The Allies is a multi-channel video work (installed with associated sculptural and photographic elements) that documents the reenactment of some aspects of the Battle of Cambrai, which occurred in November of 1917 along the Hindenburg Line. The project takes as its subject the legacy of psychotherapeutic techniques related to group dynamics as they emerged after the trauma of the Great War; specifically, some of the ideas of Wilfred Bion, who was awarded the Croix de Chevalier for his service as a tank commander in the British Forces during the battle, and who went on to pioneer ideas about group psychoanalysis, as well as graphical and mathematical systems related to his theories of the mind.
The group of young men and women who performed the reenactment were trained to read and interpret many types of “scores” and systems of movement notation, including Labanotation, textual directives, and maps and diagrams of many kinds. Using their newly acquired knowledge of these notational systems, the performers then worked together to interpret and perform a score for the battle. Their entire process — working together, performing, and talking afterward — was recorded by a trio of video cameras precisely choreographed in relation to the Sale Redutowe at the Polish National Theater, where the piece was shot.