Simply reaching the ability to wear pointe shoes is a huge accomplishment in a dancer’s life, but French ballerina Amelie Segarra takes pointe to the next level in this video performance for an installation art piece by Javier Perez. Wearing pointe shoes with stainless steel knives attaches, Segarra appears to be in excruciating pain as she struggles to do her best to dance atop a baby grand piano. Twirling and screaming, she accomplishes this amazing feat and Barcelona-based artist Javier Perez captures the pure visceral emotion of the achievement. The video was projected in HD blu-ray on a 9′ wall for his latest video installation.
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Though this is just the extract for a longer piece, the description is as follows:
A ballerina, whose pointe shoes are extended by a set of sharp kitchen knives, dances and twirls insistently until reaching exhaustion, fighting to maintain balance on the lid of a grand piano set on a stage. The theatre with its red velvet warm lighting, resembles an oversized music box. The camera turns around the dancer revealing the opposite side of the room: an empty and painfully bare theatre.
The ballerina appears as an eerie figure expressing effort, sacrifice and pain in her strive for perfection. Both fragile and cruel. Initially shy and hesitant, her steps become more and more emphatic, menacing and not exempt of violence, scraping and cutting into the delicate surface of the piano with her sharp pointe shoes.
Through this work, Javier Perez investigates and reflects once again upon the human condition. Using a strongly metaphorical language rich in powerful symbolism, he reveals the weaknesses that become the boundaries between seemingly irreconcilable concepts such as: beauty and cruelty, fragility and violence, culture and nature or life and death.