She has never set foot in space and yet Jeanne Morel regularly leaves the mainland to fly a little higher in the sky… and dance in weightlessness.
Since 2016, this extreme dancer, recently named a member of Unesco at the International Dance Council and who likes to “perform” in the midst of volcanoes, under the sea or in the high mountains, collaborates with the National Center of space studies (CNES) and the European Space Agency (ESA) on these Zero-G flights which propose to recreate the conditions of micro-gravity on board an Airbus A300.
With her partner and architect Paul Marlier, responsible for capturing the movements of her body and her brain when she improvises a weightless choreography, Jeanne delivers the results of her data to the engineers, doctors and astronauts of the two agencies - and even to psychologists from NASA - who seek to know a little more about the capacity of the human body to control its gestures - precise in the case of a trained dancer - in an environment which is no longer subject to terrestrial gravity.
“It's a wonderful link between art and science.
On the one hand, with my partner, we create poetic digital works of art based on the movements of my body in micro-gravity, on the other hand, researchers are studying psychomotricity in weightlessness, ”she explains.
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The first results of the study, still ongoing, have already demonstrated the creation of new connections in Jeanne's brain.
"We study more precisely the zones which are activated via my emotions, during a choreography", she specifies.
Ultimately, the data used could, according to Jeanne, make it possible to imagine applications that would serve, for example, people with quadriplegia.
"They could choose colors, movements and in a way dance even in a confined body by activating certain areas of the brain."
When asked if she dreams of going out dancing in space one day, the real one, Jeanne does not dismiss the idea. " I do not know. Why not. It would have to make sense. Me, I see myself more in a spatial quest. Not in the conquest of space. I remain a space dancer, ”she smiles.