Spatial Architectonics

Loie Fuller

Loïe Fuller, physical poet, 1862-1928

“Space – my space – is not the context of which I constitute the ‘textuality’: instead it is first of all my body, and then it is in my body’s counterpart or ‘other’, it’s mirror image or shadow: it is the shifting intersection between that which touches, penetrates, threatens or benefits my body on the one hand, and all other bodies on the other. Thus we are concerned, once again, with gaps and tensions, contacts and separations, Yet, through and beyond these various effects of meaning, space is actually experienced, in its depths, as duplications, echoes and reverberations, redundancies and doublings up…”

Text reproduced from The Production of Space, Henri Lefebvre, Trans. Donald Nicholson-Smith, Blackwell Publishing UK, 1991: pp.184

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“I am large, I contain multitudes” Walt Whitman

Loïe Fuller, Le Dans du Lys, ca.1902. Photo: W.Isaiah Taber

“In relation to Loïe Fuller insofar as she spreads round about, with veils attached her person by the action of dance, everything has been said in articles, at times in poems. Exercise as invention, without employ, admits of an artistic rapture and at the same time an industrial accomplishment.

In the terrific bath of fabrics there swoons, radiant, cold, the dancer who illustrates many a giratory theme in which a distant fulsome woof tautens, giant petal and butterfly, unfurling all in a clear-cut and elementary order.

Her fusion with swift nuances shedding their hydroxic fantasmagoria of twilight and of grotto, such rapidities of passions, delight, mourning, ire: to move them, prismatic, with violence or diluted, the dizziness is needed of a soul like an airing of artifice. That a woman may associate the flying off of vestments with dance, potent or vast, to the point of sustaining them, infinitely as her expansion. The Lesson depends on this spiritual effect.”

Text Stéphane Mallarmé, National Observer, 1893 quoted from Art and Utopia, Restricted Action, pp.86