what does it mean to be a woman? what does it mean to be a woman in America? how do we create an alternative geography that follows the existing map but develops from a logic other than the dominant logic of the nation state?
A FEW WORDS ABOUT THE PROJECT
People say the dance field is dominated by women. It isn’t. It is populated by women.
The field of professional concert dance does not empower women, understand women, or celebrate women. In so many ways, it reflects the systemic patriarchies of our nation: in issues of labor distribution, opportunities for advancement and recognition, and even bodily autonomy.
I want that to change. And I want my work to contribute, in some way, toward that change.
So, I came up with a plan to spend the next several years celebrating women in dance by listening to and sharing their stories, their incredible embodied wisdom, and their unique and enlightening perspectives. In the american / woman project, I am collaborating with women dance artists from every state in the US. The project explores, through a dancer’s lens, possibilities for what it means to be a woman in America today. It also endeavors to platform the artistry of women dancers from across the country.
In 2018, I spent six months interviewing and creating solos and duets with seven remarkable individuals in New England: Shura Baryshnikov (RI), Ali Kenner Brodsky (MA), Alexandra James (ME), Kellie Ann Lynch & Rachel Boggia (CT), Jessie Jeanne Stinnett (NH), and Lida Winfield (VT).
In 2019, the american / woman project expanded in scope to include collaborations with artists from across the country: in Colorado, Utah, Montana, Tennessee, Georgia, and Iowa. In 2020, like most things, the project was mostly on hold due to COVID-19. During this time, I explored the possibilities for Zoom-based collaboration with Kendra Portier (MD), and will continue working with Kendra in person in 2021. As the performing arts sector emerges from the pandemic, I am planning my next steps on future collaborations. Stay tuned for updates!
Each creative process is centered around the interests, identities, and desires of each respective artist, and has resulted in the creation of a solo or duet.
P.S: Now that you’re here, why not stay awhile and snoop around! You can find out more about these artists and view rehearsal footage, notes and other artifacts from the collaborative processes.