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Juan Dominguez

With From... to... Juan Dominguez studies the relationship between verbal language (oral or written) and body language.

The project studies how different languages (in this case Spanish, Chinese, English, German, Portuguese, Arabic) have differing impacts on our perceptions and our ways of moving and acting. The idea is to gradually draw up a fragmentary dictionary in several languages, consisting of action verbs pertaining to concepts of space, time and movement.

Once these verbs are selected and studied, Juan Dominguez looks up their translations and antonyms in other languages. In so doing, he wants to point out the similarities useful in establishing a common understanding, as well as the creative, idiosyncratic differences between cultures that are sometimes far-removed from one another.

This work was developed in each country with the help of linguists, philosophers, writers and artists of varied disciplines. Though Juan Dominguez directs the project, it is constantly enriched by the contributions of local partners and has taken on a new character with each new country of residency.

The first phase of From... to... was held in the following six cities: Peking, Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Vienna, and Aubervilliers. It constituted material for precise scenic work, in which the dictionary becomes a living tale.

In May 2008, in Aubervilliers, Juan Dominguez explored the relationship of movement to the Arab language: first in a face-to-face encounter with a linguist, Mariem Guellouz, who demonstrated the language's sentence structure, and then with a group of Arabic-speaking dancers.

In 2009, the “Living dictionary” will give an account of the research undertaken in different cities (Peking, Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Vienna, Aubervilliers).

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