- DateMon. 22 Jul - Sat. 30 Nov. 2019
Amparo González Sola is a choreographer, dancer, teacher and researcher.She is from Argentina and works in Buenos Aires, Amsterdam and Paris – and now also in Utrecht.Amparo was in Utrecht before, as a dancer in the residency of Argentinian choreographer Juan Onofri.
Together, they presented Caravana
on SPRING 2017.
Now she has her own residency in the city, deliberately choosing Utrecht. She recognizes the power of the network in Utrecht and would like to use it in her work with a new group for her: psychiatric patients and their therapists.
Amparo’s residence is a collaboration with Het Vijfde Seizoen (The Fifth Season), an artist’s residency on the grounds of psychiatric institution Altrecht in Den Dolder. Het Vijfde Seizoen uses the relationship of an artist with psychiatric patients to put aside the negative stigma surrounding psychiatric patients.
What is Amparo’s story?
For Amparo, dance and movement stand for more than just artistic practice. She uses it as a means to investigate how the social and physical environment of groups of people can be set in motion.
For me, dance is about relations, both inside the body and with others. I think that our way of thinking about and perceiving of the body equals a way of thinking about the world.
By establishing a connection with Utrecht, Amparo not only wants to share her insights, but also asks Utrechts social, cultural, scientific and educational organizations for input. This multidisciplinary method fits in seamlessly with her hypothesis: if we view the human body as something that is multi-dimensional, then that will affect our wider relationships.
Our western conception of the body is: symmetrical, vertical, homogeneous, dry, two-dimensional body, thought from the shape. This conception of the body has constructed a type of society. I wonder what political and social implications other conceptions of the body can have.
The conception of the body that I propose is: a multidirectional, humid, asymmetrical, heterogeneous body, a body in continuous transformation, thought from its relations.
What does that look like in practice?
Amparo moves between theory and practice in her research. During her residency her research is expressed in a very concrete way in a special application: in the psychiatric clinic of Altrecht in Den Dolder. She works there with patients and practitioners together, focusing on experiencing the body.
The work is going to be really practical. We will do exercises of proprioception: sensing the own body. Closing the eyes, making really small movements in the body. Also, I will do exercises in finding the balance between moving and being moved. And then see how we can proceed from this state of reciprocity.
Just as Het Vijfde Seizoen, Amparo wants to change the stigma surrounding psychiatric patients.
From body to philosophy
In addition to frequent practice, Amparo also wants to work theoretically. Because for her dance and movement are directly connected to our perception of ourselves and how we look at our relationship with others, the step to theory is obvious. Amparo wants to bring dance, philosophy, neuroscience and politics together.
Thought and body are often seen as separate worlds; philosophy and the practical body as two different things. I think that perception, movement and thought go together.
That is why her residence offers a strong basis for connecting with various Utrecht institutions. Through Residencies in Utrecht, Amparo will involve dancers of ROC Midden Nederland in her work in Den Dolder, but also students and teachers of Utrecht University (Community Arts, Theater, Brains & Bodies, Philosophy, Clinical Psychology), Hogeschool Utrecht (Community Development) and various theater makers connected to the HKU. Also, Amparo will make contact with other inhabitants of the Altrecht grounds in Den Dolder, such as Kytopia.
During these three months I will propose sessions of movement, perception, dialogue and reflection between patients and therapists, students, thinkers, and movers. The peculiarity is that the encounters are horizontal. I work on the same level with patients and therapists, teachers and students, thinkers and movers.
Amparo’s ‘horizontal’ approach means that dancing, moving and thinking are done by everyone: patient, scientist and student. Everyone dances. Everyone is moving. Everyone thinks.
Amparo not only wants to come into contact with different disciplines, but really wants to create something new together around her research question. In this way she questions the boundaries between these groups, plants seeds for further collaborations. This way, Amparo takes the first steps towards a change in our daily society.