Amerta movement, developed in the 1970s, was the movement practice of Suprapto Suryodarmo (Prapto), a Javanese movement artist. Exploration is at the heart of this non-stylised approach with roots in free movement practice, Javanese Theravada Buddhism and Javanese Sumarah meditation practice.
Amerta is a Javanese word meaning the 'nectar' or 'elixir' of life. Prapto described Amerta movement practice as based on basic movements in daily life like: walking, sitting, standing, crawling and lying down, transitions between them and observations of children playing. Integral to Amerta movement work is the aspect of moving in nature as embodied study of human and non-human presence.
In Amerta Movement, people may develop their relationship between inner and outer experience and gain understanding of cultural, societal and ecological environments. The ‘moving self’ is perceived as a multiplicity of changing selves in a constantly changing environment.
Prapto's approach to movement as creative life practice brings dialogue between traditions and can help people learn more about their own habits, cultures and art practices by becoming aware of their movement habits. Amerta movement cultivates a more engaged and embodied life, understanding of oneself, our natural environment and others.
Amerta movement worldwide
In 1986 Padepokan Lemah Putih was founded in Java where Amerta movement was taught. In 1990 Amerta movement practice and teaching began growing outside Java through the Sharing Movement initiative and application of the practice has spread through Europe, Australasia, China, Russia and the Americas. Practice is shared by dance and movement artists, musicians, psychotherapists, art/music/drama therapists, installation and other artists, filmmakers and teachers amongst others. A register of Amerta Movement practitioners can be found here. Current film projects are here.