Portraiture and Perception

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 to Friday, March 30, 2012
Urban Arts Space


Thursday | March 29 | 6 to 8pm

In co-creating this performance installation, MFA Dance candidates Fiona Lundie and Rashana Smith craft multi-sensory, interactive environments to highlight the relationship between how we gather information (perception) and how we create conceptual identities thereof (portraiture). Lundie and Smith use movement, video, and set constructions to frame, link, and present bodies in space, in time, and in relation to each other.

This exhibit utilizes dance, movement, and the body as a way to further understand our interaction with and interpretation of our world as well as the ways we conceive and retain this sensory, experiential knowledge. Performers and viewers alike will move through and act upon the gallery space in order to process the perceptual information. Therefore, it is the overarching interest of the artists to offer viewers an active, engaging, aesthetic environment to inspire greater awareness of their relationships to and agency within their everyday experiences, especially with respect to time, space, and human dynamics.

Local photographer, Candace Moser Stafford, joins Lundie and Smith by presenting correlating portraiture in the windows of Urban Arts Space.

Lundie and Smith will also serve as artists-in-residence for the OSU Urban Arts Space's monthly children's art activity, Art Explorations. The choreographers will lead creative movement explorations in and around the set constructions of the installation, and children will also make flipbooks to illustrate early film.

All performances and open rehearsals are free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be provided at each performance.

Performance dates:

Thursday, March 22, 6–8pm
Saturday, March 24, 12–2pm with Q&A to follow
Thursday, March 29, 6–8pm
Friday, March 30, 4–6pm

Open rehearsals:

Wednesday, March 14, 4–6pm
Friday, March 16, 4–6pm
Tuesday, March 20, 4–6pm
Wednesday, March 21, 4–6pm
Friday, March 23, 4–6pm
Tuesday, March 27, 4–6pm
Wednesday, March 28, 4–6pm

Artists’ Statements:

Fiona Lundie

"I am creating an immersive portrait of time and space: Second Hands and Square Feet, in two spaces in the gallery. I use the term “immersive portrait” to describe the installation because my intention is to convey information about these subjects as an experience. In this way, I use the term “portrait” to give the sense of a presentation of identifying or essential characteristics of something or someone, but since this term is generally applied to two-dimensional representations, I modify it with the term “immersive” because the space acts on the audience members three-dimensionally so that they are not confronted with these concepts but physically, bodily move into and around in them. In the titles of the rooms, I intentionally invoke our language’s temporal and spatial terminology that refers specifically to the body. Our most salient conceptual system for time is the clock, which has a "face” and “hands” (and a "colon" if it's digital). Similarly, US customary units of length, area, and volume measurements include a “foot,” "square feet," and "cubic feet." In this way and in having dancers grapple with these concepts in the spaces, I further hope to encourage a full bodily, sensory experience of the concepts of time and space."

Rashana Smith

"In Portraiture and Perception, I highlight the dynamic movement qualities of four separate groups of women with whom I have studied and documented this past year. As a choreographer who watches people move – whether they are dancing, playing sports or completing everyday tasks - I find my eye drawn to shifts in dynamic movement qualities, for example percussiveness, sustainment, swinging, suspending, vibrating and collapsing. In physical terms, these shifts create a spectrum of differences and similarities, from sharp, distinct contrasts to blended, soft likenesses. I see them as indicators of “movement personalities” that offer a portrait of individuals and the communities with which they participate. As a means of processing this inquiry, I perform solo choreography and present video footage that examines how each group has influenced my own movement choices. Viewers will be directly engaged with the act of seeing these qualities and shifts by controlling the rate, speed and direction of video. When doing so, the viewer may pause and consider where their eyes are drawn and reflect upon their own viewing choices as a means of understanding the personalities of individuals and the groups with which they identify."