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WHAT IS NOW

NOW is an artist collective based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands

We are interested in what is NOW all around us. And want to focus a system lens on what we see.

NOW has a track record of projects and partnerships, ranging from collaborations with scientists and academic research institutes to work commissioned by cultural institutes and initiatives. It is our mission to develop work in exchange and/or collaboration with our partners, and to artistically interpret and add to the theme or system at stake. Activities range from developing site-specific projects, (lecture)performances for scientific conferences, participatory movement workshops, interviews and installations.

We use and combine our expertise in performance art, movement research, spatial design practice, coding and instrument design as well as our pedagogical experience.

We are inspired by system thinking as a way to observe and analyse a situation as well as to act creatively. Our artistic practice is a playful reassessment of what we see. Our collaborative effort is to relate to systemic questions. We offer a different perspective to these questions by creating performative systems that multiply, magnify or revert cycles of cause and effect.

 

Systems can change, adapt, respond to events, seek goals, mend injuries, and attend to their own survival in lifelike ways, although they may contain or consist of non-living things. Systems can be self-organizing, and often are self-repairing over at least some range of disruptions. They are resilient, and many of them are evolutionary. Out of one system other completely new, never-before-imagined systems can arise.”

Donella H. Meadows Thinking in Systems

WHO IS NOW

IVO BOL

Composing involves listening to the world around you. To the hum of the fridge or the noise of the record just before the song starts. When performing I use my body to manipulate these sounds with light sensors, touch, gesture or brainwaves. I am part of composers group Monoták. My work is often interdisciplinary, working internationally with dancers, choreographers, light designers and filmmakers. Besides being a composer, performer and curator I work in the area of music and mental health. I studied history in Groningen and Sonology in Den Haag.

ivobol.nl

ROOS VAN BERKEL

I am a dancer and choreographer based in Amsterdam. I work on the intersection of dance and technology. The core of my work lies in systematically observing and choreographing movement for the human and non-human body, while questioning relationships that revolve around similarity and difference. I have shown my work at various digital art and art & technology festivals in The Netherlands: E-Pulse, STRP and Discovery festival. Other festivals include Gent Light Festival, Museumnacht A’dam and different theatres in Hungary and Romania.  For the past ten years I have been teaching at the Academy for Theatre and Dance and Eindhoven University of Technology. In July 2018 I received a development grant from the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts (AFK) to create compositional scores for dance and technology based on scientific themes.

lmanalysis.nl

MARION TRÄNKLE

I like observing patterns. As a trained architect as well as software engineer, I am skilled to be analytical about structures and systems. I like to take a birds-eye view on stuff, to see how things, ideas, and people are entangled and how they act together. I started my career in the political and social climate of Berlin after the fall of the wall, working in architectural design for communal housing projects. After my move to the Netherlands some 20 years ago, I engaged with the unstable quality of dynamic relations and temporal spatial structures. I studied choreography and worked as lighting designer for build environments.

Today, I work in performance art integrating system thinking, computational processes and live-performance into stage scenarios. I have a preference for cross-discipline perspectives, research and experimentation. Currently I also teach at the Eindhoven University of Technology and at the ArtScience Interfaculty at the KABK in den Haag.

mariontraenkle.eu

WHAT WE MAKE

Ik werd meegenomen naar een andere wereld waar hersenactiviteit en omgeving aan elkaar worden gekoppeld. De ingenieuze visualisatie is een mysterieuze ervaring: als kijker zie je direct verschillen tussen individuen. Het geluidsontwerp maakt het gehele beeld compleet.

Sabine Wildevuur, WAAG society 

(UN)FOCUSSED is a performance with and about the brain. It exposes our differences as individuals and our basic similarities as humans.

The EEG data of two performers are monitored, compared and translated into dynamic movements of lasers, light, and sound. The performative system uses neurofeedback and real-time display of the performers own brain activity as well as external stimuli for the brain. The audience becomes a witness of the performers effort to self-regulate their brain function, while trying to maintain synchronicity with each other. The performance ends with a mental effort of the performers that puts the entire audience in the spotlight.

(UN)FOCUSSED was commissioned by the Amsterdam Brain and Mind Project (ABMP). This UvA‐VUA Amsterdam Academic Alliance Initiative aims to build sustainable bridges between the fields of neuroscientific and cognitive research. NOW was approached for an artist in residence project to develop a work that interprets and adds to the scientific theme of neuroscience and cognition research. (UN)FOCUSSED was performed for 2000 academic researchers during the Amsterdam Neuroscience Kick-off Conference in the Theater Amsterdam. [link]

Artistic team:

EEG analysis and laser design: Alberto Novello
Sound design: Ivo Bol
Scenography & light design: Marion Tränkle
Choreography: Marion Tränkle, Roos van Berkel and Tashi Iwaoka
Performers: Roos van Berkel and Tashi Iwaoka
Registration: Eric de Clercq

Client:
Amsterdam Neuroscience Alliance.

Funded by:
The Performing Arts Fund NL, the Creative Industries Fund NL, and the Amsterdam Brain and Mind project

Performances:
15.10.2015 try-out at Amsterdam Dance Event, Compagnietheater Amsterdam
18.04.2017 Amsterdam Brain and Mind project, Compagnietheater Amsterdam
19.04.2017 Worlding the Brain Symposium, Compagnietheater Amsterdam
06.10.2017 Amsterdam Neuroscience Kickoff Meeting Theater Amsterdam
09.04.2017 The Warp, Art Chapel Amsterdam
23.09.2017 Festival Nuit des Lampions, Wiltz, Luxemburg

video loop ǁ 23 minutes

For (IN)FOCUS we conducted interviews with specialists from the fields of science, cognitive research and cultural analysis. In an attempt to treat the brain as subject and object at the same time, we asked the researchers to reflect on their work and the implications for neuroscience. During the interviews we recorded the brainactivity of the interviewees with an EEG and translated their alpha waves and eye blinking into a soundwork.

(IN)FOCUS was produced for the Amsterdam Brain and Mind Project in 2017. It was part of a commission to produce artworks that contribute to the merging of cognitive research, life sciences, behavioural sciences and humanities.

Interview Partners:

Prof. dr. Agneta Fischer, Director of the Psychology Research Institute at the UvA

Prof. dr. Arjen Brussaard, Director of Amsterdam Neuroscience

Prof. dr. Patricia Pisters, Professor of Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam

Prof. dr. Wijnand Geraerts, Emeritus Professor Molecular Neurobiology University of Amsterdam

Artistic team:

Marion Tränkle – video

Ivo Bol – sound design

Client: 

Amsterdam Neuroscience Alliance

Exhibition:
18.04.2017 Amsterdam Brain and Mind project, Compagnietheater Amsterdam
19.04.2017 Worlding the Brain Symposium, Compagnietheater Amsterdam

BLINK is a performance that uses eye blinking as a performative tool.

It is a part of our current research into rhythms and patterns of our body and brain, and makes use of the different dynamics of conscious and unconscious blinking. 

Our performance setting suggests a step-by-step progression and linear procedure in which the body serves as an intermediate between cause and effect. Three people sit in front of a screen and “read” eye-blinking instructions from a visual score (blink, blink, pause, stare, blink…)

The blinks are captured with EEG headsets. Every blink gets translated into a boost of light and a sound. However, the seemingly simple one-to-one connection becomes challenged as the piece progresses. Gradually, the link between the score’s instruction and the generated visual and acoustic environment slips. The effort to control the body’s natural blinking rhythm eventually fails. The signals hick-up and the eyes tear. 

Performances:

25.01.2019 Come Together #4, Frascati Amsterdam

Artistic team:

Performance:Roos van Berkel, Ivo Bol and Marion Tränkle
Sound Design: Ivo Bol
Lighting Design: Marion Tränkle
Registration: Eric de Clerq

SEE ME NOW is a site-specific project for the former Panopticon Prison in Haarlem.

It was commissioned by Cityscape Foundation as part of the art manifestation “Architectural Healing”.  We were asked to transform the space, to deal with its historic and traumatized past so it could be opened up and used again as a multi-functional centre with art, housing, a new university, recreational and public spaces.

The cupola is one of the three Panopticum-style buildings in the Netherlands. The 224 prison cells are situated around the central cupola that spans over a diameter of 62m. The project “See me now?” zooms in on the building’s specific architectural scope and function – specifically its centrally organized surveillance functionality –  and seeks to revert the mechanism. Who looks at whom? What can I see? But also: How can we act together? To “heal” means for us to re-visit the sore points of the past and to deal with them differently.

The performance starts with the smallest possible unit – one cell –  and looks at ways of setting out communication lines throughout the entire performance. Visual and acoustic patterns connect 224 individual cells to each other and to the panoptical centre point. With See me now? we inverted the power structure of the architecture in a live performance, bringing the personal stories of the prisoners in the centre, magnifying their personal experience, and opening up the rigidity of power dynamics.

Artistic team:

Concept: Ivo Bol and Marion Tränkle
Sound composition: Ivo Bol
Light composition: Marion Tränkle
Performers: Roos van Berkel, Cindy Brussel-Bienemann, Maartje Douwes, Suzana Gomes, Annemarie Libbers, Maria Ines Villasmil
Voice: Florian de Backere
Registration: Eric de Clercq

Client: 

Cityscape Foundation in collaboration with the Panopticon Foundation

Funded by:

The Dutch Performing Art Fund and Creative Industries Fund NL

Performance:

09.11.2018 former Panopticon prison in Haarlem

CONTACT US

Please contact us for any questions, proposals or just a good chat. mail@n-o-w.nl