Visiting Artist | November 30 - December 15, 2015
Jennifer Monson’s ongoing, modular dance performance project, in tow, foregrounds the experimental and addresses it as a category in constant flux, shaped by its political, economic and cultural contexts. Using creative processes spanning discipline, geography and generation, Monson and her collaborators have developed aesthetic, conceptual and procedural frameworks that aim to dislodge aesthetic positions and assumptions with regards to the experimental.
For the MANCC residency, Monson and her collaborators transformed the Black Box Studio into a horizon set-up - a simple anamorphic proposal that is open to negotiation by each participant. The setup creates an unusual space for observation and experience and foregoes the assumption that the horizon line is physically unreachable, has universal quality and dimension, or that it is continuous. It emphasizes the importance of each person’s point of view and as one moves through the space the horizon is comprised of constantly shifting states from fragmentation to unexpected continuity. New spaces appear in the perceptual field as the viewer shifts their point of view. The public sharing was an important opportunity for the artists to try out various scenarios for engaging the audience in the setup.
The collaborators spent two days filming within the horizon set up for a prototype experimental TV show inspired by Robert Rauschenberg’s piece for WNET in 1967, Linoleum. A tour of the WFSU TV production studio, led by Executive Producer Suzanne Smith, supplemented Monson’s ongoing research. During the tour, Smith revealed the history and inner workings of the studio while connecting contemporary issues relevant to web-based media production.
In addition, the collaborators worked on developing choreographic material based on test tide score new moon, which was created by composer Zeena Parkins from tracings of photographs of waves and tide lines from the beach - transmuting rhythmic material from the two- to the three-dimensional,from the sonic to the kinetic, and from the body to fabric.
Through in tow’s open-ended, exploratory research, Monson and her collaborators are continuing their commitment to create new hybrid processes that push both artist and audience to expand and reimagine approaches to the experimental. By acknowledging personal histories and geographies in the process, they hope to cultivate new modes of creative thinking.
in tow premiered at Danspace Project in New York, September 22-October 1, 2016, and as a five episode web-based TV series, launched in January 2017.
Collaborators in Residence: Susan Becker, Valerie Oliveiro, Alice MacDonald, nibia pastrana santiago