Space and time for contemporary productions

Cotton Flowers Exist
Maria Tsitroudi

The choreographic piece Cotton Flowers Exist brings into dialogue the actual with the virtual and connects the materiality of the world with the capacity to imagine and create non existing landscapes.

More precisely it is an attempt to explore what connects the practice of drawing, choreographing and walking.

It brings into conversation three different forms of writing in three different scales: the writing on the surface of a notebook by drawing, on the floor of a stage by choreographing/dancing and what it is written on bodies while walking/strolling outdoors.

The intention of choreographer Maria Tsitroudi is to bring into light these highly idiosyncratic inner landscapes that have been inscribed into drawings and translate them into artificial landscapes/room installations. Using her drawings as scores she translates the two-dimensional images into moving images.

The relation of the body to the cotton was the main agency that made the embodiment of the drawings possible. In the choreographic work Cotton Flowers Exist, cotton is used as a material whose aesthetic value becomes the experience of the performance.

But actually, cotton is a symbol with economic and social connotations. It is a material that signals class and race. It is a symbol of struggle. Therefore, bringing into the performance the social, economic and political context of the cotton production in order to avoid the hyper-aesthetization of cotton was an imperative ethical responsibility.

In October 2020, Tsitroudi visited northern Greece where the cultivation of cotton is very common and together with the film maker Artemis Anastasiadou, she interviewed and filmed the cotton producers of the neighborhood she grew up in. The focus of this research was to give voice to the cotton producers of three different generations reflecting on the socio-economic and political conditions of their micro society.

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