Past Featured Artists:
Marianela Boán, LaJuné McMillian, Mimi Yin, and Chisa Hidaka
See excerpts from their features below
Marianela Boán is an internationally recognized and award winning choreographer currently living in the Dominican Republic and one of the most important artists of the Cuban and Latin American dance vanguard. Her revolutionary style "Contaminated Dance" radically mixes all the arts associated with dance, producing an expressive and original scenic result.
As a choreographer, dancer, and teacher, Boán has worked in more than 40 countries presenting her works and giving workshops in numerous venues and festivals in Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. She has created nearly 70 choreographic works for dance, theatre, TV and film companies. She was a member of Danza Contemporánea de Cuba from 1973-1988, the founding director of the companies DanzAbierta Cuba (1988-2003), BoanDanz Action USA (2005-2010), and the Compañía Nacional de Danza Contemporánea of the Dominican Republic (2010-2020).
On Thursday October 1st, we hosted a MeMoSa Event where Marlène Ramírez-Cancio interviewed Marianela Boán about her artistic practice and journey, ending with a live question and answer opportunity. This bilingual event took place in Spanish with English subtitles. View the conversation:
LaJuné is New Media Artist, Maker, and Creative Technologist creating art that integrates Performance, Virtual Reality, and Physical Computing to question our current forms of communication. They were an Artist-in-Residence at the Movement Lab of Barnard College during Spring 2019 and will be teaching the Barnard Pre-College Program course "Understanding, Transforming, and Preserving Movement in Digital Spaces." LaJuné has had the opportunity to show and speak about their work at Dance on Camera at Lincoln Center, MakerFaire, Liberty Science Center, Chelsea Film Festival, Pioneer Works, National Sawdust, Creative Tech Week, and Art && Code's Weird Reality.
The Black Movement Project (BMP) is an online database of Black motion capture data and Black character base models, currently underrepresented in available online databases. "BMP is a tool for activists, performers & artists to create diverse XR projects, a space to research how and why we move, and an archive of Black existence." (from LaJuné's website)
Black Movement Project:
Music by Nala Duma and Jeremiah Johnson Featuring interviews with Nala Duma and Renaldo Maurice. Full audio link
For the Thursday May 14th event, LaJuné discussed questions BMP has helped develop:
What does it mean to ethically digitize Black movement?
How do we protect data that is collected, and how can it better serve and celebrate the community?
How can we effectively challenge digital tools that don’t share these values, and gain control and ownership of our collective future?
Mimi Yin is an artist, designer and educator. Her work explores human-computer interaction and choreography and has been presented on Governor’s Island, off The Highline, Yale University Art Gallery, Gibney Dance, Danspace in St. Mark’s Church, and The Center for Ballet at NYU The Arts among others. Her research into choreographic practice and interactive media is currently being supported by an NEA Art Works grant. She is an Artist-in-Residence at the Movement Lab at Barnard College with the artist collective NUUM. Mimi is an Assistant Arts Professor at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. For the past 2 years, she has taught the course Coding Choreography in the Barnard Dance Department.
NUUM is a collective of artists committed to a multi-disciplinary approach to creating performance work.
Our prompt: Can you see me? was created by: NiNi Dongnier, Tiri Kananuruk, Nuntinee Tansrasikul and Mimi Yin
Hello, are you there?
Can you see me?
Can you hear me?
Can you understand what I am saying?
Now that it is harder to understand each other do we pay closer attention?
Mimi Yin and her collaborators from the NUUM collective focused their feature on exploring what it means to see, hear, understand, and feel each other in this time of digital mediation. Culminating in a discussion and showing of work by current and former students of her Coding Choreography. See the event page for Program information.
Chisa Hidaka, MD (’86) and Ben Harley co-founded the Dolphin Dance Project in 2009 to bring together wild dolphins and trained human dancers in the open ocean, and produce films featuring the underwater dance collaborations.
They spent their week exploring the idea of "Making the Virtual Visceral" through the question: “How do we make what we see, feel like what we experience?”
As we practice ‘social distancing’ performances and meetings have gone online. Many of these experiences are wonderful, but we also often feel that something is missing, or lost in the virtual realm. For the Dolphin Dance Project, this is a constant challenge. We can never bring human audiences to witness our dances, which happen 30 feet or more underwater in distant, pristine oceans. Yet, what we want to share most is the live performance: the visceral experience of intimate, in-the-moment, improvised exchanges, the vibrant presences of human and dolphin dancers. Connecting you virtually to our physical experience is always on our agenda.
On Thursday April 30th, we featured a live streamed Zoom chat with dance critic for the New York Times Siobhan Burke, Artist in Residence Chisa Hidaka and her collaborator, Benjamin Harley. Watch the interview: