Leaving Tracks:
From Drawing Traces to Choreography

In Short

In this workshop, we want to investigate how you relate to the material and how you relate to the other. Alone and together. By moving and drawing you leave traces. Together we will investigate the human dimension. We make the same movements and yet different tracks are created, every individual is different.
We start gently but finish BIG. Resulting in performance and one large track.

By Natascha Vink and Audrey Helwes 


  • In a dance studio.
  • The floor is covered with paper (120 grams) 7×7 meters.
  • Newspaper 7×4 meters hangs on the wall.
  • The seams of the paper are taped with painter’s tape and the paper is hung with gaffa tape. The paper can still move from the wall.
  • The paper on the floor is fixed with painter’s tape without overlap, to make sure the seams are hardly noticeable.
  • Each participant is given white disposable painting overalls. Size XL. The rest of the room is stripped of anything that could distract attention. There is no unnecessary furniture and the walls are covered with curtains for good acoustics. The lights are on.


  • 5 min: setting the stage
  • 10 min: warming up and investigating the space
  • 15 min: exploring the material and the boundaries of your own body and the body of the other.
  • 20 min: making a choreography.
  • 10 min: time to look back and reflect.

Participants: 6 – 8; it must be an even number


  • The workshop is structured in phases:
  • 5 min: The first phase is getting ready to enter the dance hall. We get to know each other and take off our shoes and put on overalls. Everyone looks the same.
  • 10 min: The second stage is warming up the body. Through simple exercises, we become aware of our body and we start exploring space and the way we move. There is no right or wrong. Everybody moves in a different way. After a while, we will meet and see the other participants. We even give them a hand. Then we gently touch each other. At first just a finger or a hand. We follow each other’s movements, like a mirror image. (see picture)
  • 15: min: The next stage is to explore the chalk and paper. Where is the limit in your body? What kinds of shapes emerge from this? Feel the paper with your eyes closed and experience the resistance of the chalk. Different positions can be explored. Big movements and small movements. Lying on the floor, standing, squatting, or on your knees.
  • Repeated once or many times. We work in silence. Then, in pairs, we will make a trace together. One person leads the other by taking their hand and moving it. Who determines the movement? Perhaps the eyes can be closed in order to find surrender. When everything has been explored and investigated, we stop and look at our tracks together. What do we see? And what did we experience?
  • 20 min: The final stage is the creation of a choreography. Everyone chooses a line from the tracks and we take turns making a movement of the chosen line. Everyone learns the movement from the other by performing it as a group, one movement after another it becomes a choreography.
  • 10 min: reflection


We start from the idea that everyone makes and can make tracks and everyone can move. We try to make the participants aware of their own bodies. By focusing on feeling and experiencing, we try to get the participants into a flow. We also hope that everyone dares to come close to each other and open up.

Based on our own experience

  • We did not use music, because we noticed that participants could concentrate better without music and became more aware of their own body and the material.
  • The coveralls worked well. Everyone is equal regardless of what kind of body you have.
  • Participants liked working with their eyes open or closed as they saw fit.
  • Working with closed eyes caused hyper concentration and focus on the sound of the chalk on the paper.

Variations and further development
Further variations could be: drawing with body parts and making a choreography with elderly people who can only sit. The choreography can be further developed by varying the tempo and rhythm. The use of space can be deepened against each other, but also against the drawing. We could also move the choreography to the floor as well and make more use of working in pairs. And more attention should be given to breathing.

Connection to PIMDI
Our bodies take part in our contact. How do we make traces and how do we relate to each other and to our traces? The relationship with PIMDI lies in the fact that the body always participates in communication. Consciously or unconsciously. In the workshop, we want to give the feeling of the body as a place in the dialogue with each other, the material and the traces.

An illustration of the set-up with participants in action.
An illustration of the set-up with participants in action.