Constellations and Influences: Hilary Clark, Caroline Gravel, and Taisha Paggett
April 25, 2013
In 2012 Danspace Project presented two historic Platforms, Parallels and Judson Now. In 2013 we continue to explore artistic constellations and lineages. What web of connections do new generations of artists trace? Who are their influences? This season we ask each artist to share a significant artistic influence. Below are responses from Hilary Clark, Caroline Gravel, and Taisha Paggett:
Hilary Clark: My most significant artistic influence is many, many things. One being Ruth Adrienne, my Taylor dance technique teacher in college, because she said that you hold the past, present and future in one hard position where you are sitting on one heel for a long time with your arms up as if holding two worlds, and I thought, well I am really looking to the future right now but I believe. She would say the right arm and where you are looking, is the future, your body is the present and your back arm holds the past. That was blowing my young mind as it was my quadriceps and has left a significant impression on me artistically.
Caroline Gravel: My most significant artistic influence is my family’s ways of moving and relating to the environment in general and my mother in particular. Because I believe that our individual characteristics are the result of an imitation process meeting our personality, corporeality of my kin offers so many clues on my own way to perceive and to relate to the world, notions I widely use to create dance work.
Taisha Paggett: My most significant artistic influence stems from songs. Well, influence comes in all directions, but I would say songs have been the most consistent presence for me and thread between my artistic practice and my personal life-hood (assuming we’re able to separate the two). And I’m not talking about music necessarily, but lyrics. And not in terms of informing specific works, but in terms of altering mood and the way in which I generally process concepts: That’s the generative headspace in which ideas emerge and come together for me. I think my brain enjoys creating chaos so perhaps there’s also a grounding effect in lyrics…It’s all so elemental: The chorus is the thesis statement/mantra and the verse is the list of supporting ideas. I believe there’s something particularly powerful about song lyrics as well (even some of the cheesy ones)–in terms of their widespread availability; how familiar they become to us as individuals and as collectives; how they are able to stand in and create words for our feelings; and in how they craft-fully mangle and distill language to get a point or a rhyme across.
Solos & Solitudes runs Thursday, April 25-Saturday, April 27, 2013 at Danspace Project