Conversations Without Walls: Jasmine Hearn & Jo Stewart – Danspace Project
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Conversations Without Walls: Jasmine Hearn & Jo Stewart

Jasmine, a black femme with brown skin and shaved head, looks straightforward.
Jasmine Hearn by Hayim Herron. Jo Stewart by Jonathan Herrera Soto.

Livestream: Saturday, October 24 at 12pm ET


YouTube link will be sent to registrants on Saturday morning prior to the livestream, and will be posted on our website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (@DanspaceProject).

Choreographer and performer, Jasmine Hearn, joins poet and theater-maker, Jo Stewart, in a conversation that frames remembering as a practice of making and conjuring worlds. The two will discuss how each, in their own distinct bodies of work and in their ongoing collaborations, activate the double function of memory: to recall other realms-pasts-voices-spirit as well as “prepare community for the future.” 

This Conversation Without Walls, facilitated by Associate Curator, Public Engagement, Seta Morton, will hinge on what it might mean to invent memory and to keep memory, as the artists endeavor to record, score, and notate aliveness in performance for personal and institutional archives. Hearn will elaborate on their methodology of remembering and recording their work in a wide range of overlapping modalities, an approach they developed while in collaboration with their grandmother, Claudette Johnson. Stewart will discuss resisting the historic task of dance notation while writing a performance score in verse—a response to Hearn’s virtual work, Pleasure Memory, presented as part of the exhibition Black Women as/and the Living Archive curated by Tsedaye Makonnen. This Conversation Without Walls will find these artists during a shared residency hosted by Brown Arts Initiative at Brown University as they continue their embodied and collaborative research into the potential of memory and its twin, the archive.

The CWW digital series are pre-recorded and will be streamed on YouTube and archived on the Danspace Project online Journal. More about Conversations Without Walls

Accessibility: This program will be captioned.

Jasmine Hearn is from the land of the Karankawa and Atapake people, now known as Houston, TX. A curator, director, choreographer, organizer, teaching artist, and a 2017 Bessie award winning performer, she is currently a company member with Urban Bush Women and a 2019 Jerome Foundation Jerome Hill Fellow. Jasmine also creatively collaborates with Alisha B. Wormsley, Vanessa German, Holly Bass, Jennifer Nagle Myers, and Solange Knowles.

Jo Elizabeth Stewart is a poet and theater maker. She uses a combination of gesture, voice, and text to make performance that investigates entrapment, borders, and freedom. Using poetic texts as a model, her performance works diverge from linear storytelling traditions. Poetic devices acquire concrete dimensions: em-dashes are rendered as barriers, enjambed lines as windows. From the architecture of each story emerges spaces of captivity and the possibility of freedom. She looks to the dead, unborn, flora, and animal life as guides and protagonists in these stories. By asking these beings to speak through her work, she strives to free them from objecthood, thereby freeing herself from objectification and offering the radical imagining of a borderless world. Jo was a recent member of Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble, rehearsing and touring Cellular Songs from 2017-2019. Stewart is currently a cross-disciplinary MFA candidate in the Literary Arts program at Brown University.

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