Embody

 

Embody is a collaborative project that exists in many forms, including a multi media installation and live cinema performance. At PlatteForum, I had the opportunity to work with a group of girls that had no arts education in their school. They came to PlatteForum for workshops and joined me in the process interviewing, filming and dancing with various dancers. Our final work was presented as an immersive installation and performance with videos, animations, flipbooks and websites. The videos were projected onto large scale thead drawings and quilts depicting the dancers. In the interviews every dancer expressed "losing themselves" in dance. The thread drawings are neat and composed on one side while the other side is loose and less self conscious to reflect this experience. I wrote extensively about this work, including an essay that is published in a book entitled Popularizing Qualitative Research. For more details on this work, including a series of videos, please visit the following links:

 

Videos                        PlatteForum Residency and Exhibit                        The Workshops                         Workshop Slideshow                     Qualitative Research Text

 

 

Embody Dancers

Embody Dancers

From left: Flamenco: Amanda Bishop, Native American Dances: AJ and Lara No Braid, Mexican Folklorico: Jeanette Trujillo and her dancers, Jazz Tap: Jan Sherman and her dancers, West African: Cathy Phelps, Jowanna Norris and Pamela Liverpool

I created this work during a residency at PlatteForum, an organization that supports contemporary artists and under served youth in Denver through innovative arts programs that allow the youth to work side-by-side with artists in residence.

I filmed and interviewed twelve dancers with the help of middle school participants. The women practice Jazz Tap, West African, Mexican Folklorico, Spanish Flamenco and a variety of Native American dances.

All of the dancers expressed "losing themselves" in dance when they are immersed. These thread drawings express that statement. The front of the drawing depicts a tangible position, while the back of the drawing expresses the intangible feelings experienced when they are engaged in a dance.

All of the dancers expressed "losing themselves" in dance when they are immersed. These thread drawings express that statement. The front of the drawing depicts a tangible position, while the back of the drawing expresses the intangible feelings experienced when they are engaged in a dance.

All of the dancers expressed "losing themselves" in dance when they are immersed. These thread drawings express that statement. The front of the drawing depicts a tangible position, while the back of the drawing expresses the intangible feelings experienced when they are engaged in a dance.

Viewer's silhouettes became part of the piece...

Viewer's silhouettes became part of the piece...

The different channels of video captured different movements of the dance.

The different channels of video captured different movements of the dance.

The installation consisted of four channels of video featuring the dancers movements, paired with their voices talking about a transformation they experience when dancing. The videos were projected upon large thread drawings of the dancers. To express what the dancers say they experience while dancing, the thread is neat and composed on one side, but loose and less self conscious on the other.

For the opening and closing reception, I collaborated with Flamenco Dancer, Amanda Bishop. She performed while I mixed images and her statements behind her as she danced.

Girls from Clear Creek Middle school joined me in the process of documenting and getting to know the dancers. I taught the girls filming and interviewing techniques and the dancers taught us some steps. The girls created flipbooks from their video stills and a stop motion video featuring all of us dancing.

Girls from Clear Creek Middle school joined me in the process of documenting and getting to know the dancers. I taught the girls filming and interviewing techniques and the dancers taught us some steps. The girls created flipbooks from their video stills and a stop motion video featuring all of us dancing.

Girls from Clear Creek Middle school joined me in the process of documenting and getting to know the dancers. I taught the girls filming and interviewing techniques and the dancers taught us some steps. The girls created flipbooks from their video stills and a stop motion video featuring all of us dancing.

Girls from Clear Creek Middle school joined me in the process of documenting and getting to know the dancers. I taught the girls filming and interviewing techniques and the dancers taught us some steps. The girls created flipbooks from their video stills and a stop motion video featuring all of us dancing.

Girls from Clear Creek Middle school joined me in the process of documenting and getting to know the dancers. I taught the girls filming and interviewing techniques and the dancers taught us some steps. The girls created flipbooks from their video stills and a stop motion video featuring all of us dancing.

The installation consisted of four channels of video featuring the dancers movements, paired with their voices talking about a transformation they experience when dancing. The videos were projected upon large thread drawings of the dancers. To express what the dancers say they experience while dancing, the thread is neat and composed on one side, but loose and less self conscious on the other.

The installation consisted of four channels of video featuring the dancers movements, paired with their voices talking about a transformation they experience when dancing. The videos were projected upon large thread drawings of the dancers. To express what the dancers say they experience while dancing, the thread is neat and composed on one side, but loose and less self conscious on the other.