High Kicks is work which uses resistance training to develop strength and flexibility in the legs, in order to get them to kick higher. In the studio there is a handle attached to the wall at just above hip height. Tied to this is a pilates resistance band. The other end gets attached to a foot and at an appropriate distance from the wall an exercise is performed, a Movement made, to take the leg as high as possible against the resistance of the band. Over time this should make the legs kick higher.
Using Resistance leads to the muscle fibres breaking down which then rebuild bigger and stronger. With ballet or dance you need to stretch this fibre to keep it long and flexible, as well as building up strength when using resistance training.
Each time the exercise is performed, 4x with Resistance 4x without resistance, a kick is then made against the wall at that height. Graphite powder on the foot makes a mark on paper.
The process is also to be filmed each time the exercise is conducted. This will record the Trace of the Movement.
Matthew Barney‘s Drawing Resistance One has influenced my ideas around High Kicks. He was an American Football player and he used Resistance in a series. The earlier parts of which involved making various drawings in his studio whilst using resistance.
High Kicks 3 installation in the James Hockey Gallery, UCA Farnham
Paper rolls, handmade paper & Graphite
The installation was made by using Performative Moves with repetitive choroegraphy, based on a High Kicks ballet exercise. It examines Movement, time and ritual and investigates how that action becomes a Trace, mark or drawing.
It was made, performing and filming twice daily for five days through the working week in the gallery. In the week before the installation of the MA Graduation Show Sept 2014. Half of the installation was shown in the exhbition (due to restrictions of space) with a film of the making of the piece.