Elke Dreier

In a time when world is digitalized, communication is fast, and expressing thoughts or fulfilling desires is just a clicking and a keystroke away, Elke Dreier analyzes the systems and processes of body language.

Text Eleonora Bruni
All images Courtesy by the artist

A form of communication which permanently interacts with and confronts the limitations of the body’s physics, consequence of the partial ability of human beings to support all the movement options, and of their being dependent on purely physical functions. „The delocalization allowed by the digital world of today“ the artist explains, „brings human beings to rely on technology to widen their movement range. Those factors if added together, allow our body language to evolve and transform.“
Born near Munich, Elke Dreier graduated at the Academy of Fine Arts of Munich and soon establishes herself on the national and international art scenes.
Her goal is freeing human communication and movement from their immediacy, by deciphering them and putting them back on stage. By isolating them from their ordinary context, she is able to analyze them under a purely formal perspective. “In a context of permanent interconnection,“ the artist states, “I study body language and its interaction with the evident limitations set by a digitalized world.“
Raising her interest are the subtle variations of inter-personal interactions, in which she catches a glimpse of a routine failure of social action and a clear behavioral impossibility.

Essential tools in her process are videos and notes, practices which allow movement and interaction to best configure themselves. Video, for instance, is a medium which allows a specific event to manifest itself, together with its spatial variations, in different sequences. Her intention to analyze different forms of communication developing alongside verbal communication is the origin of „Various Forms not Defined as Communication“. After studying various forms of language – such as bees’ and plants’ – and using empathy as well as robotics, Elke Dreier creates an installation in which all those languages materialize and communicate with each other.

„Function For Dreams“, 2018, analyzes dream processes: „A while back,“ the artist recalls, “I dreamed I was retouching my dream with Photoshop. Since then I’ve been thinking what does it mean for our subconscious to turn into dream”. Through random combinations of Photoshop tools, potential functions for dreams are generated.
Chance becomes an essential component in her creative process. Conditioned chance, of course, but still consistent in its laws. Just like it happens in dreams, a new combination of pre-existing data brings to unpredictable solutions.

“Training for the Future/Future Routines” is an ongoing series of physical exercises, an installation in which, under different perspectives and by touching different bases, the future of different forms of human movement and communication is put to test. Elke Dreier is interested in the frivolous relation between, and the reclaiming by human beings of their action space, their putting themselves to test and their facing the future of humanity, which is increasingly deeply connected with technological advancement.
‘It’s a course,” Dreier explains – “between what you can really do and a reflection about the complexity of non-verbal communication, interacting with artificial intelligence and the possibility for a wider movement range. The work aimes for future change.”

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