The almost manual
On Asynchrony, Time Lapse, Choreography, and Extravagant Details in Life and Creative Process
The Almost Manual is envisioned as a tool and a handbook. It is intended to be a useful to artists during their creative process, offering a reflection on the concept of asynchrony. This reflection stems from a choreographic practice and is applied to and analysed through the work of several different artists. The interdisciplinary, here, is situated at the junction of choreography, visual arts, and film. Asynchrony designates a slight shift that is expressed in space and disturbs its homogeneity, modifying our perception. Asynchrony implies that our perception is disturbed by a detail and operates through movement, whatever the nature of this movement may be. An object is not asynchronous a priori – it becomes so in a particular relationship to the space and time in which it unfolds. This manual is part of an extensive project on asynchrony, begun in 2014, that takes the form of 25 fictional letters to artists. The handbook includes selected excerpts from the project and examines the forms asynchrony can take. The analysis – and I use this term lightly, for this work always involves an element of play – provides artists with tools. The first part focuses on the artwork of Pier Paolo Pasolini, Jonathan Burrows and Matteo Fargion, Miklos Gaál, Alberto Giacometti, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster and Ari Benjamin Meyers. This part also includes the tools: a glossary and parameters. The second part of the book presents a series of exchanges with artist researchers. Each guest was invited to reflect on asynchrony in relation to error, diachrony, fabulation, glitches, and history. Letters addressed to imaginary characters continue the reflection. An epistolary exchange at the very end brings in the personal dimension of asynchrony and its integration into everyday life. This manual does not teach one single, refined method, but rather offers a way to shake up methods that have become too rote or rigid. It is left intentionally unfinished with deliberate blank spaces in the booklet for the user to fill.