CN D Magazine

#5 march 24

From the Vault: Hiking, Painting, and Dancing Around the Hills of Auvergne

Hélène Caillet

Page 1 from Odile Fix’s book Tourner autour du soleil

Fonds Christine Quoiraud, Médiathèque du CN D

From 1985 to 1990, French artist Christine Quoiraud was a member of Maï-Juku, Min Tanaka’s Japan-based international dance company. During her time with the troupe, she was introduced to Body Weather, an experimental movement investigation practice,  by the choreographer and his collaborators, including Frank van de Ven, Katerina Bakatsaki, Oguri, and Tess de Quincey. After returning to France, Christine Quoiraud subsequently developed her own research, offering large-scale summer workshops which she titled Corps/Paysage (Body/Landscape). In the 2000s, thanks to a Villa Médicis ‘Hors les Murs’ grant, she launched a series of Marche et Danse (Hike and Dance) projects, in which she invited trainees and audience members to participate in intensive periods of outdoor walking, dancing, and improvisation.

In late July and early August 2024, she and a dozen other participants embarked on a walk in the volcanic Monts Dore mountain range in Auvergne. The group walked through the landscape for ten days, alternating between hiking, reading, and various physical practices. Halfway through, they split into four groups and continued their journey in concentric loops around the Puy May peak, following itineraries devised for them by Odile Fix, a local poet and visual artist.

A few days before their visit, Odile Fix had purposefully scattered the pages from a book inspired by the lanscapes she roamed during a preliminary hike she’d done around the site on the summer solstice, a month earlier. She hid the pages, painted with mineral pigments collected from the same landscapes, in natural nooks and crannies such as hollow trees, scree slopes, and rock crevices. To help participants find her sketches, Odile Fix tied them with discreet blue ribbons and made a map of their locations.

After three days of hiking and exploring, the scattered group reconvened at Guéry Lake before heading towards the village of La Garandie, where they handed over the results of their search to Odile Fix. The book, a record of this collective adventure in the heart of the Auvergne Volcanoes Natural Park, was exhibited a few weeks later at the Festival Contre-plongées in Clermont-Ferrand.

Hélène Caillet is a documentalist and archivist at the CN D’s heritage, audiovisual and publishing department.

Tourner autour du soleil in a book from the collections held in the CN D library, 
Christine Quoiraud Collection
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Odile Fix
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Also of interest : Portfolio by Christine Quoiraud