Florest of the Floor


For my LA experience I went to the Hammer museum to watch a special performance, called “Forest of the Floor”. It was originally choreographed by Trisha Brown. The performance is only a part of Brown’s works called the Equipment Pieces possibly because of the equipment that is used: ropes and steel pipes.

When I first entered the museum I was confused. I didn’t know where the performance was. No one came out to announce the start and it began, out in the open center of the museum, where people casually hung out. I knew nothing about what I was watching at the time, because I wanted to interpret the piece in my own way.

At first, I was lost. I didn’t understand what was happening except two “dancers” dangling and climbing poles and clothes, wearing and removing clothes, and silence. There was no music to give me a slight hint, it was just the audience and the dancers.

As I continued watching I was thinking, why the performance was staged outside in a somewhat public space. I saw what surrounded the space and constantly asked myself why, why here? There were trees, wooden outdoor furniture, people, cars in motion, etc. It felt as if I was in a noisy jungle. Even the structure used for the performance reminded me of a jungle or forest like display, because the clothes were hanging and dangling like tree branches, a canopy. I also sensed the use of gravity. Seeing the dancers loosen their bodies and dangle from the steel pole, sort of like monkeys trying new ways to move about and relax in a chosen space.

I might have been looking for the most complex theme to the performance, but as I was discussing with someone else I realized I was unaware of the simplest meaning. Trisha Brown choreographed a performance that portrays a person’s simplest daily task to a more complex level of action.


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