Case Study is a research video project that juxtaposes three different artists in order to make new connections between dance and design. I chose to structure the video as two simultaneous conversations, one between Leo Walk and myself, and one between Na Kim and myself.

Leo Walk is a dancer (and my favorite dancer) from Paris whose organic and poetic style breaks the codes of hip-hop and contemporary. Na Kim is a graphic designer based in Seoul and Berlin who values graphic design as a tool and as an extension. Throughout the video, I want to convey that I practice form making and conceptual thinking in two different visual languages.

To create two simultaneous conversations, I had one be video and the other be audio. My hope was to have the audio conversation enhance the meaning of the dance it overlayed. The audio is pulled from Na Kim’s lecture at CAAD. I chose two of Neels Castillon’s dance films to work with that both feature Leo Walk, PARCE QUE and ISOLA. The video was arranged in the style of a movement chain, in which after one person dances, the next person starts with the ending pose of the last person before continuing their dance. This process is repeated to create a seemingly fluid whole.

I went home last weekend to Connecticut to film my dance clips with the help of my friend Jessica Corbett (shoutout to Jessica you pulled through and saved me.) The field I filmed at is right by my elementary school, called Sunny Valley Preserve. I wanted a big open space to accommodate the spacial changes I’d have to make according to Leo in the two dance films. To make the clips smooth, I made myself a guide to know what post to start on and what pose to end on. Everything needed to be exact to create the fluid effect.

Post-production was both exhausting and rewarding. It was my first time really using Premiere Pro for a project, and I found it to be easier than After Effects (which I’ve used for every video project ever.) I started with composing the dance clips, then focused on audio recordings, then the beginning and end. It reminds me of making a cake, first baking it and then decorating. The running that opens and closes the video is meant to convey my eagerness, even passion for these two ideas; breaking into the scene and then leaving to find more answers.

I’ll leave you with part of my script when recording audio:

Dance and design are both forms of visual communication that rely on structure and aesthetics to convey a purpose. They both manipulate form in space. Design is in a sense choreographed because it follows a set of steps in its visual system. In the same way, dance is design because its form follows function to convey a feeling or a story. I’m able to practice form making and conceptual thinking in two different visual languages. Dance extends bodies, but how else can dance be an extension of design?

Graphic design student at Boston University

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