INTRODUCTION

Air Talking is a practice inspired by Air Guitar, a discipline in which fans of the most famous guitar solos, as playful aesthetes, mime the gestures and stage movements of the original guitarists. Their performance is judged both on how life-like it is and on its interpretation of the original piece of music. Intensity, self-mockery, staging and drama are major criteria in judging an Air Guitar performance.

By imitating a discipline, one captures its aesthetics without necessarily mastering its techniques. Air Talking is one extension of Air X, where X stands for any physical, social or behavioural event, be it virtual or real, that can be simulated. It is the observation of simulation integrated at the social level, the domain of appearance, or of “being good enough at pretending”, raised to the level of a discipline in itself.

The trajectory of the simulation is cut back, deliberately kept in its early state, like those dwarf trees whose shoots are pruned, or those animals that are constantly crossbred so as to keep them pygmy-size. The simulation becomes reality, not as a simulacrum intended to replace it, but as a simulation kept as such, consciously approached and developed as a practice in itself.

Air Talking groups together a series of postures, stances and gestures that belong to the body language of society situations. During the mundane ritual, the body surrenders to the crisis of presence, which decays into absence and becomes a pure echo of the world. This makes the society situation similar to an out-of-body experience, in which - while the proprioceptive capacity expands into the space around it, to other bodies, to the relationship between them - consciousness is abstracted from the present moment, and detached from the subject to enter a state of fluctuation and latency. Indeed, it enters a state of torpor, enchanted by the effect of its own substance. The society situation is a paradoxical moment, fraught with desire and at the same time with suspended possibilities.

Air Talking aims at being a strategy of withdrawal from the work inherent in socialization and from the duty of presence. It uninhabits presence by constructing a body and a gestural system suitable for a new kind of strike: a strike of the “third nature”, a nature that has gone beyond any dichotomy between real and unreal, and has integrated simulation into itself as actual reality.

An Air Talking performance is designed as a workshop, an amphitheatre course or a conference of the Third Kind. This manual presents a number of postures and gestures, body language capable of producing collective behaviour and an awareness of the economy that relates to it.

 

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LIST OF POSTURES AND THEIR TECHNIQUES

Here and There

Here and There is about presence. It is the set of postures which reveal the attitude of an individual who is both present and absent at the same time: being material, the body is present in its space, but the look and the posture make its substance more ethereal. This effect is achieved through tiny twists of the neck. The neck is turned towards the opposite side of the chest, as though in order to observe an object you have to gaze in the direction opposite to the one in which you are going. The eyes stare at something and not at someone, but without insisting, with laziness, listlessness. This materializes the ubiquity of a person stretched between opposite directions, among multiple points of interest: an individual who runs away from his own appearing.

 

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The Hair

The hands are in front of the chin.
You roll an imaginary hair between the index finger and the thumb of each hand. The eyes meet on the invisible hair, which can be projected in different trajectories. This gesture reflects a feeling or a delicate, fine situation, which “hangs by a hair's breadth”. It is a very expressive gesture that reveals the delicate nature of your proposal and your thoughts.

 

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For more information about The Manual of Air Talking please get in contact with: info@deappel.nl