Luke Jessop

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JURIJ KONJAR

Dynamics of Dialogue

Class:

Being more similar than different, we-the-people share a playground; dealing with issues such as space, memory, music, need, body ability, panic, reading of our senses, reading our partners etc. Though much indicates our differences in how we perceive and describe such phenomena, we fill in for the lack of certainty with assumption in movement, through touch and in conversation; and keep adapting as we go. I suggest that to develop this communication platform further, phenomena needs to be experienced, observed and named the only way they can be – individually; to then enable dialogue.

In these five days I’d like to challenge you to dialogue with an old friend – your bodily movement, from a fresh perspective. Let’s assume the natural, given state of a body is movement. I can direct, transform, guide, even deny it; what I can’t do is avoid it. From this perspective, movement is therefore not something I need to strive for, but rather observe and guide that which is already happening. I suggest a backwards step; to observe the various processes we call “dancing” before they result in shape.

We’ll continuously work on three levels: dealing with bodily sensation, mind information and the ethics of dialogue.

The workshop is appropriate for all who perceive the world through change; and who aspire to being beginners again.

Bio:

At an early age Jurij Konjar (1978, Ljubljana) trained judo and dancesport and took singing lessons. After receiving his first technical training in contemporary dance in Ljubljana, he decided to study at P.A.R.T.S. in Brussels. He later worked with and for Les Ballets C de la B (Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui Company), Robert Olivan, Boris Charmatz, Martin Kilvady, Maja Delak, Janez Janša and many others.

He has created many acclaimed performances, such as Catharsis for Beginners (2004, Dance Theatre Ljubljana), for which he received an Audience Award at Gibanica (Moving Cake) Biennial of Slovenian Contemporary Dance Art; Ulysses (2004, Exodos Institute), Goldberg Variations (2010), For Julian Mer-Khamis (2013), Still (2014) and more recently, collaborative improvised events Monday at Eight (2017) with dancer and choreographer Andreja Rauch Podrzavnik and improvised cycle Ventilator (2020, Sploh Institute) with Katja Legin. In 2021, he created the solo show B.O – Biodegradables (DUM Association of Artists).

In-depth observation of Steve Paxton’s Goldberg Variations video, with conversations that sprouted from it, triggered the development of his personal improvisation practice. Since 2010 Konjar has been collaborating closely and regularly with choreographer and dancer Steve Paxton in the reconstructions of his famous Goldberg Variations (2010), Bound (2013) and in the opera Quicksand (2016). In 2011 Contact Quarterly, co-edited by Lisa Nelson, published his observations and writings in a booklet titled Goldberg Observations.
From 2011 to 2013 Jurij taught and performed in Palestine. Between 2012 and 2014, he was resident artist at Modul Dance Network, in the frame of which he developed Still, a two-year project with partners from 7 European countries and a number of collaborators (Franck Beaubois, Catherine Jauniaux, Jaka Šimenc, Martin Kilvady and others), focused on exploring instant composition, scores and improvisation. Between 2015 and 2016 he performed Goldberg Variations and Still in the USA, Europe and Slovenia and taught improvisation workshops in Athens, Paris, Nantes, Strasbourg and Slovenia. In 2015 he received the Ksenija Hribar Award by Slovenian Contemporary Dance Association for his dance achievements.