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Presentation notes

Reasons behind costume design?

  • To hide, reveal, show/represent a character
  • To change or exaggerate a feature or characteristic 

E.g. describe the way Indiana jones looks like:

  • Leather jacket, whip, hat
    • Very iconic, people recognise him typically due to his costume design

 Historical costume

  • The way the body was altered
  • Even male dress was very theatrical
  • Altering the body through addition
  • Extension
  • Feminine desired form
  • Extending from a historical item to a performance costume
    • Fine line between reality and fantasy
  • Restriction (corsetry)
  • Female body shape changing in the last 50 years (food, restriction, lifestyle)


Phyllis Galembo

Charles Fregar

Rebecca Horn (extending the ability of the body. Designed to be worn by the wearer but also as artefacts in themselves)


Comme des Garçons (Garson)

Difference between Japanese cutting and and European costume cutting


Leigh Bowery

  • Transforming the body

Gareth Pugh

Jason Hackenworth

  • Navigate the environment through addition

Lucy and Bart

Gary Card

How do we extend through movement

Costume to reveal something about oneself

The kinesphere (Rudolf Laban)

  • Used in animation, etc.

The moving body - a line through space

  • Breaking down the movement
  • Charlotte Rudolph and Kandinsky
  • Showing movement in 2D
  • Extension of the body (Oskar Schlemmer pole dance 1928)
    • Theatre as a playground exploring every day and pushing the boundaries
    • Extends the dancer's limbs into space to show the movement in a different way
    • Direct correlation between sound and movement
      • Sound leading the movement
      • Scenography - sound immediately interlinked with the movement

Body extensions for sound

  • Where the costume is building around sound
  • Bringing costume and modern dance together
  • Costume as sculptural object
  • Moving in it created the rustling sound

Prosthetic instruments

Moving the body to create music

Gestures linked to instruments


  • Physical theatre
  • Comedic
  • Led through the costume, story told through costume


Our body and the way we move is separated into plane

  • The door plane (lateral, one dimensional)
  • Wheel plane (quite direct straight movement)
  • Table plane (all-over movement, open, outwards)

Linking the corners of rectangular planes builds and icosahedron

The movement direction of the planes in relationship to the effort polarities


Efforts- polarities are the factor, for a complete movement there will be one of each factors

  • Space
  • Direct
  • Weight
  • Strong
  • Time
  • Sudden (quick)
  • Indirect (flexible)
  • Light
  • Sustained

Movement and drawing etc.

Sketching ideas about ourselves

Shared with partner 


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