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date: 21 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

What makes a mountain sacred? How do spirits come to dwell in rock or forest? Which rituals are performed to bring rain? Traditional cultures formalized their relationship to the land. This essay considers the work of contemporary dance-makers Jennifer Monson, Eiko Otake, and Suprapto Suryodarmo, who use experiential approaches, including improvised movement, to investigate the environment, whether urban or rural, from courtyards to local parks. The chapter argues that in so doing, these dance-makers create a contemporary geopoetics, propositions of relationship between the human body and a changing twenty-first-century landscape. In the industrialized world, a dichotomy of natural versus humanmade often arises. Through their work on site, these dance-makers disrupt this binary and suggest, instead, a continuum. By including human doings in their geopoetics, they help us to refind relationship within, offering a sense of integration with or embeddedness in the environment.

Keywords: dance and the environment, place-based dance, site-specific dance, site dance, dance Improvisation

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