The Arts Catalyst's pioneering work in opening new environments to artists was focused in 2000/2001 on space: the space agencies, research scientists and space industries. One of the outcomes was our first parabolic 'zero gravity' flight, organised for choreographer Kitsou Dubois in September 2000 with the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre in Star City, Russia, in collaboration with Projekt Atol Flight Operations, Slovenia.
To train cosmonauts to perform experiments and investigations in real conditions of space flight - zero gravity - in Earth conditions, the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre in Russia uses a special flying laboratory on a parabolic trajectory. A parabolic flight creates the conditions of zero gravity - otherwise only experienced for any length of time in orbit or space travel - by putting an aircraft into a series of diving manoeuvres. During each parabola, bodies and objects inside the aircraft float freely for 25 - 30 seconds. A flight will have between 10 and 30 parabolas.
This experimental flight was part of a collaborative research project between choreographer Kitsou Dubois and the Biodynamics Group at Imperial College, London, looking at the control of movement of the body in altered gravities.
Kitsou Dubois & company: Dancers Matturin Bolze, Laura Nercy & Jorg Muller, cameraman Eric Duranteau, designer
Dragan Zivadinov, artist
Professor Susan McKenna-Lawlor, professor of physics, University of Ireland
Mike Stubbs, artist
Dr Chris Welch, lecturer in astronautics, Kingston University
Marko Peljhan, Projekt Atol
Emma Jane Kirby, BBC Radio 4
Nicola Triscott, The Arts Catalyst.
Trajectoire Fluide (video), Kitsou Dubois
Zero (video), Mike Stubbs
Zero Gravity (BBC Radio 4 programme), Emma Jane Kirby
London Arts Board