I Made The Ruins
I Made The Ruins is an experimental dance short that examines the desolation of being stuck within the confines of our inner critics. The short follows a dancer who revels in the destructive expressionism of their discomfort with their body and finds themselves making a home out of the ruins they’ve created.
Credits / Collaborators / Cast
Prod Co: Bouy Films
Dir/DP/Editor: Ricardo Bouyett
Creative Director: Sar Cohen
Assistant Director/Production Designer: Daisy Cardenas
1st AC: Alfredo Castil
Sound Design/Score: Steve Matthew Carter
Location courtesy of Vanessa Williams via Peerspace
Director's Note by Sar Cohen
It’s been a long Pandemic and I am not exiting how I entered it. Some of the growth and change I have experienced has been positive. The migration from my mid twenties to my late twenties induced a much needed sense of clarity towards my goals and aspirations. And yet, I can’t help but feel disappointed in myself for the perceived neglect of my body.
Like a lot of people, I’ve always had a fraught relationship with the way my bones, muscles and fat organize themselves in space. Always wishing they looked like someone else’s – regardless of how they appeared. In this time of forced hibernation, I found my flesh expanding to spill over my favorite jeans till they became impossible to zip up. Though I received warnings from my parents and and tips on how to occupy less physical space, I decided I wouldn’t blame my body for developing an extra layer of protection, as I called it. Something needed in times of great stress. I decided I would treat myself as I always did, with kindness. Little did I know, there was more to that than I was aware of.
Beneath the self-love, self-acceptance and peace of self I thought I had, was a part of me that felt I wasn’t good enough like this. A part of me that judged, ridiculed and raged at this change. A part of me that is angry and fat phobic. I Made The Ruins is about that part of myself. Stuck in a neglected setting of their own making, the character in the piece can’t escape the circumstances they find themselves in. They are sad, angry and alone but they don’t realize they are the ones who built this house of ruins. And instead of leaving it, they revel in its desolation and yearn for further destruction. I have never been kind to my body, not fully. And I never will be, as long as I continue listen to this part of myself. This piece is not a solution, but rather an expression, exploration and realization of my inner critic.
I would like to thank Alfredo Castil and Daisy Cardenas for contributing their work and support on set, Steve Carter for building the musical world, and Ricardo Bouyett for empowering me to explore this piece and providing his expertise, his labor and guidance throughout the whole process.