Amphibious Trilogies

BALLUSION workshop #2

On 4 May 2020 we held the second of three workshops for Master students in choreography at Oslo National Academy of the Arts (KHIO). Due to the restrictive policies concerning coronavirus we get together in ZOOM.

Following up Masters’ workshop #1, we take another look at the lexicon movement verbs, now accessible online: FUTURES DESIGN MOVEMENT WORDS.

We play with these words, we think, move and make metaphors that may shape our futures choreographic projects. To do this we draw on the notion of BALLUSION, a made up word to create a design futures metaphor. It conjoins Balloon and Illusion. The future may be inflated, or expanded. The future may be a faction (blending fact and fiction) or an illusion. It may be a mix of these.

BALLUSION is also a devise/tool/score. There are two versions; online/digital interaction and download the print versions, each giving instructions and prompts on how to proceed. In this workshop we appropriate the printable version, adapting instructions and prompts to the needs of the participants. Let’s get physical! With the ‘score’ and the list verb words at hand, each participant gathers balloons (in this case, transparent bags), paper, scissors and marker pens.

Here we go!

FOCUS: FACING THE FUTURE
1. In what ways does your project ‘face the future’?
By this we mean, is it a choreo-design project that does what choreographic designing does, that is to shape.
2. Does it do something new, for a time that’s beyond today?
3. Or is it a project that explores, experiments with or even disrupts our hopes and expectations in the short or long term future?

FEELING THE FUTURE: BALLUSION #1
1. Inflate the balloon (plastic bag!). Hold onto the balloon.
Prompt: If this is the future, how might we shape, twist, deflate, go, squeeze, bounce, tap, shake, stretch or release it??
2. Experiment with your balloon (shaping, twisting, deflating, squeezing, bouncing, tapping, shaking, stretching, deflating and/or releasing)

BALLUSION #2
Prompt: Looking at ‘balloon’ as a metaphor for futures allows us to play with futures in a very tangible way. In this section, we’ll use this metaphor to articulate your futures positioning or what kind of futures you’re working towards.

1. From the list of verbs, select 10 words that are interesting for you.
2. Write down these words on paper, then cut out each of the words.
3. Place a sheet of A3 paper on the table.
4. Draw a circle in the middle of the A3 paper.
5. Put your chosen 10 words into the balloon and inflate it. Tie a knot.
6. You’re now sending your words into the future. Use black marker to write the working title of the project on the balloon.
7. Hold the balloon in your hands and get ready to pop it.

BALLUSION #3: BACK FROM THE FUTURE
Prompt: The balloon is the metaphor for the future, and contained within it are words. The words inside the balloon represent words in the future. To be able to see/touch/have them you need to bring them down to the present.

1. Pop the future/balloon so as the words ‘fall’ onto A3 paper. See how the words are scattered in-and around the circle (near/far/overlapping).


2. Select 5 words that would you bring back from the future?
3. Relate them back to your project. How do these words work to prompt, project or even propel your project into the future?

WRITE THE FUTURE MORE CLEARLY
1. Take the three-line description (paragraph) you wrote earlier.
2. Rewrite the paragraph including your selected 5 words.
3. Is there a difference between the two paragraphs? Have you discovered a new metaphor for your project? Discuss with the whole group.

Amphibious Trilogies collaborates with the project FUEL4DESIGN, Education and Literacy for Designers. We contribute to the Futures Lexicon with FUTURES DESIGN MOVEMENT WORDS.

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