Katagami: dance and movement

Caroline Collinge is an artist and designer-maker with a particular interest in costume for performance.   As part of MoDA’s ongoing Katagami in Practice project, Caroline has created a magnificent folded paper costume, inspired by our katagami collection.

Caroline has been inspired by the wave motif in some of the katagami, and has used an array of techniques, from paper folder to laser cutting, to create the elaborate paper costume.

The costumed performance explores the architecture of a paper costume that incorporates katagami and origami techniques within the making of the textiles. The costume itself is made from 20 meters of Japanese mulberry paper that has been intricately folded and cut before being fashioned to a kimono design with an extended skirt. The folded textiles for the costume uses a traditional Japanese fold, ‘waterbomb’ fold, and a circular fold thought to originate from the Bauhaus School of Art and Design, Germany

Caroline has been working on a filmed dance performance with dancer and choreographer Matsumi Saito. The filmed dance, entitled Waves, is a costume-led performance involving one performer and the large scale paper folded/cut costume.

Caroline’s costumed performance was filmed using digital technology; however, the production design draws upon nineteenth century early moving pictures of the Edison Film Company, who created some of the very first dance films.  Edison’s films were staged in a black box with minimal, natural lighting and a static camera using black and white film, and this was recreated for the filming of Waves. The effect of a black box was created using carefully positioned lighting, and was filmed using a static camera in the Middlesex University Television Studios.

The film is now entering post-production, during which the film will be digitally colourised, reflecting Edison’s original painterly techniques.

Read more about Caroline’s creative process on her blog.

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