To walk, to go somewhere, to move to another time, discerning and filling the gaps between bodies in movement with traces of memories. Artist Alva Willemark and choreographer Sybrig Dokter work together around several questions related to places and displacement, objects and images, and to memories contained within our bodies.
The exhibition CAPABLE OF RETURNING HOME is a shared dialogue across an extensive temporality with two voices reflecting on many moments. In January 2022, Willemark and Dokter presented a two-week exhibition under the same title at Index and utilized the exhibitional space almost as a domestic situation for testing scores and performances. Now, after a half year, Willemark and Dokter return to Index with a series of works expressing the meaning of home through memories — memories that create new pathways and new places which transforms the exhibition space into a wandering home for travelers who are welcome to join in the journey. As the duo states, “we are to keep visiting ‘places’ we have left with our bodies, to be able to walk into new ones.”
Memory can be understood as a parallel world that defines its own reality. Our own memory can be triggered by objects summoning forgotten places from the depths of our subconscious and raising multiple questions: how was our home when we were kids? What kind of feelings are related to specific spaces within it? Was it warm or cold? Was it scary? Was it a place for love? Through these questions, the temporal distances shorten as memories of the spaces emerge.
At Index, the visitor will experience a spatial installation in various phases combining film, texts and objects encouraging movement of bodies and the senses. At the entrance, visitors are greeted with a passage leading toward a horizon that opens up to various reference points. In the middle of the exhibition at Index, a metal staircase is displayed. It is the last physical remnant of a demolished house in the North of Sweden, once the home of Willemark’s grandfather. This single object opens a series of connections to memories for Willemark. Now presented as a sculpture, the staircase becomes a possible path toward rebuilding a house in the mind. The object itself is something to be observed with its many layers of meaning and possible stories.
Memories of other homes are present in the exhibition and their traces emerge in a double projection where we follow Dokter moving through a field covered in snow. In this empty, monochrome space devoid of boundaries, Dokter is carrying out a score scripted by Willemark in response to uncovering Dokter’s memories of the inward architecture of her many childhood homes. As the choreography progresses, walls, stairs, feelings and distances begin to appear from automatic yet forgotten movements. Performative scores are an important element of Willemark’s and Dokter’s practice and these exercises are visible within the space; some scores from the first phase of their exhibition in January are presented again. The scores offer a way for visitors to participate through movement and add their own memories to the thoughts and questions proposed by Alva Willemark and Sybrig Dokter.
Alva Willemark (1988) investigates intimacy, trust and control exploring the body through performance, installation, text and video. Her work has been exhibited at the Cairo Biennale (Egypt); Weld (Stockholm, Sweden); SKF/Konstfrämjandet (Stockholm, Sweden); and Krupa Gallery (Wroclaw, Poland). Sybrig Dokter (1955) is a choreographer and performer that works with the layering of physical practices relating to synchronicity, mirror-neurons and proximity. Dokter’s work has been presented in Hungary, Ukraine, Belarus and Sweden. Alva Willemark and Sybrig Dokter met through the project Flickor leker två och två.
CAPABLE OF RETURNING HOME is a two-week exhibition activated by the physical presence of artist Alva Willemark and choreographer Sybrig Dokter. Artist and choreographer share time and space at Index with one desire—to test the idea of home. What is a home? How do we feel at home? Who has the right to be at home? The current situation has rendered a world with closed borders, thus ‘home’—and ‘homing’—becomes a multilayered question. Willemark and Dokter write that they understand homing as “a symbol of rapprochement, homing as a method of affidamento (meaning entrustment), entrustment as relational basis for examining a material, a material of memory, home, walking and existing. Leading and following. Working next to, offering and receiving support, propelling each-other forward.”
Willemark and Dokter share a long-term dialogue with recurring lapses of intensity. Their dialogue is carried out through performative situations, videos and texts, contacts and thoughts without a strictly preconceived plan. Whether it is walking or standing next to each other or floating horizontally in the sea, different modes of sensorial perception emerge from the growing and diminishing gaps between their hands and legs but also from their relationship of support, sometimes coming from afar and, at other times, up close. With CAPABLE OF RETURNING HOME, the duo engages in one of these moments of intensity. If their work together started as a series of meetings and questions related to memories, feelings and places, at Index they discover new protocols for sharing, working, thinking and dialoguing in present time. They use Index as a place to build a home, a place to swim or fly from, a place to escape in.
The exhibitional time for CAPABLE OF RETURNING HOME is very short; two weeks for an exhibition that doubles as an episode in an artistic practice. Two weeks for a situated exploration into the idea of home and homing. How does one create a home? With furniture? Through conversation? By walking together? Could home be a series of gestures, helping us to understand a limited space and time? In Homer’s Odyssey, Ulysses is searching for home in Ithaca after many years away from the island. The artist Zilla Leutenegger stated that, for her, home is language. Frontex—The European Border and Coast Guard Agency—fight to prevent desperate migrants from building a home in a desired idea of Europe. In the novel Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the characters struggle to find home in a past and a place that has ceased to exist.
Before spending time together at Index, Alva Willemark and Sybrig Dokter took two trips. The first one was to the northern part of Sweden where they performed Walking a Home, a memory journey pulsating in the snow. The second was a walk through southern Sweden towards Dokter’s homeland, to her mother and the point where the land dips into the sea. Index is the physical space where the third trip happens. In this case, a static trip understood as a time to share experiences, to recognize movement, feelings, thoughts and ideas. This trip is shared in present time with visitors and the dialogue is opened carefully to additional voices transforming remembered homes and roads, moments of intimacy and gappiness leaking into a new constellation of experiences.
Alva Willemark (1988) investigates intimacy, trust and control exploring the body through performance, installation, text and video. Her work has been exhibited at the Cairo Biennale (Egypt); Weld (Stockholm, Sweden); SKF/Konstfrämjandet (Stockholm, Sweden); and Krupa Gallery (Wroclaw, Poland). Sybrig Dokter (1955) is a choreographer and performer that works with the layering of physical practices to do with synchronicity, mirror-neurons and proximity. Dokter’s work has been presented in Hungary, Ukraine, Belarus and Sweden. Alva Willemark and Sybrig Dokter met through the project Flickor leker två och två.
Anna and Marta met in 2017 and were brought together by their shared interest in non-hierarchical working methods and a curiosity of how the ideology of feminism could be integrated as part of their everyday work. As girls growing up in Sweden in the 90’s they both can relate to the Swedish saying that girls are unable to play in larger groups (“Flickor leker bäst två, när man är fler blir det bråk”) and this saying inspired the title of the project.
The project consist of six artists, and three pairs consisting of: Sybrig Dokter & Alva Willemark, Anna Knutas Blomquist & Anna Jakobsson, and Anita Kaya & Marta Forsberg.
Flickor leker två och två is supported by Kulturbryggan
The concept of affidamento stems from the Italian Second Wave feminist movement of the 1960s and 70s. Women organised in groups to learn more about themselves and the current political situation of the society. The supportive pair relationships were part of the feminist awareness raising and functioned as a way for the women to organise themselves within the groups as well as strengthening the women on an individual level.
In the project six artists – three couples – are working together. In various ways, the artists investigate their histories, both at a personal and structural level, through the exploration of different archives. The project aims to experiment with alternative ways of history making and knowledge production therefore, the starting point for the inquiry will be to challenge the hierarchy of the senses. This means that other senses then sight will be in the centre of the investigations.
As the political, economic and social climates are changing worldwide, we feel a great need of supportive, shared structures within the industry of the arts. Girls Play in Pairs is an attempt to build these structures while simultaneously digging deeper into our own histories and origins. Through our findings, we hope to lay a foundation for similar work to be developed and explored long after the project ended.
The various enquiries of the project will be presented in 2021.
Quest for an archive
Notes on process of choosing an archive for Girls play in pairs.
As I was getting a bit stuck in deciding which archive I would want to work from, I started with something that has been lying around for some years now.
In the 80ties my partner and me were hiking along the Alte Via 5 in the Dolomites. Between Rifugio Bajon and Bivacco Musatti we lost the path and got ourselves on a ridge with a considerable drop underneath us, just holding on with our fingertips. We weren’t able to go up and certainly not down. We easily could have fallen, or frozen into inaction. Somehow we maneuvered ourselves to a ledge that was a bit wider and where from we had the possibility to move up again to where, in the end, we did find the marked path.
We took photos from each-other on the other side of the pass when we knew we were safe.
It didn’t lead me to choosing it as an archive but the thought of travel and displacement brought me to the action of walking and walks.
Walking as leisure or walking because you must.
The long one, the everyday one, the special one that needs preparations, the one in solitude and the one with others. To leave and to return. Exertion, wounds, sore muscles. Rooting and up-rooting.
‘The walk’ as an archive.
What if the water in me is the same as the water in you?
‘Bodies of Water’ is a three-hour choreographic installation that leads the visitor, aesthetically and sensorially through an empathic experience inducing new ways of perceiving your surroundings in an encounter with five performers. Departing from Russian Marxist activist Alexandra Kollontai’s texts on love and Astrida Neimanis’ work with Hydrofeminism, the work attempts to embody and become water on a molecular level through language, objects stitched and worn, sound, relational tactics, and dance.
As subtle as the smallest water droplet or as wild as the wildest ocean, the performers circulate throughout the space choreographed by a scripted score—eddying, pooling, navigating, submerging, and rolling—meanwhile connected by a magnetic attraction not unlike the hydrogen bond. Through the sounds, gestures, textures, and objects we meet with our presence we find ourselves mirrored. The superficial reflection at the surface gives way. We give agency to the water within us—its tensions, traits, and potentials.
Prior to entering the installation, the audience are invited to don their own hydrologic aphorism, printed on simple A4 paper and cut into stripes that one can wear around the wrist.
‘Bodies of Water’ is part of Pettersson’s extended research ‘All Departures Are Waves’ (2019-), which brings forward the ecological, performative, political, economic, ethical, and narrative qualities that water entails and unleashes.
Choreography, installation and objects: Pontus Pettersson
Performed by: Klara Utke Acs, Robert Malmborg, Sybrig Dokter, Adam Seid Tahir and Daniela Escarleth Romo Pozo.
Music and sound by: Neda Sanai, Samo DJ, LUNE, Daniela Bershan, Jin Mustafa, Stolen Songs, PETS, Maria Hilmersson Landgren for the project SS20
Costume: Pontus Pettersson together with performers
Dramaturgy: Karina Sarkissova
Originally commissioned by Hannah Zafiropulos to be performed in Dora Garcia’s exhibition “RED LOVE,” at Tensta Konsthall May 2018
2 March 2020, 19:00 at Artús, Budapest.
Koncept och text: Sybrig Dokter
Projicering och ljud: Kristóf Szabó
Foto: Nadja Voorham.
Created during residencies at AQB Budapest, sponsored by ProProgressione – Budapest, Açık Stüdyo, Izmir, Weld, Stockholm and the Artists Grants Committee International program.
Supported by the Artists Grant Committee and the Artists Grant Committee’s International Dance Program.
12+13+14 juni 2018 at Weld, Stockholm.
It is happening (between you and me) / Sybrig Dokter (SE)
Koncept och text: Sybrig Dokter
Projicering och ljud: Kristóf Szabó
Foto: Nadja Voorham.
Skapad under residens på AQB Budapest med stöd av ProProgressione (Budapest), Açık Stüdyo (Izmir), Weld (Stockholm) och Konstnärsnämndens internationella dansprogram (Stockholm).
Med stöd av Konstnärsnämnden.
12 November 2017, 18:00
Soft Power Generator II
In our one-week research project, me and Weld Company will take as a starting point a practice that I have been working with, which I call ‘looping’. Rhythmically repeating a single movement while also gradually reshaping it in barely perceptible increments, the practice works on sustaining a state between repetition and difference. Drawing on interests including Deborah Hay, Aby Warburg, cognitive science and hypnosis, this practice considers the possibility of performing choreography as a kind of conjuring – seeking knowledge of the unknown through movement./ Matthias Sperling
9 September 2016 kl 23.55 – 08.00
Sybrig Dokter, Robin Dingemans, Nadja Voorham
Jag faller i sömn. Jag faller i sömnen och jag faller där genom sömnens kraft. På samma sätt som jag faller av utmattning. På samma sätt som jag faller av leda. Som jag faller sönder i ett ögonblick av nöd. Som jag faller, generellt.
/ Jean-Luc Nancy (The fall of sleep)
Den 9 september håller Weld nattöppet för en visning av det arbete som Sybrig Dokter haft residens med på Weld under februari och september 2016.
Nadja Voorham, Robin Dingemans och Sybrig Dokter fortsätter nu med balansgången på gränssnittet av att vara medveten och vara i sömn; ett kontinuerligt fallande i svarta rum; passiva, hjälplösa, i glappet mellan vakande och sovande. Prekära kroppar som har förlorat möjligheten att agera; som delar rummet och blir påverkade av varandra utan motstånd.
Nadja Voorham, Robin Dingemans och Sybrig Dokter kommer sova, mötas i drömmarna och gå i vaken vila från midnatt till morgon.
En första version av Falling visades på Weld den 28 februari
Framförd av: Robin Dingemans, Nadja Voorham, Sybrig Dokter.
Ljusdesign av: Ronald Salas
Projektet initierades av Sybrig Dokter
Three ways of mastering a kiss or a 25 minute kiss at your neck, by Aitana Cordera Vico.
15 July 2016 at Notafe, Estonia.
THREE WAYS TO MASTER A KISS or a twenty five minute kiss at your neck is the result of a research about kisses, kissing and group agreements and dynamics.It also investigates the sense of taste and the borders of tasting. Taste as mouths, oral and saliva. Tasting as how we experience and evaluate flavors, how we like or dislike things, how we judge and make selections.
Alvaro Frutos, Pablo Herranz (ESP), Sybrig Dokter (SWE/NL), Micheál Rowsome (IRE), Mira Kautto, Oliver Whitehead (FIN), Joanna Kalm, Kadri Noormets, Andrea Zavala Folache (NL), Oneka von Schrader (AUS/NL)
Lights: Triin Suvi
Sybrig Dokter and Elisabeth Poignant will perform Transference
18.00–21.00 Uppsala Konstmuseum during Revolve Festival.
by Saskia Holmkvist (SE/NO)
The word ”transference” will mark the room with it´s different interpreters in a performative act of transference via a computer to a projection that wants to become body. The challenge lays in how the choice is made to register architecture, place and time along with affective traces and flickering perceptions of the non-fixity of actions.
28+29 april kl 19.00
När Weld i vår fyller 10 år firar vi med premiären av Phoenix, skapad av koreografen Rebecka Stillman tillsammans med- och för Weld Company. Med Phoenix expanderas undersökningen kring danskompaniets vara och format till en stor scen.
På scen: Caroline Byström, Robin Dingemans, Sybrig Dokter, Marie Fahlin, Noah Hellwig, Elias Girod, Disa Krosness, Robert Malmborg, Sandra Lolax, Per Sacklén, Hanna Strandberg, Andrea Svensson, Anna Westberg.
Ljusdesign och rum: Chrisander Brun
Kostym: Erik Annerborn
Weld Company har sedan starten 2013 bjudit in svenska och internationella koreografer från olika generationer till att skapa koreografiska verk under devisen ”No Talking No Props”.
Verket Phoenix är en koreografi av Rebecka Stillman tillsammans med de kompanimedlemmar som ackumulerats sedan start och är en fortsättning av det arbete Rebecka utvecklat tillsammans med kompaniet under åren.
28 February 2016, 00.00-08.00
Sybrig Dokter, Robin Dingemans, Nadja Voorham
I’m falling asleep. I’m falling into sleep and I’m falling there by the power of sleep. Just as I fall asleep from exhaustion. Just as I drop from boredom. As I fall on hard times. As I fall, in general. Sleep sums up all these falls, it gathers them together.
Jean-Luc Nancy (The fall of sleep)
During the night from Saturday 27 – Sunday 28th February between 00.00-08.00.
Nadja Voorham, Robin Dingemans and Sybrig Dokter will sleep, meet while dreaming and move in wakefulness throughout the night.
We will sleep for you. We will dream. Dreaming as a place place where one is alone and at the same time joining millions of other people sleeping or dreaming in widely different situations.
We will try to stay lucid in that world which is created by our minds without any sensory input from the world around us. When touching someone or something in a dream there is no way to verify if that person or thing is really there.
It is an unstable world where things change with every glance and where one can look 10 times at a written page and see something different all 10 times.
The project is initiated by Sybrig Dokter and developed by Robin Dingemans, Nadja Voorham and Sybrig Dokter
during a residency at Weld.
Light design by Ronald Salas
at 720stundenSeptember 2015 21:00 – 22:30
There is nothing in front of me. There is nothing underneath my feet. There is nothing to my left. There is nothing here. There is nothing beyond the door, nothing the cat is running away with. There is nothing buried underneath the tree. There is nothing bruised, nothing growing in my kidneys. There is nothing funny about a gold fish. There is nothing in the house, nothing in the Milky Way. There is nothing left to see. Funny.
Mit Peter Stamer, Sybrig Dokter und Andreas Müller
Archaeological Bodies examined individual and collective structures in relation to identity, while investigating the way we ask questions and the answers they can produce. Subsequently, interviews were conducted with people who moved to Lviv recently or longer ago.
Archaeological Bodies is a project directed at the relations between different groups in Ukraine. It took place during three sessions in 2014 and 2015.
Directed by Sybrig Dokter and Nadja Voorham
Production: Kateryna Radchenko, Eugene Chervony
Archaeological Bodies is part of the project Waiting in the Margins by Lava-Dansproduktion which was created in Georgia and is now touring Ukraine.
Co-produced by Art Travel.
Financial support by the Swedish Postcode Lottery and the Swedish Institute.
Presentation/installation at Gallery of Cultural Center Temerin
23 July 2015, 20h
Supported by Creative Force program of Swedish Institute.
Supported by Artists Grant Committee’s International Dance Program.
Hur ser arbetsförhållandena ut för en frilansare inom dans och koreografiområdet idag? Hur skapar man en trygg tillvaro? Många väljer att vidareutbilda sig då det blir ett för krävande och ovisst arbete att producera sig själv och sin konst i ett ekonomiskt http://premier-pharmacy.com hårt pressat fält. Det finns alltså mindre tid till att vara i nuet, reflektera, fantisera och drömma. Hur kan vi återta denna plats?
Weld vill uppmärksamma dansaren och koreografen Sybrig Dokter för att hon håller sig kvar i fältet och som konstnär nyfiket letar sig vidare. Vi vill härmed hedra henne och hennes arbete.
Sybrig är en förebild för kollegor genom att insistera på den fysiska praktiken, den samtida diskursen och för att hon generöst delar med sig av sina erfarenheter. Hon har med skärpa, integritet och värme bidragit till Welds verksamhet och Sveriges dansscen och har under lång tid utforskat och förkroppsligat både sina egna och andras konstnärliga visioner.
Sybrig har också ägnat stort engagemang i projekt som ägt rum utanför det eurocentriska, bland annat i Moldavien, Ukraina och Vitryssland. Hon har under åren varit aktuell på Weld genom en rad olika konstprojekt, nu som medlem i Weld Company.