Image by: Mariia Shurkhal/Adrián Artacho

Desire Machine – An artistic exploration of the performative space during Schmiede Hallein 2022

Where: Schmiede Hallein (Hallein, Austria)

When: 2023-09-15, 19h

Who: Mariia Shurkhal, Adrián Artacho, Leonhard Horstmeyer

“Desire Machine” is a work created in the months leading up to and during an artist residency at Schmiede Hallein 2022. There, choreographer Mariia Shurkhal, composer Adrián Artacho and the complexity researcher Leonhard Horstmeyer set out to explore various possibilities of expression between human and machine, drawing inspiration from Gilles Deleuze’s -& Felix Guattari’s- concept of “Desiring machines”. For our work, I explored different ways of translating a dancer’s movements into atmospheres of sound and light.

First we programmed an application (SmoothOperator) that reads the acceleration data from the dancer’s smartphone and creates different sound and light moods.

First camera tests in which dancer Mariia Shurkhal controls the sound and light moods with her body.

Later, in the boiler room of the Schmiede Hallein, I developed a more elaborate set-up with a light rack behind the dancer and a transparent “curtain” made of found materials.

The resulting work was deliberately site-specific, from the space itself (an old boiler room of an abandoned factory) to the materials available (paper, scrap metal) to the technical setup (20 DMX-enabled lamps, all available ones we could find).