On the edge of undoing: Ecologies of agency in Body Weather
Pini, S. (2022). On the edge of undoing: Ecologies of agency in Body Weather. In K. Bicknell & J. Sutton (Eds.). Collaborative Embodied Performance: Ecologies of Skill (pp. 35–52). London,: Methuen Drama. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5040/9781350197725.ch-002
This chapter explores the practice of Body Weather (BW), a postmodern dance methodology, addressing how BW performers experience and enact agency in this context of practice. Adopting a cognitive ecological, ethnographic, and phenomenological approach, this work focuses on the creation of AURA NOX ANIMA (2016) – a short dance film directed by Sydney-based visual artist Lux Eterna and filmed on the sandy dunes in Anna Bay, New South Wales, Australia – to underscore the role played by the physical and cultural environment in shaping BW performers’ sense of agency. Through the analysis of salient features of BW methodology, that include the practice of bisoku, slow movement, and the cultivation of an attention to the changing ‘weather’ of the performance ecology, this chapter suggests an ecological notion of agency as a key concept in the study of embodied cognition in performance. The chapter emphasises the relevance of addressing the environment-culture-context situatedness in the study of performance practices.