The research work GARDEN PATH transfers the phenomenon of multistable perception to the moving body on stage. Multi-stable perception is understood here as an unforeseen, spontaneous and unavoidable change in perception, which leads to a stimulus that can be interpreted ambiguously. A striking example of this phenomenon are ambiguous flip-flop pictures, also called 'vexier' pictures, which convey different picture contents through their specific structure. Today, they increasingly circulate on social media platforms and playfully remind us of the limits and scope of perception.
In the spontaneously changing interpretation of what is perceived, specific aspects suddenly become present or momentarily lose importance. The philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein describes a similar phenomenon as 'aspect vision' in his work 'Philosophische Untersuchungen' based on the hare-duck image . He emphasizes that seeing an aspect is the noticing of something that was not previously perceived that way. By illuminating one aspect, according to Wittgenstein, both seeing and thinking change, which he does not separate in a dualistic manner, but describes them as simultaneously occurring processes. Due to the involuntary leap in perception, alternative perspectives open up for the viewer. A simple classification of the image is no longer possible. Since the transitions of the perception of one aspect to another are spontaneous and can not be intentionally directed, moments of transformation and irritation arise in perception. The way we see it has changed.
The fascination with the phenomenon of optical illusion and the illusionistic technique of painting is also found in fine art, as in trompe l'oeil painting. While in the Middle Ages Vexier images primarily transported hidden satirical messages in the picture, artists such as M.C. Escher, Salvador Dali or Giuseppe Acrimboldo the change in perception as an aesthetic principle. The Op Art of the 1960s translated optical illusions from two-dimensional to three-dimensional space. Certain shape patterns and color figures create irritating optical effects that create the illusion of movement. The solo work Garden Path transfers the phenomenon of the change of perception to the moving body in the stage area. It is not intended to reproduce a kind of tabelau vivante of a tilted image, but to investigate the perceptual phenomenon in dance: what specific quality, what kind of change of perception can the moving body produce?
Concept, Performance: Julia Keren Turbahn
Sound: Alois Späth
Costume Design: Anna Phillipa Müller