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By Katie Davern
September 19, 2014
By Katie Davern
September 19, 2014

For all the logicality of urban planners and architects, we often end up with some pretty weird conglomerations of concrete and steel around town. Once in a while, we all end up staring at a nonsensical urban nook while waiting at the traffic lights and thinking, 'why?'.

Austrian choreographer Willi Dorner and his company take that reverie one step further with Bodies in Urban Spaces. They see an odd little city space and think: human Tetris.

So how does it work? Dorner enlists a group of movement artists (whose skills are not solely focused on dance — he also hires climbers, martial artists and circus performers) and choreographs a performance that sees these 20 human bodies, clad in bright colour-blocked clothes, gracefully shove themselves into any sort of architectural gap they can find, hold their positions for several minutes and then effortlessly wriggle out of the tight spot and move on to the next.

What it means for the passer-by is that your eyes fall on brightly colour-blocked human staying perfectly, magically still in an otherwise dead space. "Bodies in Urban Spaces is an invitation to let go, to take the time for a new look at the city, an opportunity to think so that we can form opinions about what makes a city a liveable space, and eventually make changes to achieve that goal," says Dorner.

Bodies in Urban Spaces premiered in 2007 and has been co-produced by festivals and venues across Europe and the US ever since. It will be appearing in Sydney for Art & About on Friday, October 11, and Saturday, October 12, from 12.30-2pm. Check out more of their cheeky and surreal appearances around the world in the images below.

Published on September 19, 2014 by Katie Davern


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