Creative improvisation jamming, under the COVID cloud

Creative improvisation jamming, under the COVID cloud
Author: Hubbard, Jenna and Keeley, Adele (24 September 2023)


This visual essay will explore the themes of collaboration, play, the digital intermediatory space and how we engage with the digital ‘other’ of yourself. The research builds on the work of Stark Smith's The Underscore (1987). This long-form dance improvisation structure is used to frame the creative journey which takes place within a jam session offers a platform to explore and consider how the experience might be re-framed with in an online context. The research also draws upon the writing of Weber, Mizanty & Allen (2017) who present digital conference tools as a method to create and teach choreography, and Francksen’s writing around how the use of digital technology produces the digital body, which can interact with the performative body (2014). The research further extends the understanding of these digital spaces as places for intangible, ephemeral, and communal play. This new practice gave a chance for reflection on both our artistic practices and our lives during the pandemic; Halprin’s Life/Art Process has been a supportive model for understanding the therapeutic nature of jamming practice (1995). The drawings and short films created during this project document the process, but also have currency as individual artefacts. The observations and recommendations below will be presented alongside empirical research about the relationship between the artists’ practice and how through drawing and movement they found beneficial creative exchange, in a temporary digital space.

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