Land/escapes as a collaboration with J Dellecave. Dellecave and I first performed Land/escapes at AUNTS x Beach Sessions Rockaway Edition on August 25 and 26, 2018 —several blocks from the ocean in Queens, NY. Land/escapes investigates questions personal and collective about relationships to land, displacement, and decolonization. A two hour-long durational improvisation, Dellecave and I move through the performance site in slow-motion, wearing sculptural costumes that help us disappear into the scenery. Holding a small speaker, our movement is accompanied by amplified nature sounds that seem to emanate from our bodies. An altered sense of time and space in this piece prompts a heightened awareness of spatial and architectural detail around us. A contemplative performance, Land/escapes nods towards the transformation of time, space, and place.
As artists, Dellecave and I carry embodied questions in this improvisation: How do we as performers acknowledge that space is NOT empty, NOT blank, NOT uninhabited, but instead filled with a vast array of histories and presences (including those pleasant, unpleasant, ambiguous, and/or unknown)? How can we engage with the historical, geographical, and visual complexities of landscape without simply demanding that the focus be our individual bodies? Who are in the places we perform this piece as settler-colonial immigrants? How do anti-oppression and decolonizing frameworks intersect with or disrupt somatic intelligence? How do we bring our bodies’ non-central nervous system’s knowings into conversation with social and political issues?
Land/escapes was featured in a New York Times write up “Taking a Dance Vacation at Rockaway.”