E-Traces: The Pointe Shoes That Turn Ballet Dancers' Movements Into Digital Paintings

If you're mesmerised by ballet dancers on stage, you can now continue to enjoy their talent after the show's over.

Pointe shoes with integrated recording devices have been created to capture dance movements and transform them into a series of abstract digital images that can be viewed on a mobile app.

The concept, E-Traces, is the brainchild of Lesia Trubat and has been created in collaboration with Lilypad Arduino.

Trubat believes dance is an art that disappears the same time it is created and is only retained by memory.

She's created a series of projects that aim to give us a way of enjoying dance for much longer while helping dancers to evaluate their own movements.

"We focused on the ballet shoes themselves, which through the contact with the ground, and thanks to Lilypad Arduino technology, record the pressure and movement of the dancer's feet and send a signal to an electronic device," Trubat explains on her website.

"A special application will then allow us to show this data graphically and even customise it to suit each user, through the different functions of this app.

"Dancers can interpret their own movements and correct them or compare them with the movements of other dancers, as graphs created with motion may be the same or different depending on the type of movements executed and the correction of the steps and body position."

Trubat says the concept can be extrapolated to other dance disciplines - we'll look forward to seeing electronic tap shoes soon then.

Misty Copeland

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