Circus research

By researching the circus artists' physical and mental ability to transcend boundaries and make the impossible possible, we are convinced that the circus can develop the whole of society and life in general.

"But Tilde, you're trying to capture your whole life on one website. It is clear that it is difficult to try to box life into a computer… ”

Everthing is possible

Through research, we have come to the conclusion that in all risk-taking and in all creative processes, whether artistic, pedagogical or entrepreneurial, a relationship to the following seven dimensions is required: everything is possible, failure, balance, trust, cooperation, presence, dedication. These dimensions can be linked to different circus disciplines.

Three-year research project

For three years, Tilde Björfors conducted a research project at the School of Dance and Circus in Stockholm. During the project, Tilde collaborated with brain researchers, economists and theater scientists and interviewed about a hundred circus artists. In its cross-border work, the project has involved almost 300,000 people in the role of participant or audience.

In 2005, Tilde received a professorship in new circus at the School of Dance in Stockholm. On March 30, 2012, her research project Nycirkus was finally reported as a transgressor in art and society with support from the Swedish Research Council.

Risks and crossing borders

Contemporary circus is an art form that has its inherent quality in exposing itself to risks through several different dimensions.

Risk-taking in this case is not a negative phenomenon but rather a pleasurable way to challenge one's physical abilities, work interdisciplinary and put the world in an exploratory challenging perspective.

By researching the circus artists 'physical and mental ability to cross boundaries and make the impossible possible, the circus' and new circus 'historical and social ability to work cross-border in art and society, the new circus' cross-border creative processes where the work takes place cross-border interdisciplinary as well as interdisciplinary made definitions and articulations of circus art and the circus disciplines available, created methods and illustrations to participate in and lead creative and risky interdisciplinary / interdisciplinary processes, as well as an in-depth understanding of art and physical intelligence as well as learning and knowledge builders.

Risk and Opportunity Research

Circus performers take risks every day: often physically on life and death. Why do they choose to do so? They are extremely safety conscious and train to achieve total control. But their arts require conscious risk-taking. And they have developed an expertise in how to physically and mentally handle these risks.

By going into their physical and practical work, I have tried to understand more about how, by focusing on the possibilities, they become experts in managing the risks. During the research process, it has become clear that this expert knowledge that the artists have developed is not necessarily and automatically transferred to other areas of life.

A flying trapeze artist who knows everything about managing risks in the trapeze can have a hard time using that ability in private life or in a creative and chaotic process. Fear is what often prevents us from crossing boundaries.

Meeting their fears always involves a risk, which is why research on fear has also become part of the research project.

Brain research

In her attempts to understand both physically, emotionally and mentally how risks and opportunities work, Tilde Björfors has devoted a lot of time to the brain and become a brain research artist, or perhaps an artistic brain researcher..

By consciously training focus, concentration and presence, a concept called mindfulness, you can restructure your brain for the better and create new brain cells in different parts of the brain. Long before mindfulness became a fashion concept, my favorite moment in circus was the seconds before the flying trapeze artist let go if the trapeze or an acrobat was going to do something really difficult. Then there is a special mental state of concentration which, despite its tension, is relaxed, open and expanded.

Tilde Björfors

Management comes from the circus' manege

Historically, the circus has been driven by strong entrepreneurship. As the other forms of performing arts approached the art field and gained access to all that it entails of scenes being built and institutions being created and supporting societal structures, circus art went a different way. The word Management is taken from the circus and the word manege.