is an ‘agrégé’ in philosophy and was formerly a student at l’École normale supérieure (ENS) where he is currently a doctoral candidate, preparing a thesis on philosophy and dance, under the supervision of Renaud Barbaras (in the doctorate program SACRe de PSL at the Archives Husserl and CNSMDP).  His research, at the intersection of philosophy and dance studies, focuses on the concept of movement in 20th century continental philosophy and the history and poetics of contact improvisation. He teaches art philosophy in the Licence pluridisciplinaire de PSL* (lycée Henri-IV) and has been exploring contact improvisation for several years.

Agrégé de philosophie et ancien étudiant de l’École normale supérieure, Romain Bigé est actuellement doctorant contractuel à l’ENS où il prépare une thèse en philosophie et en danse sous la direction de Renaud Barbaras (dans le cadre du doctorat SACRe de PSL aux Archives Husserl et au CNSMDP). Ses travaux au croisement de la phénoménologie et des études en danse portent sur le concept de mouvement dans la philosophie du XXe siècle et sur l’histoire et la poétique du contact improvisation. Il enseigne la philosophie de l’art dans la Licence pluridisciplinaire de PSL (au lycée Henri-IV) et poursuit depuis plusieurs années une exploration du contact improvisation.



Haptics and the fall: spaces of contact improvisation

In this paper, Romain Bigé examines the way contact improvisation implies a redefinition of dancers’ subjective spatiality when they enter in contact. Bigé draws on his personal experience as a contact improviser, but also on the writings of Steve Paxton, who initiated the form in 1972, and on philosophical writings, notably phenomenology. He argues that contact improvisation is characterized by a specific sensory cartography, based on the haptical sense. This postural investment in touch produces an overlapping of the dancers’ kinetic spheres, whereby the possibilities of action become co-defined, in particular in the movements of falling and micro-falls that they share. The relationship to the surroundings is thus constructed through this commonality, making space an invitation for falling.