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Dolls

This exercise is also fundamental to our style. There is a “sculptor” and a “doll”, which is that little wooden effigy with ball-bearing articulations, used by sculptors in the past. Again, after people “relax and breathe, acknowledge the partner and change partners”, I ask them to decide who is the sculptor and who is the sculptor’s “doll”. I demonstrate with a Slave of Love. The “sculptor” moves the “doll” physically, one articulation at a time, to create the gestures and attitudes of the sculptor’s imagination. The latter must learn where the center of gravity is so as not to topple the doll. The exercise is about learning about the human body and its motor and expressive capabilities, and the doll is often placed in gestures they would not ordinarily execute on their own. It also shows where equilibrium rests, and forces attention on body memory. The doll must stay in whatever position it is placed for as long as the sculptor doesn’t change it. The sculptor must immobilize the part that is attached to the articulation he/she is moving, so as to only activate one articulation at a time, and not drag another with it. For instance, if only the forearm is to move, the upper arm must be immobilized by one of the sculptor’s hands, while the other hand places the forearm wherever he or she wishes it to be. After a while, many attitudes have been imposed on the “dolls”, and I have people “freeze” and exchange roles.