nia love

Presently, nia love lives in unseated Lenape Nation known as New York. Their career spans forty years, beginning in 1978 becoming one of the youngest international apprentices with Ballet Nacional de Cuba. love received a BFA in Theater Directing and pre-Medicine from Howard University and an MFA in Choreography from Florida State University, and in 1996 studied Butoh and toured with Japanese Butoh master Min Tanaka, and received the honorary Fulbright Fellow in 2002-03. love has numerous awards and honors including a Bessie Award for Most Outstanding Performer on behalf of Skeleton Architecture, a CUNY Incubator Grant, the NYLA/Suitcase Fund, Alvin Ailey’s New Directions Lab Choreographer Award, Movement Research Artist-in-Residence and Movement Research Exchange Guest Artist/Lecturer at UCLA, and the CUNY Dance Initiative, to name a few. love is presently an Urban Bush Women 2019-20 Choreographic Center Initiative Fellow, a recipient of a 2020 MAP Fund, 2020-21 Guest Artist at Bryn Mawr College, Brooklyn Arts Exchange AIR co-advisor, and NYLA Fresh Tracks Advisor. A recipient of the 2019 Gibney Presents Residency and Gibney|DiP, love presently serves as an Assistant Professor Adjunct at Queens College and New School|Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts.

UBW Partnership Fellow | May 18 - 28, 2022


As the third artist in an ongoing partnership with Urban Bush Women’s Choreographic Center Initiative Florida State University School of Dance MFA alumna nia love came to MANCC for the first time following a postponement due to COVID-19. (love follows prior UBW partnership artists Marjani Forte-Saunders in 2018, and Ananya Chatterjea in 2019 and 2020.)

Love came into residence with several collaborators to develop UNDERcurrents, a continuation within and fresh departure from love’s long-term project, g1(host):lostatsea. A serial, multi-media, interactive performance and research platform, g1(host):lostatsea marks her continuous engagement with the memory and “afterlives” of transatlantic slavery. The project pivots on this fundamental query: what remains of the Middle Passage as force, gesture, and affect?

Building on these conceptual concerns, UNDERcurrents invites audiences to probe the seam between catastrophic history and quotidian memory and tend to the textures of kinship bonds and generational care. These processes are explored through two primary thematic elements: water and doors. The point of departure for captive Africans into the middle passage is described as “the door of no return.” Conjuring the continual resonance of this world making and breaking threshold, this project’s presentation will be structured as an immersive and participatory audience experience through a performance installation.
While in residence, love and her collaborators shot footage along the shorelines and out at sea, with free dives off the coast of Cape San Blas, near the site where the ashes of her father, former FSU Department of Art Professor and famed metalworker and sculptor, Ed Love, had been ceremonially spread. In her return to the waters of the Gulf coast and to Tallahassee, love revisits the legacy of her father and family specific to the region, in addition to the history of the region’s Black communities.

love and filmmaker Rhonda Haynes worked with an FSU School of Communication graduate student and a recent alumna to collect footage in a variety of different techniques for both 360-degree and conventional filming methods. The second half of the residency was then spent in Tallahassee, where they edited the footage remotely with videographer and editor Aiden Un, and investigated different methods of presentation of the work as an installation through a 360-degree projection dome in addition to experiments with projection in gallery spaces at the Museum of Fine Art (MoFA) at FSU.  While working with the 360 dome, love shared her work with several members of the FSU and Tallahassee community including those with ties to her father.

love’s residency was made possible in partnership with Urban Bursh Women Choreographic Center Initiative’s (CCI) Choreographic Fellowship program. This partnership is funded, in part, by the Mellon Foundation.


  • nia love and Makeda Lily Love-Roney at Cape San Blas
  • Love-Roney and love at Cape San Blas
  • Rhonda Haynes, love, and Love-Roney at Cape San Blas
  • Haynes films love and Love-Roney at Cape San Blas
  • Love-Roney and love rehearse at Cape San Blas
  • Haynes films love with Production Assistant and recent FSU alumna Chloe Mueller
  • Love-Roney rehearses at Cape San Blas
  • love rehearses at Cape San Blas
  • Haynes films Love-Roney and love at Cape San Blas with Production Assistant Ashlee Hubert
  • Hubert and Haynes films Love-Roney and love at Cape San Blas
  • love rehearses with projections at Florida State University's Museum of Fine Arts
  • love rehearses with projections at Florida State University's Museum of Fine Arts
  • love rehearses with projections at Florida State University's Museum of Fine Arts
  • love rehearses with projections at Florida State University's Museum of Fine Arts
  • love rehearses with projections at Florida State University's Museum of Fine Arts
  • love rehearses with projections in a 360 projection dome
  • love presents in the 360 dome
  • Videographer and Editor Aidan Un meets over Zoom to discuss 360 projection techniques
  • love interviewed on Landis Green
  • love poses with her father Ed Love's sculpture in FSU's Ed Love Sculpture Garden

Collaborators in Residence: Makeda Lily Love-Roney [Movement Artist], Aidan Un [Filmmaker/Editor - working remotely], Rhonda Haynes [Filmaker/Director]

Featured Artist

Faye Driscoll

February 22 - 24
Carolina Performing
Arts, UNC Chapel Hill


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