EQUATORS - Recently Commissioned - Work in Progress
First Showing Premiere - Presented by Geoffery Sheenan, creator of the InterACTion Symposium at - Housatonic Community College Theater Arts, Bridgeport CT | March 21st 2017
TNMOT AZTRO PERFORMANCE ART AND DANCE INSTALLATION LLC, will be premiering the newly commissioned performance installation EQUATORS in collaboration with Installation Artist David Borawski and Lighting designer Jon-Paul LaRocco.
EQUATORS is an exploration on environmental justice as a major form of racial injustice targeting how climate structures like The Arctic Circle, The Tropic of Cancer, The Tropic of Capricorn, The Equator and The Antarctic circle influences expectations for quality of life, order and territory. The Installation targets how racial divides are manifested in homes, neighborhoods, and geography due to impacts of zoning, segregation and gentrification.
The solo developed and performed by choreographer Arien Wilkerson is a conversation with territory. Arien Wilkerson developed his movement out of the essay “Operation Astra” written by Roland Barthes. The movement connects his form to the climate he is occupying. EQUATORS also feature 7 diagrams developed with designer Darcy St. Onge. The diagrams are maps of order used within the performance installation. The Diagrams represent Black bodies of land and White Bodies of land as well as homes in relationship to Arien and the climate he is occupying.
This creation has never been seen or performed before and will be a part of the InterACTion Symposium at the Houstatonic Community College Theater Arts Building at the Housatonic Community College. The installation will feature a complex design with 20 foot chains hanging from the ceiling, buckets, film, original lighting design and a score featuring hungarian composer György Liget, American composer William Basinski and African American musicians Dean Blunt, Death Grips, Gonjasufi and James Ferraro. As the performance takes place the audience will witness how destruction/development can be created, ruled, and deemed out of human control due to the “naturalness” of its nature.
Director, Choreographer, Producer, Performer: Arien Wilkerson
Installation designer: David Borawski
Lighting Designer: Jon-Paul LaRocco
Diagrams and art designer: Darcy St. Onge & Arien Wilkerson
Here is a quote of out the book Mythologies by Roland Barthes that helped shaped this work.
“Take any rank of order you want to restore or develop, first manifest at length its various inadequacies, the bullying it gives rise to, the injustices it produces, immerse it in the imperfections of its nature; then at the last minute save it despite or rather with the heavy fatality of its defects.”
Barthes explained that social institutions operate by showing the people its failings while at the same time appealing to them through those flaws and imperfections.
This same implication can take root in the principle of the environment we inhabit or try to establish order in. As you watch the performance think about how you feel when you see the performer enter each climate space. look at the conversation he has with the territory, think of the people who live in places around the globe that you wouldn't suspect has a heavy population of people of color or indigenous people of color.
Words from Arien Wilkerson
"I thought about the deaths of young marginalized black queer and trans folks the lands they take place in and terrorizing feeling of not being able to always get out to the other side. On the other hand the massive genocides of white bodies in climates around the world and here in the USA as well, the land they take place in and the tolls of that in certain climates."
"There was a lot I was feeling while making this work. I am so very happy to have had the chance to work with these amazing artist. With all the unrest emotionally in hartford ct and the north end and in my own life I feel the pressure of being an young artist living and loving in true turmoil at all times. This work is an ongoing conversation with territory it's our attempt to live in pure saturated thought.
"I know it's a lot yet I'm certain this on going investigation will get us somewhere making important art."
For more information on how to see this work, and possible programming, Presenting and Co Producing please Click the link here: Contact/Booking