GRIPDANCE more dance less fight a global dance a global artwork

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Concept description

- an international artwork, which within the headline more dance – less fight is expressed in dancing silhouettes in city space. The silhouettes are creating a network, which reaches around the globe – a dancing worldwide community.


The project’s elements

  1. The artist contacts, on physical journeys and by the internet, persons throughout the wide world who wish to dance within the headline more dance – less fight.

  2. The artist photographs dancers in action. These photos are collected in a database, from where they later are to be drawn out and work as a presentation to future Gripdance street art and co-operative art.

  3. The project consists of a network of single wall paintings [street art]. In the paintings as media the dancers are brought together even though they in the real world are thousand of kilometres apart. Wall paintings are painted with dancing silhouettes who fling into each other and send ‘catch-treads’ / networks out for each other. Each dancing silhouette represents a real person somewhere in the world – thereby the dancer is co-creator of a global piece of art. There is always to be painted by agreement with the local inhabitants – as this is a project of friendship.

  4. The project is documented at Photos of dancers and of the work by creating Gripdance street art are collected on the web-site. From the web-side it also appears where the single Gripdance wall painting are placed in the world and which dancers are pictured on the wall.

Genre, Media and audience contact

  • The project is moving within the genre of social art: social design, relational aesthetics and global networking. Simultaneously the work is a ‘work in progress’ work.

  • The silhouettes are to be painted up in the city space, on house fronts, city walls, garages, sidewalks and similar places – outdoor and indoor.

  • The projects global character is incorporated in many parts of the project. Partly the artist’s travels cross borders to meet and photograph the dancers, who participate in the project. Partly dancers form all over the world and of many nationalities participate. Ultimately the entire project is collected and documented on the internet. The internet is busy used by the artist as network media and interactive communications centre. The project also has a group on Facebook where interested users are connected to the project as members of the Gripdance Group and where they can interact with the artist and each other.

  • The scattered and different placing of the silhouettes secures an equal access to the work. Thus it will be possible for all types of audiences, ‘high as low’ to meet the work. This underlines the democratic and open character of the work.

The reason for the project

  • In our high technological age the world seems smaller and smaller and there will be more and more peoples who seek influence and a high living standard. At the same time the world is filled with conflicts, some of them are latent while others have developed into wars and terrorism.

  • It is easy to distance from people one does not know and understand. If one on the other hand only once has talked to and tried to understand another person from another culture, then it is immediately clear that we against all differences have tremendously much in common. Therefore many misunderstandings and conflicts never would arise if we met and got to know each other to a higher extent. We ought to meet around something we all understand, know and appreciate. Something which touches us and makes us happy.

  • Dance is a bodily and nonverbal expression, a communications form which does not need a common language. In the dance the soul can express itself and it can listen.

  • The dance is democratic. Everybody can dance, children, adults, woopies, high & low, thick & thin, coloured & Caucasian, professionals & amateurs.

  • In the dance human beings can meet cross culture, language, religion and political opinions.

  • The dance is inclusive both in the physical and in the social space.

  • It can be difficult to meet across distances, borders and time to dance. Here the picture media becomes relevant. The picture can intercept the dance’s character and make it last. In this way dancers who are physically apart can meet in the picture media and the dance can be worldwide, border crossing and lasting.

  • Thus this project brings people beings together across borders and culture –not physically – but in the visual media. The project involves the participants actively in the process by the creation of the work just as the artist meets the participating dancers and enters into a dialog about intercultural and border crossing friendship and understanding. The project carries the story about these meetings and dances by via street art, co-operative art and the internet.

Development of the project / work in progress

  • Gripdance is a ‘work in progress’ work which began in the summer of 2007.

  • The project grows with as many Gripdance silhouettes as possible each year. In 2007 and 2008 there were painted 25 silhouettes all in all, spread over 6 outdoor walls, one indoor wall, one auto camper and two large glass facades.

  • The project will spread around as many cities and countries as possible.

  • The project will involve as many nationalities and kinds of dances as possible.

  • The project is finances by sale of Gripdance co-operative art and through fundraising.

Method of work

  1. Travel to a random place in the world

  2. Contact is made to local people who wish to dance

  3. Dialogue about participation in the project

  4. Photo of dancers in action

  5. Sketch (digital or drawing by hand – according to the conditions)

  6. Projection to wall or canvas (digital projector, overhead projector, use of shapes, or free-hand drawing – according to the conditions)

  7. Painterly adaption of wall or canvas. The work is mainly done by artist Rikke Rohde, but assistants are also affiliated to the project. Other artists are also very welcome to paint together with Rikke or perform other street art by this concept.

  8. Photo of the working process

  9. Documentation at


  • The Gripdance web works as documentation for the Gripdance Project and at the same time it is manifesting the work’s global character - by offering everybody throughout the world who has access to the internet to follow the project’s development.

  • All meetings with the dancers and the work of performing Gripdance street art, are documented in photos. These photos are collected on the web.

  • The photo documentation is always followed by information about the silhouette’s placing/address and the dancer’s name and nationality.

  • The Gripdance web will be translated into as many languages as possible. Continuously, translation to new languages is done

  • Gripdance also has a Facebook group named Gripdance

Co-operative art > >





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