enter & inhabit (2008-present)

enter & inhabit investigates our changing experiences of the outdoor spaces that we pass through. Using durational movement improvisation, photography and writing, the project explores embodied presence in sites of flow and transition. The project is underpinned by an interest in the different modes of perception invoked for audience by somatically-informed movement practices. This activity recognizes and foregrounds interaction between people and places, exploring how embodied population of sites can invoke new encounters with familiar places. Casting accidental audience and invited witnesses as co-creators, the project offers mediated traces of the artists' embodied experience as an invitation into public spaces and landscapes.


Natalie Garrett Brown and Amy Voris began the project in 2007, using their ongoing training in a bodywork practice of experiential anatomy called Body-Mind Centering (BMC), to explore durational dance improvisation practice in outdoor spaces. This resulted in a duet that was performed in a series of underpasses around the Coventry ring road in 2008 as part of the Summer Dancing festival. Photographer Christian Kipp and dancer/writer Niki Pollard joined the project in 2009, to develop the work further both in Coventry and also for a residency at Aberystwyth University. In 2010, enter & inhabit was invited by Dance in Devon to develop their work, culminating in a performance event and artist sharing in North Bovey, Devon. Currently enter & inhabit are collaborating with movement artist and scholar Emma Meehan as part of Sensing the City.

The first site that the project concerned itself with was the underpass system of the Coventry ring road. The ring road is an intrigue of post-war architecture. Its underpass system comprises of concrete structures with landscaped gardens, longstanding trees and historic monuments serving to remind of us of the possible blur between the rural and urban within the UK landscape where little is truly wild or untended. Since 2007, enter & inhabit has subsequently worked in wooded sites, rivers, beaches, university campuses and farmers’ fields. Over the past few years, we have returned to the Coventry ring road as part of the Sensing the City project.

Broad in its spread of references and lineages, the enter & inhabit project can be located within contemporary dance practice, particularly the British New Dance tradition. Following the teachings of UK based environmental dance-maker Helen Poynor, the project draws on US dance artist Anna Halprin’s model of collaborative working, The RSVP Cycles. Formulated in partnership with Halprin’s husband, architect Lawrence Halprin in the late 1960s, The RSVP Cycles offers a model for collaborative working across disciplines. Particular to this model is a cyclical approach to making, through and across four key stages termed as: Resourcing (R), Scoring (S), Valu-action (V) and Performance (P). With this model in mind, we seek to un-do hierarchies between art forms and to celebrate collaborative responses to site, understanding our creative process to be continually unfolding.

When we begin working with a site, its edges or parameters become more defined through the practice – that is, through the acts of moving and scoring. Movement scores devised and moved in certain sites are collectively revised in the studio (or virtual space) and then folded back into the live realms of the project. These scores are not bound by project or performance deadlines but, rather, feed into months or possibly years of movement and photographic practice in a particular place. In this way for example, images generated from inhabiting certain sites might become the slide shows of the website which in turn fuel the resourcing cycle of movement-score writing and project reflection.

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