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Female owned

Ann Arbor | Detroit, MI


PUPP: Pop-Up Projection Pavilion

2014 | Collaboration with Robert Adams (Adams+Gilpin Design Studio) and Peter Sparling (UM School of Music, Theater and Dance).


PUPP [Pop-Up Projection Pavilion] is a collaborative project designed and fabricated for an internationally recognized choreographer, distinguished dance studies scholar, and former principal dancer in the Martha Graham Dance Company from 1973 to 1987, Prof. Peter Sparling. Architecture and dance have a long-standing relationship that co-locates the performing arts, embodied knowledge, and the ritualization of space that work as a highly tuned creative practice.

In contrast to projects that mimic the formal qualities of dance through the acrobatics of structure, PUPP delivers a disciplined formal space that measures the fluidity between spatial models and actual bodies. PUPP is a transient object on the move from studio to venue, and figuratively an apparatus that cultivates a kaleidoscopic topography of bodies, sonic shadows, and video projections inscribed in space. As a vessel with two chambers the project holds the visceral body as it circumnavigates the structure, while the illuminated body floats in the ephemera of media. Two major and one minor projection scrim define each chamber. The three major screens receive the projection, while the two minor screens catch shadows.

While many 21st century work routines occupy screen space frontally and at a distance, this project immerses the body and its double -- shadow and projection -- within the contours of simultaneity. PUPP works on the habituated routines held within our bodies distributed across architecture, visuality, and artistic practices in order to generate alternative possibilities within screen-dance. 

PUPP actualizes theoretical frameworks through kinesthetic empathy or metakinesis. Metakinesis examines the phenomenon of visual and visceral transference, and the projection of a public actor’s self-identification onto an alternative digital body. PUPP is an immersive cartographic machine that triggers mirror neurons as the mind recognizes and learns movement from a projective body, as if learning a new language that is constantly evolving.

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Status: Built
Location: Ann Arbor, MI, US
Firm Role: Design+Fabrication
Additional Credits: Robert Adams / Lead Designer
Peter Sparling / Screendance Artist
Lisa Sauve / Designer
Adam Smith / Designer
Tom Bray / Technology Consultant
Tristan Blackmore / Fabrication Assistant
Caitlin O'Connor / Fabrication Assistant
Secil Taskoparan / Fabrication Assistant