research portfolio

Unproductive will Jimena Pérez Salerno 2022


UNPRODUCTIVE WILL a choreographic practice installation 

a.pass postgraduate program 2021-2022



research portfolios 

PORTFOLIO block I Unproductive will click me!

PORTFOLIO block II Unproductive will click me!

PORTFOLIO block III Unproductive will click me!


project’s abstract

How can we create a different relation to time than the one the western worldview imposes on us? How can we produce market-wise non-productive things? 

Unproductive will is a choreographic practice installation that is part of a larger research. It suggests revisiting our relationship with the hegemonic notion of linear time and productive behavior. It proposes thinking of them as collective colonial wounds and impositions that run through our practices, affective bonds, and lives wherever we are. 

I am developing exploratory collective practices such as Kung Fu tuning (a counter-normative body practice using simple martial arts warm-up), Collective readings (Payada: a popular folk music genre involving poetic recitations), and Technologies of attention (peeling vegetables following a choreographic score) to name some of them. I work with the idea of a never-ending warm-up to re-think the idea of practice and to engage with everyone who participates as a collaborator. This process does not seek an end but wants to remain in the continuity of the search. 

I started my trajectory in a.pass exploring the normative notion of linear-productive time and how it is embodied in our behavior because I am interested in its political dimension. I observed how much thinking in a forward direction brings associations that build a certain life perspective. For example, forward-better-future-progress or backward-worst-past-degrowth. This reinforces a system of values creating a sense supported by binary thoughts. 

In an attempt against this logic, I followed a contradictory path. I stepped forward to my past. During the presentation, in a playful way, I will share practices and connections to my sentimental and cultural education, aiming to create an experience of political awareness. 

I am interested in observing the transformations the project traverses in each place it is presented. To change its language and perspective, that is to say, the thickness that its affective, geographical, and political implications take both for me and those who participate in the experience. This research challenges the definitions of audience-participant, performance-practice, and encounter-training affecting the presentation dynamic that sets all of them in motion.

This research takes the notion of Dispersion* as a method and the use of strategies such as inversion, interruption, bifurcation, turning back, or non-direct associations as its main tools. These words-actions served as an entry point to explore time logic as well. To work with the idea of Dispersion requires postponing the need to define a use for the research materials. It implies waiting until a dialogue emerges from the situation of being with the materials that are, in part, intuitively arranged. That enables a reciprocal path to relate the experiences and elements that set up the research. 

With the desire to articulate strategies that go in another direction than the notions of accumulation, linear time, and progression, I propose to look into the vibration between dispersion and attention strategies, enabling a mode of relation that seeks other possible ways of organization.


*Note: For an accurate translation we should have used the English word Scatter. The decision to use the word, Dispersion, follows the Spanish meaning and its resonances. Dispersion must be understood both on the level of the spatial distribution of things and on how the focus fluctuates.



Jimena Pérez Salerno is an Argentinian artist, based in Brussels (BE). She works and researches between Brussels and Buenos Aires. She experiments in the performing arts, artistic research, and teaching fields. As a dancer and choreographer, she collaborates and engages continuously with other artists as a fundamental part of her exploration of collective work. She considers choreographic practice like an expanded relations system that enables modes of imagination, attention, and coexistence. It leans towards performative practices that contemplate the activation of an unexpected context to think together through the experience of an implicated body. In her last project, she has been researching on the concept of expanded choreography as a critical modality for political awareness, reflecting on linear time and productive behavior.

+ info: IG: @sashimishimi



Special thanks 

a.pass team: Lilia Mestre, Kristof Van Hoorde, Joke Liberge, Kristien Van den Brande, Steven Jouwersma, Sina Seifee, Hans. 

End communication researchers: Gary Farrelly, Amy Pickles, Inga Gerner Nielsen.

a.pass researchers during my trajectory: Carolina Mendoça, Chloe Janssens, Vera Sofía Mota, Ana Paula Camargo, Federico Protto, Nathaniel Moore, Tulio Rosa, Marko Gutić Mižimakov, Aleksandra Borys, Alyssa Gersony, Andrea Brandão, Anna Lugmeier, Asli Hatipoglu, Lore, Martin Sieweke, Martina Petrovic, Nada Gambier, Sarah Pletcher.

Collaborator in residency at a.pass and in Buenos Aires (skipping block): María Sábato
Persons who were with me during this process: María Sábato, Diego Echegoyen, Amparo González Solá.
Dedicated a.pass mentors: Sara Manente, Adriana Gvozdenovic, Isabel Burr Raty, Kobe Matthys, Gosie Vervloessem, Simon Asencio, Vijai Maia Patchineelam, Goda Palekaité, Kristien van den Brande.
External mentors: Sofía Caesar, Caterina Mora, Gustavo Ciriaco, Eleonora Fabião.





Unfortunately we no longer have applications. Both programs: the Postgraduate as well as Research Center have come to an end due to the decision of the ministry of education to stop financing a.pass. At the moment we look into new plans for the future. More news soon on our website.

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