3: The Garden

In Beutler's garden sin and innocence merge together

from: Het Parool 07/2/2016

In The Garden Nicole Beutler returns to Monte Verità, the Swiss artistscolony where the residents beginning last century walked around naked, made music, danced and gardened for their lives.

Rudolf von Laban (1879-1958) was there, he researched the basic principles of human movement. Gravity, balance and flowing energy marked his dance – qualities that we now see in Beutler’s choreography. It begins with a man and a woman on white artificial grass. It’s the Adam and Eve from the left panel of Jheronimus Bosch’ The Garden of Earthly Delights, the other inspiration for The Garden.

After this a stream of precise symmetrical sculptures and paterns performed by six performers follows. When the desires of the flesh dominate, we have arrived on the middle panel of Bosch’ triptych. When we hear Einstürzende Neubauten, we reach the hell – the last panel – on which Bosch’ has painted a music score on a pair of bare buttocks. “You will find me if you want me in the garden” the six performers sing together.

The beauty is that in Beutler’s garden innocence and sin, with flowers formed by bodies and artificial grass and plants, ongoing composed dance formations and passionate animal like sequences, fluently merge together. Because of the contemporary beats by Gary Shepherd, we realize that there is no way back. We ate the apple and we will never find the paradise again.

© Jacq. Algra