contours is a fluid performance environment, enveloping performers, computers, images and audience within a shared ecosystem. It used infra-red cameras, computer vision, and motion analysis to convert the movements of live performers into imagery projected both into the space, and onto the performers themselves. Contours aimed to move beyond the hype surrounding virtual technologies in performance and to create a performance which was genuinely interactive.
During performances, up to 50 audience members at a time climbed onto a custom built, reactive, stage. The stage allowed the audience to follow the performance as the movement progressed from the floor, across the volume, and through to suspension at the top of the space. The movements of the performers were observed by computers and translated into images projected onto the floor, a 360 degree screen and the performers' bodies.
contours moved away from contemporary 'cyber' aesthetics of saturated colors and polygons. It used a minimalist aesthetic to make the technology less obvious and focus the audience's attention on the performance. It rode on the assumption that the borders of bodies are permeable, and that the visual, aural and kinetic senses entwine. When duets occur they are across bodies and liquid light; across senses.
contours was created by Susan Kozel (performance), Kirk Woolford, (installation design/programming), Ruth Gibson (performance), Horatio Monteverde (architecture) and Leon Cullinane.
Original music was commissioned from Jonny Clark.
Linda Jasper of South East Dance Agency (SEDA) provided invaluable help in administration, promotion and tour management required for the development of the project.