based in London
researches on the curatorial,  
curates still and moving images,
writes about art and life.



Dance Theatre for Real People
Artist: the real


Jimei-Arles International Photo Festival and Discovery Award


JIMEI | 集美

2017. 11. 25 - 2018. 01. 03

现场册页 | Leaflet PDF

Images: courtesy of the artist.

The photographs of the real were born from Wang Mengfan’s dance theatre for real people, but the group hopes the photographs will travel far. The strange thing is, these still and moving images have created an entirely different form of dance video. A form that in shooting, editing, and soundtrack production carries the original atmosphere, perhaps even better than the original recording material. Perhaps this is because the three deliberately do not record entire performances, preferring to use parts to recreate the soul and atmosphere. Wang Mengfan is a dance director and editor. Da Zhuang and He Shaotong are editors, witnesses, accompanying the growth of the play, familiar with the personalities and thoughts of the ordinary people who jump up on stage, and know how the audience interacts with the music, taking a form under the lights. When the curtains are drawn back, the photographers become hunters, sneaking into the performance with their memories and expectations. And in post-production, Mengfan’s selection and rearrangement of the material is nothing less than second creation.

In 1993, U.S. pioneer dancer Merce Cunningham and his photography partner Elliot Caplan produced a video together, Beach Birds for Camera. By activating the machine, the making of this video is actually a dance between the dancers and the video camera. the real’s work takes one step further to escape from the bound of representing the performance and make the video works more independent. Their subtle attention and sophisticated editing shortens and lightens the original recordings. the real’s work reminds us – the often-neglected dance theatre is blessed with more possibilities of image production and worth exploring. What’s more, the real’s work shares a concern with the documentary photography which is towards the everyday life and the expectation of an ideal man. The collective’s initial desire for dance theatre of real people was to get ordinary people on stage, and enable them to become real by dancing. We see in their photography how, in loosening the social discipline instilled in their bodies, people slowly took off the bodily constraints and revealed their own beauty and dignity.

梦凡和伙伴们的影像诞生于王梦凡导演的“凡人舞蹈剧场”,但他们期待这些影像可以离开剧场、行 至更远的地方。奇怪的是,这些静态和动态影像生出了有别于剧照和舞剧纪录片的形态,在捕捉、剪 辑、配乐后,甚至比原始记录更贴合剧作本身的气质。这或许是因为小组里的三个人在意的并非以全 局视角记录某一次完整表演,而是如何用影像再现作品的魂魄和气息。王梦凡作为舞剧导演和影片剪 辑师,大壮和何绍同作为摄影师,共同见证、陪伴了剧作的生长。他们理解这些踏上舞台的普通人的 个性甚至内心,也熟稔众人肢体如何随音乐摇动、在灯下定形。帷幕拉开,摄影师们便是同时带着记 忆和期待围捕转瞬即逝的表演的猎手,而在后期剪辑里,梦凡对素材的遴选和重组更近乎心中存有原 型的二次创作。

美国先锋编舞者摩斯· 肯宁汉在 1993 年与他长期的影像合作伙伴埃利奥特·卡普兰共同制作了录像 《为摄像机编排的“海鸟”》,在录像机的景别推进和机位切换加入后,影像的生成其实是演员与录像 机的共舞。而在王梦凡的舞蹈剧场里,舞蹈设定的观看对象并不是相机镜头,影像作品也跳脱了再现 舞剧的束缚。细微的着眼点和精巧的剪辑让影像简短、轻盈,与舞剧同脉呼吸但有着独立的节奏。梦 凡和伙伴的作品提醒着我们,当代影像时常忽略的剧场空间仍蕴藏着影像生产的许多可能且值得更多 实验。他们的作品也分享着纪实摄影对日常的关怀和对理想之“人”的憧憬——梦凡的“凡人舞蹈剧 场”的初衷即是让真实的人们进入剧场,让人们在剧场和舞蹈中成为真正的人。在梦凡和伙伴的影像 中,我们看到了普通人如何在舞蹈剧场中松动被社会规训的身体,在褪去种种身形程式后,显露出自身的美和尊严。

About the Artist / 艺术家简介

Wang Mengfan, born in 1990, graduated from CAFA where she practiced and di research on dance theatre. Then she went to study in Germany.
Da Zhuang, born in 1991, graduated from Nanjing University. She is an amateur photographer and theatre groupie. She is still learning and trying to find her path in life.
He Shaotong, born in 1990, graduated from Tsinghua University Academy of Fine Arts. Asa part-time artist, he now lives in Germany and China.

The artist collective "the real", composed of them three, creates image-base works from theatre shoots.

王梦凡,生于 1990 年,毕业于中央美术学院。研究并实践舞蹈剧场。德国游学中。大壮,生于 1991 年,毕业于南京大学,非职业摄影人,常混迹于剧场内,至今还在学习和摸索的过程中。何绍同,生于 1990 年,毕业于清华大学美术学院。艺术兼职者,生活工作于德国和中国。

三人组成“ the real”小组,创作独立于舞蹈剧场作品的影像作品。