Shadow Dance, the Bluecoat


Shadow Dance

Shadow Dance

Portfolio NW

the Bluecoat

July 26 – September 15 2013

Preview: 25 July 2013

School Lane, Liverpool, United Kingdom, L1 3BX

“the individual’s organic totality is the necessary precondition to the totality of the State (…) the people gather to dance, in a circular movement of the whole, without the existence of the individual “I” being of any account (…) the individual exists solely in relation to the whole, just as he has no private existence, but rather is defined in relation to his civic responsibility.” Bode

I am delighted to be working again together with the Bluecoat in this my new commission- Shadow Dance. This project further develops my interest in psychological and physical blockages as I convert my gallery space into a dance studio/laboratory to focus on the intersections between psychology, movement and the body.

Through a series of dance sessions with local dance professionals proficient in ballet and tap to Alexander technique, I’ll work closely with a small group of participants to consider choreographic and improvisatory skills linked to gesture and the psychological and physiological through the body. This continues to develops strands of themes explored in my recent exhibition and performances Amongst Dark Trees, A Clearing, Grundy Art Gallery and Military Craft II, Golden Thread Gallery.

My interest in physical movement has persisted throughout my practice and particularly since a piece Trampoline, 2006, which entailed jumping up and down in a Scottish forest for 9 hours on a trampoline to consider internal/external boundaries linked to identity and politics, this became edited into a 7 minute video performance.

Please see below for how you might be able to take part in Shadow Dance in the following call outs. If you also have any disused DVDs related to dance and fitness, please send them in.

Facing out to College Lane, the windows of Gallery Three provide a looking glass to and from the shopping district of Liverpool One. This dialectal relationship between cultural and consumerist praxis is one of the most spatially intriguing features of the galleries at the Bluecoat. It is here that Kai-Oi Jay Yung transforms the static gallery environment into an experimental space for movement and dance.

Over the duration of Portfolio NW, Yung will hold dance laboratories in the gallery with dancers and public participants. These activities do not discriminate against any genre of dance or skill level: participation, and a connection to our inner self, is actively sought. Weaving numerous disciplines, Yung’s practice is fuelled by her desire to unravel complex cultural forms, challenging and engaging the viewer through physical and participatory works.

Approaching Shadow Dance without any formal training in dance or movement, Yung will advance her engagement with psychological and physical blockages, exploring the junctures between psychology, movement and the body. As with her recent work, she will use her own body and mind as vehicles to absorb and propagate new interpretations of movement. Gestural movement is perhaps the most visceral and emotional bodily release, one that has a deep, primal connection with the inner self. It can be seen as a liberating experience, one that has the potential to lead to spontaneity and improvisation.

Drawing on both choreographed and improvised gestural movement, Shadow Dance is influenced by participation by numerous actors: the Bluecoat as an institution, the professional dancers and the audience. Yet through participation and representation, these actors operate within Yung’s wider interrogation of the structures of reality, becoming implicit in the rendering of new possibilities. Numerous visits will be required to see Shadow Dance develop.’

See Documentation of daily sessions here

For example, see Week 1, Tuesday’s Laban Dance session

See Schedule here

See Opening Talk & Performance, 27 July 2013, 2pm

See here for the Dancer, Participant & DVD Amnesty Open Calls

Main Shadow Dance text

See Closing Event, Talk & Performance, 10 August, 2013, 2pm

Installing show & Private View

Installing the Show

Take me to Private View



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Private View


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Back to Documentation here

See Opening Talk & Performance, 27 July 2013, 2pm

See here for the Dancer, Participant & DVD Amnesty Open Calls

Main Shadow Dance text

See Schedule here

See Closing Event, Talk & Performance, 10 August, 2013, 2pm