Reclaiming the alienated Self


Dissertation, MA Art and Science, Central Saint Martins.  Published in the LABS Database

The unpredictable shift from the natural world to the (digital) technological sphere confronts body and mind with a variety of new challenges. A lack of physical sensations, loss of identity and increasing self-awareness lead to isolation and alienation. Although neurological researchers are only beginning to understand the relation of mind and body, technological inventions are offered to the conditioned consumer who commits to alterations. Critical voices perceive the postdigital era as an awake nightmare that urgently requires models by which human being can live in balance with technology. Returning to past handworks and somatic practices, such as contemporary dance could treat man- made damages, yet reclaiming the self demands an examination of man-made failure and a collective solution. My work involves the interdisciplinary collaboration with contemporary dancers and handworkers, where I analyse the importance of habitual mind-, body- and groupwork through workshops and personal experiences. Furthermore I am holding ongoing interviews with professionals with different backgrounds, and undertook internships in neuroscience and fashion design. Secondary research on self and culture in psychology and philosophy function as sources of information and enrichment of vocabulary. This study is part of an ongoing research project analysing the changes of mind and body through technological alterations and sociological misconceptions (racism and sexism). In analysing these changes from a female perspective, and through interdisciplinary collaboration, this research will increase an understanding of underrepresented areas. Simultaneously it will be used for workshops in the arts to provide independent knowledge on Self and Culture, and to produce works that engage the viewer to reflect on the above issues.

Collective Synchronisation

2015 - 2017

A workshop and choreography based on biological rhythms.

This workshop connects us on an essential level: with body rhythms, such as heart-beat, breathing or brain-waves. In the first part of the workshop you will learn more about body rhythms, e.g. the effect of stress or relaxation. In the second part you will create short performances in partner or group works using methods such as clapping, whistling, breathing. Throughout the day you will be supported to develop your exercises, and perform to the public. The partner work should strengthen the group by acknowledging similarities, instead of differences: a collective synchronisation.

Presented/performed at Tate Exchange (2017) and Residency in Czech Republic (2015)

Anthropocentric Choreography


For Student Affairs, at Foreign Affairs Festival Berlin, I designed this movement outdoor workshop in collaboration with dancer/choreographer Nelly Hakkarainen.
It is an interdisciplinary laboratory, which connects the medium of art with the analytic reflection of Zeitgeist politics. Therefore we use technology as a contemporary medium and explore the possibilities of the body in urban landscape. It is a continuation of my previous solo research Anthropocentric Choreography (2014/15).

Whether its the natural or the built-architectural environment - present circumstances force us to adapt continiously. Regarding the body as a flexible and interactive organism the participants learn to work with principles of choreography in public space. Starting with a general theoretic introduction to (self-) perception we continue with movement technics using the city landscape as a playground and stage. Technology functions here as a tool for creative expression and quick self reflection -
we are researching the balance between adapting to landscape and standing out of it.

The collaboration between dancer Nelly Hakkarainen and artist Monika Dorniak is fusing their two research pools, and thereby creates a more-in-depth-program. This includes Nellys interest in site specific choreography and Monikas interest in the science of the human anatomy and contemporary architecture.

The workshop invites participants from different disciplines to reflect upon the excessive usage of technology and life in urban space. The practical part of the workshop is connected with theoretic insight from our research pool, and makes it possible to actively discuss about the thematics.
There are no previous experiences in dance or choreography needed- instead we welcome different experiences and skills to create a versatile scenario.

Circles and Cues


This workshop was applied to various projects, such as my collaboration with Rory Pilgrim and as a workshop at TAT-werk, Berlin.

The workshop Circles and Cues connects the Scientific and Artistic by understanding and experiencing our personal cognition & perception. During two workshop days we will combine moving & observing with capturing & reflecting.
In the first part of the workshop I will give a basic introduction to the human cognition & perception. This knowledge is based on current scientific findings in neuro-psychology, psychology and mind-body-awareness. Understanding what e.g. Metacognition, Neuroaesthetics, Empathy scientifically mean, will lead us to the second part.
Secondly we go deeper into the artistic work. By projecting scientific matter into space, neurological and anatomical networks will become our inspiration for choreographical output. The maps of the body are leading the body itself to create movement material. We will work in solo and group settings.

For the workshop we will use mind & body, maps and science books, camera & paper, and obligatory the computer & mobile devices. The usage of various media allows us to deepen the experiences and extend the workshop above the time-being. A.o. we are going to use the website to create an archive of the workshops content (scientific papers, links, and video material of the course).

We Convert Our Mind To Creativity


Video Still: Festival Trailer (2013)

In 2011 I initiated the self-organised group We Convert Our Mind to Creativity, with the aim to connect people from various backgrounds to talk about topics that adress us all, such as the human cognition, the anthropocene era, and collectivity. While the group had no specific location, it worked in various locations, and throughout the web.  Two major projects came out of this group 1) Festival of Art and Science (2012), Trier and 2) Synthetic (2013), Shift, Berlin. 

︎︎Festival of Art and Science (2012), Trier
A festival uniting artists and scientists and the audience to exchange, experience new knowledge, new technics, new relations regarding the universal topic >Human Cognition<.

With works by: Anthonis Antonellis, Dominik Bubel, Ting Cheng and Virginia Francia, Elisa Damm, Darko Dragicevic, Martin Fell, Rudolf Grillborzer, Demian Kern, Christine Sun Kim, Frederic Kokott, Ginna Lee, Tómas Lemarquis, Matthias Neumann, Thilo Seidel, Marielena Stark, Rosemarie Stuffer, Jetske Visser, Lukasz Wierzbowski

Symposium: Dr. Karl F Wender, Jasmin Sinha, Dr. , Matthias Neumann
Moderation: Monika Dorniak

︎︎Synthetic (2013), Berlin