsumi Hijikata’s 1960s Butoh

Katja Centonze
2018

Abstract

The radical reassessment of performance conceived by Tatsumi Hijikata calls into question the body informed by dance systems and society. While exploring a wide range of corporealities, Hijikata focused his attention, in particular throughout the 1960s, on the nikutai (carnal body). This specific corporeality is corruptible, pluralistic, metamorphic, ungovernable, intrinsically political and anti-capitalistic. The nikutai permits the performer to access and explore gaps between reality and fiction, to uncover the quality of deformation and malformation inherent within reality, while resisting systems of knowledge and forms of monolithic identity. As Hijikata states, the nikutai is shattered at the moment of birth. Hence, it may be said that disfiguration is at the very root of the carnal body, which oscillates between the rotting corpse and living body. In his 1960s dance aesthetics Hijikata experiments with corporeality by challenging image, reproduction and representation, and dismisses the figurative outcome of the performative act. Central to this enterprise is the corruption of the body and of the standardised body-object relation disciplined by language and quotidian behaviour. In this essay, I examine aspects of Hijikata’s artistic strategy to undermine choreographic methodologies and framed corporeality. With reference to James Gibson’s theory of affordances I also argue that the challenge in butoh’s movement process and corporeal work disrupts affordance. In relation to this alternative economy of movement, and of attention and exhibition, is highlighted the question of how Hijikata, in his earlier experimentations, avoids ‘the aesthetic consciousness of those who dance’ and switches off the power of gaze.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/3715694
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