Reflections from Hampus Bergenheim's creative residency at STRUT Dance in Perth, Australia / by Lee Brummer

Hampus Bergenheim, the recipient of the OPPORTUNITY IN AUSTRALIA FOR ARTIST BASED IN SWEDEN, a collaboration between ilDance and STRUT Dance in Perth, Australia, has just concluded his three week stay in Perth.

Below you can find blog entries and reflections by Hampus from his time in Perth.

The Poetics of Could

The questions below each paragraph were formulated as speculative directions to myself in the Master Workshop lead by Jo Lloyd and Anny Mokotow in Perth (AU), the 12th of November – 23rd of November 2018. They were later on posed to stimulate an automatic writing practice to be contextualised by the experiences of my stay in Perth and the exploration on the potential of the indefinite that was present in the moment of writing. A procedure of collecting whatever caught my attention followed, which then took on the function of the stimulant for another session of automatic writing. The procedure of collecting has rendered the writing three times around. From there on, the content has been composed as if it was a dance with a conceptual contingency and a dramaturgy of intensities towards a text that attempts to remain in the potential of what it could be. 


Hegelians whispers. An end is the beginning. Moving towards until it appears in the past. Resonating as a nourishing ground. To lean into the future is on repeat. I hear a car accelerating. The pitch gets higher. Gears up. The pitch gets higher. 

What we face is over there. Abiding an agenda to be my landscape. Create purpose. Expose purpose. Which one is it? The purpose aligns with its crusader. No deviations. Adopt the other. Pursue significance. And make it yours. I am approaching what I have not found yet and what I approach transforms within the movement towards it. Consumption culture. Exhausting utility constructs a lack. 

It is so hard to choose a place to eat. - When things cannot exist for you.  

Does the becoming attempt to reproduce itself?


Material in emergence. An emergency. But don’t shortcut the beach walk that is there to be walked. Collect to collect for the collection. The picture is taken. 

I considered taking two cups of coffee this morning, being tired and wanting to enable the version of myself that presumably would contribute the most to the coming situation. Striving towards a sensation of validity known as external. The outside of the inside of the outside. A dance of incitements.

I am walking the same route every morning. It’s nice because I get to know it. Getting closer to google that bush that smells so interestingly.

Are we repetitions?


Looking for glasses. In the light, but they are in the dark. Why? It is too dark in the dark. Or when the charming jacuzzi was about to be prepared for the splendid sensation of bathing to arise. Being with the anticipation. Doing in a trajectory. Feel it. 

How do we condition for the possibility to do what we want to do? 


That which is satisfying with beauty. Pictures are taken. The medium of a tourist, and things appear as their stored version. Where to put it? Maybe in a beautiful dance piece. Let’s re-iterate virtuosic attributes whilst being conscious about the risk of re-producing conventional hierarchies. Maybe the convention has more to it. Maybe the convention is an illegible author for the commonness of knowledge. The main patriarch. Reclaim. And the sunshine in my peripheral view is having a duet with a bird singing to my right and beauty appears beautifully. How is it conveyed, performed and contextualized?

The act of avoidance is an activity in the roots of polarization and the normative criteria’s are infectious. The guitar string vibrates. Sustain.

What did you come here for?

What if the product is indeterminate in itself? 

Waking up on the horizon between the figured and the figuring. Domestic procedures, and I greet automatization. This must be the place where the definable come handy. Falling into its own arms, provoking a response. In resistance through an insistence. Freedom is conditioned. And I indulge in the feeling of anonymity, where forms are found in relation to the possibilities in the fluctuating given. I could, depending on the other. It could also be fun. - An open call for the calibration; where’s the suspension between Hampus and non-Hampus? 


Make a dance piece. Explore the process of commodification to disrupt the alienation of the labour and rather claim ownership from within of what is not already finite. It’s a task.  

What’s the mission?


Thinking out loud in a terrain less familiar gives rise to a greater gap between intention and expression. A growing ground for misunderstandings. A stimulus for poetics. Celebration. Listening to my own saying grants me access to an interpretation of its expression, evident for the contextualization’s ability to serve the content. This is constant. That might be called social awareness. But in an environment where the foundation on which I stand is less layered and balances on its own axis, the necessity of checking in with the circumscription of my saying tends to feel more significant. Is it?  

As the story continues, it is told how such instability is realized in the not-knowing. Realized as not invented nor summoned, but withdrawn from its pre-conscious existence. Enacting ambitions to dismantle normative assumptions through the attempt of communicating in ways that corresponds to the normative lens through which the receiver perceive. Ops. Betray the consolidation. Sustain a mode of being that relies less on the established, without losing depth. To intertwine context and content in production. Worlding (persistently). 

How do we prepare for performance?


The non-expected knowledge asks me how it smells. What shape it has. How I want it to behave. A beginner on the other side runs on the fuel of forgetting. The non-knowledge cannot hurt you and is extremely generous. Like when I got AFL described to me and it reached me before I had time to consider what got described. In retrospect, I could choose whether I knew it or not and maybe I did. It just got spoiled before the knowledge had time to realize its lack or sufficiency.   

Actions that derive from what might be. Things haven’t granted themselves. We are all guests. Timothy Morton. Have you heard about that person?  

Author of knowledge? 


Touch yourself. Hold your own hand. Which hand is the one that you are touching? Who are you? Karen Barad. I am zoning out as I am listening to the conversation at the table next to me. I can’t hear what they are saying, but I hear that they are saying. I attribute them my doing.  I put myself there. I place my ear at the middle of the table, like a meal for their supper. Transcending. They are speaking about a 4 year old, entering, yeah. Not just for itself. It is to be received. Distribute attention. Antennas. But it happened as a consequence. The perception is composed and the accessibility is up for grabs. Places of void to solidify. So where’s the reception to the Art Centre? It is there, at the surface of the content. Made for the centre’s adherence. Another option of itself. A self-embracement. 

Currently in an inner-city suburb. A non-centred infrastructural other. The place where cafés can be found. This is where you open your café. Facades of windows are fully open, turning the inside out and the outside in. It is becoming more of the representation of itself. And downtown, you will find H&M in the most glorious building. 

Making it real. Faking.  

Centre-less structure? 


It is the café-as-office phenomenon in the trendy strip of Leederville. Being just as much about clocking into a vibe as it is about having a good coffee. The soundscape is a cluster of different actions, however interlayered, like a cake of oneness. 

I attended the pride parade yesterday. I was struck by how intensively happy it made me. How the choreography of a manifestation can nourish the differential grounds of identity, dragging repressed personas of oneself as an emancipation of fictional insistence that gives rise to experiences of the realest real. The real-ease. The surrender. The exhale and its fellow friend called joy. I lost it. Forgetting.

What to empathize with?