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Listening Post

Athina Vahla


Athina was Dancer in Residence at the Science Museum, London from May to October 2008.

The focus of the residency was a performed response to The Listening Post, a ‘dynamic portrait’ of online communication by artists Mark Hansen and Ben Rubin that displays uncensored fragments of text sampled in real-time from internet chat-rooms and bulletin boards. Stray thoughts resonate through the space in sound and voice as texts surge, flicker, appear and disappear across a suspended grid of over 200 electronic screens.

Athina’s response was a series of movement vignettes repeated in a cyclical pattern. Through the live presence of the dancers, she tried to locate a sense of humanity in the symphony of disembodied voices and texts and to reflect the contrasts between communication and isolation, utterance and silence, the passing and the permanent, sender and receiver, and the fleeting moment of a thought upon a screen.

Commissioned by the Arts Service, Kensington & Chelsea and Science Museum Arts Projects.