I didn’t know how to talk about the cold and thirsty bodies made invisible at the muddy margins.
I didn't know how to talk about all the terrified women, about their scared wombs,
cramped while defending our freedom.
I didn't know how to talk through the lump in my throat which grew when I heard that a cultural sector has once agreed that Eastern European art might not be up to their standards.
I didn’t know how to release that lump after someone told me not to worry
because my body has been moulded in the West.
I still don’t know how to free my body from the twisting anger it brought to it,
how to make it vomit,
when I just wanted to close the ears, numb the eyes and take the money and I wasn’t sure whether it meant that my dancer’s body was silenced or it just didn’t see a point in saying something and whether they both meant the exact same thing.
I wished to dare to say that my foreign body is not feeling the guilt that is expected of it,
that the culture in which I live in has no cultural debt to repay to the culture I come from,
that it has no space left for it because that space is reserved for the process of de-guilting,
that I thought it was selfish and far from generous.
Today, I just want to see my body beyond the codes
and I don’t want to choose any sides -
I am afraid of the bodily asymmetry,
of tensions that it might cause.
Held tight by the hope
for the audible language
to be the abstract one
of our bodies,
I choose for mine not to recite any boxes,
nor for the in between to become an event,
nor for the grey to become a category.
‘Dry dances’ are written with an intension of reassuring my trust in the body to be able to speak about or the boiling thoughts and impressions from within it. Choosing not to name or tick any literal boxes, doesn’t decrease the value of the work of art or, in my case, the value of movement. I wrote ‘Dry Dances’ as a manifesto or encouragement to myself to believe in the bodily expression as valid and legitimate. To believe that it can mean and say something (even if only for me) in its abstraction or altered rhythm of breath. Written with a believe and hope that all the words boiling inside the mind and tensing the body, could be shared and passed on through the bodily abstraction.
In a fashion where each artistic attempt is expected to comment or express political views or statement in order for it to become legitimate, Dry dances/Manifesto is a self-made ticket to allow myself to make a dance, simply. Antwerp, 10/1/2022