ITERATION ON TEIGYOKUKEN (2018) is the result of an artist in residency at CLOUD/ Danslab in The Hague, the Netherlands. This spatial installation is inspired by the movement complexities of the Teigyokuken teahouse and garden as built in the late 17th century in Kyoto, Japan. Teigoykuken is the most famous tea room constructed by tea master Kanamori Sôwa. Many contemporary Japanese architects have worked on replica’s and iterations of this tearoom and garden to celebrate its spatial and performative value.
During a visit to Teigyokuken in Kyoto, a conversation with the caretaking monk opens my eyes to the close relationship between Japanese movement practices, such as Zen mediation and Butoh, and how the teahouse is constructed. The spatial configuration prepares, as well as invites one, to listen, gaze, move and breathe with the surroundings. It is in this conversation that I discover the carefully crafted relationships between moving bodies and movement space. During the residency at CLOUD/ Danslab, I recollect my findings and present an iteration on Teigyokuken based on performative abstractions of body-environment reciprocity.
"While zig-zagging through the room, a playful constellation of wooden stones attract my gaze. Between dawn and dusk their shadows rotate with the sun. When repositioning a rope, dead corners come alive."
Artist statement by Renske Maria van Dam