Research

Most of my research currently revolves around questions of intermateriality in contemporary outdoor dance practices. How does movement come about in confederations between human, rock, river, tar? I am a post-doctoral researcher in artistic research at the University of the Arts Helsinki and additionally collaborate in a variety of research networks and activities that are related to artistic research, movement, materiality, ecology, space and being-in-this-world.

I consider artistic dissemination practices to be as important as artistic research practices and enjoy the challenge of developing responsive ways of working with both.

Research

august 2017 – a day in the gallery – Exhibition Laboratory, Helsinki

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[26.08.2017]

Shared day long event with Kirsi Heimonen and Jyrki Siukonen in the Exhibition Laborartory, Helsinki.

Taking stock of a year of post-doctoral artistic research. Meeting films with pens and pencils, moments of conversation, moments of recognising, moments of touching.

Photos © Petri Kaverma and Paula Kramer.

july 2017 – open human/nonhuman workspace @ DSP coventry

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    © Christian Kipp
  • Paula Kramer, Nigel Clark & Simo Kellokumpu - Open human/non-human work space
  • Paula Kramer, Nigel Clark & Simo Kellokumpu - Open human/non-human work space
  • Paula Kramer, Nigel Clark & Simo Kellokumpu - Open human/non-human work space
  • Paula Kramer, Nigel Clark & Simo Kellokumpu - Open human/non-human work space

[7. – 9.7. 2017]

Collaboration with geographer and social theorist Prof. Nigel Clark and choreographer and doctoral researcher Simo Kellokumpu. Mini-residency during the 4th Dance and Somatic Practices Conference, co-creation of a gallery space and performance. How do we collaborate with materials that populate and transcend the human sphere? The mineral, the organic and inorganic, the geologic – fire wood, dance mats, aluminum – crust of the earth, vulcanic activity, the interplanetary.

Artistic research processs investigating and appreciating human-non-human co-creation. How do we do it? Photos © Christian Kipp

june 2017 – workshop @ NOFOD – göteborg

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[14. – 17.06.2017]

Dance, Deviation & Public Spaces

Workshop at NOFOD 2017: “Dance and Democracy”. Playing and experimenting with the norms of acceptable behaviour in public spaces and the potential of dance to reconfigure them. Fluidity between normal-not-normal. Drag en miniature. Small dances of deviation. Attending to dance’s potential of mattering to the world, offering practices of deviation and participatory forces that mingle with social processes beyond dance.

More info about NOFOD 2017.

may 2017 – testlauf eins/testrun one – Martin-Gropius-Bau

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[16. + 17.05.2017]

One-to-one performative format on two days, collaboration with Sabine Zahn. In parallel: a walk with somatic interventions and Sabine, a pic-nic, conversation and site-based performance in three parts with Paula.

Sunny and rainy, strawberries, sloe jam and purslane, multiplicity and entanglements. Sensual stimulation and rational resonances. The burden of this site. The playfulness of petals, feathers, choices. Sloes and purslane foraged on site.

view flyer

april 2017 – lab @ SAR conference – helsinki

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[28.04.2017]

Body-based Research and Dissemination – A Collective Exploration & Participatory Methodology Lab (collaboration with dancer and doctoral researcher Joa Hug).

A participatory lab, exploring *body* practices in the field of artistic research. How does the body stay “in”? Engrained into all processes at work in a research setting?

Working with and through: our own questions, clay, water, paper, words and co-pilots.

A studio with prepared workplaces. Materials are offered as an invitation to play with and think alongside: what is a current threshold that is currently unresolved in my research?

Conference Programme here.

summer term 2017 – artistic research – BA seminar @ HKS Ottersberg

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Co-teaching with Prof. Gabriele Schmid at HKS – University of applied sciences and arts in Ottersberg.

A very diverse group of students – theatre pedagogues, visual artists and art therapist.

Does artistic research ruin the art? Does it have to be verbal? Do we need a PhD to do it? Many questions discussed over the course of the term.

All photos © Gabriele Schmid.

2016 – 2019 Martin-Gropius-Bau

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Exploring a site in Berlin. A stranger in a known place. Behind buildings, on a nodal point. Here is everything at once – remnants of Nazi Germany, a long stretch of the wall, the city parliament, a refugee accomodation, a memorial stone from the American Air Force, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (behind a large fence), many security cameras, the place as such, returning street sweepers, people on lunch break, urban wilderness, tourists passing throuch, trees, artists doing their work. What is rock, what is body, what is history, what is now, what is movement – here?

november 2016 – lecture @ KuvA – academy of fine arts, helsinki

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[2.11.2016]

Lecture/investigation on/of Intricate Relationships – Art, Site-Specificty and Research in the series Reframing the Artwork, curated by Annette Arlander and Mika Ehlo. Lovely group and lovely work. Exploring material as a connective force in site work and artistic research. Approaching text as material (Life in a World Without Objects, Ingold 2014 & Strange Realism: On Behalf of Objects, Harman 2015)

[All rights to the images remain with the artists, please do not reproduce]

february – october 2016 – reflecting with practice – joa hug

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A research project in three phases – Berlin I + Helsinki I & II.

Framed and directed by Joa Hug as part of his doctoral research project at the University of the Arts Helsinki on the epistemic potential of Body Weather’s ‘Manipulations’.

Time together in a research collective – practising the manipulations, learning and testing details, experimenting with the research score, excercising collective criticism, expanding into thought, words, breath, movement. A wonderous and rare opportunity for collective thinking and creation. Thank you all.

In collaboration with Outi Condit, Riikka Theresa Innanen, Tashi Iwaoka and Joshua Rutter. More material on the project here.

14 – 18 mar 2016 – artist retreat/research phase – coventry

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One week in Coventry with dance artist Sandra Reeve, exploring the Contexts of Time and Space in Ecological Movement. Organised as part of a wider research project by Emma Meehan.

Sandra Reeve facilitated a closed artist’s retreat, exploring the context of Coventry city as an urban environment with a final day sharing on the 18th of March.

Solo – group – trio. Accidental and intentional collaborations. Dreams of tall buildings, spirals, the liveliness of water. A lovely week in a familiar place. Photos © Lily Hayward-Smith.

The project was funded by Coventry University and partnered by Decoda and City Arcadia. Twitter feed for this project.

may 2015 – HZT artistic research phase and workshop with alys longley

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[8. – 26.05.2015]

Collaboration with Alys Longley (NZ) at HZT Berlin.

We brought to this research phase aspects of our main practises – experimental documentation (Alys) and materiality orientated movement (Paula) and offered these worlds to each other. Together we explored how our respective bodies of work inform processes of movement making, documenting and sense making.

Moving – writing – living.

We worked in the studio, on the HZT campus and its direct surroundings, Berlin’s neighbourhood ‘Wedding’. On five days we had external visitors and collaborators who co-informed this work. These were Jagna Anderson, Lina Kukulis, Hanna Nordqvist, Bettina Neuhaus, Yigit Daldikler and Simone Weber. To all these movement practitioners we are grateful for contributing to our working process.

This collaboration provided space to notice that both our respective areas of work are both intensely of material, materially bound and materially enabled. I noticed for example an immediate feedback from the materials I was working with. The amount of give, the quality of contact, frictions and resistances. Becomings of lines, fields or colours, forms and words in the moment of lowering tool to paper and beginning to make a mark.

I was also particularly intrigued by moments in which materiality orientated movement and documentation practices overlapped such that my dancing body could feel its becoming line on paper and the line speaking back to me and affected my movement.

To be continued and more to be discovered …

 

may 2015 – presentation at NOFOD – reykjavik

[30.05.2015]

Moving, Writing, Living – Experimental documentary practices in site-specific dance research.

A work-in-progress presentation in collaboration with Alys Longley (NZ).

A room filled with cards, cloth, an accordion book and a few items from Reykjavik’s beach. Collective explorations of experimental documentation and touching materials of different orders. Speaking, trying, presenting. A full hour during a wonderful conference.

[images coming soon!]

october 2014 – body, thing, material – somatic encounters

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[29.10.2014]

Der Oktober-Salon der Somatischen Akademie Berlin widmete sich im Gespräch mit Katja Münker und mir der Welt der Ding- und Stofflichkeiten. — Körper, Ding, Material. — Struktur, Gewicht, Temperatur. — Luftzug, Arm, Eisenbahn.

Wir luden ein, Material zu berühren und sich berühren zu lassen und über Bewegung als Begegnung mit Vielfalt nachzudenken. Wie entwickelt sich Bewegung in Verbindung mit Orten, Gegenständen und ihren Gegebenheiten? Was bedeutet das für unser Leben in Mitten von Organismen, Objekten und Witterungen? Welches Potential eröffnet sich dadurch in kreativen und choreographisch-performativen Prozessen?

march 2014 – daffodil lab @ C-Dare coventry

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[11. March 2014]

 
4 white tables, a waterbowl, some daffodils with bulbs and earth.
tea, butter, bread and jam.
a page of writing becomes a paper boat.
A set up for a daffodil cake? [Sarah wonders]

 

A sharing and collective exploration of “Dancing Materiality”.

Moving from and with materiality, in collaboration, in confederation. Combining this with what needs to be done right now. Email included. Witnessing each other in a partner score.

Playful immersions, hesitant integrations. The symbolic strength of objects! Seeing a whole body move, occasionally. Conscious touch. Appreciation of composition. Appreciation of bread. Thoughts on atoms. Shifting the human …

Thanks for joining!

july 2013 – the walk in phd @ DSP conference coventry

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[12. July 2013]

At the Dance and Somatic Practices Conference 2013 (Coventry University) I presented my research installation The Walk-In PhD. It offered the possibility to step into my research process and engage with its current form, move with objects, make sounds, view films and photographies, read texts and leave comments.

Musician Michaël Lacoult was part of the installation, playing several instruments including his double bass.

june 2013 – artistic research lab @ tanzkongress düsseldorf

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    © Anja Beutler
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[08. June 2013]

SHIFTING THE HUMAN : TOUCHING MATTER

With writer/philosopher Wallace Heim (UK) I offered a collaborative artistic research labs during the dance congress 2013 in Düsseldorf. We moved indoors and outdoors, witnessed and watched, touched and talked, washed our hands and ate strawberries. We experimented with and discussed how both mover and context might be considered as agentive and lively, as having something to say. We notived that a shift of the human positioniality might change our sense of temporality, time can expand as we enter the zone of things and materials – the radiator, the train tracks, the tree, the bare feet.

The tandem series of artistic research labs was initated by Joa Hug and carried out by Katja Münker & Ralph Fischer, Joa Hug & Monica Alarcón, Paula Kramer & Wallace Heim.

Read a review by Helmut Ploebst (in German).

 

august 2012 – publication of performance research 17.4 “on ecology”

  • Photographer Stephen Bottoms

I have co-edited the issue entitled ‘On Ecology’ of Performance Research together with Stephen Bottoms and Aaron Franks. It was published in August 2012, including my article “Bodies, Rivers, Rocks and Trees: Meeting agentic materiality in contemporary outdoor dance practice.”

How do we live on earth?

In recent years, a broad and growing range of performance events and processes have sought to re-imagine the question of our relationship, as humans, with the non-human environment. Where the traditional Western view has been to see ourselves as the central players on a static stage with a green backdrop, current thinking and experimentation often emphasise the diverse ways in which we are implicated in, responsible for, and responsive to the systems and processes that constitute life on earth. Who are the other actors – animal, vegetable, mineral, structural  – whose existence impacts on ours, and is impacted on by us? How is ecological consciousness and connectivity currently manifesting in performance studies and its related contexts?

More information about Performance Research.

 

may 2012 – body, trees & things – a reflective presentation, berlin

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[28. May 2012]

artistic research lab and open studio @ Uferstudios Berlin

research installation and discussion

films, items, postcards, string, photographs, comments, leather, cloth, pins, costume

a morning of quiet attentiveness, entering the installation through different pathways, playfully improvising with it’s materiality or reading / viewing a specific item.

in the evening an unexpectedly crowded space, yet attention and playfulness continue, are possible, available.

 

may 2012 – body, trees & things, stoneleigh

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[10. May 2012]

body, trees and things: final performance in the PhD-framework.

From village church through fields and under trees, an afternoon near Stoneleigh village, close to Coventry. A site of ancient trees and airplanes, of criss-crossing and settling, of traversing and trespassing, of sound and silence, of sun, clouds and rain.

A collective journey, sequenced by individual timing and interests.

 

may 2012 – body, trees & things (announcement)

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Welcome to body, trees and things – the final performance in the framework of my PhD.

We’ll spend an afternoon at a tree site near Stoneleigh village, close to Coventry. There will be images, trees, performance, food and conversation.

I’ve worked on the site since February 2011, in the beginning very informally, mostly with musician Michaël Lacoult. Over several months a more focused way of working has emerged, with a performative inauguration in October 2011 and an intensive work period of six weeks leading up to this final performance.

We will meet shortly before 3 pm at St. Mary’s church in Stoneleigh and begin with a brief walk to the site. If you have been to the inauguration, please note that this is a different meeting point.

To receive a map and thus ‘register’ your participation, please send an email: paula[at]paulakramer.de.

If you arrive by public transport: Take BUS Nr. 539 from “Coventry Station Bridge” at 14:13. You need to get off at the station “Stoneleigh Birmingham Road” at 14:42 and walk 5 min to the church. There will be enough cars to bring you back to the train station after the event.

The event will take place in any kind of weather, please dress accordingly.

 

february 2012 – trees, – a winter triangle, stoneleigh

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[15. Feb 2012]

Moving on the outer edges of what has becomes visible as a triangle. These trees were planted in lines that meet each other – three corners, three trees, three little performances.

In time you will find your way – foot!

Collaboration with Michaël Lacoult. One photographer as witness.

 

november 2011 – trees, – absolute soloist, stoneleigh

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[23. Nov. 2011]

Me and a tree became me and two elderberry bushes, a ball of string, a white flag, an old dead oak in the background. A small audience arrangement.

Three people watching from tree trunks and camping mat chairs and moving about. A dlsr camera on auto timer and a video camera filming continuously (silent, slightly scientific witnesses).

Entangled in small branches I move simply. From lying, to upside down, to rolling over, arriving at the other bush, going through and out. And there I am. And there you are.

Magic is the moment of three women coming over the hill in the midst as I have already begun to move. Later we talk, drinking hot elderberry juice and tea.

Next edition February 15, 2012, 4 pm. Write an email if you would like to come.

october 2011 – trees, – collective inauguration, stoneleigh

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[08. Oct. 2011]

Inviting known strangers to be among trees with a performer and a musician. It is early evening, quiet autumn. Not much movement in the atmosphere, but a shift into light and then it gets dark.

Collective procession into the trees, opening the camp.

Walking, starting. Many circles. Lostness, anger, pleasure. Quiet. Moving-singing-dancing.

Oh what? Oh what? Oh what? Oh what?                                     So what? So what? So what? So what?

There is attention and distraction, some concentration and a lot that remains unknown. As audience members join in, the net breaks open even further, yet little universes form here and there. Families in trees. A man tries to walk in circles. A woman sits under a tree. The double bass and his son walk into the field.

“Tonight this little copse is magical. And the elderberries, wow. They look delicious.” [Noël Warr]

Night falls. We eat chestnut soup and sourdough bread and drink hot elderberry punch.

Next edition November 23, 2011, 2:30 pm: trees, – absolute soloist.

october 2011 – trees, – collective inauguration (announcement)

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Throughout the year I have been working with musician Michaël Lacoult (double bass/objects) at a tree-site near Stoneleigh Abbey (Warwickshire). I am now considering this site as a possibility for one part of my practical PhD-examination in 2012. To ‘plough the field’ in preparation I would like to invite you to an informal sharing of our working there, which will include some showing, some collective improvising for those who would like to join us and some food and drink and a bit of chatting/feedback for those who are up for that.

You need to arrive in time for the beginning and can leave any time you wish.

Weather will be taken as it is! Please dress accordingly.

Getting there: Parking lots are few. Get in touch for directions, carsharing and train station pick-up.

There will be hot elderberry punch and sweet-chestnut stew (veggie) made from the autumn harvest of the site.

playing with trees
informal performative gathering
amongst old sweet chestnut trees

paula kramer & michaël lacoult
SAT 08 OCT 2011, 5 – 7 pm

Carsharing, directions and other questions: paula [at] paulakramer.de

 

may 2011 – applied and social theatre working group interim event

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Study day on Richard Sennett’s book The Craftsman

TaPRA interim event at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London, May 27th, 2011

skin, touch, collective, resistance, chicken, anchor, skill

I offered a performative response to The Craftsman, improvising with words, materials and movement. I was particularly inspired by the poetic recipie that started with “Your dead child, fill him with the earth” and the notion of material reality offering an anchor, thus understanding the body as something we can always return to. Reading and dancing The Craftsman makes me hopeful about the possibilities of expressive, metaphor infused language, collective agency, and patience.

Find more information on the study day

 

january 2011 – research installation at NOFOD, odense, denmark

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    © Paula Kramer
  • installation draft with MA students
    © Paula Kramer
  • Installation draft with MA students (image: Tara Rutter)
    © Paula Kramer
  • installation draft with MA students
  • Installation draft with MA students (image: Kerry Allsop and Prof. Whatley)
    © Paula Kramer

In the context of the Nordic Forum for Dance Research 2011 (NOFOD), I presented a research installation – a material as well as metaphorical communication tool of my research. Both static and ‘there’, yet also processual and continuously changing through the intervention of its visitors.

For me this is one attempt of developing modes of research dissemination which are able to transmit core themes and experiences of research in a dense frequency and in a way that is, I hope, both reflective and generative – of thought, experience and insight.

2011 obreros espaciales / raumarbeiter 2

Second international meeting @ dansBURG in the Catalan Pyrenees: Obreros Espaciales: Laboratori transversal de arquitectura i dansa – Space Workers: transversal laboratory of architecture and dance.

2010 obreros espaciales / raumarbeiter 1

In collaboration with architects Pepe Ramos and Marta Serra I started the research network obreros espaciales, in English space workers, in German raumarbeiter. We invite architects, dancers and others who have dealings with space into moments of collective investigations.

The first meeting took place in July 2010 in the village Burg in the Pyrenees and was hosted by dansBURG.

2009 dem raum lauschen / escoltar el lloc

With dance and movement therapist Montse Martí I embarked on a photographic and movement based investigation of what arises when we listen to space. What we found was an intense inscription of individual and collective memory into a location. The final exhibition was shown at galerie magenta in Berlin and Alliançe Francaise in Granollers (CAT). The catalogue was produced by the Ajuntament de Granollers.

Rixdorfer Str. 9

12487 Berlin

Germany

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paula [at] paulakramer.de