Something Old and Something New: Drawing and Movement

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Recently in my practice, I have become very interested in movement and the drawing capacity of the body to cut through space. When it comes to movement, such as dance and yoga, I am very shy about people looking at me. While all of my performance art thus far includes movement (as I move my limbs to execute the actions at hand), gesture has not been the main focus of articulation. To be clear: I am a mediocre dancer. I have a hard time learning new routines, staying on rhythm for an extended period of time and allowing my body to lead my spirit instead of my mind. So this territory of dance, movement and gesture-based performance has always appeared off limits to me because, well, I’m not a dancer.

As of recently, however, I have had this urge to crawl through space, collapse onto the floor, walk up walls and maybe even dance a little. I decided to disregard the arbitrary limits I have placed on myself and indulge this urge by attending the first two Physical Education workshops at PNCA, lead by Takahiro Yamamoto and Allie Hankins. While for me, the workshop was scary as fuck, I walked away buzzing with energy and a new area of thought and expression tapped open, and oozing with potential. We practiced moving with pressure, pushing against pressure and moving in opposition to pressure.

I felt sooooo vulnerable, but I have learned that for me, the best things come from the spaces within me that I fear. As such, I have been incorporating movement more and more into my practice through various exercises. Most recently, I have been marrying an old friend, drawing and painting, with these expressions of movement. Having been done by various artists, such as Trisha Brown, I decided that this territory, though not new to art history, is worth exploring for me since it is extremely foreign terrain in my practice.

 

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As I practice movement in my body and drawings, I have also been reading up on what dance is and looking at a few movement/dance-based artists, such as Brown, Simone Forti, Wura-Natasha Ogunji and Senga Nengudi. At the same time, I am wondering how this new art form fits with what I have done in the past. Regardless of the answer, this is the scariest and most exciting part of my practice at the moment, and I look forward to what I make of it.

For more information on Physical Education and their PNCA residency, please see http://physicaleducation.life and http://www.opb.org/radio/article/physical-education-dance-collective-pnca/

 

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