STREB Extreme performing FORCES
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, filmmaker Catherine Gund spoke with choreographer Elizabeth Streb (2000 Performing Arts) about their new film “Born to Fly,” the human condition and making every breath count. The following is an edited excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Catherine Gund: So, I’m Catherine Gund. I just made a movie called Born To Fly: Elizabeth Streb vs. Gravity, which premieres at Film Forum in New York on September 10. I’m here with the one and only Elizabeth Streb, and the two of us are going to have a conversation about what it was like to make the movie, why we did it, what we think it achieved—or didn’t achieve—and what people might get out of it. But I think we should just start with what maybe you thought, at the very beginning, about the idea of making a movie, having a movie made. What did you imagine it might be? Because I know, no matter what your answer is, it was not what it ended up being.
Elizabeth Streb: Well, for one, I was extremely excited and inspired because I know that you were around STREB and SLAM [Streb’s school and creative center], both with your children and yourself for years and years and years, so it wasn’t someone coming in that I didn’t know from the outside. I felt that you would have the worm’s eye view, the eagle’s eye view, the human eye view straight on, from the bottom up, from the top down. And I completely trusted that however you saw the story of STREB leading up to the London Olympics [where Streb staged public performances on London landmarks], I completely trusted. And I don’t think I, in my mind, fabricated what it would be like, at all. Continue reading
Haruko Nishimura in Degenerate Art Ensemble performance
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, Seattle-based artists Joshua Kohl and Haruko Nishimura of Degenerate Art Ensemble (2013 Performing Arts) spoke with choreographer Amy O’Neal (2006 Performing Arts), also based in Seattle, about collaboration in dance, choreography and site-specific performance work. The following is an edited excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Joshua Kohl: We thought we could talk about a whole bunch of things because we have a lot in common, and a lot of differences in our work.
Amy O’Neal: And we’ve known each other in the Seattle community for at least ten years, or more?
Joshua: Probably more.
Amy: And have been each other’s work in various ways.
Haruko Nishimura: Yeah. And we do both music and dance and different media. Maybe we could talk about process or collaboration? Amy, I know you have five projects right now, but, generally, how do you start the process from you, and how do you spread or hand over or share to another collaborator in your team or in your project?
Amy: So, this next project I’m doing is called Opposing Forces and I’m working with a cast of B-boy break dancers from Seattle. And I’m working with DJ WD40 to make original music. It’s going to premiere at On the Boards in October. Continue reading
Penny Lane and Marshall Curry
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, Marshall Curry (2008 Film/Video) and Penny Lane (2012 Film/Video) connected over the phone to talk about their past and current documentary film projects. The following is an edited excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Penny: Hello! Where are you calling from, Marshall?
Marshall: My office in Park Slope.
Penny: Oh, you’re in Brooklyn. Neat!
Marshall: Where are you?
Penny: I’m in Waterville, NY, which is about five hours north and west of where you are right now. I moved to central New York this past summer for a teaching job. Continue reading
Cory Arcangel & Julia Christensen
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, Cory Arcangel (2006 Emerging Fields) and Julia Christensen (2013 Emerging Fields) connected over the phone to discuss DIY projectors, technological obsolescence, source code, and other issues related to their media-based practices. The following is an edited excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Julia: Hello! Great to talk to you, Cory! So you’re in Norway right now?
Cory: Yes, I’m in Stavanger, Norway… Are you in Oberlin?
Julia: Yes, I’m in Oberlin, Ohio. It’s winter term here, which is this wonderful break Oberlin gives, so I’m in the studio 9-5 right now, which is really good.
Cory: And what are you working on?
Julia: Well, primarily I’m working this project that is being supported by Creative Capital.
Cory: Aaaahh. At that point they should throw in a Creative Capital audio watermark. CREATIVE CAPITAL. And an airhorn. (Laughs) Cool.
Julia: Sound effects every time we say Creative Capital! (Laughs)
Tracie Morris (left) and Queen GodIs (right)
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, Queen GodIs (2013 Performing Arts) and Tracie Morris (2000 Performing Arts) met up at the Brooklyn Museum to discuss commonalities in their work. The following is an excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Queen GodIs: This is Queen GodIs, Creative Capital grantee, 2013, with the honor of being with Tracie Morris, a Creative Capital grantee from…
Tracie Morris: The first class of Creative Capital—2000.
Queen: I’m excited. I think there are a lot of parallels that I’m interested in discovering between our work, and some new things. I’m excited to see what she’s up to in this time and figuring out what we’re doing now. I’m going to start with what I call a “check-in.” I think that before you start an interview and start with asking people questions about their business, you want to see what’s on their brain for the day. This check-in is actually inspired by a quote of yours that I heard in an interview that you did with Charles Bernstein. You said: “Our subconscious says things that our consciousness has to catch up to.” I thought that was an awesome statement—a profound statement—and one that rings true in so many ways. So for this check-in, it’s just a quick thought, word-association based on this year in America. So I’m going to throw out some words, and you just give me one or two words—short, simple, off-the-top, first things that come to mind.
Janie Geiser (left) and Miwa Matreyek (right)
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, Miwa Matreyek (2013 Performing Arts) and Janie Geiser (2000 Performing Arts) sat down to discuss commonalities in their work. The following is an excerpt from their conversation. You can listen online to the full podcast, or subscribe through iTunes.
Miwa: We’re here talking about our work for Creative Capital. I just showed Janie my Creative Capital project, This World Made Itself, and I’ve seen a lot of Janie’s puppetry work as well as her films, and Janie’s seen my work. We’ve been in each others’ worlds for a few years. Janie was one of my mentors from CalArts who really inspired me to do performance, so it’s really thrilling to have this conversation.
Janie: Yeah, I’m very happy to be here talking with you in your apartment, where I can feel the presence. I see the collages that I’ve seen on your website. It’s really amazing. So, it might be a good starting place, thinking about your work as collage and how you combine images and how you went from still collages into performance and film.
Miwa: I actually consider the performances as a collage. Continue reading
Neal Medlyn and Jessica Almasy
Listen online to the podcast of this conversation, or subscribe through iTunes.
Neal Medlyn: Hey everybody. It’s me, Neal Medlyn. I’m here with Jessica Almasy from The TEAM at the Grey Dog and we’re going to talk to you about America for Creative Capital.
Jessica Almasy: Helloooo!
Neal: I was just thinking that we would get together because Jessica’s work is somewhat about America and I think that my work is about America, too. I don’t get asked about that very much. So, I wanted to talk about what it’s like to make work about America and have various experiences of people responding or not responding to it. I just wanted to have a wide-ranging and thought-provoking conversation about making work about America. [Laughs]
Jessica: Awesome. I’d like to start by giving a little context for where The Team is coming from. I’m part of the collaborative theater ensemble The Team, and we created a mission statement about ten years ago, which states that we make plays about America. So, if we’re succeeding, then that’s what we’re doing. Also, we had to create an acronym for legal purposes back in the day when we incorporated, so Team stands for Theater of the Emerging American Moment; so again, it’s right in the title. Our job is to think about what is happening right now. We gained our first traction in the UK at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, so people really read our work as information from America being made by young Americans. We were like a specimen for them. I think there’s a really big difference when you’re out of context than when you’re ensconced in your own culture. Continue reading
DD Dorvillier and Jennifer Monson in “RMW(a) & RMW,” 2010. Photo by Val Oliveiro.
As part of our “Artist to Artist” interview series, choreographers and long-time artistic collaborators DD Dorvillier (2013 Performing Arts) and Jennifer Monson (2000 Performing Arts) sat down to discuss Jennifer’s recent performance project, Live Dancing Archive, which she presented at The Kitchen in February 2013. The following is an excerpt from their conversation.
DD Dorvillier: To start, I thought I would take on something you wrote to me: “I am interested in the possibility of the body as an archive on multiple scales at once both temporal and spatial, human and adjacent to human—the particularities of experience as something that is impermanent and leaves multiple kinds of traces, and the relationships of transmission and reception in the sound scores, in the dancing and the audience.” This idea of the possibility of the body as an archive on multiple scales—do you think of this as a metaphor, or is it an actual practice, or is it something in between? In other words, what does the body as an archive LOOK like or FEEL like? Continue reading
Concept rendering of SuttonBeresCuller’s “Mini Mart City Park”
John Sutton: So, a little bit of background to start: I’m a 2008 Visual Arts grantee—one third of the group SuttonBeresCuller—and I’ve returned to the Creative Capital Artist Retreat for the last couple of years as an artist advisor and consultant. At this year’s Retreat, [Creative Capital staff] Lisa Dent and Jenny Gill introduced us and said that we had to chat because our projects have a lot of parallels and they thought that we could learn from each other.
Juan William Chávez: Great to talk to you! I guess we can start by just describing our projects.
Sutton: Okay. SuttonBeresCuller does a lot of different kinds of work, but our Creative Capital project, Mini Mart City Park, is an ongoing project intent on the creative reuse, revitalization and remediation of former small-site gas stations. Right now, we’re focused on a site in Seattle’s Georgetown neighborhood. Like many of these former gas station sites, it’s heavily contaminated, and ultimately we want to clean it up and turn it in to a pocket park, community center and public sculpture, and gift it to the city, for the site to become part of the parks department. Everybody’s really interested but nobody wants to take on the environmental issues. Continue reading
Lisa Bielawa will stage a musical performance at Berlin’s Tempelhof Field May 10-12.
Artists Lisa Bielawa (2006 Performing Arts) and Arturo Vidich (2013 Performing Arts) have more in common than meets the eye. Though they work in different media—Bielawa is a musician and composer, Vidich is a choreographer—both Creative Capital grantees are taking on community-building and place-making in an unusual space: the repurposed military airfield.
Bielawa’s Airfield Broadcasts project has two iterations, one at the Tempelhof Field in Berlin (premiering this weekend, May 10-12) and the other at Crissy Field in her native San Francisco (October 26-27). Each performance involves between 100 and 1,000 musicians, from student groups to professional orchestras, performing Bielawa’s hour-long composition in these massive public spaces for audiences both intentional and accidental. Bielawa incorporates musical composition and choreography to fully explore the sonic and spatial relations of each former airfield. Continue reading