Events – Danspace Project
Athena Kokoronis, close-up holding up in front of her face a mesh colander, in the foreground of kitchen
Photo courtesy the artist.

DraftWork: Athena Kokoronis

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This event will take place online via Zoom. A link will be sent to registrants via email 30 minutes prior to the stream.

Registration closes 30 minutes prior to the program.

Danspace Project’s DraftWork series hosts informal showings of new works in varying stages of development. They are followed by a conversation and Q&A between the artists and DraftWork curator Ishmael Houston-Jones.

This season, Danspace has re-envisioned DraftWork as a series of virtual engagement.

Accessibility: This program will be captioned.

Athena Kokoronis is an artist living in New York since 2005. Her art practice revolves around studying, referencing, researching and embodiment within the domestic space. Domestic Performance Agency (DPA) is the name and the space of practice for a choreographic process that gives attention to aspects of performance production, curation, food, cloth, fungi, and searches for the creative economy within these realms that begins and extends out of domestic scale with hospitality. Choreographic problem-solving with time, sensitivity, and intimacy are at the core of the DPA vision. Costume design is elemental to DPA process. Costume collaborations have been with Jasmine Hearn, Tatyana Tennebaum, Jessie Young, Angie Pittman, David Thomson, Marion Spencer, Tyler Rai, Kensaku Shinohara, and Daria Fain. Holistic Micro-Patronages, like DPA Soup Subscriptions, operate all year long and are currently open to new subscribers. In 2018, CookBook: Domestic Performance Agency was published by Yonkers International Press (YIP), in conjunction with Dance & Process series at the Kitchen. A second edition was released in 2019 in conjunction with The New School (NYC) centennial exhibition. DPA is currently represented in Lydia Rodrigues Collection (NYC )

DraftWork is presented, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.

Samita smiles while looking into the camera and holding a small wooden string instrument in one hand. She wears a cozy grey sweater and white earphones. Another string instrument sits in the background.
Samita Sinha, Breathing Room session, 2020.

Samita Sinha: Breathing Room

*This session is now full.*
Questions? Contact Ben@danspaceproject.org

This month’s invited guest is Okwui Okpokwasili.

Admission: Sliding scale of $0-$20 per session. Participants are invited to choose what to pay based on your circumstances. We ask that you be honest with yourself and your financial situation. You are welcome to attend for FREE if that makes the most sense for you.

In this series, artist and composer Samita Sinha will lead participants in vocal practice, rooted in Indian tradition, that invites the wilderness of the body and opens connective channels of vibration. Each practice session will be followed by an in-depth conversation with participants and an invited guest artist.

This event will take place online via Zoom. A link will be sent to registrants approximately 30 minutes in advance of each session.


Accessibility: Please email seta@danspaceproject.org to request CART live captioning or any other access requests. Requests should be submitted at least three weeks ahead of any one session.

Artist and composer Samita Sinha investigates origins of voice: quantum entanglement of listening and sounding, how voice emerges from body and consciousness, and how voice is claimed and rescued from voicelessness. She synthesizes training in Hindustani (North Indian) classical music, Bengali Baul tradition, and embodied energetic practices to create a decolonized, bodily, multivalent language of vibration and transformation. 

Sinha’s sound and performance works have been commissioned by Asia Society, Performance Space 122 and Invisible Dog Art Center, Danspace, Rubin Museum, Queens Museum, and Gibney Dance, and presented by The Kitchen, Wexner Center for the Arts, REDCAT, PICA, National Sawdust and others. She has received awards from National Endowment for the Arts, Fulbright Foundation, National Performance Network, New York State Council on the Arts and the Ucross/Alpert Residency Prize, and collaborated across disciplines with artists including Okwui Okpokwasili and Peter Born, Ralph Lemon, Sunny Jain and Grey Mcmurray, Fiona Templeton, Daria Fain, Julia Ulehla, Robert Ashley, Dani Restack, Sunil Bald, and Aki Onda. Sinha teaches voice through many channels—in addition to private lessons and workshops, she has in recent years taught at Princeton University, Swarthmore College, Movement Research, Rubin Museum, Centro Nacional de las Artes (CENART) in Mexico City, and New York Asian Women’s Center.

Larissa has her face in the left side of the frame only and she has dark brown curls framing her face and she wears bright red lipstick.
Jaamil Olawale Kosoko (photo by Nile Harris); Larissa Velez-Jackson (photo courtesy of the artist).

Conversations Without Walls: Jaamil Olawale Kosoko and Larissa Velez-Jackson

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This conversation will take place on YouTube. A link to view the conversation will be sent to registrants via email 30 minutes prior to the stream.

In Fall 2020, Danspace Project invited six Artist Research Fellows, devynn emory, Larissa Velez-Jackson, Jaamil Olawale Kosoko, iele paloumpis, Angie Pittman, and Alice Sheppard to gather virtually with Danspace’s curatorial team. They responded to Danspace’s digital programming, the shifting landscape of dance, making and presenting, pedagogy, and programming. These sprawling and intimate conversations led to critical reflection, dreaming, and deep connection. Each of the Artist Research Fellows will return in our Winter 2021 digital Conversations Without Walls (CWW) series

In this CWW, performance artist & poet, Jaamil Olawale Kosoko, and choreographer, interdisciplinary artist & movement educator, Larissa Velez-Jackson, reconnect to continue threads of reflection and dreaming. At a moment when the pandemic remains far from over, Jaamil and Larissa both find themselves leaning into kinship, intimacy and rest as politics to devise theater, while de-centering liveness and stagecraft. They have been slowing down to embrace a different kind of artist’s hustle, one that uplifts healing, self-love and spirituality. Larissa and Jaamil discuss how these intentional shifts have become central to each artist’s personal “internal audit.” This CWW will be facilitated by Danspace’s Program Director & Associate Curator Benjamin Akio Kimitch.

The CWW digital series are pre-recorded and will be streamed on YouTube and archived on Danspace Project’s online Journal at danspaceproject.org/journal.

More about the Conversations Without Walls series

Jaamil Olawale Kosoko is a Nigerian American performance artist, poet, and curator originally from Detroit, MI. He is a 2020 Artist Residency Award Recipient from the Wexner Center for the Arts, 2019 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Choreography, 2019 NPN Development Fund Awardee, a 2017-19 Princeton Arts Fellow, 2019 Red Bull Writing Fellow, 2018 NEFA NDP Production Grant recipient, and a 2017 Cave Canem Poetry Fellow. His creative practice draws from Black study, queer theories of the body, weaving together visual performance, lecture, ritual, and spiritual practice. His most recent works American Chameleon: The Living Installments (2020), Séancers (2017) and the Bessie nominated #negrophobia (2015), have toured internationally appearing in major festivals including: Tanz im August (Berlin), Moving in November (Finland), Within Practice (Sweden),TakeMeSomewhere (UK), Brighton Festival (UK), Oslo Teaterfestival (Norway), and Zürich MOVES! (Switzerland) among others. He is the author of two chapbooks and his poems and essays have been included in The American Poetry Review, The Dunes Review, The Broad Street Review, among others. Visit jaamil.com for more information. IG: chameleon_coalition

Larissa Velez-Jackson (LVJ) is a NYC-based choreographer, movement educator and multi-platform artist who uses improvisation as a tool for research and creation; blending dance, healing modalities, sound, internet art, humor and strategies of self-compassion in her original performance practice called, Star Pû Method (f.k.a. Star Crap Method). LVJ was nominated for a New York Dance and Performance “Bessie” award for Outstanding Emerging Choreographer and was awarded the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Grant to Artists, in 2016. www.larissavelez.com

two seated bodies- one human one mannequin, in chairs with a table in a field
Photo by Reilly Horan.

devynn emory: deadbird + can anybody help me hold this body public grief altar

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devynn emory’s latest work is a virtual conversation, film, public grief altar, and website archive. The artist encourages you to engage with all aspects of this work. If you can’t make it to the premiere, deadbird is available for self-streaming. See below!

 

Wednesday, March 31 | 7pm ET: deadbird film premiere & conversation with Okwui Okpokwasili
Sliding scale: $0-$20
*Registration has ended for this event. See below to register to self-stream the film.*


Thursday-Saturday, April 1-3 : Missed the premiere on March 31?
You can register to self-stream deadbird! Register for any day and watch any day between April 1-3! You will receive a link and a password to self-stream with your registration confirmation.
REGISTER TO SELF-STREAM THE FILM HERE


Thursday-Saturday, April 1-3 | 12-4pm ET: public grief altar: can anybody help me hold this body
Free
REGISTER HERE
The location in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, will be shared after registration.


About deadbird the film

deadbird
is a new film by emory. It is part-critical commentary of the medical industrial complex that’s in friction with emory’s own ceremonial end-of-life care practice, and part-grief space for emory’s body as a hospice and COVID-19 nurse, spirit medium, and artist. deadbird is an invitation to “grieve in honor of the bodies and spirits who are our teachers as they leave this plane.” This work carries the complexities of death and dying, with a mannequin (voiced by Julia Bennett, Neil Greenberg, and Calvin Stalvig) playing multiple characters, telling stories of near-death experiences, pre-death visualizations, and transitions into the afterworld. On the evening of the premiere, emory will be joined by choreographer and writer Okwui Okpokwasili in conversation. Following the premiere, the film will be available for online viewing from April 1-3.

About the public grief altar: can anybody help me hold this body
deadbird
the film will offer instructions to engage the public grief altar, called can anybody help me hold this body, tended by emory and Joseph M. Pierce (Cherokee Nation) in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park from April 1-3. The altar is an invitation to the public to be in ceremony together, to strategize how to hold a person’s last wishes, and practice grieving the layered pandemics of this time. 

Instructions on how to create a grief space of your own in another city or in a safe outdoor location near you will also be provided. The deadbird website will archive the living deadbird project and a gallery of altar offerings from the public collective grief altar project. Writes emory, “let us awaken to the call to grieve as an essential act of embodiment so that we remain resilient and connected to our awakening bodies, and each others.” For more information, visit deadbird.land

deadbird was scheduled to premiere as a live performance in Danspace’s Spring 2020 season. In response to the pandemic, Danspace has collaborated with emory to commission a reimagined life for deadbird. 

deadbird and can anybody help me hold this body begins in New York, and will extend this spring to the cities of Philadelphia, PA; Portland, OR; and Los Angeles, CA. In each location, the altar will be tended by a local BIPOC artist honoring the land they reside on.

Special Thanks to our community partner, Prospect Park Alliance!

 


Accessibility:

The film will include closed captions. Automated captioning will be available for the live conversation. Please email seta@danspaceproject.org to request CART live captioning or to plan your site visit to Prospect Park.

Please note: Face coverings must be worn to visit the public grief altar at Prospect Park.



deadbird
was commissioned and is premiering at Danspace Project in 2021, and was a part of the Eureka Commissions Program by Onassis USA.

devynn emory is a mixed Lenape/Blackfoot transgender choreographer, dance artist, bodyworker, ceremonial guide, acute care and hospice nurse currently working as a COVID-19 nurse in NYC. emory’s performance company devynnemory/beastproductions draws from their multiple in-between states of being, holding space for liminal bodies bridging multiple planes of transition. Their formal dance training pulls on mathematical and mapped scores to support bodies decolonizing and bleeding human truths, opening peep holes and revelations for collective performers and audiences. They are currently working on a trilogy centering medical mannequins processing transitional mediumship. “deadbird” with its touring public altar can anyone help me hold this body will be first. Cindy Sessions and “boiling-rain” are to follow which are interactive storytelling projects with an elder mannequin holding a collection of grandmother wisdom. As a healer they have dual licenses in “western” and “eastern” bodywork and run a private practice sage-massage that offers end of life consultation, channeled counseling and hands on care modalities in conversation with thresholds. You can find their work at devynnemory.com and sage-massage.

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