Secondhand Knowledge

Secondhand Knowledge is a research project between Rósa Ómarsdóttir, Ásrún Magnúsdóttir and Alexander Roberts, where they look at dance history through the eyes of the geographical periphery of Europe.

Coming from Iceland, a very isolated island way up in the north, they realized that their perception of dance history was maybe not the same one as has been written about in central Europe. Their knowledge was mostly received second hand from the euro-centrically claimed history of dance. When their only insight into what was going on in the dance world was through youtube trailers of dance pieces, they found themselves fill in the gaps and imagine what the rest of those trailers was. Often this misinterpretation lead to something else completely.

Having a strong believe in the value of knowledge that is received secondhand, interpreted and often mistranslated, Rósa, Ásrún and Alex have been traveling through the periphery of Europe and working with people to discover their perception of history. By willingly dwelling in this so-called secondhand knowledge, they remake and reconstruct dance works that were important to them and others, with full artistic freedom to fill in the gaps. They will somewhat bypass the traditional sense of dance history, from the ballet tradition, as it is mostly irrelevant to our own history and many others we will work with.

We focus mostly on people's own influences and their relation to history.

The first jump start of this project started in August 2014 in collaboration with Alexander Roberts at Reykjavík Dance Festival. They asked everyone who participated in the festival to mention their biggest influence for their work and their own dance history. These names were then printed onto t-shirts for the event Secondhand T-shirtology, where they celebrated these named influences.

Since then they have been to Denmark, Norway, Latvia, Greece and Cyprus. Find out more here.

Cast & crew

Alexander Roberts, Ásrún Magnúsdóttir, Rósa Ómarsdóttir.