For Wayne McGregor’s Atomos I worked with fashion technology company Studio XO and the dance company on a really interesting process-driven design for the costumes. Studio XO really push creative boundaries in terms of interdisciplinary practice and creativity. I have collaborated with them for many years on a number of projects. They use film not only as an outcome in itself but is also in the design process, to better understand movement of the body within space, essential yet underrated in wearable design.
This was particularly true of Atomos. Studio XO developed sensors to capture various biorhythms during rehearsals, and we initially used that as part of a multi level observation and documentation with film, drawing and biometric data. We also observed patterns in the way Wayne and the dancers moved and interacted – both physically and mentally.
For the next stage I used techniques such as layering video with parametric data, creating visualisations of the data, and tracking the movement of the dancers to creating abstract shapes and forms based on those paths and notes. Then elements were brought back into the performance space to disrupt and shake up the rehearsal space, through projecting the videos for the dancers to interact with and by creating physical objects from these data-based shapes. The dancers created choreographic material based on the properties of these objects as well as with them. The process then was repeated. I filmed and continued to work on visualisations that informed the costume designs in shape, colour and patterns. Each of the costumes is based on how the individual dancer moves and creates.
The outcome was a documentation of process – including drawings, video sketches, data visualisations - a whole body of work that had informed the costumes, as well as the final film essay, which succinctly and imaginatively communicates the design collaboration.
See the final film here - https://youtu.be/_Vk-nw0VW9E
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