[YS interviews Koosil-Ja while she is eating a packed lunch]
Koosil-Ja: Just because I’m veggie and I can’t eat the food out there. I’ve tried, but they use lard when they fry things. I can’t take that.
YS: Tell me about your revelation upon reading Deleuze and Guattari.
Koosil-Ja: The key concept is a body without organs. What did it to me was – first, I don’t need to see my identity concerning “I am a product of my heritage”. I am sometimes American, I am sometime Japanese, I am sometimes Korean, I am sometimes a 3D character. They lead me to think that “I am myself” is no longer a domain of I, territory of I. And “I am” is no longer a product of I, but maybe more interesting and more practical and more helpful is “I am is a product of they”. I overlap with you, I overlap with space, I overlap with objects. And but it’s a flow and constantly changing, so if I have to determine myself, self can be only found in the difference.
So yesterday was this, and today is this. So yesterday minus today is self. But yesteday and tomorrow is another difference, so minus that. D and G wrote about it in a book called “Repetition and Difference”.
YS: When did the revelation happen?
Koosil-Ja: About like three years ago. Maybe about five I forgot.
YS: Did it affect the kind of work you made?
Koosil-Ja: My work has changed - I just became extremely encouraged to conduct radical experimentation, that more and more … they went and flipped it outside. That object was standing facing and facing the corner, a group of people came and flipped it. We must investigate that. We must investigate that.
So, right now my problem is that I have a problem of fitting myself into organisation institutions in general. Because of the body without organs - the key concept it teaches me. To break out of the strata. Stratification. The building of people on top of each other. They hate trees, rooted, and roots. Memory, and another issue with memory, that’s why I negate memory, memory to root, to so-called soil, so ending up you, only one person above you and one person below you.
Instead imagine grass, spread out all over the continent. Like in Mille Plateaux, they promote the idea of escape, running away, of encoding and decoding, and stop working for 100 rich people. How a few people are rich in this world, and how many people exist in this world? Capitalism is all about working for this handful of people and education is also reform, or form, to create student youth who can be plugged into this capitalistic system. They read what the teacher told them to read, they tell the student to submit the paper on that deadline, the student will do so, the teacher will tell you to speak properly, dress properly, the student will do so - they are just perfect persons. After they graduate they are just perfect persons to be plugged into this corporate person, and they don’t think twice to be plugged into the system. And these arrogant rich people will never think about redistributing wealth to other people or even think about returning the land to the farmers. Why the farmer harvests or works on somebody else’s land.
YS: Can you tell me about life-processing?
Koosil-Ja: Life-processing. So life-processing basically is to set the external agency that drives you. And this dance technique can be modified to each dance, meaning each concept for the dance. And it doesn’t allow you to dance beyond your memory. Life-processing allows you to dance with the body without organs.
[To better illustrate: in her Singapore presentation, Koosil-Ja demonstrated one example of life-processing in her choreography. She would select video images of bodies in motion on different walls of the theatre while she danced, so that the sensory overload of multiple bodies to imitate became the stimulus for her movements]
Koosil-Ja: Yeah. You type so fast.