I praise the dance, for it frees people
from the heaviness of matter and binds the isolated to community.
I praise the dance, which demands everything:
health and a clear spirit and a buoyant soul.
Dance is a transformation of space, of time, of people,
who are in constant danger of becoming all brain, will, or feeling.
Dancing demands a whole person,
one who is firmly anchored in the center of his life,
who is not obsessed by lust for people and things
and the demon of isolation in his own ego.
Dancing demands a freed person,
one who vibrates with the equipoise of all his powers.
I praise the dance.
O man, learn to dance,
or else the angels in heaven will not know what to do with you
– Saint Augustine
This week, I am continuing to explore the figure based on pictures from post: ballet.
I came across this poem by St. Augustine while doing a search for poems about dance and love the part that describes dance as something that demands health, a clear spirit and buoyant soul — all things that seem worthwhile to strive for in life in general.
I also like the description of dance as a transformation of space, time and people – which is such a well articulated concept. It helps me think through these drawings as I work on them and also makes me more aware of what makes dance such a unique form of art.