Anna Rubio: All the Trees I Met

Performance, 2014–2016

The work began in 2012 with a performance in Festival Saó (Farrera, High Pyrenees), and continued until today in different environments, always with trees as a motive.  Performances took place in 2013 in Java (Indonesia), in 2014 in Farrera (Catalonia), and were specially developed in SERDE residences (Latvia) in 2014, 2015, and 2016, supported by Frontiers in Retreat.

On the one hand, the Tree, the world's largest living organism, the strongest vegetal, which brings together all the symbolism of life, from its roots to its leaves, on the other hand, the Woman, the creature that takes in its essence the archaic symbolism of the tree, simultaneously bringing together all symbolism of fertility, which is about life, are here seen in relation to one another, dialoguing in different languages, but having the same origin.

Exploring a tree is exploring the essence of life, but not just to emphasise its values, but also to analyse how we relate to and give intimate insight from the creative act.

1. "Fagus" was performed on the Abolosana Festival (Latvia), with the collaboration of the violinist Ruta Vitkauskaite (2014) and with the pianist Rihards Plesanovs (2015).

This piece mixed vertical dance and creative movement techniques to explore the intimate connection between a tree and a person, and all the symbols that appear in this dialogue. In this work, I also want to show the audience a new point of view to the tree and its environment: the tree’s point of view, its textures and its beauty.

"From the first day, I was captivated by you. You welcomed me. Your sensual forms captivate me and, at the same time, I feel you big and strong and full of life. Horizontal branches of the free-spirited beech, stretching majestically, drinking in light.

Every day, I come to your daily life. Children hurrying to school, women going shopping, a drunk, a distracted dog, and the leaves. How many generations wished to climb you!

I couldn’t resist discovering your body. The diameter of your strong branches allows me to feel safe, and moving every day for your light relief. I explore you, and I see that you are man and woman at the same time, and I like that. Complete, holistic. You excite me, welcome me, and swing me.

The moss that you nourish dresses you with a dark and soft green. It’s a dress custom-made just for you.

I'll be another ant again, coming up, a ripe fruit, and now also a lover.
Fagus, faig, dizskabardis..."

2. “The suspended Apple" was performed in the Abolosana Festival (Latvia, 2016).

I started to work with apples and their symbols in 2014 in Farrera (Catalonia), after being shocked by the strong presence of apples in Aizpute.  It's an investigation of exploring the symbolism of these fruits through creative movement, which also wants to appreciate these beautiful trees, and, from a symbolic level, explore the concept of falling down.

"We are in Tom’s Apple orchard. Here, you are hearing the birds, you are hearing the cars passing through these fields, and you are noticing the wind and the sun that embrace everything.

Here, you can see the butterflies, crickets, and fresh grass. You can see the ants, the spiders, you can touch the grass, and maybe you can feel the beauty of this place for a while, when the harmony between the environment and human briefly appears.

And you can hear your heart beating, and also mine, and maybe you will touch the beat of this apple tree. It’s just living, just waiting quietly, free of expectations and full of the history of this place.

Inside this history, I’m an apple suspended, a red one. I’m playing with my fragility, with sensuality and gravity just before falling down. Only the branches and the wind know the right moment for that. And only the apple knows what’s going on:  She knows about the pain of breaking the harmonic cycle of life."